Autograph letter signed ("(Satchmo) Louis Armstrong)") to Erich Kauffmann, [Corona, N.Y.] April 5,1970

Armstrong, Louis

Publication Date: 1970
From Thomas A. Goldwasser Rare Books (ABAA) (San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.)

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Five pages, in ink. Erich Kauffmann was the partner of trombonist Franz Schuritz who formulated the lip salve that Armstrong discovered in the 1930s and grew to depend on. By 1950 : "Dear Mr. Kauffmann: My dear friend I always be very happy when I get a letter from you. You and your dear family are Lucille (my wife) and my dear friends. We love you all very very much. We are very happy that we had the thrill to meet you - the family and the Boss Man, Mr. Franz Schuritz. Real fine family And a happy meeting for Lucille and I. We both talk about you all lots and lots of times. I am well again and feeling fine after a long good rest which was what I really needed after traveling so much in show business. My doctor demanded that I do it. Now I am happy that I did. And with attention of my dear Lucille - all is well - I am well and everything is beautiful again. And I promised that I will never work so hard. (Moms) Lucille that is my (love-pet name for her) she joins me in sending you all our love and the best of happiness always. I have also recorded my first record. I'll send one of them to you as soon as they are released. Already it's a big seller here in America. So you must stay happy. And keep making your very good Lip Salve (Anzatz Creme) Louis Armstrong Lip Salve. If no more than make it for me. I'll buy all that you can make. Anytime that you should have a batch of Louis Armstrong's Lip Salve on your hands - just send it on to me at my home. Tell me how much it is and I will gladly send you the money. Now do you understand? I am very serious about this - I live by your Lip Salve and I hope that I will never run out. So what ever amount of Lip Salve that you have in your possession, send it to me. C.O.D. No matter how much the cost. Please understand me when I say these words to you Mr. Kauffmann. I am very serious. I am sure that you will understand the SINCERITY when I speak to Dick Cavett, who is a smart and sincere man. And he was with me all the way and believed every word that I said concerning Mr. Franz Schuritz and that wonderful Lip Salve. God Bless you. Goodnight from (Satchmo) Louis Armstrong." With autograph envelope, return address: "Satchmo, 34-56 107 St, Corona, New York". All five pages are written on the backs of a Harper's Bazaar reprint: "Lose Weight, the Satchmo Way!" recommending Swiss Kriss. According to Jasen and Jones's "Black Bottom Stomp," Armstrong's daily regimen included "a daily dose of Swiss Kriss (an herbal laxative that he swore by), a few applications of the lip salve made for him by a German trombonist named Franz Schuritz, some red beans and rice -- when he could find them on a hotel menu -- and several marijuana cigarettes." According to his obituary in the New York Times (July 7, 1971), "Mr. Armstong's greatest [health] worry was chronic leukoplakia of the lips, what amounted to a tough corn that resulted from blowing his horn. He used a special, imported salve to sooth his lips. 'If you don't look out for your chops and pipes,' he said, 'you can't blow the horn and sing. Anything that'll get in my way doin' that, out it goes. That trumpet comes first, before anything, even my wife.'" Ricky Riccardi, Research Director of the The Louis Armstrong House Museum was quoted (in the NY Times, March 2016) as saying the salve was a symbol of Armstrong's devotion to his music. The Museum still has 500 tins on hand. Bookseller Inventory # 27943

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Autograph letter signed ("(Satchmo) Louis ...

Publication Date: 1970

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

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