Bonhams : LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:

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Lot 2055
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016.
Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:

Sold for US$ 25,075 inc. premium
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016.
Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
1. To Kill a Mockingbird. Philadelphia & New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, [1960]. 8vo. Original green cloth over brown boards, spine lettered in brown, publisher's 1st issue dust jacket, volume clean and square, jacket somewhat tattered, nearly separated at front joint.
FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE JACKET, WARMLY INSCRIBED TO CHARLES CARRUTH, "To my dear friend Charles, with love always — Harper Lee."
2. Collection of original drawings by Harper Lee, 13 in ink and 1 in pencil, being:
a. 7 caricatures depicting Charles Carruth as Shakespearean leads including Julius Caesar, King Lear, Othello, Yorick, et al, four signed "NLee" in the image, four unsigned, 6 captioned by Lee, on ruled sheets removed from a spiral notebook, each measuring roughly 250 x 200 mm, one image of Carruth as an unidentified woman character with Carruth's note at top, "Fall Quarter/ Univ. Ala 1945";
b. Original pencil drawing depicting Carruth as "Malvolio — The Impatient One (Waiting to go to the Jakes) Twisted by Charles Carruth," on plain drawing paper, 277 x 213 mm, signed in the image "NLee," old centerfold;
c. Original ink drawing, a caricature depicting another Yorick with the skull (presumably Carruth but slightly different), reading a copy of "Timeless Mexico," 280 x 215 mm, on lined paper removed from a spiral notebook, old centerfold, signed "Nelle Lee" and dated "11/8/45";
d. 5 naturalistic ink sketches by Harper Lee of Charles Carruth in various postures, 282 x 220 mm, on plain paper, unsigned, some chipping to edges.
3. 3. Three Autograph Letters Signed (2 as "Nelle" and 1 as "Victoria R & I") to Carruth, warm and personal, 5 pp total, various sizes (one a New Years card), Monroeville, New York, and Montgomery, July 21, 1995; January 10, 1993; and December 29, 1995, all with original transmittal envelopes;
4. Original portrait of Charles Carruth, by Harper Lee, 260 x 208 mm, acrylic on board, inscribed to the verso, "From Nelle Lee, Dec 25, 1952," with sticker from Garber's Artist's Materials, N.Y.C., affixed to verso.
5. Brown, Dee. The Bold Cavaliers. Lippincott, 1959. FIRST EDITION, INSCRIBED BY HARPER LEE, "To Charles, With Love, Nelle."
Provenance: Charles Weldon Carruth (signature, authorial inscription); thence by descent.

BOOKENDS TO THE LIFE OF A REMARKABLE BOOK AND WRITER: A FASCINATING ARCHIVE OF MATERIALS FROM HARPER LEE OFFERING A RARE GLIMPSE OF THE WRITER PRE-MOCKINGBIRD, AND TRAVERSING THE YEARS TO A SEARING LETTER ON THE MONETIZATION OF MOCKINGBIRD IN MONROEVILLE, 1993. The earliest materials date from Harper Lee's time at the University of Alabama, where she was editor of the campus humor magazine Rammer Jammer, and also contributed writing (including a parody of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet) and illustrations, to both the Rammer-Jammer and the campus newspaper Crimson White. The drawings and sketches included here show both her artistic talent and overarching interest in the arts and literature.
She and Carruth stayed in touch through her early years as a writer in New York City, where he worked as a radio producer early on, before becoming a writer and editor for the Catholic News. She gives him the Dee Brown Bold Cavaliers, which was published in 1959 by Lippincott, the publishing house that acquired the manuscript that would become Mockingbird in 1957.
The letters pick up again in 1991, with a heartfelt note from Lee. She writes, "I can't think of anyone to whom these words apply more — in your work, in your life — 'Well done, thou good and faithful servant.' ...You are one of the most special people to me, and you have meant so much to my life." And two years later, in January 1993, she writes again, thanking him for a "lovely Christmas remembrance and, farther back, your memoir of Winston County [Alabama, where Carruth was born]." Despairing of changes in her hometown, she continues, "You remember the Faulknerian prophecy — the Snopeses shall inherit the earth? They've already taken over Monroeville ... they are trying to turn Harper Lee into a tourist attraction like Graceland or Elvis." She discusses the restoration of the Old Courthouse, as well as billboards with mockingbirds: "[They] say they are doing this to honor me. What they are doing ... [is] embarassing me beyond endurance ... So keep an eye out for a small place that will hold 10,000 books ... is near grocery stores & hospitals, and you! ... We can look at each other and celebrate our longevity." Despite the vitriol, she maintains her sense of humor, signing the letter as the Queen Victoria, "Your unamused but loving, Victoria R & I." A remarkable letter, both loving and full of a harsh honesty normally reserved for very close friends.
The archive also includes Carruth's inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, the jacket a bit worse for wear, but with an excellent association. This is a remarkable archive from a private collection, including rare (and well-done) illustration art by Harper Lee, never before seen in the marketplace.


Contacts
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
LEE, HARPER. 1926-2016. Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Weldon Carruth, with an inscribed first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird, comprising in full:
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