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LINDBERGH, CHARLES - TLS Donating a Spanish Doll to the International Doll Library Foundation
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LINDBERGH, CHARLES - TLS Donating a Spanish Doll to the International Doll Library Foundation

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LINDBERGH, CHARLES. (1902-1974). American aviator; made the first solo non-stop transatlantic flight. TLS. (“Charles”). 1p. 4to. Darien, January 10, 1965. To his friend, aviation pioneer SAMUEL F. PRYOR (1898-1985).


“About the Spanish bed-doll we left in your doll library yesterday, Anne tells me it was purchased from ‘Au Nain Bleu’ in the early 1920’s when the Morrow family was in Paris. It was selected by Anne as a present from her mother. Anne thought the doll looked like the Spanish dancer, Raquel Meller, whose dancing had made a great impression on her and inspired one of her early poems. She says the possession of the doll was probably somewhat related to the writing of the poem. She had the doll in her room at Smith College. We thoroughly enjoyed having lunch with you and your family yesterday, going through the museum with you, and seeing the Lowell Thomas, Jr. film of Alaska and the arctic. You were very good taking so much time to show us around…”


Lindbergh’s flight in The Spirit of St. Louis brought him international acclaim and the $25,000 Orteig prize for the first non-stop flight between New York and Paris. It was awarded to Lindbergh in New York on June 16, 1927, barely four weeks after landing at Paris’s Le Bourget airport. A hectic year followed as Lindbergh traveled through the U.S., Latin America, and Mexico, where he met and courted Anne Spencer Morrow (1906-2001), daughter of the newly-appointed American ambassador. They were married on May 27, 1929. Lindbergh served as technical advisor to Transcontinental Air Transport, as well as Pan-American Airways, personally pioneering many of their routes. In his later years, when not traveling to exotic locations, Lindbergh spent time at one of the couple’s three residences: their home in Connecticut, a chalet on Lake Geneva, or his personal favorite, a cottage on the Hawaiian island of Maui. Anne Lindbergh’s aviation experiences not only provided inspiration for her writing, but garnered her the Hubbard Medal, awarded in 1934, for her work as a co‑pilot and radio operator accompanying Lindbergh in a 40,000 mile flight over five continents – the first woman to be so honored. She is the author of the critically‑acclaimed North to the Orient (1935), which recounts the couple’s perilous Great Circle flight, and Listen, the Wind! (1938),chronicling their Atlantic flight across Bermuda and the Azores.


A Yale classmate of Pan Am Airways founder Juan Trippe, Pryor was a senior vice president at Pan Am where he developed international routes and built secret airfields in Africa and South America. By 1965, Pryor had also amassed what was purported to be the largest collection of dolls in the world. The International Doll Library Foundation housed roughly 8,000 dolls, some more than 3,000 years old, in Greenwich, Connecticut. It was featured in Reader’s Digest and toured internationally before finally being sold at auction in 1982-1983. Pryor had been instrumental in financing Lindbergh’s record-breaking 1927 flight and the pair maintained a close personal relationship. After his retirement from Pan Am, Pryor moved to Hawaii where he and Lindbergh joined forces with the Nature Conservancy to preserve the indigenous plants and wildlife. Both died in Hawaii and were buried there.


Lowell Thomas Jr. (1923-2016) was a film producer, politician, conservationist and owner operator of a bush air taxi service in Alaska. Raquel Meller (1888-1962) was a Spanish singer and actress, popular during the 1920s and 1930s, especially on the Vaudeville circuit.


Darkly signed. Folded with nominal creasing and age toning. In very fine condition.


Item #16560  


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