Mark Twain. American author of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Autograph Quotation Signed, Truly yours Mark Twain, two lines on an oblong octavo sheet, dated “Dec./05.” “Taking the pledge will not make bad liquor good, but it will improve it.” Matted in beige and cocoa with a bust-length portrait photograph of Samuel … [ Read More ]
Collectible Signatures of Famous American Authors and Writers
In the field of author signatures, autographs and signed letters, there is generally a direct relationship between the popularity of an author during his/her lifetime and the availability of their signed pieces today. Popular authors carried on correspondences. People went to their readings and obtained their autograph signatures, and everyone saved their autographs and signed letters because they knew they were important. Authors who were not popular during their lifetimes, and were not appreciated until decades later, are quite rare in autograph signatures and signed letters today, because people did not recognize their names in the decades after they died and did not save their signatures and signed letters. In American literature, autograph signatures and signed documents of Nathaniel Hawthorne are rare, while those of Edgar Allan Poe and Herman Melville are in the very to extremely rare category. Henry David Thoreau would be, as well, if it were not for the fact that autograph manuscript pages of his were tipped into a specially issued collection of his works. These are the only pieces in his handwriting that are ever encountered. Popular writers of the same period – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, John Greenleaf Whittier, Oliver Wendell Holmes – are all readily available today in autograph signatures and signed letters. Emily Dickinson, the reclusive poet, is extremely rare in any autograph examples. Walt Whitman is less rare and was quite popular during his lifetime, but he has been extensively collected by specialized collectors who have given or sold their collections to institutional libraries.
Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) stands out as someone who was very popular during his lifetime and the decades after, and he is still very widely read today. Fortunately, he has always been a celebrity and his autograph signatures and signed letters have been saved and treasured, making them available to today's collectors. F. Scott Fitzgerald did not create as many autograph pieces as one might imagine, and he has been heavily collected by institutional libraries creating a scarcity of his autograph signatures and signed letters. Ernest Hemingway's typewritten signed letters are more available, in part because he carried on large correspondences over his very active life, and also because he seemed to genuinely enjoy writing letters. Margaret Mitchell, the author of “Gone with the Wind,” one of America's most famous novels, was killed in an automobile accident before she could write a sequel, and even though her letters were treasured, they are still very uncommon. J. D. Salinger, the reclusive author of “The Catcher in the Rye,” has always been very rare in autograph signatures and signed letters. Robert Frost, the perennially popular poet, has always been in demand and, fortunately, he was always very agreeable to signing pieces for collectors.
Please browse our selection of author signatures, autographs and signed memorabilia or you may search our entire inventory alphabetically, by name or by category.
WRITING IN HIS HEAVENLY BED Mark Twain. American author of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Superb oversize photograph, Signed, “Mark Twain, Jan./06,” showing the author at work on a manuscript, wearing his pajamas and propped up in bed. The black and white photograph, by Underwood & Underwood, New York, is … [ Read More ]
American author of The Last of the Mohicans. Autograph Letter Signed, J. Fenimore Cooper, four full pages, legal folio, [May 20-27, 1848]. To Messrs Editors [George Pope Morris and Nathaniel Parker Willis] of The Home Journal. The Battle of Long Island that James Cooper discusses in the present letter took place on August 27, 1776. … [ Read More ]
American novelist Document Signed, two and a half pages, legal folio, April 9, 1936. An agreement between Faulkner and RKO Studios, Inc. in which RKO engages William Faulkner “…to write, compose, prepare and/or revise a treatment and/or adaptation and/or continuity, with dialogue, of a story presently entitled ‘Gungha Din,’ suitable for reproduction as a motion … [ Read More ]
A copy of the final mimeographed shooting script, dated on the front cover, January 24, 1939, and stamped copy number 137. Starring Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Leslie Howard, Olivia de Havilland. Screenplay by Sidney Howard. Produced by David O. Selznick. Directed by Victor Fleming. 273 pages. Folio. Enclosed in a full blue morocco clamshell box. … [ Read More ]
“…COULD I SAY ‘THAT MAN’ WITHOUT YOUR THINKING I MEAN ROOSEVELT?” DASHIELL HAMMETT. American writer; creator of ‘hard-boiled’ school of detective fiction, which included novels that were made into movies such as The Maltese Falcon and The Thin Man. Typewritten Letter Signed, Dash, one page, legal folio, [Aleutian Islands], Alaska, October 23, 1943. To Florence … [ Read More ]
“IT WAS A DAMNABLE BIT OF FEUDALISM WHICH OUGHT TO BE EXPRESSED TO A CIVILIZATION THAT IS SUPPOSED TO HAVE LEFT SUCH THINGS FAR BEHIND.” BRET HARTE. American short story writer. Autograph Letter Signed, one and one-half pages, octavo, [Scotland], July 14, 1880. To M. D. [Conory]. “Many thanks for your flattering and most kind … [ Read More ]
American novelist; author of The Scarlet Letter. Partly printed Document Signed, two pages, legal folio, Liverpool, November 22, 1853. “…I, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Consul to the United States of America, at the Port of Liverpool, do declare that the facts set forth in the preceding certificate subscribed by A.F.W. Maxwell…merchants, are in my opinion just and … [ Read More ]
American novelist; author of The Scarlet Letter. Autograph Letter Signed, Nathl. Hawthorne, one full page, octavo, Liverpool, October 17, 1853. To Thomas George Morton, in Philadelphia, sending his autograph. “Your note, addressed to me at Concord, has just reached me on this side of the Atlantic. I take pleasure in complying with your request.” Hawthorne … [ Read More ]
EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY. American author. A Collection of twenty-eight Typewritten Manuscripts, twenty-eight pages, quarto, [ca. 1920 and earlier]. Three of the manuscripts are signed by Edna St Vincent Millay at the conclusion; one bears a holograph correction in the text; and in another she has changed the title. Accompanied by a typewritten letter … [ Read More ]
MARGARET MITCHELL. American author. Typewritten Letter Signed, one page, quarto, Atlanta, Georgia, September 26, 1936. To Almira B. Taylor in Hyde Park, Massachusetts. With the original envelope. “Thank you so much for your letter about ‘Gone With the Wind.’ I appreciated it so much. Authors write books and send them out into the world and … [ Read More ]
THE PUBLIC REACTION TO “GONE WITH THE WIND” MARGARET MITCHELL. American author of Gone with the Wind. Typewritten Letter Signed, one page, quarto, Atlanta, Georgia, January 7, 1936. On her name-imprinted stationery, to Dr. Mayos. “Thank you so much for your New Year’s note and all your good wishes. I had it on my mind … [ Read More ]
AN EXTRAORDINARY LITERARY LETTER ABOUT THE PROCESS OF WRITING “SHIP OF FOOLS” KATHERINE ANNE PORTER. American essayist, short story writer, novelist; wrote “Ship of Fools”. Typewritten Letter Signed, Katherine Anne Porter, three densely typed pages, on blue paper, quarto, August 18, 1958, Outpost Inn, Ridgefield, Connecticut. With corrections in her hand. To Mr. Clemons. “I … [ Read More ]
J. D. SALINGER. Typewritten Letter Signed, initials, one page, large quarto, [Windsor, Vermont], September 29, 1978. With original envelope. To Amy Kassak in Japan. With the original envelope. “Please excuse this late reply. (The truth be told, I’m usually later still. I’m the world’s worst correspondent, and I usually can manage about one letter … [ Read More ]
GERTRUDE STEIN. American author. Autograph Letter Signed, four pages, quarto, Azay-le-Rideau, France, [July 19, 1926]. On imprinted stationery of the Hotel du Grand Monarque, to Gertrude Stein’s friends, Allan Taumer and [Trututueff]. With the original envelope. Not a squeak out of you. Where are you and how are you, we are here. We came near … [ Read More ]
AN EXPENSE ACCOUNT FOR A DRAMATIC PERFORMANCE OF “UNCLE TOM’S CABIN. HARRIET BEECHER STOWE. American author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. An expense account for a dramatic performance of Uncle Tom’s Cabin, one page, small oblong quarto, October 14, 1853. The account, totaling 29 cents, is for sarsaparilla, cigars, apples, raisins, cork and cake for John … [ Read More ]
Black American educator; founded the Tuskegee Institute for practical training of blacks in trades and professions in 1881. Autograph Letter Signed Booker T Washington, one page, large quarto, Tuskegee, Alabama, March 13, 1897. On imprinted stationery of the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute, to a supporter, Ella Kent in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Booker T Washington, the … [ Read More ]
American poet. Printed Poem Signed Walt Whitman, one page, small oblong octavo, undated [ca. 1884-1885]. Entitled “Of that Blithe Throat of Thine.” “Of that blithe throat of thine from arctic bleak and blank/ I’ll mind the lesson, solitary bird – let me too welcome chilling drifts,/ E’en the profoundest chill, as now – a torpid … [ Read More ]