Auction Update Review

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Eighteen Auctions Archived - $22.8 million in sales

For the week ending Saturday December 4th 18 auctions were archived: 5 in dollars, 6 in Euros, 6 in British Pounds, and 1 in Mexican Pesos. Sales of six of the events exceeded their aggregate high estimate. Four others achieved more than 90%. In New York Bonham's sold the American Experience collection on the 2nd and Christie's Books and Manuscripts on the 3rd for a total, between them, of $10,593,533. For all sales reported this week 6,309 lots were offered and 4,726 sold for a 74.9% success rate. Against the aggregate high estimate of $26.3 million $22.8 was realized for an overall percentage of high estimate of 87%. Evidence continues to mount that auction houses are lowering estimates to encourage bidding to re-establish valuation. That process is well underway.

In New York on the 3th Christie's Books & Manuscripts sale made $6.52 million against its aggregate high estimate of $6.46 [101%]. Lot 32, a 1784 map of America by Buell estimated at $500,000 to $700,000 brought $2,098,500 and made the sale a significant success.

The American Experience sale at Bonham's on the 2nd was entirely unreserved, a rare occurrence in the rare book field for a highly important sale. Source, year purchased and price paid were provided for almost every item thus allowing for assessment of both the material and the market overall. Every item sold and every person seemed to interpret the results differently. The collection, which was built between 1991 and 2001, raised $4,056,000 against a cost of $3.34 million. Net of commissions the sale made a $100,000 gain. Valuations in the book, manuscript, map and ephemera markets have fallen about 20% over the past three years after experiencing steady increases for decades. This sale earned 21% more than its cost before deduction of auction house commissions and 3% after. The consignor [myself] believes that an exceptional catalogue, extensive publicity and extended payment terms were factors in the outcome. An in depth analysis of the sale will be posted in the January issue of AE Monthly.

Bruce McKinney
AE

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries: Fall 2017 Auction Schedule</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 19: 19th & 20th Century Prints & Drawings</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 28: Printed & Manuscript Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 5: African-American Fine Art</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries: Fall 2017 Auction Schedule</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 17: Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 19:<br>Art & Storytelling: Photographs & Photobooks</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 26: Rare & Important Travel Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries: Fall 2017 Auction Schedule</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 2:<br>Old Master Through Modern Prints</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 7: Autographs</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 14: 19th & 20th Century Literature</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries: Fall 2017 Auction Schedule</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Nov 16: Contemporary Art</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Dec 5:<br>Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Dec 14: Illustration Art</b>
  • <b>Announcing a new Books for Sale platform hosted by Biblio</b>
    <b>List your books simultaneously on Rare Book Hub and Biblio</b>
  • <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Exodus 10:10 to 16:15. Complete Biblical scroll sheet in Hebrew, a Torah scroll panel. Middle East, ca. 10th or 11th century.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Copernicus Refuted. (Astronomy.). Scientific manuscript of a course of studies at Collège de la Trinité, Lyon. 1660s.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Israel’s War of Independence and the Early Days of the IDF. 58 photographs presented to Israel Ber, IDF officer and later convicted spy.
    <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Early Unpublished Darwin letter on the races of man. Autograph Letter Signed [to Henry Denny]. Down, Kent, June 1, [1844].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Classic Image of American Slavery. Kimball, M. H. <i>Emancipated Slaves</i>. New York: George Hanks, 1863.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> (Underground Railroad.) Scaggs, Isaac. Important Runaway Slave Poster: $500 Reward Ran away, or decoyed from the subscriber…
  • <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Newton. <i>Philosophiae naturalis principia mathematica</i>. London, 1687.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Josephus. <i>De antiquitate Judaica.</i> Lubeck, 1475-76.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Carlerius. <i>Sporta fragmentorum, Sportula fragmentorum</i>. Brussels, 1478-79.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Fridolin. <i>Der Schatzbehalter</i>. Nuremberg, 1491.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Pinder. <i>Der beschlossen gart des rosenkrantz marie</i>. Nuremberg, 1505.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Isidorus Hispalensis. <i>Synonyma de Homine</i>. Nuremberg, 1470-71.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Durer. Sammelband including <i>Underweysung der messing</i>. Nuremberg, 1525-29.