Rare Book Monthly

Articles - March - 2012 Issue

Libraries, Staffers Offered Free AE Trial Subscription

Richardring

Richard Ring, Head Librarian at the Watkinson Library.

Americana Exchange publisher Bruce McKinney announced a free trial subscription for library personnel is now available on request. He said that the offer is good through September 2, 2012, the date of AE’s tenth anniversary.

After a decade of building the world’s most comprehensive data base of book, manuscript, and works on paper auction records, McKinney thinks: “It’s time to celebrate.” What better way than by introducing AE to librarians, curators, heads of special collections and others in the library world “who may not know about us yet.”

A 30-day trial subscription is available free on request to any individual who fits that description. It allows access to AE’s database (AED) consisting of over 3.4 million current and historical book auction and bibliographic records, the largest archive of this kind in the world. The company name notwithstanding, all types of material are included in the database, not just “Americana.” A wide variety of other services, including notices of upcoming auctions worldwide, come with the package.

“The free trial is a way libraries can become familiar with our resources,” McKinney said. “If they like what they get, we will extend and expand their access to include their entire department or institution for another 60 days at no charge.”

Those who opt to extend will be able to connect to AE without the need for a password. That way anyone who is qualified to use their library -- including students, faculty, staff and patrons -- can easily access the AE database and other services. “In that configuration it’s always on -- 24/7,” he said.

The first to accept the invitation was Trinity College’s Richard Ring. He is head curator and librarian at the Watkinson Library, the special collections department at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut – www.watkinsonlibrary.org. Ring also blogs frequently at The Bibliophile’s Lair http://commons.trincoll.edu/watkinson.

He has already used AE to price check the values of books the library is considering for acquisition. Later this year he will teach a course on book collecting and thinks his students will find the information they can obtain from AE of great value in their studies.

Another positive response came from Beatriz (Bea) Hardy, Ph.D. She was second librarian to take advantage of the free trial. Dr. Hardy is director of Special Collections at the Swem Library at Virginia’s College of William and Mary – http://swem.wm.edu/about.

“It seems like a powerful and highly useful tool,” she said. “It will make figuring out what’s a reasonable price to pay much easier.”

McKinney was not surprised that these early adopters seem to like Americana Exchange. “We follow 185 auction houses around the world and simultaneously add older auction records as well. We are simply more thorough. The goal has never been to be good enough. It is to provide a complete and unparalleled account of rare and collectible works on paper over time. In direct comparison to searches with other databases we tend to provide eight times as many records. The reason is simple. Our records are complete.”

“In addition to prices realized, our members are able to locate a wealth of information on upcoming individual auctions and individual lots that may have material they desire. Not only can they search our records and find out what these books have sold for in the past; they can also stay abreast of what’s coming up.”

Perhaps most importantly, he said, “AE has a unique feature that instantly estimates current dollar value of specific items and also calculates the length of time (frequency) before such material might be offered again.”

Records are updated almost immediately. Auctions that occurred last week typically become part of the historical record within a week. “To be maximally effective we believe we must be both complete and always current.”

After the free trial period ends (a total of 90 days), library personnel have the option of becoming regular subscribers.

McKinney said membership fees range from $265 for individuals to $750 per year for large institutions. Departments and smaller institutions pay an intermediate amount. System-wide access with IP recognition is available.

Library staffers interested in taking advantage of the offer please email: wailukusue@gmail.com and put the words: AE LIBRARY FREE TRIAL in the subject line. Please include name, title, phone number and email address.

Susan Halas writes frequently for AE Monthly. Reach her at wailukusue@gmail.com

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann, wallpaper sample book, circa 1919. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Archive from a late office of the Breuer & Smith architectural team, New York, 1960-70s. $3,500 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> William Morris, <i>The Story of the Glittering Plain or the Land of Living Men,</i> illustrated by Walter Crane, Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1894. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustave Doré, <i>La Sainte Bible selon la Vulgate,</i> Tours, 1866. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustav Klimt & Max Eisler, <i>Eine Nachlese,</i> complete set, Vienna, 1931. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>Eric Allatini & Gerda Wegener, <i>Sur Talons Rouges,</i> with original watercolor by Wegener, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>C.P. Cavafy, <i>Fourteen Poems,</i> illustrated & signed by David Hockney, London, 1966. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jean Midolle, <i>Spécimen des Écritures Modernes...</i>, Strasbourg, 1834-35. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>E.A. Seguy, <i>Floréal: Dessins & Coloris Nouveaux,</i> Paris, 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. SOLD for $131,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. SOLD for $516,500
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. SOLD for $106,250
    <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. SOLD for $16,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. SOLD for $275,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750
  • <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> E.H. SHEPARD, Original drawing for A.A. Milne’s The House at Pooh Corner.<br>$40,000-60,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> BERNARD RATZER, Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $80,000-100,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> THOMAS JEFFERSON, Autograph letter signed comparing Logan, Tecumseh, and Little Turtle to the Spartans. Monticello: 15 February 1821. $14,000-18,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN C. FREMONT, Narrative of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, in the Year 1842.. Abridged edition, the only one containing the folding map From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $3,000-5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ZANE GREY, Album containing 94 large format photographs of Grey and party at Catalina Island, Arizona, and fishing in the Pacific. From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $5,000-$8,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> WILLIAM COMBE, A History of Madeira ... illustrative of the Costumes, Manners, and Occupations of the Inhabitants. produced by Ackermann in 1821; From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ERIC TAVERNER, Salmon Fishing... One of 275 copies signed by Taverner, published in 1931,From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN WHITEHEAD, Exploration of Mount Kina Balu, North Borneo. Whitehead reached the high point of Kinabalu in 1888. Part of a major group of travel books from the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN LONG, Voyages and Travels of an Indian Interpreter and Trader, describing the Manners and Customs of the North American Indians... The first edition of 1791. $3,000-$5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> SAMUEL BECKETT, Stirrings Still. This, Beckett’s last work of fiction with original lithographs by Le Brocquy, limited to 200 copies signed by the author and the artist. From the Estate of Howard Kaminsky.. $1,500-$2,500

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