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Note: I'll be traveling this month and over the next few months so anything that youmay purchase, it will be shipped out within 10 business days.
This is quite a find in two ways: First, it's a very nice Charles Dickens autograph. Second, it was authenticated by none other than Charles Hamilton. I've included some info. below and I invite you to also research his information! Charles Hamilton was one of the first autograph authenticators and he invented the term"philography"- (Charles Hamilton 1914-1996).
His catalogs alone sell for $200-$350 at sale and here is an autograph with his certificate of authenticity included on the reverse side!
Be sure to check out my other autographs and vintage baseball items listed.
Charles Hamilton (handwriting expert)From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Charles Hamilton(1914– December 11, 1996) was apaleographer, handwriting expert and author of historical works. He invented the term "philography" as another term for his profession. He is the author of a number of books on this topic. He was also an autograph dealer. He died inNew York Cityat the age of 82.1Early life and studies2Career and military3Methods4Shakespeare5Books6References
Early life and studies
Hamilton was born inLudington, Michiganand grew up inFlint, Michigan, and then inLos Angeles. His father was in the lumber business. At the age of twelve he collected his first autograph, which wasRudyard Kipling's. Kipling was well known for refusing requests for autographs, but Hamilton, who had just readThe Jungle Book, included a dime for the return postage, and told Kipling that the dime was Hamilton's allowance for carrying out ashes from the furnace. He graduated fromBeverly Hills High School, as the valedictorian of his class. He then received a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in English literature from theUniversity of Southern Californiain Los Angeles. He was a voracious reader of literature and history.
Career and military
In the 1930s he moved to New York City to work in publishing. He enlisted in theUnited States Army Air Corpsin 1942, and duringWorld War II, he won abronze starand sixbattle stars. In 1945, after his service, he returned to New York City and began seriously dealing in autographs and manuscripts. He was called upon by the New York City police to consult in a number of notable cases, including the hunt for theZodiac Killer. In a notable case, he called the so-calledHitler Diaries, "patent and obvious forgeries." The British historian who was claiming them to be authentic eventually changed his mind and sided with Hamilton; the forger was unmasked and convicted in 1983.
He dealt with a great many historic documents. He once owned a note thatQueen Isabellawrote regarding the jewels she sold to pay forChristopher Columbus' discovery of the New World. He owned the first draft of theBill of rights, and a letter written byJesse Jamesbut signed with his pseudonym, Thomas Howard. He owned another letter penned byQueen Victoriawith advice for an unwed mother: "Let her wear a ring and no one need be the wiser". He is also credited with resolving a great number of questions regarding frauds and forgeries.
In his book,In Search of Shakespeare; A Reconnaissance into the Poet’s Life and Handwriting, Hamilton describes what is needed to be a professional handwriting expert: Knowledge of history and literature; as well as in watermarks, ink and paper; and above all in the handwriting of noted persons in all areas; as well as the ability to read difficult scripts, to accurately judge the authenticity of documents, and to recognize forgeries. According to Hamilton, accuracy is essential because a professional handwriting expert’s opinions will often be tested in a court of law. Talent, Hamilton states, may be partly instinct, but it will also be the “result of decades of daily experience in the examination of old style="margin: 0.5em 0px; line-height: inherit;">He is noted for his work in studying the handwriting and documents regardingWilliam Shakespeare.In his book,In Search of Shakespeare; A Reconnaissance into the Poet’s Life and Handwriting, he considers thatShakespeare's willwas written in the playwright’s own handwriting or "holographic". He also considers the handwritten evidence that three pages inserted into the playSir Thomas More, and the drafts of the applications for the Shakespeare coat-of-arms are also in Shakespeare’s handwriting. Hamilton presents charts and examples that compare the handwriting in each document.
Hamilton has said that in his Shakespeare studies his essays and ideas all begin with his observations of handwriting.He has drawn some interest, and also has his critics.Gary Taylorhas said that Hamilton is a considerable paleographer, but some of his views on Shakespeare are controversial and “too recent to have been subjected to thorough scholarly scrutiny.”
Among his 17 published books are:
Collecting Autographs and Manuscripts(1962)
- The Signature of America: A Fresh Look at Famous Handwriting(1979)
- Great Forgers and Famous Fakes(1980),American Autographs(1983)
- Leaders & Personalities of the Third Reich, Vol. 1(1984), R. James Bender style="margin-bottom: 0.1em;">The Hitler Diaries: Fakes That Fooled the World(1991)
- In Search of Shakespeare; A Reconnaissance into the Poet’s Life and Handwriting(1991)
- Cardenio or the Second Maiden's Tragedy(1994)
- Leaders & Personalities of the Third Reich, Vol. 2(1996), R. James Bender