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Tag: abraham lincoln

Two Plead Guilty to Theft of National Historic Treasures Including Documents Signed by George Washington and Abraham Lincoln

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

A New York man has pleaded guilty this week to stealing pieces of our nation’s history.

According to the FBI, Barry H. Landau, 63, of New York,  pleaded guilty on Tuesday to conspiracy and theft of historical documents from museums across New England, including original documents of Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, John Adams, Franklin Roosevelt and others. Landau also admitted to attempting to sell the documents for a profit.

From December 2010  to July 2011, Landau and co-conspirator Jason Savedoff stole the documents from a series of museums and historical societies across New England, targeting specific collections based on content and perceived dollar values, according to the plea agreement.

The two researched collections over the Internet, identifying specific documents and signatures of historic individuals to target for theft, says the FBI. Once located, Landau e-mailed Savedoff the titles and locations of collections which were eventually stolen.

At numerous museums the two posed as researchers, accessing collections of documents. Some of their methods of thievery included  concealing documents in sports coats and hidden pockets and  distracting curators.. The two kept records of the documents and their contents they had stolen, as well as where they had all come from. The two removed museum markings on documents and often stole card catalogues indexing of the stolen items to conceal the theft from the museums.

Suspicious curators at the Maryland Historical Society called the police on July 9, 2011, as Landau and Savedoff were viewing collections under the guise of authors researching a book. Police found 79 documents hidden in a computer bag in a museum locker that Savedoff had the key to. Sixty of those documents were found to have been stolen the Maryland Historical Society. One document with the signature of Abraham Lincoln was valued “well in excess of $100,000,” according to the FBI.

Police searched Landau’s New York City home on July 12, 2011, and again on August 2, 2011, finding more than 10,000 documents and cultural heritage objects, including “documents signed by George Washington, John Adams, Franklin Roosevelt, Marie Antoinette, Napoleon Bonaparte, Karl Marx, Sir Isaac Newton and others.”

Savedoff previously pleaded guilty. The two face a five year maximum for conspiracy charges and ten years for the theft.

 

New Yorker Pleads Guilty to Stealing Historical Documents With Signatures from Lincoln, Washington, Roosevelt

istock photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Jason James Savedoff had an obsession with historical documents and folks like George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. But it  all seemed to center around money, not history.

The 24-year-old New Yorker pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Baltimore to stealing historical documents from museums in Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania and Connecticut and selling them for a profit.

Authorities said the documents stolen contained the signatures of some notables like Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Franklin Roosevelt, John Adams, Marie Antoinette and Napoleon Bonaparter.

Authorities said Savedoff admitted that he and his co-conspirator prepared lists containing the names of historical figures and other noteworthy individuals, and made notations referencing the value of signatures and documents authored or signed by them.

Authorities said Savedoff, under the direction of his co-conspirator, conducted research — including on the internet — to identify collections containing valuable documents that were worthy of stealing.

Savedoff and his conspirator visited a number of museums posing as researchers and were able to steal the documents.

Some documents were concealed in sports coats and other outerwear that had hidden pockets.