DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Four drafting tools that once belonged to Thomas Jefferson have sold for almost $64,000 at auction.
Dallas-based Heritage Auctions on Wednesday sold the pieces, which include compasses and other instruments, for $63,932. Heritage historical auctions director Tom Slater says a fifth Jefferson drafting tool did not draw a $5,000 minimum and wasn’t sold.
The auction house says nobody seems to know what one of the tools was used for.
Heritage says it’s the first time the items have been offered to the public. They descended through the family of Jefferson, Declaration of Independence author and third U.S. president, and then through the family of James Monroe, America’s fifth president.
Slater says, “The Monroe and Jefferson families were closely intertwined in Virginia society and politics, and the Monroes became the custodians of various items originally owned by Thomas Jefferson.”
(Copyright 2011 CBS Local Media. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)