News | April 19, 2024

President Grover Cleveland's Signed Document Approving Utah Statehood Sold for $27,188

RR Auction

President Grover Cleveland approves statehood for Utah in 1896

A significant historical document signed by President Grover Cleveland approving Utah's entry as the 45th state into the Union has been sold for $27,188 by RR Auction

Dated January 4, 1896, the one-page document features President Cleveland's directive to the Secretary of State to affix the Seal of the United States to his Proclamation admitting the State of Utah into the Union of States. 

No other territory in the United States has had requests for statehood denied or ignored by Congress as many times as Utah. Utah's territorial government unsuccessfully applied for statehood six times before the Utah Constitutional Convention was held from March 4, 1895 to May 8, 1895. To Congress, Utah was un-American for several reasons, including theocracy, economy, polygamy, and slavery. As such, disputes between the dominant Mormon community and the federal government delayed Utah's admission as a state, and it was only after the outlawing of polygamy that Utah was admitted into the union as the 45th state on January 4, 1896.

"Utah's path to statehood was fraught with obstacles, each overcome with remarkable perseverance," said Bobby Livingston, Executive Vice President at RR Auction. "This signed document is not just a piece of history; it's a symbol of Utah's relentless spirit and commitment to achieving statehood.”

Other highlights from the recent Fine Autograph and Artifacts auction included:

  • Robert Oppenheimer typed letter to a Manhattan Project employee in the 'Explosives Division' which fetched $21,421
  • an Albert Einstein signed book, Philosopher-Scientist: Volume VII of the Library of Living Philosophers, sold for $19,899
  • Leon Trotsky's signed document for publishing The History of the Russian Revolution ($18,769)
  • a Charles Darwin signed letter regarding "the new English edition of The Origin" which achieved $18,089
  • a George Washington signed document for the Potomac Company ($18,089)