Rare Book Monthly

Articles - May - 2010 Issue

Young Blood: The Beginning of a New Collection

Falmouth

My first purchase.


By Tom McKinney

This month, I was struggling to think of topics to write about. I 'm supposed to be a tech expert, but tech isn't always on the forefront of the rare book industry. There's the fact that I'm two generations behind the general demographic, and that other than my relation to my parents, I'm not particularly connected to rare books. I was a voracious reader as I grew up - and that's not to say I don't read anymore - but as the Internet took hold just as I reached adolescence, my reading attention has shifted there. So, I was stumped. About a week later, I decided on a relatively easy solution, and one I can tap more than once. I'm starting a collection, and I'm going to be blogging my experiences as they come. Over the years, I've been in a few situations where I apprenticed under someone fairly older than me; that's where the term "young blood" comes from and it's what I'm calling this column and collection.

After deciding that I wanted to collect, I needed to decide what! My initial thought was to the Gold Rush. Just a knee-jerk reaction. I'm interested, but my instinct was to perhaps look elsewhere. From there, I thought about the frontier, and then moved to Indians. I've always had a fascination and admiration for Native Americans, and love Western movies to this day. I decided this would definitely be something to look into. As an alternative addition, I decided I'd also search terms related to the first town I ever lived in, Falmouth, Massachusetts.

I already knew before I started collecting how I'd do it. I just wrote an article about the AE service MatchMaker last month and how it allows for more efficient, microscope-intensive searches. The other thing I decided on early on was that this is going to be a hobby for me; not a way to make money, at least not in the short-term. That being said, my limit for most purchases is $50. I say most because you never know when something special's going to pass by!

So I needed to create some "Wants" in MatchMaker. These are the terms you're looking for on a consistent basis. They're saved in MatchMaker and may be edited or deleted freely. The wants are allowed either as book title searches, or as keyword searches. They do exactly what their names entail.

Since I don't know many specific titles I'm looking for (or can afford!), I started with keyword wants. Initially, the first want I created looked like this:
Keyword: Indian
Modifier 1: Dakota
Modifier 2: wyoming
I later went back and revised it to make two separate wants for Wyoming and the Dakotas since they're not the same areas.

My second and third wants also begin with the keyword "Indian" but have different modifiers. Ones I used were "Little Big Horn," and "gold rush." Another thing to note: in creating keyword wants with multiple words, a single word goes in each modifier box, and can be continued into the eBay Modifiers list as well for a maximum of six keywords (all must be present in a listing to match). I also added wants for a couple tribes, "Lakota" (Sioux), "Sioux," and "Commanche." As for my collecting alternative, I created wants for: Falmouth & Massachusetts, and for the town's county, Barnstable.

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.

Article Search

Archived Articles

Ask Questions