John Y. Simon, the editor of Grant's papers, comments on the soon-to-be auctioned Appomattox document: "I don't like to blow the whistle, but I hear about these all the time... I am in the heartbreak business. Whenever things like this come up, I am the one who says this is not what you think it is. Let's find out what it is. But I can tell you what it isn't."
Hat tip to reader Russell Bonds for passing this on. He would have us note that Foote's caveats to his own "authentication" appear farther down in the story.
The use of Foote in this matter is surreal. Recall that the appeal to authority argument is ranked as an error, a fallacy in rhetoric. Here an authority on one thing is asked to judge another matter and an appeal to authority - a false argument - is then constructed even where there is no authority.
p.s. My wife reads Lovejoy mysteries from which I gather antiques and collectibles are criminal activities everywhere and all the time.