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Einstein Letter Yields $63,000 at Auction

The letter, dated June 10, 1939 was sent from his office at Princeton University to William Morris, scion of the eponymous Beverly Hills talent agency.
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March 26, 2021
Portrait of physicist Albert Einstein sitting in an armchair with a pipe, circa 1934. (Photo by Lucien Aigner/Three Lions/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

In the runup to World War II, renowned physicist Albert Einstein  wrote a letter comparing the perils faced by the Jewish people in the past to the threats posed by Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany.

The letter, dated June 10, 1939 was sent from his office at Princeton University to William Morris, scion of the eponymous Beverly Hills talent agency.

After a three-day auction, the offer attracted 13 bids, with $63,195 as the highest one, public relations director Sam Heller of Nate D. Sanders Auctions in Los Angeles announced Thursday evening (3/25).

In line with auction company’s standing policy, Heller did not identify the seller and buyer by name.

Photo courtesy Nate D. Sanders Auctions

After thanking Morris for his work on “behalf of the refugees during Dedication Week,” Einstein continued “The power of resistance which has enabled the Jewish people to survive for thousands of years has been based to a large extent on traditions of mutual helpfulness. In these years of affliction our readiness to help one another is being put to a specially severe test. May we stand this test as well as did our fathers before us.

“We have no other means of self-defense than our solidarity and our knowledge that the cause for which we are suffering is a momentous and sacred cause.

“It must be a source of deep gratification to you to be making so important a contribution toward rescuing our persecuted fellow Jews from that calamitous peril and leading them toward a better future.

signed A. Einstein”

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