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Lot # 222: 1925 William H. Taft Signed Handwritten Letter (PSA MINT 9)

Starting Bid: $200.00

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William Howard Taft was the only person to have ever served as both a United States President and as a Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Presented is a 1925 William Howard Taft handwritten letter, with signature. Taft was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1857, and his father was heavily involved in politics, serving in many positions, including that of the United States Secretary of State. Taft was a Yale University graduate, and he studied for his bar examination in Ohio, and later was on the faculty of the University of Cincinnati Law School. Taft, a Republican, was helped to become the 27th U.S. President through the mentoring of Theodore Roosevelt. Taft defeated William Jennings Bryant in the 1908 Presidential Election, and Taft served as President from 1909-13. He was particularly noted for his policy of "Dollar Diplomacy" while President, in which Taft expanded the United States' influence over the governments of a number of South American countries. He was defeated in his re-election bid when Teddy Roosevelt split the Republican vote by running as a third party candidate, and Democrat Woodrow Wilson was elected. Taft became the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and served from 1921 to 1930. He was known for legal opinions advancing civil rights causes. Taft resigned as Chief Justice because of poor health in '30, and died shortly thereafter. The offered letter is hand-dated as June 20, 1825, at a time when Taft was serving as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The letter has incredibly bold handwriting and signature, especially for being nearly 100 years old. Taft uses black ink from a fountain pen, and he lists a return address in P.Q. (Province of Quebec), Canada. Taft was writing to a "Mr. Harry Anderson, Esq., Cincinnati." Taft begins, "Dear Harry, I have yours from June 16th but the 3rd Judicial Code.... so glad to have it up here when it comes." Taft is very informal in the letter, apparently to an old friend. The Chief Justice talks about legal matters and then praises a seafood dinner that he enjoyed "the next week after your visit." The letter is chatty and relaxed, even though the stationery upon which it is written reads, "Supreme Court of the United States/Washington, D.C." The stationery measures 7.8x9.8", folded in half for mailing, but displayed unfolded. The reverse side of the unfolded letter is blank. The paper shows some minor darkening because of the passage of years, but the handwriting is wonderfully preserved. The letter has been encapsulated and PSA/DNA certified as "AUTO GRADE MINT 9." Note that the envelope in which this letter was mailed is available elsewhere in this auction.

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