Lot 651: Francis Scott Key

RR Auction

RR Auction

2015-06-29 15:01:02

Lot 651: ALS, signed "F. S. Key," one page both sides, 7.5 x 12.5, January 24, 1825. Letter to James Stabler, in full: "I remember the old man mentioned in your letter & his story—He is in no danger from any legal measures that may be resorted to take the child away from him: & he did not inform me that there was any cause to apprehend that they would resort to force or stealth—though I can easily believe that those who would wish to take her away would not be scrupulous about the means. The paper & the proof he has, are quite sufficient there was no necessity for a more formal paper, nor that it should be recorded—The only difficulty was as to his wife's being the purchaser—But this I think is of no consequence, as she would be considered as his agent, & as making the purchase for him: & as he has been in possession of the child so long, they could not recover her from him by a suit—the Statute of limitations would of it self be a bar to their claim. But his only danger is the one you suggest—that they would steal the child away or get possession of her by force. To prevent this, I would recommend that a Bill be filed, setting out the facts, & praying to have his title confirmed, & an injunction granted to prevent the party or his agent from any attempt to take her from his possession. Judge Kilgour would, I am sure, grant such an injunction immediately. If our Court was not sitting I would draw the Bill for him: but I could not do it conveniently for some time, & I am sure that Mr. Forrest or one of the Gentlemen at the Court house would do it for him—If however he cannot get it done otherwise I will do it." Reverse of second integral page is addressed in Key's hand to "Mr. Jas. P. Stabler, P.M., Sandy Spring, Mont. Co. Maryland." Small separations along intersecting folds and hinge, chipping to edges, scattered toning and dampstaining, and paper loss to second integral page, otherwise very good condition. RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 453 Sunday, 17th May 2015 Estimate: $3000-4000
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