Heinlein Letter on Ebay

Robert Heinlein’s 1945 letter sympathizing with Forry Ackerman about the death of his brother, Alden, at the Battle of the Bulge was discussed here a few months ago. Now that letter has suddenly popped up for sale on Ebay.

Listed as coming “From the Collection of Forrest J Ackerman,” the letter is offered for $1200 by James Van Hise. Here’s a physical description:

Original two page letter sent to Forrest J Ackerman by Robert Heinlein dated January 28, 1945. Two separate pages, 8 x 10 1/2, original typescript. Excellent condition. Signed “Bob” and last sentence refers to Heinlein’s then wife Leslyn. Heinlein letters of this early vintage are scarce.

It’s quite the letter, Heinlein taking the death of Forry Ackerman’s brother as an opportunity to deliver a long, stinging criticism of “the way active fans have met the trial of this war.”

I’m not discouraging anyone from buying the item because of its historic value. Though speaking for myself, if I was inclined to pay four figures for an autographed Heinlein letter I’d be looking for more than “Bob” on the signature line.

[Thanks to David Klaus for the story.]

3 thoughts on “Heinlein Letter on Ebay

  1. Suddenly popped up? Why did you assert that? In actual fact James van Hise originally put that letter up for auction before it was mentioned here. At intervals he does like to remind potential purchasers that it’s still there but given the amount he’s asking for it makes sense to try and keep the profile of this letter up. I would think there is somebody out there willing to pay, he just has to catch their eye.

  2. If it was a letter written by Michael Jackson or Ronald Reagan (I’ll be charitable and assume they both knew how to read and write), there would almost certainly be someone willing to pay six figures for it.

    I wouldn’t pay that sort of money for Julius Caesar’s bedroom slippers, but then I don’t have the sort of money to even consider adding such things to my collections.

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