Rare Book Monthly

Articles - June - 2017 Issue

Two Sales of Books and Ephemera Coming Up Soon at Cowan's

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Cowan's Auctions of Cincinnati has two auctions coming this month of great interest to those who collect in the books and works on paper field. The first, a live auction scheduled for Friday, June 9, features more in the way of ephemeral types of paper. The second, being held online, is a collection focused on books.

 

The live auction on June 9 is titled American History, Featuring the Property of N. Flayderman & Co. N. Flayderman & Co. was in the business of selling historic arms and militaria for 64 years. After Norman Flayderman died in 2013, the family decided to close the business. Over the years, it had acquired a large collection of paper items pertaining to American history, and in particular its military, arms, and wars in which the country was engaged. There are 396 lots, mostly works on paper but some others as well. Paper includes broadsides, manuscripts, photographs, and various other forms in smaller numbers.

 

Here are a few items from the Flayderman sale to give you an idea of what sort of material you will find.

 

Lot 15. Extremely rare catalogue of hand-drawn swords from Widman & Co. and Horstman of Philadelphia, circa late 1840's-1851. Approximately 35 pages with swords colored. Starting Price $1,000. Estimate $2,000-$4,000.

 

Lot 104. Civil War message from General Burnside to General McClellan in September 1862. It reads in part, "Adam received of send new report return indicate left accordance office directions but udder seem on once pigeons..." How did the Union win this war when their commanders spoke like that? This is actually a ciphered communication, with an 1895 translation provided with it. Starting Price $2,500. Estimate $5,000-$8,000.

 

Lot 19. A Confederate broadside headed Circular concerning the employment and impressment of free blacks and slaves living in the Confederacy. Free blacks could be hired for such tasks as building fortifications or hospitals, but not serve as soldiers. Slaves could be impressed to serve similar functions, but only if between the ages of 18-50, and no more than one out of every five slaves from a slave owner could be impressed into service. Starting Price $250. Estimate $500-$700.

 

Lot 182. This is a southern item that focuses us on a controversy that still rages today. It is a printed cotton kerchief headed Our Heroes and Our Flags. The date was 1896, the Civil War 30 years past, but the heroes were not Lincoln and Grant, the flags American. The heroes depicted are Stonewall Jackson, Beauregard, and Lee, the flags variations on the Confederate one. Starting Price $250. Estimate $500-$700.

 

Lot 188. The times they are a-changin'. This is a World War I recruitment poster for the Naval Reserve and Coast Guard. It features an illustration of a young woman wearing a white sailor's hat and naval jacket with the caption "Gee!! I wish I were a man. I'd join the Navy." You can today, young lady! The drawing was created by Howard Chandler Christy. Starting Price $400. Estimate $800-$1,200.

 

Lot 211. Seven photographs, including one autochrome lumière (an early color photographic process) of Clara Clemens, her husband Ossip Gabrilowitsch, and daughter Nina. Clara was Mark Twain's only surviving daughter, Nina his only grandchild and last surviving descendant. Other photographs are of Clara and Nina, and one shows a group of boys dressed up like Huckleberry Finn from a 1935 Huck Finn look-alike contest in which Nina was the judge. Starting Price $800. Estimate $1,600-$2,800.

 

Lot 231. Was George Washington supposed to pay the postage? Evidently, he was confused about the original free franking privilege on postage and was concerned his recipients were being charged postage due. In this letter, likely from 1789, Washington writes, "As the Law exempting me from payment of Postage, is not worded as I expected it wd. have been, and as I believe it was intended to be -- Pray let me know whether you are charged Postage for my letters to you? Not meaning you should do so." It is signed "GWash." Starting Price $1,500. Estimate $3,000-$5,000.

 

Lot 310. At last, there is a cure for baldness. Actually, it happened almost two centuries ago, in 1832. This is a broadside for Ward's Vegetable Hair Oil. It takes "but a short time" to regrow lost hair, even on heads that are totally bald. It even prevents hair from turning grey. If you doubt the claim, Ward's points out that "Physicians second to none in Medical Science" use and recommend it, and "the concurring testimony of thousands put it beyond all doubt, so that the most incredulous no longer hesitate." The drawing at the top shows a man pouring the miraculous oil on the heads of bald men and women who walk away with a full head of hair. Starting Price $250. Estimate $500-$700.

 

The second sale is online only. Bidding opens on June 8 and closes on June 19 at noon. This one is of The Book Collection of Dr. Ivan Gilbert, Columbus, OH. Dr. Gilbert's collection is hard to categorize, which is to say, if he had a clear focus, it's unclear to me. He collected a lot of interesting books, but what is their connection, I cannot say, other than that Dr. Gilbert must have liked them. This is a something for everyone sale. Here are a few samples.

 

Lot 101. This is a most entertaining book of drawings and captions entitled Adventures of a Woman in Search of Her Rights. It is a circa 1871 Boston & New York edition, following a circa 1870 from London. The author was Florence Claxton, who with her sister was trained by their artist father in art. This book contains nearly 100 drawings. They follow the protagonist's odd search for her rights. She decides to pursue a typical male education. She reads John Stuart Mill, which makes her more educated, but for some reason her nose becomes larger and her looks deteriorate. Still, she emerges emancipated, becomes a lawyer, a politician, and finally a doctor, failing at all. Eventually, she emigrates to the United States, marries polygamous Mormon leader Brigham Young, and in the final illustration, is once again a beautiful young woman, awakening from a dream. "Thank goodness it's only a midsummer night's dream and I'm not emancipated," she exclaims. Estimate $500-$1,000.

 

Lot 9. Biblia dat is de Gantsche H. Schrifture. This is a massive Dutch bible from 1682. It features contemporary colored maps, a plan of Jerusalem, 80 biblical scenes, and working brass clasps. Estimate $2,500-$3,500.

 

Here is a link to the Flayderman sale: www.cowanauctions.com/auction/692017-american-history-featuring-the-property-of-n-flayderman-co-live-salesroom-auction-3768

 

Here is a link to the Gilbert sale: www.cowanauctions.com/auction/682017-the-book-collection-of-dr-ivan-gilbert-columbus-oh-timed-bidsquare-auction-ends-619-7514

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>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>Aurora Australis.</i> Printed at the sign of 'The Penguins'; East Antarctica, 1908. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>South Polar Times.</i> 1st edition, limited issue. from the library of Michael Barne. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> General Washington's <i>Proceedings of a General Court Martial... of Major General Lee.</i> Philiadelphia, 1778. 100 copies printed for Congress. BOUND WITH: ...Court Martial... of St Clair and ...Schuyler. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>The Voice of the People.</i> Boston, 1754. Rare pamphlet on the Excise Tax. Nathaniel Sparhawk's copy. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Autograph Letter Signed ("S.L. Clemens"), offering extensive hard-earned advice on writing, 5 pp, 1881. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> After Fra Egnazio Danti. <i>L'Ultime Parti not:e nel Indie Occid:ntli" [The last known parts of the Western Indies].</i> Painted Map of California, Western Mexico, and Japan. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Ptolemaeus, Claudius. <i>Geographie opus nouissima...</i> 1513. The most important edition of Ptolemy, containing the Admiral's Map. $250,000 to $350,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> De Arellano, Don Alonso. Manuscript, his <i>"Relación mui singular y circunstanciada... Capitán del Patax San Lucas,"</i> manuscript copy from the Sir Thomas Phillips collection. $50,000 to $80,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Purchas, Samuel. <i>Purchas his Pilgrimes.</i> First edition. With John Simth's engraved map of Virginia. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Lewis, Meriwether. Contemporary manuscript true copy of his final power of attorney, 1809. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>A New Method of Macarony Making, as Practiced at Boston in North America.</i> Mezzotint. London, 1774. $5,000 to $7,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>Scientific Base Ball Pitching: A Treatise on the Pitcher, Pitching, Origin and Philosophy of the Curve.</i> Chicago, 1897. $2,000 to $3,000
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Franklin H. Brown, <i>State Sovereignty, National Union,</i> Chicago, 1860. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Thomas Paine, <i>The American Crisis,</i> Fishkill, NY, December 1776. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b><br>The Aitken Bible, Philadelphia, 1781. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francisco Loubayssin de Lamarca, probable first edition of the first novel set in the Spanish New World, Paris, 1617. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Juan de la Anunciación, <i>Sermonario en lengua mexicana,</i> first edition, first book of sermons in Nahuatl, Mexico, 1577. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Maturino Gilberti, <i>Thesoro spiritual en lengua de Mechuacá,</i> first edition, Mexico, 1558. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Commission of William O. Stoddard as secretary to the president, signed by Lincoln, Washington, 1861. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> <i>Clay and Frelinghuysen,</i> flag banner, circa 1844. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Daguerreotype of a man believed to be Frederick Granger Williams Smith, son of Joseph Smith, circa late 1850s. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> John C. Wolfe, <i>Portrait of Abraham Lincoln,</i> oil on board in period wooden frame, circa 1860s. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francis W. Winton, manuscript on pow-wows with indigenous Canadians, 1881. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Family letters from two young daguerreotype artists, 1826-79. $10,000 to $15,000.
  • <b>Leland Little: Important Fall Auction. September 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Published Half Plate Ambrotype of a North Carolina Confederate Officer. $2,000 to $4,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Two 19th Century Books Pertaining to Canada's Red River Settlement. $400 to $800
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Two Books With Fore-Edge Paintings of British Architectual Landmarks. $400 to $600
    <b>Leland Little: Important Fall Auction. September 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987), "Torte a la Dobosch" from <i>Wild Raspberries</i>. $1,000 to $3,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Keith Haring (American, 1958-1990), <i>Pop Shop II,</i> One Plate screenprint in colors, on wove paper, 1998. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Thomas Rowlandson (British, 1756-1827), Twenty-Two Prints from the <i>Tours of Dr. Syntax</i>. $500 to $1,000

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