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I like historical documents as much as anybody, but the warning system at the back of my skull is going off. I would need to see a better argument for authenticity before I would dig into my pocket for even one tenth of the asking price.

Pass.
 

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You'd think if you were going to try to counterfeit something like this you wouldn't use a lined legal pad...
 

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I think it could well be authentic, at least from what I see. However, without examination by a reputable document examiner I would not consider purchasing it. Even were it authenticated, I would not expect that it would bring close to the stated starting price. By the way, I have seen lined notepaper from the mid-19th century before.
 

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One would want to compare it to known and authenticated Saml Colt Letters from a comparable time period, to see how the Handwriting matches up.

Very old Letters or other papers can indeed appear to be startlingly crisp and not-aged at all...being kept away from Light and damp, they can last virtually for-ever and remain very fresh looking.


Paper used for writing Letters or Notes and so on at that time, almost always had Water Marks, and, these are always interesting in themselves.
 

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One would want to compare it to known and authenticated Saml Colt Letters from a comparable time period, to see how the Handwriting matches up.

Very old Letters or other papers can indeed appear to be startlingly crisp and not-aged at all...being kept away from Light and damp, they can last virtually for-ever and remain very fresh looking.


Paper used for writing Letters or Notes and so on at that time, almost always had Water Marks, and, these are always interesting in themselves.
some of my guns and ammo magazines are showing signs of age and they are only a few years old. I guess you have a valid point that I am proving. This paper is near moisture.. the toilet bowl. The water marks on mine are from a 3 year old boy that is still learning his aim.:rolleyes:
 

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I want one of those letters excusing me from work to go shoot at the range ..with the Sam Colt signature on it. wonder how much fake Box guy would do me for on that one??
 

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I have a few letters, from 1879, that were wrote by my G. Grandad to my G. Grandmother, before they were married. . Grandad was working on a cattle ranch in the Dakotas and wrote how lonesome he was and how he wanted to see her folks when he got to see her next time. . I have more old letters that were wrote by my G. Grandmother to her cousin and her replies, also from the 1870`s, and all these letters were carefully stored away for many years before I found them. . The paper is a grey not quite yellow and has a patina that only age would provide. .The paper is certainly not stark white like the Sam Colt letter appears to be from looking at the pictures . .

Heck it may well be a letter wrote by Sam Colt himself, just doesn`t appear to be an original.

Rod
 

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some of my guns and ammo magazines are showing signs of age and they are only a few years old. I guess you have a valid point that I am proving. This paper is near moisture.. the toilet bowl. The water marks on mine are from a 3 year old boy that is still learning his aim.:rolleyes:
Guns and Ammo Magazines are made of entirely different kinds of Paper, than were Stationary of the mid 19th Century...and, will age differently, and much faster.


Most Stationary of Sam'l Colt's time was acid free Paper and humidity would not effect it.

Paper with residual Acids or Bleaches in it will become discolored or may get darker or mottled or will become brittle over time and Humidity.

Paper used to be primarily made of Cotton, Flax, or Hemp fibres.

Paper for popular Magazines and most else, for a long time now is made of Wood Pulp which has been 'digested' and chemically treated and Bleached and rinsed and whatever else, which contains or represents different chemistry and will age differently than the old Papers.

One starts seeing 'Foxing' or Age Spots or brownish blotching, and peripheral embrittlement of Book Pages starting around the 1820s, and starting in News Papers and less expensive printed Media, and getting slowly worse from there, and, this co-responds to developments in Paper Making and the use of less high grade materials for cheaper kinds of products or applications.

Sometimes entire periodicals or cheap-cost Books of the early-ish 1800s will have aged to become thoroughly darkened, brittle and weak and can just about fall apart in one's Hands even, but, these tend to be examples of the cheapest grades of Paper having been made into a Printed Book of the time.

Stationary stayed pretty good, so one usually does not see these problems as much in Letters or other Documents, but, it all depends on the quality of Paper used, so...
 

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In the 19th Century, Staionary was often of tinted Paper and was not always stark White...Greys, Lavenders, Yellows, pale Greens, Blues, off-Whites, etc...
Inks and Pencils, also came in many kinds and many colors.

In the mid to latter 19th Century, Lavender color Pencils were quite popular for Letter writing or other Notes and so on.

In the field, it was often more convenient to write with a Pencil anyway, than with Ink of course, so, most Letters written in the field, were in Pencil.

Stationary often was purchased in what we would today call 'Parent Sheets', and these have historically been about 2 feet by 3 feet.


Either the Stationer or one's self, would fold the Sheet however many times, and, then cut the folded edges with a Knife, to arrive at the size Sheets one was after. Though a Stationer would also tend to run the pile through a Paper Cutting Press to acheive uniform perfect pages and edges, but, it often depended on what the Customer wanted and many people did not bother with having that part done.


Of the handfull of Letters I have from the 1700s, and early to mid 1900s, most seem to be on very pale Blue Paper, and some on White...some are on a pale Grey, and some on a pale Yellow.

Somewhere in the early 19th Century, ( though maybe it started earlier ) one starts seeing occasional examples of very faintly 'Ruled Lines' or faintly dotted Rule-Lines appearing in Stationary, and, these could be of various spacing, and, they served as a guide for those people who otherwise tended to drift upward or downward as they wrote.

These lines stayed faint for a long time, but, as time went on, the 'lines' eventually became more bold, till we finally arrived at so called 'school' type or Ruled Paper or Ruled Notebook Paper, with quite bold Rule Lines.

Children never wrote on such Boldly Lined paper before that...and neither did anyone else.

I suppose it had previously been assumed that if someone wanted or needed Rule Lines, there were not need to rub it in, and, faint Rule Lines were all the guide anyone needed or wanted.


I am sure there are a handfull of Forum Members who recall their Grammar School Desks to have still had the Ink Well 'hole', though no Ink Well anymore...or, if old enough, they will remember the Inkwell Hole with an Ink Well in it.

When I was in Grammar School, all that remained in the Desks, was the 'Hole' and they would not allow us to have or use Ink Wells or Steel Point Pens anymore.

This rubbed me the wrong way, so I went about finding my own Ink and Inkwell and my own Steel Point Pens, and used them on my own then.

That was the broader period of the best Penmanship our Country ever had, or ever will have - the era of the Steel Point Pen, successor to the Goose-Quill Pen.


The Colt Letter appears to have been written with a Steel Pen.


Kind of sobering and maybe charming or maybe depressing or maybe all three...that after much more than a Century of use, Schools in the 1950s still were using Desks outfitted to hold an Ink Well for the use of Steel Point Pens, even though the 'ball point' Pen had succeeded it in common practice by then, or it and the Fountain Pen had succeeded it pretty well totally, everywhere.
 
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