From the Washington Times, 11/23/1900, p. 6, c. 4
NO SENTIMENTAL INTEREST.
Effects of Miss Van Lew, the Union Spy, Bring Small Prices.
BOSTON, Nov. 23. – There were a few people present at the sale of the remains of the personal estate of Elizabeth Van Lew, the Union spy in Richmond during the civil war, which was held yesterday afternoon. There was little competition in bidding and John Leonard, who was a prisoner in Libby Prison, and who knew Miss Van Lew, auctioned off the estate.
The American flag which was raised by Miss Van Lew directly after Richmond was evacuated by the Confederate troops, and which was the first Union flag that met the eyes of the entering troops under General Grant, was sold to Mrs. Nathaniel Thayer for $75. Other flags brought far less. The books of Miss Van Lew’s library went at all sorts of prices. The autograph and a book plate of John Randolph brought $4, and an autograph of Horace Greeley was sold for half as much. Signed letters from President Garfield and Oliver Wendell Holmes were each sold for $1.15.
The disguise which Miss Van Lew wore was sold for $4,50. The furniture went for something like its real value, and there was no sentimental interest. Four armchairs brought $25.75 each, and a sofa brought $56. The secretary in which the spy kept secret despatches went for $49.