EAST DENNIS, Mass. — A copy of the ‘Reynolds Pamphlet’ will go up for auction Wednesday, Oct. 18. The historic document may not seem familiar, but the hit Broadway play Hamilton is bringing it into the spotlight. In the pamphlet, Alexander Hamilton admits to his scandalous affair with Maria Reynolds and to being blackmailed by her husband. The pamphlet is one of the more than 500 lots Eldred’s is presenting at auction. The items are from the Dan Schofield Collection of Political Memorabilia.
The auction will begin at 10 a.m. EDT. It will take place at Eldred’s, located at 1483 Route 6A, in East Dennis, Massachusetts. On-site, telephone, and absentee bidding options are available, as well as Internet bidding via Invaluable.com.
Exhaustive Research Surrounds Collection
Schofield, who passed away earlier this year, was a passionate and respected collector of political memorabilia. He is the co-author of “The Broadsides of the Dorr Rebellion”. He also taught history in the Stonington, Conn., school district for 35 years. His collection, dating from the 18th through the 20th Century, includes rare pamphlets, ballots, tickets, and broadsides. It also features campaign buttons and songbooks, sermons, and Thomas Dorr-related memorabilia.
“During his many years of teaching American History, Dan made his classroom ‘come to life’ with his collection of interesting trivia and political artifacts,” said his sister-in-law Elizabeth Schofield in an introduction to the auction catalog. “As his love of teaching kindled, so did his interest in political collecting. His attention to detail is evident as one peruses his collection. Not much could stop him if he saw a listing of some item he really wanted for his collection. Fellow collectors consider him to have been ‘one of the best’.”
Beyond Hamilton Memorabilia
In addition to the Hamilton-related ‘Reynolds Pamphlet,’ which has an estimate of $1,500 to $2,000, anticipated top lots include Daniel Webster’s Presidential nomination papers from the election of 1852, estimated at $2,000 to $3,000, an 1884 ballot for the National Equal Rights Party, which lists women as candidates for President and Vice President (nearly 40 years before women got the right to vote), estimated at between $1,000 and $1,500, and an ax-shaped “Railsplitters” campaign sign, carrying an estimate of $800 to $1,200. Other notable items include a satirical Abraham Lincoln business card, a large group of Eisenhower material and an Andrew Jackson broadside “The Hero’s Reward. Jackson is Coming” with an image of a hangman’s noose and gallows.
“So many items in the Collection are incredibly rare and the only other copies that exist are in the Library of Congress,” states Joshua Eldred, President of Eldred’s. “It’s been an honor – and quite the history lesson – to handle these items. Dan spent nearly his whole life collecting, and the depth and breadth of material he acquired is exceptional.”
Atypical Rebellion Cartoon
Items of the Dorr Rebellion are of particular interest. The Rebellion was an attempt by the middle
class to force broader democracy in Rhode Island, which, in 1841, still only allowed property owners to vote and had not adopted a Constitution. Under the leadership of Thomas Wilson Dorr, the “People’s Party” adopted a state constitution and elected Dorr as Governor, while the Whig party, which controlled the state General Assembly, adopted its own constitution and elected Samuel Ward King as governor. After both claiming to be the legitimate official, King declares martial law and Dorr’s supporters take up arms, which sets off a six-week civil war in the state.
Items pertaining to this peculiar moment of New England history include a rare political cartoon supporting the Dorr Rebellion, with an estimate of $1,000 to $1,500, and a two-dollar bill with an image of Dorr in shackles on one face, coming to auction with an estimate of $500 to $700.
For more information, visit www.eldreds.com or call 508-385-3116.
Enjoy a clip from the Broadway play Hamilton….