May 2024 Auction Ends Thursday, May 30th, 5pm Pacific
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on: 5/30/2024 6:29:00 PM

Lot #67: 1833 Force Declaration of Independence From Original Copper Plate -- Still Within ''American Archives''


1833 copy of the Declaration of Independence from the original copper plate by William J. Stone, still contained within its ''American Archives'' volume. William Stone created the earliest copies of the Declaration of Independence in 1823, using a new wet-ink transfer process to create a copper plate from which copies were made. His work was commissioned by John Quincy Adams, then Secretary of State, to produce copies for the 50th anniversary of the signing in 1823. As a result, 201 vellum copies were produced in 1823, nearly all of which now reside in permanent collections.

Ten years later, in 1833, the same copper plate was used to print additional copies of the Declaration of Independence on rice paper for inclusion in Peter Force's book, ''American Archives''. The series was to total 20 volumes, but the cost of the set was prohibitive for most Americans and printing was stopped short at nine volumes. It's unknown how many Declarations were printed but it's believed that most were destroyed, apart from the small number that were printed and sold. This 1833 Force Declaration is the oldest Declaration apart from the original and the 1823 copies. This copy is still included in ''American Archives'' which is quite rare as most copies that survived were removed from the book.

Declaration bears the ''W.J. STONE SC. WASHN.'' watermark at lower left, from the original copper plate. Measures approximately 24.5'' x 29.75'', attached along part of top edge to the book. Declaration has folds as issued, moderate foxing, a few discreet holes and a few areas of archival tape repair on verso. Overall an attractive example in very good condition.
Final Bid (Includes Buyers Premium):$22,000
Minimum Bid:$16,000
Number of Bids:2