Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2012 Issue

Latin American Works from Plaza Books

Plaza33

Works from Latin America.

Plaza Books has prepared their List 33. Plaza specializes in Latin American works, with Mexico and Central America predominant. Dates range from the 17th to the 20th century, the languages found are Spanish and English. Works are sized from posters to several volumes. Several, though of Mexican origin at the time, relate to what is now the southwestern states of the U.S.A. Here are a few of the items we found in this latest selection.

Item 20 consists of three letters on the official letterhead of the State of Nuevo Leon (Mexico) to the Mayor of Linares, dated 1830-1832. They pertain to requests for fairly small numbers of rifles, horses, and financial support to deal with raids by Pames and Apache Indians. Despite centuries of attempts by Spanish, and later Mexican authorities to subdue the Indian tribes, some natives continued to resist authority well into the 20th century (some still object). Priced at $850.

Item 16 is A New Survey of the West Indies, by Thomas Gage, the 1699 “enlarg'd” fourth edition. Gage was an Englishman, but he moved to Spain, where he became a Catholic priest. From there he traveled to Mexico in 1625, where he spent the next 16 years. Spain jealously guarded all knowledge about their American colonies, fearful that others might use that information to gain control over their resources. Except for his being a Catholic priest from Spain, it is unlikely he could have moved about the area so freely. After 16 years, Gage returned home, but not Spain, to England. He switched sides, both nationally and religiously, converting to an Anglican priest. He then wrote his tell-all book, which provided the world with information about the New World otherwise hidden by Spanish authorities. In 1656, he returned to the West Indies, Jamaica specifically. The island had recently been seized by the British, and it is likely Gage played a role in their decision to grab the poorly guarded Spanish colony. $2,750.

Item 33 is Tratado de Fortification Pasajara... by Antonio de Santa Anna, translated from French by Jose Ignacio Serrano. This is an 1854 first Mexican edition of a military manual for training Mexican troops. Why Santa Anna, the Mexican general and leader known primarily for losing Texas, would write such a manual in French, and need to have someone else translate it to Spanish, is mystifying. As Plaza points out, “Santa-Anna, as was his way, seems to have taken credit where it was not in the slightest due.” $675.

Item 40 is The War in Nicaragua by the man who instigated it, William Walker. Walker hoped to carve out a nation he could rule in Central America. In 1853, he invaded Mexico, planning to capture the northern part for a new nation. His attack was repulsed, but Walker was not discouraged. In 1856, he led a small group of armed men into Nicaragua, and amazingly enough, succeeded in taking control. His plan was to open the country for slavery, which would earn him the support of the American South. However, Walker unwisely antagonized U.S. shipping magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, hurting his chances for support in the North, and was unable to withstand a coalition of Central American countries. He was forced to flee. He attempted a return in 1857, but was stopped by the U.S. Navy, then made another attempt in 1860. This time, the British caught him while attempting to rally a return from Honduras. They turned him over to Honduran authorities who promptly executed Walker. His account was published in 1860, shortly after he died. $950.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. SOLD for $131,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. SOLD for $516,500
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. SOLD for $106,250
    <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. SOLD for $16,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. SOLD for $275,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750
  • <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> E.H. SHEPARD, Original drawing for A.A. Milne’s The House at Pooh Corner.<br>$40,000-60,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> BERNARD RATZER, Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $80,000-100,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> THOMAS JEFFERSON, Autograph letter signed comparing Logan, Tecumseh, and Little Turtle to the Spartans. Monticello: 15 February 1821. $14,000-18,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN C. FREMONT, Narrative of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, in the Year 1842.. Abridged edition, the only one containing the folding map From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $3,000-5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ZANE GREY, Album containing 94 large format photographs of Grey and party at Catalina Island, Arizona, and fishing in the Pacific. From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $5,000-$8,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> WILLIAM COMBE, A History of Madeira ... illustrative of the Costumes, Manners, and Occupations of the Inhabitants. produced by Ackermann in 1821; From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ERIC TAVERNER, Salmon Fishing... One of 275 copies signed by Taverner, published in 1931,From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN WHITEHEAD, Exploration of Mount Kina Balu, North Borneo. Whitehead reached the high point of Kinabalu in 1888. Part of a major group of travel books from the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN LONG, Voyages and Travels of an Indian Interpreter and Trader, describing the Manners and Customs of the North American Indians... The first edition of 1791. $3,000-$5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> SAMUEL BECKETT, Stirrings Still. This, Beckett’s last work of fiction with original lithographs by Le Brocquy, limited to 200 copies signed by the author and the artist. From the Estate of Howard Kaminsky.. $1,500-$2,500
  • <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 Apr 26:</b> Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann, wallpaper sample book, circa 1919. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Archive from a late office of the Breuer & Smith architectural team, New York, 1960-70s. $3,500 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> William Morris, <i>The Story of the Glittering Plain or the Land of Living Men,</i> illustrated by Walter Crane, Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1894. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustave Doré, <i>La Sainte Bible selon la Vulgate,</i> Tours, 1866. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustav Klimt & Max Eisler, <i>Eine Nachlese,</i> complete set, Vienna, 1931. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>Eric Allatini & Gerda Wegener, <i>Sur Talons Rouges,</i> with original watercolor by Wegener, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>C.P. Cavafy, <i>Fourteen Poems,</i> illustrated & signed by David Hockney, London, 1966. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jean Midolle, <i>Spécimen des Écritures Modernes...</i>, Strasbourg, 1834-35. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>E.A. Seguy, <i>Floréal: Dessins & Coloris Nouveaux,</i> Paris, 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.

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