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>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 Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Caius Julius Hyginus, <i>Poeticon Astronomicon,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1482. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Giovanni Botero, <i>Le Relationi Universali... divise in Sette Parti</i>, Venice, 1618. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> <i>L'Escole des Filles</i>, likely third edition of the first work of pornographic fiction in French, 1676. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin on vellum, Flanders, early 16th century. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes Regiomontanus, <i>Calendarium,</i> Venice, 1485. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Pedro de Medina, <i>Libro d[e] gra[n]dezas y cosas memorables de España,</i> Alcalá de Henares, 1566. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b><br>Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> Salamanca, circa 1496-97. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Andrés Serrano, <i>Los Siete Principes de los Ángeles, válidos de Rey del Cielo,</i> Spain, 1707. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes de Sacrobosco, <i>Sphaera mundi,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1478. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> A Rare 3-rotor German Enigma I Enciphering Machine. $70,000 to $90,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Important collection of correspondence between Werner Heisenberg and Bruno Rossi. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Walt Whitman Autograph manuscript containing his thoughts on death. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> David Roberts. <i>Holy Land</i>. Six volumes. 1842-1849. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Extensive collection of Ray Bradbury's primary works, most signed or inscribed. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Peter Force. Declaration of Independence. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Steinbeck. <i>Grapes of Wrath</i>. A fine copy of the first edition. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Lewis & Clark. <i>Travels to the Source of the Missouri River</i>... First English edition, extra-illustrated. 1814. $10,000 to 15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Manuscript document signed by Nuno de Guzman relating to Hernan Cortes, 1528. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> “Nos los inquisidores..." The first book in English printed West of the Mississippi. [1787]. $5,000 to $8,000.

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