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Autograph Letter Signed

GALENA, Illinois) McDANIEL, Mary (?-?)

From Main Street Fine Books & Mss, ABAA (Galena, IL, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since March 11, 1998 Seller Rating 5-star rating

Association Member: ABAA

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About this Item

Early resident of this important Illinois lead-mining town, which for a time produced a high percentage of the world's lead ("Galena" is Latin for lead) and was supposed to become the great hub of the Midwest before Chicago's natural geographic advantage supplanted it; today's Galena is remembered as the adopted hometown of Ulysses S. Grant. ALS, 2pp (single leaf), 5" X 8", Galena, IL, 1857 January 1. Addressed to Miss Marcia Floyd of Courville, Maine. Writing on pale pink lined stationery, McDaniel pens her friend this chatty missive. She describes Illinois: "Well it is a large and fertile state, abounding in vast prairies, the principle production is wheat, maize, etc. There are numerous salt springs." Of Galena, she notes: "The inhabitants in the vicinity are chiefly farmers and are intelligent and enterprising. Most of them live in log houses. I am attending school at present and like it here very much." Oddly, she signs off "Peter Fling / Mary McDaniel." The significance of this pseudonym we have not been able to ascertain -- perhaps "Peter Fling" was a character in popular young women's literature of the day. Even more odd is the original envelope, which is present. A typical small 4 3/4" X 2½", in addition to addressing it, McDaniel draws a three-cent stamp in the upper right corner and draws a circular "Galena Ill Jan. 1" postal cancellation in the upper left corner! The 1850s was the early days of actual government-issue postage stamps, of course, but this humorous version surely was contained within another, larger second envelope. No "McDaniels" appear in the Galena city directories of this period, though with a large and somewhat transient population in a rural area this isn't terribly meaningful. This superb and evocative letter has been handsomely framed, the letter in one mat opening and the envelope in another above it, double matted in tan and dark brown and framed in a 1¼" burlwood frame, overall dimensions 10¼" X 18". It's double sided as well, so may be flipped over to read the letter's second page, where an attractive typescript of the entire letter is also displayed in a mat opening. Very early and very unusual. Bookseller Inventory # 31612

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Autograph Letter Signed

Store Description

Main Street Fine Books & Manuscripts has been buying and selling quality books, autographs and ephemera since 1991. We specialize in general antiquarian, first editions, signed books and autographs and documents. We are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA), Midwest Antiquarian Booksellers Association (MWABA), Universal Autograph Collectors Club (UACC) and The Manuscript Society.

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Association Member Members of these associations are committed to maintaining the highest standards. They vouch for the authenticity of all items offered for sale. They provide expert and detailed descriptions, disclose all significant defects and/or restorations, provide clear and accurate pricing, and operate with fairness and honesty during the purchase experience.
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Main Street Fine Books & Manuscripts accepts VISA, MasterCard and Discover cards. Checks are welcome. Institutions will be accommodated as their procedures require. Shipping is additional and will be quoted at the time an order is placed. Illinois residents will be charged 8.25% sales tax. Every effort has been made to describe each book and any defects accurately. If an item proves unsatisfactory for any reason, it may be returned pursuant to ABEBooks' policy. We would appreciate a courtesy cal...

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