Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - August - 2012 Issue

Fine Books and Manuscripts from James Cummins Bookseller

Cummins112

Fine books & manuscripts.

James Cummins Bookseller has issued Catalogue 112 of Fine Books and Manuscripts. This catalogue contains a wide mix of material, making it hard to describe beyond the word “fine.” The works here are notable both for top condition and significance. This is material certainly suitable for a fine collection. Here are some examples of what you will find.

Item 5 is a set of the first four volumes of the History of Woman's Suffrage, edited by Susan Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Matilda Gage, and Ida Husted Harper. The four volumes were published between 1881 and 1902. The first and fourth volumes are inscribed by Susan B. Anthony to businessman, author and women's rights supporter George Francis Train. Train made a great amount of money in transportation, including, appropriately, railroads. He also was something of an eccentric, particularly as he aged. In 1872, he ran an independent campaign for president, and was jailed for a while for supporting a publication deemed obscene. In his spare time, he attempted several around the world trips in an air balloon. He was the inspiration for Jules Verne's classic Around the World in 80 Days. Train also was a strong supporter of various causes, including woman's suffrage, and had financially backed Susan Anthony and toured Kansas with her. Two more volumes were later added to this title in the 1920s, but they are not present with this set, not surprisingly as Train died in 1904. Priced at $15,000.

Item 57 presents a collection of 1970s letters on a single topic from an amazing collection of authors. A few of the authors included are Ray Bradbury, Erskine Caldwell, Michael Crichton, Joseph Heller, Erica Jong, Stephen King, Norman Mailer, Joyce Carol Oates, William Saroyan, Herman Wouk, and Robert Penn Warren. A note from Thornton Wilder says he can't participate because he is “very old and half blind,” while Conrad Aiken's widow explains he cannot participate because he is dead. All told, 65 responses are included. And the topic? Writers Who Drink / Drinkers Who Write. This subject would probably not be treated so lightly today, but in 1978, it worked for a story in Writer's Digest. Malcolm Cowley observes that Hemingway was a heavy drinker, Conrad Aiken “consumed more gin than anyone else in the world.” Stephen King says “I like to write when I'm drunk...but I never wrote anything that was worth a shit under the influence of pot or any of the hallucinogenics...” John Cheever offers some insight with “The immense happiness of writing to one's satisfaction can be equaled only by sex or sauce or both...” Norman Mailer, who had a reputation for alcohol abuse, wisely responds, “Pass.” $15,000.

Item 69 is another extensive collection, perhaps the best on its subject, a great American tragedy of the 1880s. It pertains to the assassination of President James Garfield. Garfield is something of a forgotten President. He was a very popular Ohio Congressman and Civil War veteran, but not a presidential contender in 1880. However, the Republican convention became deadlocked that year, between former President Ulysses Grant, future nominee James G. Blaine, and Senator John Sherman, brother of General William Tecumseh Sherman. The result was Garfield being selected as a compromise. He went on to be elected in the fall, and was a very popular man when he took office in 1881. Unfortunately, we never got to see whether Garfield would have been a great president. Just 6 months into office, he was assassinated by a disappointed, mentally unbalanced office seeker named Charles Guiteau. This collection includes material relating to the assassination and to the trial and execution of Guiteau. Among the items are five letters and manuscripts written by Guiteau, one a very early letter, another a “chilling jailhouse manuscript” written shortly before his execution. There is one of prosecutor James K. Porter's trial notebooks, and correspondence between Porter and a trial attendee, civil rights pioneer Frederick Douglass. There is an autograph draft of the doctor's announcement of Garfield's death, a trial autograph album with signatures from Guiteau, attorneys, jurors and attendees, the Speaker of the House's letter conveying a first-hand account of Garfield's condition on the day of the shooting, one of Garfield's last signatures (from the morning of the shooting), and a letter from Lucretia Garfield, still in mourning several years later. $90,000.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Leland Little: Important Fall Auction. September 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Published Half Plate Ambrotype of a North Carolina Confederate Officer. $2,000 to $4,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Two 19th Century Books Pertaining to Canada's Red River Settlement. $400 to $800
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Two Books With Fore-Edge Paintings of British Architectual Landmarks. $400 to $600
    <b>Leland Little: Important Fall Auction. September 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987), "Torte a la Dobosch" from <i>Wild Raspberries</i>. $1,000 to $3,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Keith Haring (American, 1958-1990), <i>Pop Shop II,</i> One Plate screenprint in colors, on wove paper, 1998. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Leland Little, Sep. 22:</b> Thomas Rowlandson (British, 1756-1827), Twenty-Two Prints from the <i>Tours of Dr. Syntax</i>. $500 to $1,000
  • <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 Sep 27:</b> Franklin H. Brown, <i>State Sovereignty, National Union,</i> Chicago, 1860. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Thomas Paine, <i>The American Crisis,</i> Fishkill, NY, December 1776. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b><br>The Aitken Bible, Philadelphia, 1781. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francisco Loubayssin de Lamarca, probable first edition of the first novel set in the Spanish New World, Paris, 1617. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Juan de la Anunciación, <i>Sermonario en lengua mexicana,</i> first edition, first book of sermons in Nahuatl, Mexico, 1577. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Maturino Gilberti, <i>Thesoro spiritual en lengua de Mechuacá,</i> first edition, Mexico, 1558. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Commission of William O. Stoddard as secretary to the president, signed by Lincoln, Washington, 1861. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> <i>Clay and Frelinghuysen,</i> flag banner, circa 1844. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Daguerreotype of a man believed to be Frederick Granger Williams Smith, son of Joseph Smith, circa late 1850s. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> John C. Wolfe, <i>Portrait of Abraham Lincoln,</i> oil on board in period wooden frame, circa 1860s. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francis W. Winton, manuscript on pow-wows with indigenous Canadians, 1881. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Family letters from two young daguerreotype artists, 1826-79. $10,000 to $15,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>Aurora Australis.</i> Printed at the sign of 'The Penguins'; East Antarctica, 1908. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>South Polar Times.</i> 1st edition, limited issue. from the library of Michael Barne. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> General Washington's <i>Proceedings of a General Court Martial... of Major General Lee.</i> Philiadelphia, 1778. 100 copies printed for Congress. BOUND WITH: ...Court Martial... of St Clair and ...Schuyler. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>The Voice of the People.</i> Boston, 1754. Rare pamphlet on the Excise Tax. Nathaniel Sparhawk's copy. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Autograph Letter Signed ("S.L. Clemens"), offering extensive hard-earned advice on writing, 5 pp, 1881. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> After Fra Egnazio Danti. <i>L'Ultime Parti not:e nel Indie Occid:ntli" [The last known parts of the Western Indies].</i> Painted Map of California, Western Mexico, and Japan. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Ptolemaeus, Claudius. <i>Geographie opus nouissima...</i> 1513. The most important edition of Ptolemy, containing the Admiral's Map. $250,000 to $350,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> De Arellano, Don Alonso. Manuscript, his <i>"Relación mui singular y circunstanciada... Capitán del Patax San Lucas,"</i> manuscript copy from the Sir Thomas Phillips collection. $50,000 to $80,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Purchas, Samuel. <i>Purchas his Pilgrimes.</i> First edition. With John Simth's engraved map of Virginia. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Lewis, Meriwether. Contemporary manuscript true copy of his final power of attorney, 1809. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>A New Method of Macarony Making, as Practiced at Boston in North America.</i> Mezzotint. London, 1774. $5,000 to $7,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>Scientific Base Ball Pitching: A Treatise on the Pitcher, Pitching, Origin and Philosophy of the Curve.</i> Chicago, 1897. $2,000 to $3,000

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions