Collection of Dylan’s love letters sold for $670,000

BOSTON – A collection of touching and sometimes prescient personal letters written by a young Bob Dylan to a high school friend has been auctioned off to a prestigious Portuguese bookstore for nearly $670,000.

That Livraria Lello in Porto, Portugal, which calls itself “the most beautiful bookshop in the world”, is planning the Archive of 42 handwritten letters with a total of 150 pages complete and available for Dylan fans and scholars to study, auctioneer RR Auction said in a statement Friday.

Dylan, a native of Hibbing, Minnesota, wrote the letters to Barbara Ann Hewitt between 1957 and 1959, when he was still known as Bob Zimmerman. They give a glimpse into a period of his life about which not much is known.

Notably, in some of the letters, Dylan writes about changing his name and hoping to sell a million records. Decades later, Dylan u 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature has sold around 125 million records.

The young musician also expresses his affection for Hewitt, inviting her to a Buddy Holly show, adding little fragments of poetry and talking about things that have occupied generations of high school students, like cars, clothes and music.

Hewitt’s daughter found the letters after her mother’s death in 2020. The original envelopes, addressed in Dylan’s handwriting, were sent to the Hewitt family’s new home in Minneapolis-St. Paul, a suburb of New Brighton.

Several other Dylan memorabilia were also up for auction at the auction, including an archive of 24 “Poems Without Titles,” written while the singer-songwriter was a student at the University of Minnesota, which sold for nearly $250,000, and one of the earliest known autographed photos of Dylan, grossing more than $24,000.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed without permission. Collection of Dylan’s love letters sold for $670,000

Sarah Y. Kim

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