The 50 Greatest Love Letters of All Time
In 2000, Lion Heart Autographs’ owner, David H. Lowenherz, began work on a series of books that brought together famous and important letters organized by theme.
The first book, The 50 Greatest Love Letters of All Time, published by Crown, a division of Random House, received enormous attention and praise upon its January 2002 release and went, almost immediately, into a second, third, and then a fourth printing. It has also been published in Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Romania, and China. This lovely, illustrated, hardcover edition is a fascinating compendium of love letters written by famous personalities over the past 500 years including Michelangelo, Beethoven, Harry Truman, Jack London, and Virginia Woolf.
In conjunction with the book’s release, David lectured to a sold-out audience at New York City’s 92nd Street Y, appeared on the BBC’s World Service, was interviewed 12 times, coast-to-coast, on Canadian radio, and on many U.S. radio stations including WNYC’s The Next Big Thing. Selections from this book were used in the movie Sex and the City.
David continued to speak on the subject of love letters and autograph collecting while completing his second book of the series, The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars, published by Crown in December 2002.
Praise for The 50 Greatest Love Letters of All Time
“Dipping into the collection…will be inspiring for those who seek to command the attention of their loved ones” — Publishers Weekly
“[The letters] provide an intimate glimpse into the lives of well-known men and women. Recommended for public libraries.” — Library Journal
“… a lively new collection” — Esquire Magazine
“The title may be a bit too hyperbolic, but there is no denying the worth of The Fifty Greatest Love Letters of All Time…and there’s nothing like reading other people’s mail.” — J. M. Eberhart, The Kansas City Star
“Lowenherz’s choices — from Henry VIII to George Custer — are passionate and poignant, and there isn’t an e-mail among them.” — People Magazine
“[These] declarations of love provide insight into the hearts of these prominent people, who wrote their tender words probably certain that no one but their intended recipients would ever read them.” — Ron Berthel, Associated Press
“[The book] is as compulsive, and sometimes as naughty, as reading other people’s mail.” — Marc Horton, The Edmonton Journal
“Enormously entertaining” — Nan Goldberg, Newark Star-Ledger
The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars
A touching and inspirational tribute to the human spirit, The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars reveals our nation’s struggles and triumphs in soldiers’ letters from the Revolution to the operations in Afghanistan. The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars is more than just a collection of letters recounting the experiences of servicemen and servicewomen. Simply written, they speak with power and eloquence about the human face of history. From members of the Continental Army to today’s Special Forces, the authors of these letters are frontline soldiers, nurses, prisoners of war, spies, and generals — a cross section of the men and women who fought, and sometimes died, in our nation’s wars. It tells the stories in the first person of their families, friends, and sweethearts. Inspiring and intriguing, this book is filled with the voices of ordinary heroes, voices that speak of courage, love of country and family, and sacrifice in the name of freedom.
Praise for The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars
“What do people say in time of war? Husbands to wives? Mothers to sons? Sons to parents? Presidents to generals? David H. Lowenherz asked these questions, and his answer is The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars (Crown). Here, Lincoln defends his Emancipation Proclamation, freeing the South’s slaves; and Capt. Rodney Chastant of Mobile, Ala., in Vietnam, thanks his parents for letters recounting “trivial events” back home that helped him forget the war for a moment. Most messages from today’s war zones come via e-mail, but we suspect the feelings are the same.” — Parade Magazine (November 3, 2002).
Lowenherz has collected letters written by politicians, soldiers, and civilians in all American wars from the Revolution to Afghanistan. He has chosen well. A letter from Abraham Lincoln defends his Emancipation Proclamation, General Sherman defends the evacuation of Atlanta, and even John F. Kennedy’s famous carved message on a coconut is included. This excellent sampling is recommended for all public libraries. — Library Journal
The 50 Greatest Letters from America’s Wars is featured in the “Ten most remarkable things in culture this month” section of Esquire magazine (December 2002).
ROBERT FROST: Letters, Manuscripts, and Inscribed Books by Robert Frost from the Collection of David H. Lowenherz
In 1999, New York’s Grolier Club celebrated the 125th anniversary of Robert Frost’s birth with an exhibition featuring numerous items from the collection of Lion Heart Autographs’ owner David H. Lowenherz. The 99-page hardcover exhibition catalogue, describing over 200 items, contains 13 duotone illustrations of books, poems and letters, with over a dozen important letters published here for the first time. Loosely inserted in a three-part-flap pocket at the back of the book are three prints by Thomas Nason, Leonard Baskin and Antonio Frasconi.
The letter-press edition is limited to 500 numbered copies signed by the author and is available through Lion Heart Autographs for $95 plus shipping and handling.
We are proud to have published 44 elegant, professionally designed catalogues since Lion Heart’s inception in 1977, some of which are pictured here. Although we now focus on presenting new acquisitions on our website, we still have available some of our catalogues which are a great resource for anyone wishing to learn more about autographs. Contact us to obtain a copy of our 25th Anniversary catalogue.
Comments on Our 25th Anniversary Catalogue
“Impressive in the extreme” and a “remarkable achievement,” The Book Collector Autumn 2004
“Phenomenal catalogue – a standard-setter.” James C., Pennington, NJ
“Your twenty-fifth [anniversary] catalogue is absolutely stunning – the research impeccable; the prose, crisp; & the overall presentation, a bright, new standard in the field…” Randy Weinstein, North Star Rare Books & Manuscripts, Great Barrington, MA
“Your new catalogue has left me absolutely overwhelmed. It has to be the most sumptuous and adventuresome autograph catalogue ever issued. Beautifully done, congratulations!” Gregor B., Hensonville, NY
“Breathtaking” Hal K., Annapolis, MD
“I just wanted to congratulate you on your catalogue. It was absolutely a wonderful, wonderful catalog… It is absolutely spectacular and you should be proud of it… It is the by far the most remarkable catalog I’ve ever seen bar none. It’s fantastic and congratulations.” Shawn T., Bayshore, NY
“Gorgeous” Ted C., New York, NY
“I just wanted to compliment your new spectacular catalogue – I’ve never ever seen one like it. When I showed it to my wife she responded, ‘His catalogues have always been works of art!’ How true…” David F., Young Harris, GA
“Your catalog is fantastic.” David S., Evanston, IL
“Your Stately and Picturesque Procession book is spectacular. You are to be congratulated. This is just a truly, truly wonderful example of the type of autographs and work you do and you are to be congratulated. This is just magnificent.” Richard S., Highland Park, IL
“I think your catalogue was exquisite.” Steven B., Los Angeles, CA
“I wanted to write to you to thank you for the wonderful catalog that you were nice enough to send me. I have been the grateful recipient of your catalogs for nearly ten years now and have always enjoyed dealing with you and your great staff. Thank you again.” Robert I., Austin, TX
“Congratulations on what I believe is a first in bookselling and autograph dealing – the catalogue and CD combo. Also the design and production excellence of the catalogue exceeds even your previous superlative standards. Sincerely,” Jeremy N., Novato, CA
“It finally came, and what a beautiful thing it is…It is obvious that you put it together with love and great respect for the letters, and what they convey and represent. The CD, which I’ve not heard all the way through yet, is absolutely a work from the heart… and what a masterpiece it is so far… So all around, mazel tov’s to you and all of the others who have participated in your project for the great work that resulted.” Steve R., Denver, CO
“Thanks a lot for the beautiful Audio CD, I listened with great pleasure! The end with Satchmo is wonderful. Congratulation for Your 25th anniversary and good luck for your future!” Roland K., Basel, Switzerland
“It’s a spectacular catalogue!” Patrick S., Thomas Cooper Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
“WOW! It arrived today. Wonderful! I take it home to read it tonight. Congratulations.” Thierry B., Les Autographes, Paris, France
“Your latest volume was a wondrous thing… you have created a most beautiful and exciting ‘art form’ and the delight, and pleasure we will receive from it is endless. I am reading and RE-reading it and think of you endlessly while doing so and when it is not in hand, as well… What a superb collection of people is represented in your perfect catalogue.” Avron C., New York, NY
“What a handsome gift I have just received from you… the limited edition 25th anniversary catalogue full of autographs treasures! Beautifully designed and executed, it joins other very special editions from your hand in my library. Thank you. Cordially…” B. Lende, Loma Linda, CA
“Wow! What a catalogue. I haven’t even started to read it but I’m so impressed.” Irwin U., Burlingame, CA
“Thanks for your great catalogue that I have now received. A superb work! Congratulations.” Thomas K., Stuttgart, Germany
“Wonderful! Your 25th Anniversary CD is an audio delight… Autographs and manuscripts are not only your livelihood they are your passion and you obviously love what you do. I would have even forgiven a certain haughtiness that could have easily crept in to the narration. After all you are presenting the crème de le crème of autographs and manuscripts. Instead you offer us all a beautiful insight into how holographic items can relate to one another and invite us to think outside the usual collecting box. I can’t wait to see the catalog and play the CD again.” Gerald W., Chicago,IL
“Many thanks for sending the above. I listened to it with great interest. You have accomplished a great deal since founding Lion Heart Autographs so many years ago!” Alexandre T., Binfield, England
“Dear Mr. Lowenherz: I very much enjoyed both the originality of your conception and the content of your 25th anniversary CD and much appreciated receiving it…Very best wishes for the next quarter century!” Jack B., Toronto, Canada
“…thank you, David, for the wonderful CD you sent me. I am several ‘tracks’ into it and will enjoy it over lunch in the coming days. I want to say that Lion Heart Autographs has always in my book been known as a high quality establishment with high quality material and a high quality proprietor. Thank you again and my sincere congratulations.” Scott P., Chicago, IL
“Thanks so much for sending me your beautiful catalogue. It is really a special one – and I know the time and effort something like this takes! You should know it is appreciated.” Patricia J., Cambridge, MA
“Congratulations on yr. 25th – and the magnificent catalogue with inspired CD!” Carol R., Summit, NJ
“Thank you for sending me your milestone catalogue! I have kept all of your catalogues; this one is the finest of all. I send you, your family, and your staff all best wishes for the future.” Mary M., Spokane, WA
“…Your catalogue is a magnificent showpiece, and the source of much pleasure for me, as I am certain for your other clients and friends. Clearly, you poured yourself completely into this wonderful souvenir. Much credit is due also to your collaboration with Heather on making the narratives such morsels to delight during the night – when I read and re-read this treasure. The CD is truly innovative and a splendid marriage to the catalogue. I have played it several times in my car and it has taken away much of the mind-numbing day to day trek to the office. The actor who does the voices is a hoot! As Epictetus said ‘Nothing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen.’ And this catalogue is one juicy fruit.” Arthur S., Princeton, NJ
“What an amazing job David et al did on the special catalog and CD. Listening to the CD has been fascinating – and the catalog was brilliant.” Jonathan C., Vienna, VA
“This catalogue of available material is probably the classiest presentation of its kind that I have seen in my years of collecting. You definitely have something here to be proud of.” Carl P., River Forest, IL