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  • The Roadshow Archive

    1950 Albert Einstein Letters

    Appraised Value:

    $20,000 - $40,000 (2013)

    Appraised on: August 18, 2012

    Appraised in: Seattle, Washington

    Appraised by: Devon Gray

    Category: Books & Manuscripts

    Episode Info: Seattle (#1716)

    Originally Aired: May 13, 2013

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 2 Next 

    More Like This:

    Form: Letter, Autograph
    Material: Paper
    Period / Style: 20th Century
    Value Range: $20,000 - $40,000 (2013)

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    Comment

    Appraisal Video: (1:17)

    appraiser

    Appraised By:

    Devon Gray
    Books & Manuscripts

    Skinner, Inc.

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: What I have here are two letters to my father, who wrote Albert Einstein, who was a colleague of my grandfather's, requesting that he write a preface to my grandfather's book, which was published after his death. And despite the fact that it's interesting, the publisher decided not to use it in the book. So it's actually an unpublished preface by Albert Einstein.

    APPRAISER: Of course, Einstein was not only a physicist, but he was also political. He was very worried about the war. He wrote to Roosevelt about his fears about the atom bomb and what German physicists were up to. He was also involved in some work on psychology, like this, and also wrote a book with Freud, an anti-war book. You have three signatures of Einstein, which have some value on their own. But more importantly, you have a little glimpse into Einstein's ideas about psychology. And he gets into politics in the preface as well, which was never published. So you have a piece of paper, but it's an important part of anyone's understanding of Einstein's thought that is unknown to the world. Even uninteresting unsigned letters go for about $5,000 at auction. A grouping like this, with an unpublished document, I would expect to sell for between $20,000 and $40,000 at auction.

    GUEST: Wow, that's impressive.

    APPRAISER: Yes, it's a wonderful archive.





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