408
408
Russell, Charles M.
Estimate
6,0008,000
LOT SOLD. 23,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT
408
Russell, Charles M.
Estimate
6,0008,000
LOT SOLD. 23,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

THE JAMES S. COPLEY LIBRARY: ARTS & SCIENCES, INCLUDING THE MARK TWAIN COLLECTION

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New York

Russell, Charles M.
Autograph letter signed ("C M Russell"), 3 pages (11  x 8  1/2  in.; 279 x 216 mm) on his letterhead with steer's skull vignette, Great Falls, Montana, nd, to Guy Weadick; horizontal and vertical folds.  Hald black morocco clamshell case, morocco gilt lettering-pieces on spine.
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Provenance

Karl Yost (Russell's bibliographer}

Catalogue Note

An exceptional autobiographical letter, complete with Russell's usual mispellings and complete lack of punctuation.  The letter is written to Guy Weadick, originator of the Calgary Stampede, and includes a sentence in Mrs. Russell's hand ("Please find enclosed the waffle receipts at last.  Nancy R.").

Complying with Weadick's request for biographical information, Russell begins with his birth in St. Louis in 1865, chronicles his move to Montana at the age of fifteen ("... there were no rail roads in Mont then so we cam over the Union Pacific and staged in to Helena bought a wagon and four horses and loaded with Grub went to the Judith basin").  He pinpoints his first success as an artist: "Since I can remember I have drawn and painted but the first picture of mine to be noticed I painted in water color the winter of 1886 all old cow men remember that winter I was at the OH ranch on the Judith river Jess Phelps the owner ... received a letter from Lewie Kaulfman the owner of the –R wanting to know how things were coming with the cows the snow was two feet deep and no Chinook winds Jess started to answer the letter and I made a little picture to go with it my picture was done before Jess had finished and I handed it to him it was a –R cow starving to death standing knee deep in the snow with two wolfs watching her I wrote under it waiting for a Chinook that was the real titel of the picture known as the last of five thousand Jess looked at the littel picture tore up his letter and said Hell he dont need no letter that this tells it all ..."

Russell ends the letter with a fine vignette of Hollywood: "Saw a fiew of the moovie folks last winter Tom Mix Dug Fairbanks Neal Hart Bill Hart and Jim and Dell Parker  Jim is with the moovies when the hero of the play is supposed to spur his horse off a cliff into the sea 60 feet belo to save his sweet hart from the shark said hero lopes his horse within 50 yards of the rim from then on Jim's it, but boobs that paid thair 30 cents dont know it  they say photos dont lye but I know moving ones do... Jims wearing the same rig as the hero  The people looking at the screen wonder at the nerve of the hero they dont know when Jim takes the brainless leap Mr Hero is sitting back of the camera man in a coushened catalack smoking a camal ...."

 

THE JAMES S. COPLEY LIBRARY: ARTS & SCIENCES, INCLUDING THE MARK TWAIN COLLECTION

|
New York