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Autograph Letter Signed (to Vladimir Nabokov?)
Amenia, NY, 1975. Mumford declines to be a "nominator," on the grounds that he resists doing favors for anyone who might review his work, and suggests in his place Loren Eiseley or Harrison Salisbury. The letter reads as though the recipient was looking for a nomination, not for himself, but for some unnamed third party. The fascinating part is that Mumford begins the letter "I had a smothered fear, dear Van Veen," and closes it by saying "With all good wishes to you -- and Ada!" It is signed "Cordially, Lewis" (and headed with an Amenia NY address, where Mumford lived). "Van Veen" is the name of Vladimir Nabokov's protagonist in his novel Ada. Although we could find no direct connection between Mumford and Nabokov, both won the National Medal for Literature, in 1972 and 1973, respectively, and could have met at the April, 1974 ceremony where Nabokov received his. As for the nomination in question, Mumford, Eiseley, and Harrison all belonged to both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Association. Folded in sixths; light corner creasing; near fine. [#035856] $300

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