• <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. Sept. 21, 2016</b>
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> WARREN, JOSEPH. Letter Signed ("Jos Warren") as Chairman of the Committee of Safety. Cambridge, MA, June 4, 1775.
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> WHITMAN, WALT. Leaves of Grass. Brooklyn, NY: [for the Author], 1855.
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> JEFFERSON, THOMAS. Printed Broadside Signed ("Th: Jefferson") as Secretary of State. Philadelphia, February 12, 1793.
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> CELLINI, BENVENUTO. 1500-1571. Autograph Letter Signed ("Beto. Cellini"). [Florence, c.1566].
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. Sept. 21, 2016</b>
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> NAPOLEON BONAPARTE. Autograph Manuscript. [c.1795].
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> DICKENS, CHARLES. Great Expectations. London: Chapman and Hall, 1861.
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> REED, JOHN. To the Honourable House of Representatives of the Freemen of Pennsylvania this Map of the City and Liberties of Phiadelphia With the Catalog of Purchasers is Humbly Dedicated.... [Philadelphia]: engraved by James Smit
    <b>Bonhams Sept. 21:</b> ELIOT, THOMAS STEARNS. The Waste Land. New York: Boni and Liveright, 1922.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Announcing the Fall 2016 Auction Season
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 1:</b> Autographs
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 18:</b> Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 10:</b> 19th & 20th Century Literature
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Dec 8:</b> Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Colored Plate Books
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 17:</b> Printed & Manuscript Americana
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Dec 1:</b> Art, Press & Illustrated Books
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 29:</b> Illustration Art
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 3:</b> Old Master Through Modern Prints
  • <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Leaves from<br>George Washington's Own Draft <br>of His first Inaugural Address. An Extraordinary Rarity!
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Declaration of Independence: Benjamin Tyler 1818 - First Print with Facsimile Signatures.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Thomas Jefferson Signed Act of Contress Authorizing Alexander Hamilton to Complete Famous Portland Maine Lighthouse.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Emanuel Leutze. Silk Flag Banner designed by Leutze, created by Tiffany & Co., and presented to Gen. John A. Dix, 1864.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> The "greatest of early American maps … a masterpiece" (Corcoran). Thomas Holme.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Lincoln Summons His Cabinet for a Historic Meeting to Discuss Compensated Emancipation.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Albert Einstein. Autograph Letter Signed. Einstein Counsels His Son ... Meaning of Life.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Normal Rockwell. Painting/Drawing Signed. Rockwell's "Barbeshop Quartet", 1936.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Frederick Douglass. Autograph Letter Signed to unknown correspondent. Washington, D.C.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Harry Truman. Autograph Manuscript Notebook for Kansas City Law School Night Class.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> Robert E. Lee. Autograph Letter Signed, June 11, 1782. Hours after the Battle of Culpeper Court House, Lee Escapes Again.
    <b>Seth Kaller:</b> George Washington. Letter Signed, as Commander-in-Chief, Continental Army, to Elias Dayton, Headquarters, [Newburgh, N.Y.], June 11, 1782.

Rare Book Monthly

Articles - February - 2009 Issue

Dealing With Customer Service On Line

Techno

The jumbled confusion of technology can lead us to assume we caused a problem when actually we are the victim.


By Karen Wright

I'm a pretty laid back, easy going sort of woman. I seldom get angry except where serious injustice and stupidity are concerned. Thus, when my computer behaves like a furious three year-old child, I just turn it off and come back later. I remember the sage advice of my first computer guru, "It's probably not the fault of the computer, Karen, it's probably the fault of the operator." Chances are it will re-mesh its gears (or whatever the heck it has) and come back on line doing exactly what it is supposed to do. Hardly anyone needs to get a book so fast that they can't wait a few hours for the computer to stop pouting and get back on the straight and narrow.

Sometimes, however, that doesn't work. If a customer needs a book in a big hurry, Murphy's Law says that's when my electronic business partner will decide to have liver failure or something will go wrong with one of the websites I use to purvey my books. That was the story a while back when I got a notice from one of my vendors, ABE Books, that I had a number of outstanding orders that were about to be cancelled because I hadn't acknowledged them, and that my fulfillment rate was way low. I had noticed that ABE hadn't sent me any orders for a while, but my Alibris orders were arriving in a timely manner, so I thought it was just a slow ABE week. I emailed them my assurance that I had not received the offending orders, and would they please check and see why I hadn't. I also went to ABE's website and found, yes, about fifteen back orders. I freaked! I can't afford to lose any orders. I quickly emailed each customer and explained that I didn't know why their orders had not gotten to me, but that I did have (or didn't have) the book. I filled all the orders I could and emailed back to my ABE Rep that I had found the back orders and queries on their web site, but that I had not received the emails from them announcing the orders in the first place, and why was that?

Five emails and four or five days later, one of their right-hand agents finally got back to me and assured me that they were, of course, not at fault and gave me a list of the ten or twelve things I must have done wrong. They even suggested that I find another server as it might be Yahoo's fault. That would be fun. I would have to change my email address everywhere, thousands of wheres! I looked these things over and there were no matches to the problem, nor did it seem as though I had been the culprit. They also suggested that I check their web page every day and not rely on emails from them. I noted that they had been e-mailing me my orders for years, and what was the problem? For cryin' out loud, what am I paying their extravagant fees for? Two days later, they emailed me again and said they had no idea, and it must be something I was doing wrong.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop.</b> (DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION, Chicago, 1968). <i>Collection of papers of John M. Bailey, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, concerning the convention</i>. Various places, 1968.
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> (ARMSTRONG, NEIL.) VERNE, JULES. <i>A Trip to the Moon.</i> New York: F. M. Lupton, September 9, 1893. Signed by Neil Armstrong, first man to walk on the moon.
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> KEY, FRANCIS SCOTT. <i>A Celebrated Patriotic Song, the Star Spangled Banner.</i> 1814.
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> [COLUMBUS, CHRISTOPHER, Amerigo Vespucci ..] Bernardus Albingaunensis .. Dialogo nuperrime edito Genue in 1512.
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> (WATKINS, TABER &c.). <i>An album of 32 photographs of the Yosemite and American West Various places</i>, c. 1890s
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> (BATTLE OF CONCORD.) <i>Powder horn used by Minuteman Oliver Buttrick at the Battle of Concord</i>, April 19, 1775.
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> (CIVIL WAR.) <i>An Extraordinary Confederate Photograph and Autograph Album of Dr. R. L. C. White</i>, 125 original mounted salt prints. 1859-61.

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