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Just about every dealer in the country will have handled a set of Churchill’s History of the English Speaking Peoples at one time or another, but nothing quite like this first edition of 1956-58 – the first volume of which was inscribed on publication day by Churchill to Eleanor Roosevelt. Surrounding that inscription is a pencilled exchange between Mrs Roosevelt and her secretary as to how he should be addressed – “Dear Sir Winston” being Eleanor’s response – and the final volume is also signed. The set reached $38,000 (£26,205). A first US edition (1948-53) of Churchill’s History of the Second World War, lacking jackets, but all with presentation notes taped to the endpapers of all six volumes, made $31,000 (£21,380).

Illustrated right, below: inscribed with a Christmas greeting by the author to a Mrs Thomas Hastings, at the request of David Grey, who has added his own inscription beneath that of the author, this 1910 first of Teddy Roosevelt’s African Game Trails was sold for $18,000 (£12,415). Grey was Eleanor Roosevelt’s uncle, who in WWII was appointed US ambassador to Ireland by FDR.

All of these were sold at Christie's New York special sale, The Rooselvelt Era, held on Febuary 14–15.