Einstein lecturing on the H bomb in 1950. Einstein lecturing on the H bomb in 1950. Some of Einstein's correspondence has been popping up at various auctions around the world. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

How you can own a piece of Einstein history this week

Auction for a prized letter about the theory of relativity ends Thursday.

A science teacher from a small town in Iowa had a question about the theory of relativity. So he went straight to the source: Albert Einstein.

It was 1953, and Arthur L. Converse penned a note to Einstein's office at Princeton. A short time later, the genius typed up a lengthy response, and sprinkled it with handwritten drawings and calculations. Decades later, this piece of history ended up in the hands of Converse's nephew and is now being auctioned off to the highest bidder. At the time of this writing, the current price was $16,500.

A letter signed by Albert Einstein, along with his initialed drawings, explaining the science behind his groundbreaking work on electrostatic theory and special relativity.A letter signed by Albert Einstein, along with his initialed drawings, explaining the science behind his groundbreaking work on electrostatic theory and special relativity. (Photo: Nate D. Sanders Auctions)

It is being sold by Nate D. Sanders Auctions, an autograph and memorabilia dealer based in Los Angeles. The auction house has previously sold items such as William Shatner's handwritten "Star Trek" diaries and the actual Golden Globe trophy for the movie "Dances with Wolves." The firm calls this auction "an extraordinary lot by Einstein showing the generosity of his time, with rare content on his theory of special relativity." The auction ends this Thursday, March 30.

Six decades after his death, Einstein memorabilia continues to flood the marketplace. In 2015, a batch of Einstein's letters on topics fetched $420,000 at auction. Back in October, we reported on a letter that Einstein wrote to his son that was auctioned for around $100,000. A signed photo of Einstein sticking his tongue out went for $125,000.

A statue of EInstein was erected last summer.A statue of Einstein near his archives at Hebrew University in Israel. (Photo: Benyamin Cohen)

Einstein bequeathed his papers to Hebrew University in Jerusalem, which is home to the official Albert Einstein archives. But items that belonged to his children or were sent to others, like the letter being auctioned off this week, were often sold to collectors.

If you're still hankering for something else of Einstein's to own, here's another idea. His New York vacation home is up for sale. The four-bedroom, three-bath home at 33 Intervale Road on the north shore of Long Island has been on the market for nearly a year.

"Einstein's face is the most recognizable face worldwide," Hanoch Gutfreund, the director of the Albert Einstein Archives at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, told From The Grapevine. "The interest in Einstein does not fade into history. If one can say anything about this, the interest in Einstein increases with time. It's greater now."

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