Rare Book Monthly

Articles - September - 2007 Issue

A New Mexico Book Fair

Sf.book.fair

Santa Fe Book Show


By Bruce McKinney

The first annual Santa Fe Antiquarian Book Show is to be held October 5 and 6, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. It is a book fair springing to life and the culmination of more than six months work for Henry Lewis, Shirley Jacobson, Steve Kalminson and Rita Robbins who have combined their efforts to bring this event into being. They are all book dealers and seek to raise awareness and interest in the printed word. It is a two-day regional show staged at the El Museo Cultural at 1615 Paseo de Peralta in the historic railyard district in Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501. On Friday October 5th the show opens at 4:00 pm and runs into the evening, closing at 9:00 pm. On Saturday October 6th it continues from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. The organizers are hoping to attract both the local audience and some of the tens of thousands that regularly visit the area. Over that weekend the nearby Albuquerque balloon fiesta is expected to be a big draw.

For this the inaugural fair there are between 30 and 35 exhibitors so far committed and, with 5 weeks remaining, 10 exhibitor spaces available. The cost of a booth is $450 and the organizing committee hopeful of receiving last minute sign-ups. Dealers and would-be dealers who are interested should contact Henry Lewis for information. His email is gunstockhillbook@aol.com. His telephone number: 505.983.0088.

The show will include an array ranging from collectible and antiquarian books to local press books and signed material by local authors. While the show emphasizes books the material offered is bound to also reflect the unique New Mexico market's interest in ethnographic material, prints and ephemera. The show is supported by various local writers who will be on hand to sign their books.

Steve Kalminson and Shirley Jacobson, speaking as members of the organizing committee, mentioned that professional show promoters were contacted but declined to stage the event. Book fair attendance has been on the slippery slope for years, leaving promoters sanguine about new events. The dedicated book buying and selling audience will always walk barefoot over hot coals to attend such events while the younger audience, transformed by the net and attracted to other forms of collecting, has proven to be very elusive.

In organizing this fair the promoters have taken a conventional approach. They have run advertisements in various traditional media; including their email address and phone number. They have not prepared a website. Neither have they promoted across the internet.

For those in the Santa Fe area over the weekend of the 5th-6th this is an event well worth supporting. You may not be able to tell but the staging of such shows is increasingly difficult to achieve. Costs are rising and attendance falling. An interested group or a promoter may front the money to stage an event but only events that draw a strong crowd will survive for many years. This is year one. For the show to make it into year two your participation will make a difference.

Such shows are an important aspect of collecting. Certainly, collectors are increasingly specialists and less likely to find sought-for material at general shows. What they will find however are knowledgeable people with perspective, the great intangible that separates the accumulator from the collector. This alone makes such events very worthwhile. You may come home empty handed. You won't come home empty headed.

So if it's a reasonable jaunt, mark your calendar and make the trip. You'll do well by doing good.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> first edition of the earliest extant manual on modern chess, Salamanca, circa 1496-97. Sold for $68,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Carte-de-visite album with 83 images of prominent African Americans & abolitionists, circa 1860s. Sold for $47,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Gustav Klimt, <i>Das Werk,</i> Vienna & Leipzig, 1918. Sold for $106,250.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Man Ray, <i>[London Transport] – Keeps London Going,</i> 1938. Sold for $149,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Thomas Jefferson, Letter Signed, to Major-General Nathanael Greene, promising reinforcements against Cornwallis, 1781. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Nicolas de Fer, <i>L’Amerique Divisee Selon Letendue de ses Principales Parties,</i> Paris, 1713. Sold for $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Russell H. Tandy, <i>The Secret in the Old Attic,</i> watercolor, pencil & ink, 1944. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ernest Hemingway, <i>Three Stories & Ten Poems,</i> first edition of the author's first book, Paris, 1923. Sold for $23,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Walker Evans, <i>River Rouge Plant,</i> silver print, 1947. Sold for $57,500.
  • <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Ernst, Max. <i>Mr. Knife and Miss Fork</i>. Paris, 1932. DELUXE EDITION. Sold for $15,625
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Einstein, Albert. Signed Passport Photo for his US citizenship application. Bermuda, 1935. Sold for $17,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Verard, Antoine. Illuminated printed Book of Hours. Paris, 1507. Sold for $7,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Wetterkurzschlussel. German Weather Report Codebook - for Enigma use. Berlin, 1942. Sold for $225,000
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Morelos y Pavon, Jose Maria. Autograph letter signed to El Virrey Venegas, February 5, 1812. Sold for $6,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Milne, A.A. Complete set of <i>Winnie-the-Pooh</i> books. 4 volumes. All first issue points. London, 1924-1928. Sold for $5,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> A 48-star American Flag, battle worn flown at Guadalcanal and Peleliu, 1942-1944. Sold for $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Locke, John. Autograph Letter Signed mourning the death of his friend, William Molyneaux, 2 pp, October 27, 1698. Sold for $20,000
  • <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>

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