A fascinating interview with Harold Holzer, one of the nation’s leading scholars of Abraham Lincoln, was posted just a few days ago by host Martin Willis on his site Antique Auction Forum. The interview is enlightening, has already garnered 158 downloads and is an excellent way to launch your year-long dive into the Civil War’s Sesquicentennial.
Traditionally, Willis uses his blog to introduce the week’s special guest. But this week he tells about one experience during an appraisal call that placed him just a few degrees away from Lincoln’s iconic American legacy:
“The descendents of Hugh McCulloch, Lincoln’s Secretary of the Treasury lived in the family home in Kennebunkport, Maine. They called me with some items for sale and I was able to visit their beautiful Colonial home in what used to be the center of town. This home was built for the family in the 1700s and still had a number of original period furnishings.
The walls on the second floor bedrooms were hinged and would latch to the ceiling to create a ballroom for the entire second floor. It was a fantastic early home. They had a number of McCulloch’s affects including his desk from the Capitol that was curved in design and would connect to other desks to form a semicircle. While I was writing up the consignment contract for the desk and other period furniture, I looked over at the wall and saw a one-page letter with the distinct writing and signature of Lincoln.
I asked if I could take a minute and read it. I do not remember the content of the letter as I almost fell over when I read the date. I asked them if they realized that it was Lincoln’s last day when he wrote it. They told me they had dozens of Lincoln’s letters in a safe and enjoyed hanging that one on the wall. Needless to say, I could not talk them into consigning it.”
Can you get anything better than that? Treat yourself and listen to what Mr. Holzer has to say about Lincoln’s life and struggles through the Civil War. The full podcast is still available at AntiqueAuctionForum.com.
(UPDATE) Over at NPR today stands a report that a Virginia historian has admitted he altered a presidential pardon written by Lincoln on April 14, 1864, to make it appear as if Lincoln had signed the document a year later — on the day he was shot by John Wilkes Booth.
You can read more : Date On Lincoln Document ‘Started To Look A Little Hinky,’ Archivist Says
More from Antique Trader
- Antique whaling scrimshaw over at Antique Auction Forum
- Celebrating Lincoln’s bicentennial at Lincoln’s Cottage
- Abraham Lincoln’s 1864 victory speech establishes new world auction record
- Happy Birthday, Abe
• Join the Antique Trader Ning network: Antiques, collectibles, irresistible objects and collectors
Visit the Antique Trader website and
sign up for our FREE twice-weekly eNewsletter.
the latest trade news, research, sales reports and expert columnists delivered to your home – for just $24.98 – when you subscribe to Antique Trader magazine.
• And browse the Antique Trader classified ads or place
your own online ad – FREE