Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

The first edition copy of that final version seen  right, inscribed to John L. Thomas, the commander of a revenue cutter who had taken Douglass to revisit his old plantation home after the Civil War, was sold for $9500 (£5225) as part of an Americana sale held by  PBA Galleries of San Francisco on September 16. 

That sum was rather more than had been predicted, as was the $6500 (£3575) bid taken on the leaflet illustrated  bottom right, a scarce Texas Rangers recruiting poster of 1860 in which General Nicholas Darnell calls for 80 men from Dallas and Collin counties, who must be "well mounted, armed and equipped for a three months campaign", to form a company of Mounted Rangers "for actual service on the Frontier of Texas".