The Manuscript Society is an international organization of persons and institutions devoted to the collection, preservation, use and enjoyment of autographs and manuscripts.

Love for the written word drives our members. History you can hold in your hand. A connection to the past. Hunting for the next piece to add to your collection.  Members are individuals; collectors, archivists, history lovers and librarians.  Members are dealers and auction houses. Members are libraries, historical societies, and universities. All are passionate about the history revealed in their manuscripts. Whether you collect family letters or presidential signatures; cartoons or signed photographs; musical scores or any other kind of manuscript you are part of our world. Join us in this glorious exploration!


Latest Digest


Digest – May 2020

Manuscript Digest – May 2020 – This complimentary e-digest, launched in 2012, covers significant acquisitions and sales, manuscripts lost and found, rare books and ephemera, document conservation, and more.


Recent Posts


From “The Defence of Fort McHenry” to “Star Spangled Banner”

“The Defence of Fort M’Henry.” Not all that catchy… Not an advertisement? Sorry, not on page 1. The lines are relegated to page 2 of the newspaper. It began as a poem. The triumph of American bravery against the might of Great Britain.  It became a song we sing all the time…… “Oh say can […]


Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions – Gone Virtual

“We in America do not have government by the majority, we have government by the majority who participate. All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” Thomas Jefferson “We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but […]


Document Conservation: Today’s Challenges

Document Conservation: Today’s challenge In 2019, NEDCC [Northeast Document Conservation Center] worked on the conservation of the State of South Carolina’s seven Constitutions. They also worked to conserve a certified copy of the 1790 Constitution. The South Carolina Department of Archives and History was concerned with prior restoration techniques.  Were they affecting some of the […]


John Jenkins: A Double Life – Bluffing Texas Style

John Holmes Jenkins was a Texan. He was a gambler. A rare book collector. Poker pro “Amarillo Slim” Preston described Jenkins as “a sneaky, clever rat.”  John Holmes Jenkins’ life and times is illuminated by Santa Fe rare books dealer, Manuscript Society member and onetime Jenkins acquaintance Michael Vinson. His new book is , “Bluffing […]


Einstein-Szilárd Letter and Manhattan Project

August 2, 1939 – Physicist Leó Szilárd writes a letter signed by Albert Einstein. It is sent to Franklin D. Roosevelt. It is an attempt to warn the president that Nazi Germany may be working on a fission bomb.  The U.S. should begin work immediately on its own nuclear weapons research. September 1, 1939 – […]


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