Amelia Earhart Letter Archive, ca. 1930
I have a collection of letters, personal letters, from Amelia Earhart to my aunt, along with a telegram sent to my aunt and her husband when Amelia landed in England on her solo crossing. When my aunt passed away, she left them to me. My aunt's introduction to the aviation community was through her soon-to-be husband, Porter. Porter Adams was part of the early aviation crowd and when they started dating, she was included in that group. They were close enough so that Amelia agreed to be her maid of honor.
And did your aunt tell you any interesting stories about Amelia Earhart?
She had a great admiration for her. She'd talk about the last flight she made, which, we're still looking for her, and said that most of her friends were trying to discourage it because technically, she wasn't the most proficient pilot. She was just a great adventurer, tremendous courage, and just had that spirit. And they were concerned because this was a very technical flight. The navigators, everybody knows, had some history, you know, some problems. And the equipment, including the radio, we later found out, wasn't very good, so they were concerned that maybe this was a little bit too risky.
The great thing about this collection of letters is that it shows us what some of her other talents are. I think one of the things she had a talent for was public relations. She was a great controller of her image, of the message. And the other thing was, she had an incredible entrepreneurial spirit. You have an archive of about eight letters. There are four typed letters, four hand-written letters, and this one's written on the letterhead of the New York Philadelphia Washington Airway Corporation, which we learned from a later letter, she had a role as vice president of public relations for this. And in this letter, she's talking to your uncle about trying to get involved in selling swimming pools. "Let me know if you think it's a hot idea and maybe you'll know someone who can dump in some cash," is the letter. The other letter over here, this typed letter, is on Hearst International Cosmopolitan Magazine letterhead and it reminds us of her role as a journalist. She's the aviation editor at Cosmopolitan. And the other letters, too, indicate all of the interests and entrepreneurial efforts that she was involved in in promoting aviation. She's a very important figure in aviation history. She's a very important figure in women's history. Prices for her manuscripts have very much appreciated in the last ten or 15 years. Letters are more valuable than telegrams in general, although that's an interesting telegram on its own. I would value the collection with an auction estimate of $12,000 to $18,000. Very nice.
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