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Q: I'm enclosing a copy of letters patent for an improvement in "Flying-Machines" dated Dec. 5, 1911. Alexander Graham Bell is the first person on the petition requesting the patent. I'm interested in finding out the value of this paper.

A: This letters patent assigns "the right, title, and interest" in the improvement to the flying-machine to Charles J. Bell (Alexander Graham Bell’s cousin) as Trustee. Alexander Graham Bell and four other men filed the petition for the patent on Dec. 5, 1911. They were members of the Aerial Experiment Association, which was formed in Baddeck, Nova Scotia, Canada, in September 1907. Members of the association set several records for early flight in Canada. The association was disbanded in March 1909. If your letters patent is original and has important original signatures, it has value, but if it's a copy it is not valuable.

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