Profiles in History, run by Joe Maddalena, has announced that the personal correspondence, manuscripts and first edition books from the brilliant scientists that shaped and formed our understanding of the universe will be included in their December 18th auction, The Property of a Distinguished American Private Collector. Part I of The Property of a Distinguished American Private Collector will include 300 of the most important items in the collection. The entire collection has over 3,000 items and will be sold over the next two years.
Beginning today, a selection of letters from the collection will be on exhibit at DOUGLAS ELLIMAN’S MADISON AVENUE GALLERY, in New York City until December 9. For more information on the exhibit, contact Nancy Seltzer & Associates below.
Science and technology letters included in this auction are:
A Charles Darwin handwritten letter to his friend and colleague, John Gould. Darwin and Gould worked together extensively after Darwin’s second voyage on HMS Beagle and returned bird specimens which were relayed to Gould for identification. The letter is expected to fetch $10,000 - $15,000. Also up for auction is an extremely rare early edition of Darwin's earth shattering, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. The book is a foundational pillar of modern scientific endeavor and removed humans as the epicenter of the natural world. The book is expected to fetch $60,000 - $80,000.
A very, very rare, first edition of Sir Isaac Newton's, Opticks: or, a Treatise of the Reflexions, Refractions, Inflexions and Colours of Light. Also Two Treatises of the Species and Magnitude of Curvilinear Figures. The lot is expected to fetch $30,000 - $50,000.
A Thomas Edison handwritten manuscript and drawing of a "speaking telegraph.". The "speaking telegraph" would, of course, go on to become a modern day telephone. The present manuscript documents a milestone in the history of communications in America. Edison notes near the bottom: "Have tried it ok Edison." It is pictured right and expected to fetch $20,000 - $30,000.
An Albert Einstein handwritten manuscript in which he summarizes his Unified Field Theory, that attempted to explain gravitation and electromagnetism with one set of laws. Even today, the unification of forces is widely recognized as one of the most important tasks in physics. The manuscript is expected to fetch $20,000 - $30,000.
An extremely rare first edition, first issue in English of Galileo Galilei’s Dialogo, The System of the World from 1661. The System of the World, followed by the short but important Letter to Christina, was only the second work of Galileo’s to be published in England. The book is expected to fetch $20,000 - $30,000.
A Carl Jung handwritten letter dated September 5, 1927 to a Miss Morrison on his name imprinted stationery. Jung writes regarding the psychological problems of a hermaphrodite with whom Morrison is in contact. With no shame, Jung asks for payment for his advice upon receipt of the present letter. The letter is expected to fetch $15,000 - $20,000.
A Sigmund Freud handwritten letter, dated June 19, 1921 to his nephew, Edward Bernays. In the letter Freud outlines conditions and prices for patients, specifying that if a man is homosexual and wants to be changed, he would not accept him as a patient. The letter is expected to fetch $4,000 - $6,000.
A Wilbur Wright handwritten letter dated September 26, 1907 to E.W. Ellis, Secretary of the Annual Club of Ten Dayton Boys, Dayton, Ohio. Spurned by the U.S. Government, Wilbur Wright tours Europe in hopes of finding financial backing for the Wright Flyer. The letter is expected to fetch $10,000 - $15,000.