* EIFFEL, Gustave (1832-1923). Autograph letter signed ("G. Eiffel"), in French, to Adolphe [Salles?]. N.p., 29 June 1895.
3 pages, 8vo, on a bifolium, creases, a few pale stains. Regarding the formation of a business partnership, Eiffel writes: "My dear Adolphe, Your letter arrived and I do not have time to respond to you regarding the Richard affair. I accept the principle of a company with a capital of 200,000 francs… I will give 50,000 francs and would receive 30% of the net profits…" He then goes on to explain what portion of the profits would go to other partners, and continues regarding other projects: "My drawings will not be finished tomorrow Sunday, and I will only leave on Monday… I will go to Geneva, Lyon… St. Germain… What is the best itinerary to take… I am still very busy and that pleases me. I am very satisfied of my results. If I did not have a sketch artist I would never finish…"
Adolphe Salles was the son-in-law of Gustave Eiffel, and one of the founders of the Eiffel company; he headed the general company of the locks of the Panama Canal in the early 1890s, among other engineering projects. The "Richard affair" he mentions refers to the take-over of the French camera manufacturer Comptoir General de Photographie company, owned by Felix-Max Richard. Felix-Max Richard had just lost a lawsuit against him by his brother to enforce a non-competition agreement, and as a back-up plan Richard arranged for Eiffel to purchase the Comptoir with three other men: Joseph Vallot, Alfred Besnier, and Leon Gaumont. The company was renamed L. Gaumont et Cie after its youngest partner because Eiffel did not want his name on the company. Gaumont was manager and Eiffel was president from 1895 through 1906.
Estimate $ 800-1,200
Property from the Robert L. McKay Collection, North Tustin, California