2022 Holiday Gift Guide: Gifts for the Political Historian

November 04, 2022

2022 Holiday Gift Guide: Gifts for the Political Historian

We've rounded up some of the most interesting and illuminating political memoirs, autographs from great American leaders, paintings and collectible antiques that tell the story of the founding of our Nation's government. Receiving any of these gifts during the holidays is sure to delight any political history buff.

Madam Secretary, Signed by Madeleine Albright, First Edition, 2003

Madam Secretary, Signed by Madeleine Albright, First Edition, 2003

In this thoughtful memoir, Madeleine Albright (1937- 2022) shares her remarkable story from her childhood as a Czechoslovakian refugee to her rise to power in the world of international diplomacy and policy-making. Albright details the intense behind-the-scenes diplomacy leading up to the 1999 war in Kosovo and outlines several lessons of the Kosovo conflict. Albright also discusses what it was like to be the first female secretary of state. The book is presented in its original, first edition dust jacket and is signed by Albright. A true collectable and great holiday gift! 
Ronald Reagan Autographed Collage
This elegant collage showcasing former President Ronald Reagan’s original signature along with two iconic black and white photos of the President would be the perfect gift for a Reagan admirer. The signature card has the printed words, “With best wishes,” and Reagan’s signature just below in black ink. The card also contains an embossed Seal of the President of the United States on the upper left corner. Nicknamed “The Great Communicator” for his effective oration skills, Reagan’s presidency was defined by his foreign policy. Initiatives such as the build-up of weapons during the Cold War, the Reagan Doctrine, and the Strategic Defense Initiative would all be cited as defining characteristics of the Reagan administration.
Richard Nixon Presidential Seal Tie Bar
Present this Richard Nixon White House-issued Presidential Seal tie bar to your favorite politico. It is a long-standing tradition for presidents and vice presidents to present small gifts as a token of gratitude and well-wishing. Presidential or vice presidential cufflinks or tie bars are some of the most popular and long-lasting of these gifts. 
John F. Kennedy Signed Senate Menu Collage

This piece of Senate history is so cool. John F. Kennedy inscribed and signed this United States Senate Restaurant menu on April 10, 1957, when he was a Senator representing the state of Massachusetts.  Kennedy was elected to the U.S. Senate and served as the junior Senator from Massachusetts from 1953 until 1960. The signature reads, in dark ink "To Kathleen-- / Best Wishes / John Kennedy / Mass," on the menu’s front cover. The menu is additionally signed by Tennessee Senator Estes Kefauver, at bottom left. 

Vintage Borghese Eagle Bookends with Black Base

Vintage Borghese Eagle Bookends with Black Base

This beautiful Borghese bookend pair is the same style as seen in photos of John F. Kennedy’s Senate and Oval Offices desks. This simple elegance in design combines the stunning shine of the gold-painted eagles with the classic, clean-cut decorations of the six-pointed gold star base.

Abraham Lincoln Bust after Leo Cherne

Abraham Lincoln Bust after Leo Cherne

Consider gifting this handsome patinated bust of Abraham Lincoln, after Leo Cherne. Leo Cherne created the bust of President Abraham Lincoln in 1955. He based the sculpture off an 1865 photograph of Abraham Lincoln. The photograph was taken hours after Lincoln learned of General Robert E. Lee’s surrender and only four days before Lincoln was assassinated. The original sculpture of the Abraham Lincoln bust was once located in the Cabinet Room of the White House and has been in the White House since the presidency of Dwight D. Eisenhower.


Declaration of Independence Oil on Canvas by Horace Carpenter, after John Trumbull

Declaration of Independence Oil on Canvas by Horace Carpenter, after John Trumbull

This is a beautiful oil on canvas painting of the signing of the Declaration of Independence by American artist Horace L. Carpenter. Painted in the early 20th century, this historic rendition is based on the epic 1820 oil painting of the same scene by John Trumbull. A skillfully rendered piece commemorating one of the proudest moments in the political history of the United States, this painting would make a beautiful addition to any early American history collection.

The Federalist, on the New Constitution by Publius, Rare 1802 Second Edition in Two Volumes

The Federalist, on the New Constitution by Publius, Rare 1802 Second Edition in Two Volumes 

To go above and beyond this holiday season, consider gifting this rare second edition of the most important work of American political thought ever written, The Federalist. According to Thomas Jefferson, the Federalist papers were "the best commentary on the principles of government." This second edition, published in 1802, was the first edition to identify Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison as the authors, as well as the first edition to include text of the Constitution, which is missing from the first printing. It was also the last printing issued during Hamilton’s lifetime. This second edition is in its beautiful period, tree-calf boards with gilt titles and a new archival slipcase, for preservation. 

Political Debates Between Hon. Abraham Lincoln and Hon. Stephen A. Douglas, Limited Edition, 1894

Political Debates Between Hon. Abraham Lincoln and Hon. Stephen A. Douglas, Limited Edition, 1894

This is a special limited edition printing of the political debates of Lincoln and Stephen Douglas. The series of seven debates between Stephen A. Douglas and Abraham Lincoln during the 1858 Illinois state election campaign was among the most significant statements in American political history. The issues they discussed were not only of critical importance to the sectional conflict over slavery and states’ rights but also touched deeper questions that would continue to influence political discourse. As Lincoln said, the issues would be discussed long after “these poor tongues of Judge Douglas and myself shall be silent.”






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