A rare 1776 broadside printing of the Declaration of Independence by Ezekiel Russell will sell at Heritage Auctions.
The broadside dates to July 4, 1776, 10 days before the more famous handwritten copy of the Declaration was drawn up.
It's among the earliest examples of the famous document ever offered.
Sandra Palomino, head of manuscripts at Heritage Auctions, comments: "The earliest broadside printings of the Declaration, of which this is one, were ephemeral in nature and extremely few have survived to this day.
"This document was printed within days of the founding of the United States and has survived almost 250 years since that time. It's an extraordinary thing."
It's one of a number that were issued to be read aloud to crowds around the colonies. This specimen was sent to a Reverend L Frisbie in Ipswich, Massachusetts.
Palomino explains: "It is likely that Rev. Frisbie read this very copy of the Declaration aloud to his congregation on the afternoon of July 21, 1776, or the next Sunday at the latest.
"You can imagine what an exciting event that must have been for his congregants."
The lot is expected to exceed $160,000 in the April 5 sale in New York. Another copy of the Russell printing sold for $456,000 in 2004.
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