Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2013 Issue

Six Hundred Children's Books from Aleph-Bet

Alephbet104

Books for children.

Aleph-Bet Books has released Catalogue 104 of Children's Books & Illustrated Books. Aleph-Bet's are the most consistent of catalogues we receive. Each includes 600 items, every item illustrated and described. Practically all qualify as being both for children and illustrated. You can count on finding the most familiar of children's authors, the Seusses, Sendaks, Baums and Disneys, along with the obscure. Most are in English, but other languages will also be found. Most are fun, but a few reflect ugly prejudices of their times and authors. Everyone will find something that will bring you back to your childhood. Here are just a few.

We will start with one of those books that are not in English, Paraplyernes Opror (Umbrellas Revolt). Aleph-Bet assures us, “You don't need to read Danish to enjoy this book.” A good thing, since not many people do. Author Kjeld Abell's “almost surreal” illustrations do the trick even if you can't follow the text. You will never think of umbrellas quite the same once you realize what happens when they rebel. Published in 1937. Item 41. Priced at $200.

While there was fun coming off the presses in Denmark in the late 1930s, it was pure ugliness in their neighbor to the south. Item 374 is Der Giftpilz (The Poisonous Mushroom) by Ernst Hiemer, published in Nuremberg in 1938. During the war, Hiemer served as editor under Julius Streicher (later executed for war crimes) of the rabidly anti-Semitic newspaper Der Sturmer. It regularly advocated the extermination policies carried out by the Nazis. Hiemer shared its most repugnant views. This book is filled with hideous stereotypes of Jews, designed to sew hatred among German youth. $6,000.

Today society encourages children to get out and play, rather than sit around the house, as being important to physical health. This reality was recognized over 200 years ago, as shown in this book published by J. Johnson of Philadelphia, circa 1805: Youthful Recreations. As it points out, “For he who sits by the fire all day, And never goes abroad to play, May keep himself from being cold, But may not live till he is old.” Truer words were never rhymed. This book includes descriptions and illustrations of various games of the day, such as football (“a manly exercise not proper for girls”), archery, battledore, shuttlecock, hopscotch, rocking horse, kite flying, rope skipping, bait the bear, and marbles (that last one doesn't sound too athletic). Item 193. $1,850.

Here are some more rhymes: Rhymes of Real Children, by Betty Sage, illustrated by Jessie Wilcox Smith. Published in 1903, it includes six large color plates by Smith. This copy contains an original two-page typed and signed poem mounted to the front endpaper. The writer is William Lloyd Garrison, Jr., son of the famed abolitionist of the same name. Abolition already achieved, the younger Garrison was an outspoken advocate of women's rights and suffrage. Item 541. $675.

I'm not sure how Jack Lait got all of the necessary approvals to put out this book in 1926: All the Funny Folks. He has managed to take many of the leading cartoon characters of the 1920s and weave them together into one story. So here we find Jiggs and Maggie, Krazy Kat, Happy Hooligan, Tillie the Toiler, the Katzenjammer Kids, Dinty Moore, Barney Google and many others. Barney should sue that internet company for stealing his last name. I remember many of these characters, though from days later than the 20s, but don't know whether any are still active. Item 118. $500.

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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