History In Ink® grew out of a passion for historical autographs. Its founder, Rick Schnake, has been a collector for more than 20 years. He began the business in 2003 as a natural extension of his hobby and his own love for history.
Since then, we have been privileged to handle items such as these:
- Franklin D. Roosevelt’s last check register, with bank statements and numerous cancelled checks, including the last one he ever signed;
- a letter from French Prime Minister Nicholas Soult thanking the man who supervised the exhumation of Napoleon’s body at St. Helena for the keys to Napoleon’s sarcophagus;
- Ulysses S. Grant’s handwritten acknowledgment of his appointment as a brigadier general at the outset of the Civil War;
- John J. Crittenden’s letter decrying Abraham Lincoln’s “odious and unconstitutional” Emancipation Proclamation;
- Reinhard Heydrich’s personal library copy of Mein Kampf;
- Queen Elizabeth II’s handwritten letter inviting her midwife to the christening of Prince Andrew;
- John F. Kennedy’s White House letter sending thanks for condolences on the death of his infant son;
- Dallas detective James R. Leavelle’s letter describing his conversations with Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby, the events surrounding Ruby’s shooting of Oswald, and his view of conspiracy theories about the Kennedy assassination;
- Lyndon B. Johnson’s letter, written the day Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated, explaining why he did not seek reelection; and
- Sandra Day O’Connor’s letter discussing her position as the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court and how she got there.
As a collector himself, Rick appreciates the importance of personal service. He enjoys becoming acquainted with his clients, their interests, and their budgets in order to help them to find just the right pieces to build or complement their collections or to give the perfect gift to a history buff.
History In Ink® offers both unframed and beautifully framed historical letters, documents, and signed photographs in many fields and in a broad range of values. We concentrate on the autographs of United States presidents and first ladies, Supreme Court justices, European royalty, and World War II military figures. We also offer items from many other notable persons throughout American and world history.
On our website, though, there is much more yet: Our listings not only have detailed color scans of the autographs, but they include biographical information on the persons involved and often explain in depth the historical context of the items offered. To help collectors find exemplars, our Sold Archive compiles color scans and descriptions of many of the items that we have sold. We also provide information on caring for historical autographs and links to many interesting and helpful web sites.
We take care to make our framed displays some of the best—wonderful conversation pieces for the home or office. Most of our unframed autographs can be framed, and we work with our clients to create custom displays that complement both the autograph and room decor. We ship both framed and unframed items virtually anywhere in the world.
Based on our active want list, we notify clients when we have items that may interest them. Since our online listings never include all of our material, we encourage inquiries about items that do not appear on our website. If we do not have something in stock, we will help find it.
We always interested in buying quality autographs and will consider single or multiple items or entire collections. We also offer attractive consignment options should you prefer not to sell your items outright.
Rick, a lawyer, is a member of the Manuscript Society and is a UACC Registered Dealer. He always likes talking about autographs, so call or email with questions, comments, and suggestions.
Most of all, enjoy our website, breathe in the history, and come back often.