On Wednesday of this week (Rare Book Week in NYC), Heritage Auctions will offer for sale a traveling trunk once owned by Mark Twain. Not only is it, as the catalogue copy puts it, “an astounding artifact from arguably the most important author in American literature,” but for us at FB&C, it is particularly gratifying, as we “broke the story,” so to speak, of its recent discovery and its owner’s efforts to research and authenticate it:
The story seems as far-fetched as Mark Twain’s tall tales. A man, who by day crafts and restores stained glass, happened by an old trunk at an auction in Kansas City, Missouri, in early 2015. The words ‘Property of Samuel L. Clemens’ applied in black paint caught his eye. A lifelong fan of the American author born Samuel L. Clemens but better known as Mark Twain, the browser’s interest was piqued. He purchased the tatty antique and began a yearlong quest to verify its authenticity. (Read the full article here.)
The bidding opens at $25,000, and we’ll be watching!
Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions.