Price: $3,750 English mathematician and mechanical genius; perfected a calculating machine, the forerunner of the modern computer. Autograph Letter Signed, C Babbage, two pages, octavo, Com[mitte]e Room, December 1, 1832. To W. Venning. “I regret exceedingly that on consulting my Committee they advise me not to have a meeting at Holloway on account of the … [ Read More ]
Signatures of Famous Inventors
Autographs, signatures and signed letters of inventors have always been very popular with collectors. American inventiveness and ingenuity at the turn of the 19th century was based more on practical needs than theoretical applications. Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin to solve a serious problem in cotton processing. His signed letters are quite rare, but are found from time to time. Signed letters and historical documents of Robert Fulton are much rarer and expensive. Not only did Fulton invent submarines, but his work with steamboats resulted in the development of the first commercially viable steamboat. In the 1830s, Samuel F.B. Morse experimented with magnetic telegraphy and in 1844, sent the world's first message over his telegraph line between Washington and Baltimore. Morse lived a long time and was very well-known in his lifetime, and his autograph signature and signed letters were saved. Much rarer is signed and autograph material of the inventor of the vulcanization process, Charles Goodyear whose patent is the basis of the rubber manufacturing industry. Elias Howe invented the sewing machine which revolutionized industry, and his autograph material is extremely rare.
Of all the major inventors, Thomas Edison is the most available in autograph signatures and signed letters. His long lifetime, and most importantly his fame during his lifetime, caused anything signed by him to be treasured and saved. The Wright Brothers’ first powered manned flight revolutionized the world. Wilbur Wright died eight years later, in 1912, and his autograph material is extremely rare. Orville Wright lived a long life and was very well-known, and his autograph signatures and signed letters were always treasured, but he is, nevertheless, quite scarce in autograph material.
Charles Babbage, the inventor of a calculating machine that was a forerunner of the modern computer, can occasionally be found in autograph letters signed.
Please browse our selection of inventor autographs, signatures, signed historical documents and memorabilia or you may search our entire inventory alphabetically, by name or by category.
Price: $8,500 American inventor of the telephone. Letter Signed, two and one-half pages, quarto, Northampton, Massachusetts, March 15, 1906. To Dr. A. L. E. Crouter, president of the American Association to Promote the Teaching of Speech to the Deaf. Also signed by three witnesses. “As I am about to sail for Europe, and since I … [ Read More ]
Price: $12,500 Anglo-Irish natural philosopher, chemist, physicist, inventor, and gentleman scientist. Autograph Document Signed, “Ro Boyle,” one page, oblong octavo, June 26, 1675. Also signed by E Anglesey (Arthur Annesley, 1st Earl of Anglesey). “We doe hereby acknowledge to have recd. of the Countess of Orrery our Severall propo[rt]ions of the ballance of this acco[un]t. … [ Read More ]
Price; $17,500 English cabinet-maker. Autograph Document Signed, Thos Chippendale Junr., one page, oblong quarto, June 4, 1766. A receipt for furnishings and services from Mr. Parran, made and done for Thomas Chippendale, Sr. “Feby 22 1766, To making a new Cloaths press shelf and putting edges round two other shelves and lining them with baize … [ Read More ]
Price: $4,750 American inventor of the phonograph. Autograph Letter Signed, Thomas Edison, in pencil, two pages, octavo, undated. To Fagan. “Call Patterson’s attention to the fact that if 90 grams of Lithia is right for say an A4 it is not right for any other size as we have found out at Lab. There is … [ Read More ]
Price: $12,500 American automobile manufacturer. Superb oversize Photograph, showing Ford examining an automobile engine, signed and inscribed to “Mrs. Cameron” in the light lower portion. The black & white photograph measures 11 inches wide by 14 inches high. Henry Ford’s aversion to farm work and his interest in mechanical things, caused him to leave home … [ Read More ]
Price: $13,500 American inventor and engineer; built the steamboat Clermont. Autograph Document Signed, one page, small octavo, Georgetown, August 15, 1808. Fulton orders The Bank of Columbia to “Pay the bearer six dollars.” A very fine example. Framed in beige, terra cotta and gilt, with an engraved portrait of Robert Fulton. Framed dimensions: 11 inches … [ Read More ]
Price: $8,750 French physician who invented the beheading machine which was employed during the French Revolution. Document Signed, Guillotin President, as President of the Committee of Health, full page, legal folio, Paris, November 23, 1790. Concerning a request that Dr. le Doyene be given an assistant. Fine condition. Matted in tan and maroon, with a … [ Read More ]
Price: $20,000 American artist and inventor of the telegraph. Sketch, in pencil, one page, irregular small octavo sheet pasted onto a quarto sheet, . Morse has drawn the face of a bearded man, wearing a cap, below which is an Autograph Note of Winfield Scott’s Chief of Staff, B[enjamin] B. French, signed with initials: “Pencil … [ Read More ]
Price: $9,500 Russian-born American aeronautical engineer, Igor Sikorsky; developed the helicopter. A collection of two contracts and five typewritten letters signed, as well as five documents and 26 letters, typewritten and carbon copies of letters, memos and financial papers, all concerning the publication of his book, The Story of the Winged-S, and its revised editions, … [ Read More ]
Price: $12,500 English pioneer in photography; in 1839 invented and described “photogenic drawing”, contemporaneously with the invention of the daguerreotype; process later improved and known as the calotype, or Talbotype process; discovered method of instantaneous photography ; with Rawlinson and Hincks, one of the earliest to decipher cuneiform inscriptions of Nineveh. Autograph Letter Signed, H.F. … [ Read More ]
Price: $7,500 American inventor and industrialist; chiefly responsible for the adoption of alternating current for electric power transmission in the United States. Autograph Letter Signed, Geo. Westinghouse Jr, four pages, octavo, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 11, [1880s]. On his monogrammed stationery, to his mother, Mrs. Emeline Westinghouse in Schenectady, New York. With the original envelope. “I … [ Read More ]
Price: $15,000 American aviation pioneer. Typewritten Letter Signed, one page, quarto, Dayton, Ohio, December 21, 1937. On his name-imprinted stationery, to Henry Ford in Dearborn, Michigan. “Please accept my thanks for your telegram of greetings and congratulations on the thirty-fourth anniversary of our first flight.” The Wright brothers made history’s first powered, sustained, and controlled … [ Read More ]
Price: $12,500 American aviation pioneer. Typewritten Letter Signed Orville Wright, one page, quarto, Dayton, Ohio, April 3, 1938. On his name-imprinted stationery, to Fred L. Black at the Edison Institute in Dearborn, Michigan. “I received this morning, Sunday, the following cable from Mr. Brewer: ‘I find your kindness irresistible. Sailing Europa, Thursday, arriving New York, … [ Read More ]