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Parallel Visions: American & Israeli Documents of Freedom

Seth Kaller ,Inc. – Historic Documents & Legacy Collections 914.289.1776 •

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Parallel Visions American & Israeli Documents of Freedom Israel’s Declaration of Independence pledges to “uphold the full social and political equality of its citizens without distinction of race, creed, or, sex.” Thus, Israel’s founding document put in place ideals which took America over a hundred years to achieve. Israel’s emphasis on protecting human rights remains radical compared to many nations, especially in the Middle East. A declaration of independence requires an act of courage on the part of each individual who signs it—and of those who work to carry out its intent. In the letters and documents here, George Washington, Theodor Herzl, Thomas Paine, David Ben-Gurion, Chaim Weizmann, Golda Meir, and other visionaries fight to create and develop a nation. Documents in the Parallel Visions Collection show similarities in the ideals and struggles for independence and security of our two great countries, both aspiring to be “a light unto the nations.”

I hope that this “Parallel Visions” collection will inspire supporters of Israel, and perhaps create new supporters by reminding Americans of the ideals, dedication, integrity, and distinction of our respective founders. We look forward to working with a philanthropic client who can take ownership of this collection, allow us to continue building it, and work with curators and exhibit venues to share it with the public. —Seth Kaller

Only a third of Americans supported independence when Common Sense was published in January 1776, and very few Jews could conceive of a Jewish state when Herzl published Der Judenstaat in 1896.

“If You Will It, It is No Dream”: Theodor Herzl’s Der Judenstaat: Scarce First Edition Faced with anti-Semitism in Europe and around the world, Herzl realized that Jews could only defend themselves with the establishment of their own state. “I consider the Jewish question neither a social nor a religious one . . . It is a national question, and to solve it we must first of all establish it as an international political problem to be discussed and settled by the civilized nations of the world in council. . . . We are a people—one people. . . . We have sincerely tried everywhere to merge with the national communities in which we live, seeking only to preserve the faith of our fathers. . . . in vain do we make the same sacrifices of life and property as our fellow citizens; in vain do we strive to enhance the fame of our native lands in the arts and sciences, or her wealth by trade and commerce. In our native lands where we have lived for centuries we are still decried as aliens. . . . Oppression and persecution cannot exterminate us. No nation on earth has endured such struggles and sufferings as we have... If you will it, it is no dream.” The next year, Herzl convened the First Zionist Congress in Basel, Switzerland, with the goal of establishing for the Jewish people “a home in Eretz Yisrael.” Theodor Herzl. Der Judenstaat: Versuch einer modernen Lösung der Judenfrage. Leipzig & Vienna: M. Breitenstein, 1896. First edition, 86 pp., 5¾ x 9 in.  #22745.01  $15,000

Thomas Paine’s Common Sense – Scarce Early 1776 Edition Common Sense was the first work to effectively communicate the idea of American self-rule to a mass audience, attacking not only British policy, but the entire notion of hereditary monarchy. It was an instant success, turning popular opinion in favor of independence. “Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil . . . security being the true design and end of government, it unanswerably follows that whatever form thereof appears most likely to ensure it to us, with the least expense and greatest benefit, is preferable to all others. . . .” We recently discovered a March 4, 1776, advertisement for this edition in the Boston Gazette, placing this among the earliest editions of Common Sense. [Thomas Paine]. Pamphlet. Common Sense: Addressed to the Inhabitants of America, On the Following Interesting Subjects. . . . Written by an Englishman. Boston, Mass., Edes & Gill and T. & J. Fleet, ca. March – May 1776. 44 pp., 8½ x 10¾ in.  #21912  SOLD 914-289-1776 .


The Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel: Scarce First Edition of Israel’s Official Gazette Following the American example, the 13– member National Council appointed a committee of five to draft a Declaration of Independence. After debate and editing, it was unanimously approved. The first issue of the Official Gazette of the Israeli government contains its first printing. “We extend our hand to all neighbouring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and good neighbourliness, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land. The State of Israel is prepared to do its share in a common effort for the advancement of the entire Middle East. We appeal to the Jewish people throughout the Diaspora to rally round the Jews of Eretz-Israel in the tasks of immigration and upbuilding and to stand by them in the great struggle for the realization of the age-old dream— the redemption of Israel. Placing our trust in the “Rock of Israel,” We affix our signatures to this Proclamation at this session of the Provisional Council of State, on the soil of the homeland, in the city of Tel-Aviv, on this Sabbath Eve, the 5th day of Iyar, 5708 (14th May 1948).” [Israel]. Newspaper. Iton Rishmi [Official Gazette], Jerusalem, May 14, 1948. 3 pp., 8¼ x 13 in. In Hebrew. #22589  SOLD

This first edition of Israel’s Declaration can be included with the purchase of the July 1776 broadside on the next page.


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The Declaration of Independence – Rare July 1776 Broadside This July 1776 Salem broadside is the earliest known publication of the Declaration of Independence in Massachusetts–the birthplace of the American Revolution. Only six copies have been discovered, four of which are already in institutions. On July 2, 1776, Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee’s resolution proposing “that these United Colonies are, and of right, ought to be free and independent States,” was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. The delegates then began debating the formal Declaration text, which passed on July 4. Congress immediately sent the Declaration to Philadelphia printer John Dunlap, who produced the official July 4 broadside copies, one of which recently sold privately for over $20 million. This copy is nearly as rare and desirable. In Massachusetts, Salem printer Ezekiel Russell scooped the official Dunlap version with the present broadside. Russell based his text on the July 6 first newspaper printing from the Pennsylvania Evening Post. The Post’s text—and thus Russell’s—is closer in style to Jefferson’s original than the Dunlap version. The exciting news was printed here in a four-column format from the same type that Russell next used for his July 16 American Gazette newspaper printing of the Declaration. Considering the date the Declaration arrived in Salem from Philadelphia (likely July 13), and the time needed to typeset and print the four-column sheet before the American Gazette was published (on July 16), this broadside can be dated to July 13–15, 1776. The title, a “Declaration by the Representatives of the United States of America,” reflects the fact that the Declaration was not yet unanimous; New York’s delegates had abstained. After word reached Philadelphia on July 19 that New York had adopted the Declaration, Con-

gress ordered an engrossed (handwritten) copy on vellum with the heading changed to “The unanimous Declaration.” The “original” engrossed manuscript was then signed in August 1776. Our broadside, created approximately two weeks earlier, is one of the first publications of the Declaration of Independence. This is a rare opportunity to own an original broadside actually printed in July 1776 to proclaim our independence. [Declaration of Independence]. Broadside in four columns. [Salem, Mass., Ezekiel Russell (or John Rogers at Russell’s printing office), ca. July 13-15, 1776]. Sheet size 13¾ x 16¾ in., untrimmed. #21747.99  Price on request.

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A Study in Leadership: Collection of David Ben-Gurion Letters More than any other leader, David BenGurion was responsible for molding modern Israel. He headed the provisional government during Israel’s war of independence in 1948 and served as Israel’s first Prime Minister from 1948–53 and again from 1955–63. By the time he retired from political life in 1970, he had come to symbolize the tenacity and determination of the young Jewish state. This collection comprises approximately 40 excellent content BenGurion letters, dating from his time as Prime Minister and Minister of Defense to his retirement. Please inquire for a complete inventory. Here are a few translated excerpts: “It is our duty to establish some policy of rationing as the reality of the situation dictates. In this way, . . . This will allow us to support the continuance of army operations even though armistice agreements with Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan have been concluded. It will also help us to absorb tens of thousands of olim arriving at an accelerated pace with greater speed and efficiency.” [1949]. “Great Britain is interested in preserving and strengthening her influence in the Hashemite state in TransJordan. Therefore, she ignores all the incidents of murder and theft perpetrated within the borders of Israel on the responsibility of the Arab Legion which is sustained by British money and commanded by British officers. Only naive people can assume after the debate which took place in the British Parliament, and a few speakers expressed admiration for our enterprise of building Israel, that England’s policy in the Middle East will change.” December 8, 1953. “The goals of our youth in this generation have not ended with conquest and realization of our independence....By instilling in our country the human/personal freedom and


the pioneering spirit, we can show the way to all mankind.” December 28, 1955. “I really want to hope…the eyes of the Egyptian leaders will open and they will be able to see that the war path will bring nothing of benefit to them, thus they should accept the Israeli hand offering a real peace and an alliance between neighbors.” May 19, 1956. “Of course we are on our own (in this world), although we do have some friends here and there. By our very essence, we are simultaneously the most isolated nation and the most universal one . . . Due to this contradiction we have enemies as well as friends among the nations of the world. As I see things, let us not trust our friends so much nor should we fear our rivals so much.” January 3, 1956. “I have no doubt regarding the importance of the retaliation actions against the enemy, but after a while they are like a two-edged sword, they turn out to be—in spite of their success and the harm caused to the enemy— not worthwhile for the I.D.F. . . . The question is should we keep on in this manner, or is there another option— and could this other option be a preventive war.” September 1, 1956. “I read your letter and I do not agree. In my opinion, President Eisenhower sees the existence, security, and prosperity of America as dependent on the existence, security, and prosperity of all free countries—including our tiny state. I am convinced that only America’s worst enemies would desire that President Eisenhower act towards small free states as if they were vassals. Nothing would give more satisfaction and strength to the enemies of America than such a position.” June 16, 1957. David Ben-Gurion. Collection. Autograph and Typed Letters Signed, some as Prime Minister. Israel, 1948–1970. In Hebrew. #08639 Price and complete inventory on request.

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With “the Prize in View,” Washington Seeks “Material Change” in Leadership, Finance, and Government to Win the War For George Washington, 1780 was a terrible year, starting with a desolate winter encampment in Morristown, New Jersey, during the brutal winter of 1779 – 1780. On May 12, Charleston, South Carolina, fell, followed by the humiliating defeat of Horatio Gates’s southern army at Camden, South Carolina, on August 16. Four weeks before writing this letter, Washington watched trusted subordinate Benedict Arnold nearly succeed in handing West Point over to the British. “We are without money … without provision & forage … without Cloathing—and … without men— In a word, we have lived upon expedients till we can live no longer, and it may truly be said that, the history of this War is a history of false hopes. . . .” “We must have a permanent force – not a force that is constantly fluctuating & sliding from under us as a pedestal of Ice would leave a Statue in a Summers day. . . . Our Civil government must likewise undergo a reform—ample powers must

be lodged in Congress as the head of the federal union, adequate to all the purposes of War.—Unless these things are done, our efforts will be in vain & only serve to accumulate expence—add to our perplexities, & dissatisfy the people without a prospect of obtaining the prize in view.” Washington considered Nathanael Greene the perfect man to replace Gates and reverse American misfortunes in the South. The Commander hoped that George Mason, this letter’s recipient, and other southern statesmen would help Greene in his new command. Washington therefore reports on the desperate state of the army and offers a brief argument in favor of expanding Congressional power to prosecute the war. Greene proceeded to wage one of the most impressive campaigns of the war, finally allowing Washington to regain the offensive. George Washington. Autograph Letter Signed, to George Mason. “Hd Qrs, Passaic Falls,” [N.J.], October 22, 1780. 4 pp., 7½ x 9 in. #13449 $362,500

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Israel’s Declaration — May 1948

On May 14, 1948, “the last day of foreign rule,” the Hebrew newspapers in Palestine published a joint issue titled Yom ha-Medinah, “The Day of the State,” announcing the establishment of the State of Israel. “The General Assembly of the United Nations passed a resolution authorizing the establishment of a Jewish state . . . by reason of our natural and historic right, we hereby proclaim the establishment of . . . the State of Israel.” The front page contains the entire Israeli Declaration of Independence, signed that day by the members of the Provisional State Council, as well as an announcement that all the regulations of the British “White Paper” of 1939 were null and void.


Israel’s Council and representatives from a variety of other agencies met in Tel Aviv Museum Hall to sign the Declaration on their actual Independence Day. America’s Declaration was not engrossed and signed until a month after July 4th. Also, the names of the 37 signers of Israel’s Declaration were immediately published, whereas in America the names of the signers did not appear in print until the next year. Another contrast is in the visual record. There were no contemporary images from America’s Declaration signing - the famous John Trumbull scene was painted in 1817-1819. But the Israeli signing was documented in photographs (published here) and film. [Declaration of Independence]. Newspaper. Yom haMedinah. Jerusalem, May 14, 1948. 2 pp. Unframed. 161/2 x 22 in. #23011  $5,900

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The Declaration of Independence – The Stone-Force Facsimile The signers of the Declaration of Independence understood that they were not just putting their names on a piece of vellum, they were pledging to each other “our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” Only two men actually signed on July 4; John Hancock, as President of the Continental Congress, and Charles Thomson as Secretary of Congress (the only two names on the July 1776 broadside printings). After word reached Philadelphia that New York had seated new delegates and adopted the Declaration, Congress ordered an engrossed copy on vellum. With the new heading, “The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,” the famous signing took place on August 2, 1776. The unique signed manuscript deteriorated through handling and exposure. In 1820, Secretary of State John Quincy Adams, with the approval of Congress, commissioned William J. Stone to engrave a facsimile on a copper plate. The engraving is as close to an exact copy of the original as was possible at the time. Stone worked on it for nearly three years, keeping the original in his shop. Many still believe he used some sort of wet or chemical process to transfer the ink to create such a perfect reproduction, thus hastening the destruction of the original manuscript. In fact, a close examination shows that he left minute clues to distinguish the original from the copies, in our opinion providing evidence of his painstaking engraving process. Stone’s engraving is the best representation of the Declaration manuscript as it looked in 1776 when the Signers put their lives on the line to support it.

Declaration of Independence. Copper­plate engraving printed on thin wove paper. “In Congress, July 4, 1776. The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America.” Imprint at bottom left, “W. J. STONE SC. WASHn.” [William Stone for Peter Force, Washington, D.C.], second edition [ca. 1833]. 33¼ x 40¼ in., framed. Never folded.  #20728  $45,000 Another copy, folded, from Force’s American Archives. 26 x 30 in.  #22733  SOLD

201 copies of the first edition were printed on vellum, of which approximately 50 are known to survive. None are presently available.

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Weizmann’s First Letter as President-Elect “This is the first letter which I am writing since the news of last night has reached me....I must ask you again to be so good and impress upon the President [Truman] the necessity of two additional steps: first, the lifting of the embargo on arms in such a way as to permit supplies being sent to those defending the new State; secondly, a warning to the Arab States that they should stop their destructive and murderous attacks and withdraw their irregular troops and regular forces....Otherwise I fear the trouble may assume very serious proportions.” In 1948, Weizmann helped persuade Truman to recognize Israel and he was now in New York pressing the United Nations to support Israeli independence. Two days after declaring independence, the Provisional State Council elected Weizmann as Israel’s first president. The next day, in this letter, he asked Samuel Rosenman, Special Counsel to President Truman, to continue lobbying for American support. Chaim Weizmann. Typed Letter Signed as President, to Samuel I. Rosenman. New York, N.Y., May 17, 1948. 1 p., 8½ x 11 in. On Waldorf-Astoria stationery. #11773  $48,000

Henrietta Szold Offers to Help a Visiting American to “understand Jewish Palestine” “I hasten to assure you, that it will be a pleasure to me to aid Miss Byrne understand Jewish Palestine, insofar as it lies in my power to interpret our aspirations and achievements. The fact that she is a friend of Dr. Wilson’s is a recommendation of the first order, and that she has been introduced to me by you who call yourself a stranger does not militate against her. On the contrary, that in such circumstances you were willing to address me, I take as testimony to her worthwhileness, and for myself I regard it as a compliment. I shall try to deserve it.” Henrietta Szold was an American Zionist leader born in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1912, she founded Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, and helped establish schools, hospitals, children’s clinics, and welfare stations in Palestine. Szold moved to Palestine in 1920 and directed Hadassah medical and relief projects. From 1933 on, she directed Aliyah, which worked with young immigrants. Henrietta Szold. Autograph Letter Signed, to Rose L. Rosenberg. Jerusalem, April 20, 1934. 1 p., 51/8 x 7 in. #20721 $750


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Ben-Gurion Looks for Definition of the “Zionist Movement” Today Israel’s founding father urges the president of the World Jewish Congress to focus on the “burning questions” of Zionism—immigration— rather than on “the historic tale” prior to the establishment of Israel. “It is your duty to give every Zionist an answer as to what the content of the Zionist Movement is today, and what the difference is between a Jew who calls himself a Zionist and an ‘ordinary’ Jew who helps Israel, at a time when even the Zionist is not required by you to do more than an ordinary Jew. It is intolerable that, instead of receiving an answer to today’s ‘burning’ questions—those which concern immigration—your Executive is continuing to recount the historic tale that almost every one of us already knows, the deeds of Zionism prior to the establishment of the State.” Nahum Goldmann (1895-1982) was a Polish-born Israeli Zionist. Founder and president of the World Jewish Congress from 1948 to 1977, Goldmann worked actively with David Ben-Gurion towards the creation of Israel and coordinated the efforts of Jewish societies outside the state. Between 1956 to 1968, Goldmann also served as the President of the World Zionist Organization. He became a citizen of Israel in 1962, though he never took up permanent residence there. David Ben-Gurion (1886-1973) became the first prime minister of Israel on May 14, 1948 when he proclaimed the birth of the independent State of Israel. Prior to 1948, he had been a leader in the pioneering Labor movement and had headed the struggle for Jewish independence in Palestine. Ben-Gurion resigned from the government in 1953, only to be recalled to serve as defense minister in 1955. By the end of 1955 he was

once again serving as prime minister while maintaining his position in the defense ministry. He resigned permanently from the Israeli Parliament in 1970. BenGurion’s ideology was staunchly democratic and he was an ardent Zionist. David Ben-Gurion. Typed Letter Signed to Nahum Goldmann, July 18, 1955. In Hebrew, on State of Israel letterhead. 1 p., 6 x 8 in. #21300 $3,000

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Moshe Dayan Documents Relating to the Loss of His Eye in Battle While fighting Vichy French forces in Syria, 26-year-old Moshe Dayan was scanning enemy positions with his binoculars when he was struck by a sniper’s bullet, causing the loss of his left eye. These four items relate directly to that loss, and to Dayan’s return to the armed forces despite his injury. 1. Moshe Dayan Autograph Letter Signed, in English, 2 pp., [Jerusalem, 1941]. Dayan asks “the General Officer Commanding His Majesties Forces in Palestine” to reassign him to duty “although I have lost one of my eyes while on active service with our British Forces.” He attaches a typed report, with some autograph corrections. “During the disturbances in Palestine I served as a guide to the British troops....I do not wish to ask any special favours except that I shall be allowed to pass the medical examination. The rest I shall try and fulfill to my abilities.”

2. “Report,” in Hebrew, with full English translation. Dayan’s report on his actions leading up to his injury on June 7, 1941. Ink additions, some by Dayan. 3 pp. “I was responsible for the activities of thirty men (?) who were to operate in the area of Bint-Jneil – Iskandaroun. I was told that whatever uniforms we would be wearing, we would be considered (Members of the British Forces) and we would undertake the same duties and rights as members of British Forces. After receiving the explanation of the value and nature of the assignment, I accepted it willingly...from June 1 to June 7, my men and I patrolled the area allocated to me.... Upon approaching village...we observed the movement of French troops...The Australian Officers and their men opened fire over the stone wall...and I, together with two of my men, jumped over to the balcony...located about 1½ meters above ground level...I threw a bomb into the building through one of the open doors. After it exploded, we stormed the building.” 3. Typed Letter Signed, from unknown British officer to Dayan, October 29, 1941. 1 p. “You have been considered suitable as a candidate for this [officer’s] course. You must however, first enlist into the ranks at Sarafand and serve a period in such as is the usual procedure.” 4. Hospital Bill, Paris, France, January 28, 1947. 1 p., 6¾ x 9¼ in. In French. On “Maison de Chirurgie” [House of Surgery] stationery. The total bill was 12,389 francs for eye surgery six years after his injury. Moshe Dayan. Collection. Four items, Jerusalem and Paris. 1941–1947. 7 pp. #22981 $39,000


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As Jewish World Editor, Herzl’s Work “Becomes Heavier Day by Day” Theodor Herzl worked tirelessly to promote the founding of a Jewish state, organizing an annual conference and running a newspaper, but two years after the First Zionist Conference was held in Basel, Switzerland, the end goal still seemed very far away. “We did not have any room, the enormous Bank heading took up our space. That is the simple reason for the interruption fixed since. Why complicate matters. I succumb to fatigue. Work becomes heavier day by day. Fraternally Yours Th Herzl We cannot take on the special edition of your good news.” Theodor Herzl. Autograph Letter Signed. Vienna, Austria, April 27, 1899. 1 p., 5¾ x 8¾ in. In French, on Die Welt [The World] letterhead. #22791 $4,500

Herzl Appeals for Funding for the Sixth Zionist Congress “We urgently ask that you send your dues in today, that we might cover the money already paid out. Without your money, the Congress’ accounts for 1902/1903 will be out of balance and in arrears—and this is not the picture of our movement that we wish to present.” Just prior to the Sixth Congress (the topic of this letter), the Easter Sunday massacre in Kishinev, Russia, led Herzl to propose British Uganda as an emergency refuge for Jews in immediate danger. Despite money troubles, the Congress did meet, but the emergency measure failed. Many delegates argued that it would sidetrack the vision of a Jewish state. Theodor Herzl. Typed Letter Signed. Vienna, Austria, June 6, 1903. 1 p., 8½ x 11 in. In German. #20063  $3,000

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John Adams Hopes That “Religion and Learning Will Find an Asylum in America” “If all Religion and Governments all arts and sciences are destroyed the Trees will grow up, Cities will moulder into common Earth, and a few human Beings may be left naked to chase the Wild Beasts with Bows and arrows. Printing they say will prevent it. But it would be very consistent with the present professed Principles to destroy every Type and Press as Engines of Aristocracy, and murder every Pen and Ink Man as aiming at superiority. I hope in all Events that Religion and Learning will find an Asylum in America: But too many of our fellow Citizens are carried away in the dirty Torrent of dissolving Europe.” Adams worries over the survival of civilization in the wake of the French Revolution. In this letter to the secretary of the Northwest Territory, Adams moves the discussion from Native American artifacts to his fear that Europe could “cease to be what it is and become as savage and barbarous as America was three hundred years ago.” He had little patience with Americans such as Jefferson, who supported the new French Regime and its excesses. Adams’s prophecy about attacks on the press is ironic considering that he would soon sign the Sedition Act to stifle opposition to his own administration. John Adams. Autograph Letter Signed as Vice President, to Winthrop Sargent. Philadelphia, Pa., January 24, 1795. 2 pp., 8 x 10 in. #22034 $45,000

Ben-Gurion Calls for a Jerusalem Home for the Bible Society “Every spiritual idea, for it to exist and exert influence, needs a physical structure, too, a central home....The House, with its book collections and educational exhibits, will serve as a place of study for the lovers of Torah [and] as a gravitational center for residents of this country when they go up to Jerusalem, and to tourists from the Diaspora, who will be able to absorb in it the spirit of the Book of Books.” Building a permanent home for the Israeli Center for Biblical Research was one of Ben-Gurion’s favorite projects. He envisioned a compound overlooking Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives with a research library, exhibit and museum space, and educational facilities. Intended for the study of the Hebrew Bible, the research center would be the headquarters for the World Jewish Bible Society. Ground was broken on October 18, 1970, but the building was never completed. David Ben-Gurion. Typed Letter Signed, to Menasche Elissar. Jerusalem, “17 Kislev 5731,” December 15, 1970. 1 p., 8½ x 11 in. In Hebrew. #20230  $2,950


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Preventing a War Between Religious and Secular Society “The existing arrangement regarding the religion in the State is a compromise that was accepted in order to prevent a war of the religious against the secular and a war of the secular against the religious. That kind of war may seriously hurt the fusion of the Diaspora, which stands as a top priority of the State. The continuance of the compromise is dependent, first and foremost, on the degree of tolerance that people who hold opposing outlooks can show through a mutual love of Israel.” During the British mandate, rabbinical authorities were given control over all matters of Jewish religious practice. To avoid a potential “war of the Jews” and to win over the large, religious Zionist constituency, Ben-Gurion offered a written guarantee to maintain the “status quo” when statehood arrived. David Ben-Gurion. Autograph Letter Signed, to D. Z. Benat. July 9, 1954. 1 p., 6½ x 9 in. In Hebrew. #8639.41  $9,500

Kennedy Criticizes a Priest for “Attempting to Make a Religious War Out of a School Election” Congressman John F. Kennedy makes a powerful statement to a newspaper editor, criticizing the use of religion as a wedge issue, and reminding Catholics, who tended to vote Democratic, of the difficulties faced by Al Smith in his 1928 presidential campaign. “I think that the priest up there should be reprimanded by the Bishop for attempting to make a religious war out of a school election. And then they complain about Al Smith’s treatment.” John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Autograph Letter Signed as Congressman, to John Mahanna. Chicago, Ill., November 6, [1952?]. 2 pp., recto and verso, with envelope addressed by Kennedy. 22½ x 23½ in. Archivally framed. #21552 $7,900

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Menachem Begin Blames Ben-Gurion for Israel’s Political “Demoralization”

Future Prime Minister Menachem Begin, at the time leader of the opposition Herut party, urges the defeat of Ben-Gurion’s Mapai party in the election of the second Knesset. “In [Ben-Gurion’s] eyes there is no stable government unless it is his government! It seems that Mr. Ben-Gurion thinks about two possibilities. One is… Ben-Gurion submits his letter of resignation to the President; the President accepts his resignation but at the same time reaches the conclusion that there is no other Prime Minister except for the one that has just resigned, and Mr. Ben-Gurion who resigned continues ‘to fulfil his role.’ Till when?... The second option which is imagined in Mr. BenGurion’s disturbed soul is new elections … if in the second Knesset there is no ‘solid majority’ about which Mr. Ben-Gurion thinks, it is possible that he will propose to turn again to the voter, until … the voter is tired and says ‘let it be, we would rather have Mapai as a ruling party than have new and unexpected


elections’ … Mapai destroyed the economy.… If the nation wants to end the aggressive demoralization, it has to overcome Ben-Gurion’s accusations. The voter has to make sure that it will be possible to assemble a government without Mapai … BenGurion claims: there is no solid government unless it is my party—Mapai—who rules but the truth is that stability will only be reached without Mapai. To Mapai: ‘No and Goodbye’.” Despite Begin’s hopes, in the July 30, 1951 election, Mapai won 45 seats in the second Knesset and BenGurion continued as Prime Minister of a coalition government. Menachem Begin served in the first 10 Knessets and went on to serve as Prime Minister from 1977 to 1983 in the first government formed by a party other than Ben-Gurion’s. Menachem Begin. Autograph Manuscript Signed. Urging defeat of Ben-Gurion and his Mapai Party in the election of the Second Knesset. [Jerusalem], c. 1951. 3 pp., 5 x 7 in. In Hebrew. #22794 $19,000

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Harry S. Truman Reflects on His 1948 Proclamation Recognizing Israel In this 1970 letter, Truman writes to Benjamin Cohen that his proclamation recognizing Israel’s independence was handled normally, as “any document or statement issued by the President goes through a series of statements to make certain of its accuracy and clarity of meaning.” Actually, Truman responded only eleven minutes after receiving news that Israel had proclaimed independence. Secretary of State George Marshall and many national security experts had opposed the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine. But Truman ignored that advice and became the first head of state to recognize Israel. His original recognition message, with hastily added corrections, can be seen in the U.S. National Archives. Harry S. Truman. Typed Letter Signed, to Benjamin Cohen. Independence, Mo., March 25, 1970. 1 p., 7¼ x 10½ in. #21308.01 $18,000

Golda Meir Hopes to Dissuade Ben-Gurion from Retiring “Friends are telling me that you are considering leaving the government....I hope that the time is still ripe to dissuade you from leaving the leadership of the country...As we know, the country is only five years old, the ingathering of the exiles is far from complete and our neighbors all around us still want our lives. In my opinion, this is not the right time.” On November 8, 1953, Ben-Gurion submitted his resignation as prime minister effective the following month. He also planned to retire from the Knesset to work full time on his kibbutz, Sdeh Boker, in the Negev. As a result of letters such as this one, he must have reconsidered. He remained in the Knesset for the next 17 years. Moreover, his retirement as prime minister was temporary—he returned on November 3, 1955. Golda Meir. Typed Letter Signed “Golda Meyerson” as Minister of Labour, to David Ben-Gurion. Jerusalem, December 1, 1953. 1 p., 6¼ x 8½ in. In Hebrew, on Ministry of Labour letterhead. #22770 SOLD

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Einstein Threatens to Resign from Hebrew University “I shall not only resign from the Board, as well as from the Academic Council, but also publicize in the Jewish press in all frankness the reason for my resignation. If Magnes cannot be eliminated in the very near future, I shall also follow through with my resignation.” American philanthropist Felix Warburg donated $500,000 to the Institute for Jewish Studies (which became part of Hebrew University) with the caveat that American Rabbi Judah L. Magnes head the school. Chaim Weizmann, President of the World Zionist Organization, agreed. University co-founder Einstein objected, citing Magnes’s lack of academic experience and poor management style. Nine months later, Einstein followed through on his threat and resigned his position. Albert Einstein. Typed Letter Signed, to [Leo] Kohn. Berlin, Germany, September 20, 1927. 1 p., 8½ x 11 in. In German. #22048 $8,500

Washington on Filling the New Government with “the Most Suitable Characters I Could Obtain ...” One of Washington’s foremost concerns was opening up executive offices to people of talent and ability regardless of their wealth or station of birth. Rufus Putnam, Washington’s nominee for the important post of surveyor general, was the epitome of the talent he sought for the new nation. Even so, Washington expresses regret that he did not receive Carrington’s recommendation of another candidate before making his decision. “As it has always been my aim to fill Offices with the most suitable characters I could obtain,” Washington writes, “the aid of my friends to accomplish this desirable object has . . . always been required.” This approach was in marked contrast to the British system, which favored nobility over ability. George Washington. Autograph Letter Signed as President, to Edward Carrington. Mount Vernon, Va., October 17, 1796. With autograph address leaf free franked, “President/U.S.” 1 p., 7¼ x 9 in. #21748 $55,000


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Aiding Wounded Soldiers to Keep Them from Having to “Solicit the Icy Hand of Charity” Future Secretary of War Henry Knox insists that the United States honorably care for its disabled war veterans, whose sufferings “tarnish the lustre of the revolution.” “The States have too much dignity and too high a character to support, to suffer the men who have shed their blood in its cause, and who in consequence are untimely cut off from all the sweet enjoyments of society, to solicit the icy hand of charity for that food, which a less decided conduct would have given them in ease and plenty.”

Henry Knox. Manuscript Letter, to John Hancock, in the hand of and signed for Knox by Samuel Shaw, but with Knox’s signature in the autograph docketing, “H Knox’s Letter West Point Oct. 1782.” 2 pp., 8 x 13 in. #22042 $10,000

“Turn Your Fury into Deeds. Volunteer!” Jewish Recruitment Circular No. 7 for the British Army “Following the horrible news concerning the mass extermination of our brethren in Europe...increase of mobilization is a must for every one of us...Many more thousands are needed to fight our counter the terrible war declared on our people.” Dov Yosef. [Bernard Joseph]. Circular Letter Signed (Mimeographed). December 13, 1942, Jerusalem. 1 p., 8 x 12 in. In Hebrew. #20759 $900

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General Washington Pressures Virginia to Muster Up Even after the American victory at Yorktown, Washington could not afford to be complacent; the enemy still held New York, Wilmington, Savannah, and Charleston. Two months after Lord Cornwallis surrendered, Washington urged Virginia Governor Harrison to ensure that his state met the quota of troops mandated by Congress and that the men are fit for duty, “especially if the mode of drafting is adopted.” The Commander in Chief knew that the best way to avoid prolonging the war was to be prepared to fight it. “It is a well known fact that the critical and dangerous situation to which all the southern States were reduced, was owing to the want of a sufficient regular force to oppose to that of the Enemy. . . . But the greatest encouragement to a vigorous preparation is, that it will be the most likely method of gaining new Allies and forcing Great Britain into a negociation, which we have every reason to suppose would end in a peace honorable to the interests and views of America. I will take the liberty of recommending a matter to your Excellency which I must sollicit you to urge to the Legislature, as absolutely necessary to the filling your Regiments with proper Men.” Copies of this letter, with some variations, were also sent to the governors of Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. George Washington. Letter Signed, to Benjamin Harrison. Philadelphia, Pa., December 19, 1781. 4 pp., 8 x 13 in. Circular letter in the hand of Tench Tilghman, with two edits in Washington’s hand. #22651 $42,500

The “Struggle for the Flag and Symbol” in the British Army During WWII “These volunteer soldiers . . . wish to fight Germany as proud Hebrews rather than anonymous Palestinans.” Though part of the British Army, several Jewish battalions were issued “Palestine” cloth insignia for their uniforms. In 1943, some 69 Beitar and Irgun members of the regiment were court martialed and sentenced to two months hard labor for refusing to wear the non-Zionist emblem. The Jewish Brigade distinguished itself for actions fighting the Nazis in Europe and North Africa. [Jewish Brigade]. Broadside. Palestine, 1943. By the “National People.” 1 p., 9¼ x 135/8 in. In Hebrew. #20760 $1,250


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Dov Yosef Archive: Israeli Military Governor During the War for Independence A member of David Ben-Gurion’s Mapai party, Yosef was elected to the Knesset and at various times held the positions of Minister of Justice, Development, Agriculture, and Health. These documents record the words and workings of the Israeli inner sanctum. This is one of the most important privately-held archives on the development of Israel. 15 Autograph Notebooks comprising: • The Independence War • The Sinai War • Israeli relations with America • The agendas and never-before published words from closed-door meetings with Ben-Gurion, Shertok, Meir, Begin, Eshkol, and more

• The building and empowering of the IDF, weapons, trade & strategic decisions such as unconventional weaponry, guidelines for preemptive warfare, drafts and recruitment, supply resources, and purchases, etc. • Critical political decisions during election campaigns • Payments from Germany as restitution for the Holocaust • Foreign affairs discussions and the shaping of foreign policy Dov Yosef [Bernard Joseph]. Archive. Fifteen Autograph Notebooks. Jerusalem, 1948–1964. Approximately 350 pp. In Hebrew. #22980 $150,000

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Declaring Independence was only a step on the perilous road to statehood in America; the War had begun in earnest a year before independence, and Jews in Palestine had been fighting for independence long before U.N Resolution 181.

1947 U.N. Resolution to Establish a Jewish State in Israel Announcing and celebrating the historic decision of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181, authorizing the establishment of a Jewish state in the land of Israel. “After 2,000 years, we’ve finally returned to the Land of Israel. Although we still have much to work for, we have attained the right to live Independently in a Jewish State for eternity. The two greatest empires— The United States and the Soviet Union, together with most nations in the world, stood loyal by us and helped to protect our rights as humans and as a country. Throughout history, it has been difficult to work together towards a common goal. But today, we are here to turn a dream into a reality. It would’ve been impossible to reach this day without our tireless dedication to the land. This is not the time to hold onto old grudges; This is the time to look towards a bright, illustrious future. But we must work hard to build our fledgling nation, despite the many obstacles ahead.” [Israel]. Broadside. “To the Workers of Israel...” November 29, 1947. 1 p., 27½ in. x 39½ in., in Hebrew. #21546 $5,000


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“If We Have Courage to Persevere, We Shall Establish Our Liberties and Independence” To steel the resolve of their “Friends and Countrymen,” Revolutionaries Samuel Chase, Gouverneur Morris, and Richard Henry Lee drafted this strongly-worded Congressional address to the American public. The writers reject a suggestion by Britain’s Secretary of State that America be granted independence to join Britain’s war with France. Even though American troops still faced hardships, the three men argue that the situation had improved considerably since the beginning of the Revolution. This broadside reminded Americans of the reasoning behind the war, urged them to reject the temptations of British peace overtures, and offered an optimistic perspective for ultimate victory. “How often have we been reduced to distress, and yet been raised up?...This hath been…marked almost by the direct interposition of Providence….At length that God of Battles…hath conducted us through the paths of danger and distress…[Now, Parliament speaks of] “terms of accommodations…to ensnare us with the insidious offers of peace. They would seduce you into a dependence, which necessarily, inevitably leads to the most humiliating slavery…. And, do they believe that you will accept these fatal terms? Because you have suffered the distresses of war, do they suppose that you will basely lick the dust before the feet of your destroyers?....[They hope] to lull you with the fallacious hopes of peace, until they can assemble new armies….Be not therefore deceived….Arise then!...and gird you for the battle. It is time to turn the headlong current of vengeance upon the head of the destroyer.” [Continental Congress]. Broadside. An Address of the Congress to the Inhabitants of the United States, York-Town, [Pa.], Hall and Sellers, May 9, 1778. 1 p., 127/8 x 20¾ in.  #22123  $55,000

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Declaration Signer George Clymer opposes migration to the frontier at the expense of eastern cities, while Ben-Gurion considers immigration and internal migration essential to Israel’s development.

Ben-Gurion On the Need to Populate and Develop the Negev “The concentration of the industrial belt along the central shore strip constitutes a severe danger to the future of our state and our people in the event of a future war. The upper Galilee, and particularly the expansive spaces of the southern portion of the country and the Negev are all empty. We must direct to these areas the man-power of the new immigration wave [Sephardic Aliyah] as well as the maturing youth of the country. As a result new (small-scale) industries and factories, development projects, and research institutions will emerge in the southern part of the country. The desolate Negev will become populated, and the potential of large-scale destruction to our vital military-industrial complex in the time of war will be removed.” David Ben-Gurion. Typed Letter Signed as Defense Minister to Levi Eshkol. Jerusalem, April 8, 1955. 1 p., 63/8 x 81/8 in. In Hebrew, on official Israeli state stationery. #8639.16  $3,600

Declaration Signer George Clymer Discourages Frontier Settlement “A bill now before our house to regulate the role of the back territory, like all others of the kind, giving emigration ‘lighter wings to fly,’ brings this evil more home to my feelings....but truth and reason are not always obvious to common apprehensions ... the settler ... having nothing wherewith to purchase labour ... can never have the comfortable expectation of getting others to work for him— his lands will gain little additional value, his family may never change their rags, nor his children, running wild, be able to pay the church or the school—And this must be the case until a great internal society in the course of time, as in Germany, shall be gradually formed.” The Land Office Bill of 1789 promised free or nearly free land to veterans, traders, or others wishing to migrate to America’s western territory. Here, Declaration of Independence signer George Clymer argues against this internal (i.e. westward) migration, claiming it would entail punitive start-up and transportation costs while offering little in terms of economic or educational opportunities for future generations. George Clymer. Autograph Letter Signed, to Dr. [Benjamin] Rush. New York, N.Y., August 7, 1789. 4 pp., 8 x 12½ in. #21939 $25,000


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George Washington and Golda Meir both looked forward to their nation’s growth with faith in the success of upcoming generations.

A Week Before Yorktown, Washington Builds Up the Virginia Militia Washington orders Virginia militia Brigadier General George Weedon to monitor the British and prevent them from foraging the countryside. The Commander in Chief then informs Weedon that French reinforcements are due to arrive and to show their commander the respect he deserves. “The Legion of the Duke Lauzun is ordered to join the Troops now under your Comand - & you may soon Expect to see them....The Duke de Lauzun is a Gentleman of Rank and long Service in the Army of France ... You will please to shew him all the Respect and Attention that his Character demands” Weedon served under Washington in 1776 and wintered at Valley Forge but resigned in a dispute over a promotion. Considering Weedon’s past sensitivities to matters of rank, Washington had reason for concern and did not want petty jealousies detracting from his plan to encircle Cornwallis at Yorktown. GEORGE WASHINGTON. Letter Signed, to George Weedon. Williamsburg, Va., September 23, 1781. 2 pp., 63/8 x 81/8 in. In John Trumbull Jr.’s hand. #22782.01 $40,000

Golda Meir Stresses the Need to Settle New Immigrants “It is of highest importance that Mapam join the Government headed by [Moshe] Sharett. As I see it, the magnitude of this moment must overcome all the differences of opinion between us. It is incumbent upon Mapam to take part in and contribute to the settling of the new immigrants who have just arrived, according to the same philosophy which inspired us in Merhavia and Mishmar Ha-Emek in the 1920’s, and which will motivate the cooperation between us in the 1950’s. As a result, you will never be able to forgive yourselves for standing idly by in the face of the obvious challenges.” Golda Meyerson (she would change her name to Meir in 1956), promotes the idea of Mapam (the Marxist United Workers’ Party) joining Sharett’s Mapai (Workers’ Party) government. Hazan, the recipient, was one of Mapam’s co-founders. Golda Meir. Typed Letter Signed “Golda Meyerson” as Minister of Labour, to Yaakov Hazan. Jerusalem, October 23, 1954. 1 p., 6¼ x 8½ in. In Hebrew. #22933 $4,200 914-289-1776 .


A Sampling of Other Historic Items –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

This catalog represents only a small selection from our inventory. Additional items include rare and important early maps, colonial land grants, and more from the Revolutionary War and Founding, as well as important Abraham Lincoln, Civil War and African-American history documents. Our 20th-century stock, though not as strong as earlier periods, includes a selection of items from the women’s suffrage movement, the New Deal, World War II, and the Cold War. We proudly specialize in manuscript and printed “Documents of Freedom.”

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– The “greatest of early American maps . . . a masterpiece” In 1681, King Charles II granted William Penn sole proprietorship to more than forty-five thousand square miles, making him the largest non-royal landowner in the world. Penn’s appointed surveyor general laid out the future city of Philadelphia, and then produced this map of Pennsylvania, showing the “improved” (settled) area of the province along the western bank of the Delaware River. This is the only copy we can locate in private hands, and none are found in sales records of the last several decades or more. Thomas Holme. “A Map of the Improved Part of the Province of Pennsilvania in America.” London, 1687, second state, modern color. 64½ x 42¼ in. framed. #22133 Price on request

Lincoln Helps “Relieve and Comfort Our Brave Soldiers” To raise money for Union soldiers, the former Illinois First Lady requested an autograph for the sanitary fair to sell. This is Lincoln’s reply: “Though much pressed for time, some portion spent in efforts to relieve and comfort our brave soldiers can not but be well spent. Therefore I cheerfully send the autograph. Yours very truly, A. Lincoln.” Abraham Lincoln. Autograph Letter Signed as President, to Lucy Southwick French. Washington, D.C., May 16, 1864. 1 p., 5 x 8 in. On Executive Mansion stationery. #22821 $37,500


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Abraham Lincoln Signs a Connecticut Draft Call, June 30, 1863 The first effective draft by the federal government called for all men between the ages of 18 and 45 to enroll in local militia units and be available for national service. Lincoln signed this scarce draft call establishing quotas for the state of Connecticut only two days before the massive bloodletting began at the Battle of Gettysburg. Two weeks later in New York, a similar call led to four-day rioting, with widespread looting, arson, and murder. #22642 SOLD

Madison on Lafayette James Madison regrets that he can’t attend an 1824 dinner honoring the Marquis de Lafayette,“a Champion of Liberty and National benefactor whom every American Citizen delights to honor.” Archivally framed to 22¾ x 193/5 in. #22090.01 SOLD

Women’s Suffrage An 8 x 5½ inch flag, ca. 1910, with original stick. #21421 $1,500

Frederick Douglass & Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Attention Civil War Veterans Offering pensions to veterans and the disabled. 12 x 19 in. #22702 SOLD

Eloquent autograph quotations signed on the same sheet of paper by two of the most prominent American abolitionist leaders. “Twenty two years a slave- / Twenty eight years a freeman- / and now a citizen of the / United States.” #21908 $18,000

William Penn Grants 236 Acres to Pennsylvania’s First Quaker William Penn had been trying to profit from his own 1681 colonial grant by selling off parcels of land. In 1684, with this deed, Robert Wade became, literally, the first Quaker to settle in Pennsylvania. #21411.99 $15,000 914-289-1776 .


Custom Framing & Displays We offer a wide variety of display options. Working with a team of professionals, we provide the finest archival products available to preserve and exhibit your documents.

Special Catalog Notes • Quotes in italics are from the document we are offering. • More detailed descriptions, images, and condition notes are on our website. • Offers are subject to prior sale or price change without notice. Terminology Autograph Letter Signed or Autograph Document Signed: Both text and signature are in the hand of the signer. Letter Signed or Manuscript Document Signed: The text is penned by someone other than the signer. Broadside: A single-page printing used to spread news.


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Our History “Some objects do seem to retain the pulse of their making.” ­ —Edmund de Waal Historic documents are more than a chronicle of our nation’s rich past. They are tangible relics that directly connect us to the individuals and events that shaped our nation. The letters and manuscripts our leaders wrote, the documents they signed, and the artifacts they held allow as visceral a connection as possible. A unique July 1776 printing of the Declaration of Independence. The Emancipation Proclamation signed by Abraham Lincoln. Manuscript and printed drafts of the U.S. Constitution. Robert E. Lee’s farewell order to his troops. Letters and speeches penned by Washington, Jefferson, Adams—and many others—on war, religion, slavery, and government. A famous Hassam flag painting. Portraits of George Washington. These are all among the treasures we have acquired for our clients. Seth Kaller is a leading expert in acquiring and appraising American historic documents and artifacts. He has built museum-quality collections for individuals and institutions, as well as legacy collections for philanthropic gifting. Kaller is a member of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America (ABAA), the Professional Autograph Dealers Association (PADA), the American Antiquarian Society, the Manuscript Society, the New-York Historical Society’s Chairman’s Council, and the Papers of Abraham Lincoln Advisory Board.

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235 Main Street, Suite 510, White Plains, New York 10601 (914) 289-1776 Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest

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Historic Documents & Legacy Collections

235 Main Street • Suite 510 • By Appointment Only White Plains, New York 10601 • 914.289.1776 See more of our historic offerings at, or ask about our Elite Client Services Program.

Parallel Visions Catalog  
Parallel Visions Catalog  

Parallel Visions explores the similarities in the ideals and founding struggles of two great democracies —both aspiring to be “a light unto...