Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - September - 2015 Issue

History of Mexican Independence and More from Plaza Books


History of Mexican Independence.

Plaza Books has released their List 37 Early and Important History of Mexican Independence. It actually extends beyond its title, with some works pertaining to other Latin American countries, others to pre-independence history. Nonetheless, you will find many items relating events in the years of Mexican independence, as the nation grappled with finding its way after centuries of rule from far off Spain. These are a few of the items presented in this list.


First up is an uncomplimentary look back at the original conquest of Mexico by the Spanish. The author was Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxochitl, descendant of two rulers with the same, hard to spell name, of the city-state of Texcoco. The second and last of these Texcoco rulers had cooperated with the Spanish in defeating the Aztecs, but Ixtlilxochitl the historian was bitter at how the Spanish ended up treating his people, and the cruelties they committed in capturing Mexico. While he was born in the second half of the 16th century, and did not personally witness the conquest, he had access to ancient records and spoke with old timers who carried his people's oral history. As such, he was able to describe the conquest and pre-conquest Mexican history from the perspective of the land's natives, rather than its conquerors. The book's title is Cruautes Horribles des Conquerants du Mexique (horrible cruelties of the conquerors of Mexico), and this is a second edition published in 1838, nine years after the first. That was over two centuries after Ixtlilxochitl wrote his account of the Mexican conquest. Item 12. Priced at $1,200.


This next item provides a unique look at Spanish rule of Mexico: Instrucciones que los Virreyes de Nueva Espana dejaron a sus Sucesores. It is a compilation of instructions left by various viceroys to their successors, as well as directives they received from Spain. It covers not only what is today Mexico, but areas of the United States from California to Florida which were once controlled by Spain. The printing of this material was ordered by Emperor Maxmilian, when another European power, this time France, seized control of Mexico during the 1860's. However, during the year it was published, 1867, Mexican revolutionaries overthrew French rule and executed Maximilian. According to Sabin, most copies were destroyed during the siege of Mexico City, making the book scarce today. Item 10. $3,000.


The French weren't the only ones who attempted to conquer independent Mexico, or at least a part of it. The newly independent Republic of Texas tried to grab a portion of Mexican territory in 1841. A poorly equipped group of Texans attempted to attack Santa Fe that year. The aim was to extend the Texas border on the west to the Rio Grande, seizing a large portion of New Mexico. The Texans believed the locals were as disgusted at Mexican rule as they had been a few years earlier and would join them in throwing out Mexican rule. They guessed wrong. Mexican forces quickly overwhelmed the Texans, who then marched the Texans all the way to prison in Mexico City. One of those who participated in this calamity and was marched to Mexico City was George Wilkins Kendall. He gives an account of the disaster in Narrative of the Texan Santa Fe Expedition, published in 1844. Kendall and his comrades were freed the year after their capture through the efforts of U.S. diplomats. Just a few years later, the United States would capture this and far more Mexican territory during the Mexican War, but Texas still did not get this territory as it became part of the future state of New Mexico. Item 14. $1,850.


Here is a favorite topic of collectors all over the world - railroads: History of the Mexican Railway. This is the 1876 first English language edition of a book originally published in Spanish in 1874. It celebrated the opening of the Mexico City – Vera Cruz line. It contains 32 sepia plates, all but two of which have been hand colored. This is the same number of plates as found in the Spanish edition. It also contains a map. Item 3. $6,500.


Item 35 is a look at Mexico just before one of the more important of its many revolutions: Barbarous Mexico, by John Kenneth Turner, published in 1911. Turner was a crusading California newspaperman who exposed the abuses and corruption of the then 35-year-old dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz. This came at a time when the American government was sympathetic to Diaz for keeping Mexico under tight rule. Turner predicted a revolution, and Diaz' successor credited his articles, on which the book version was based, as helping to bring it about. Turner would oppose American intervention in Mexico in the years following Diaz' overthrow. $100.


Plaza Books may be reached at 707-217-9229 or plazabks@sonic.net. Their website is www.plazabooks.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 7. Ritter's unusual sun-dial world map, 1607. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 16. Fascinating Japanese satirical map published prior to WWII, 1932. Est. $1400 to $2000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 30. Newton's 2" miniature terrestrial globe, 1833. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 318. Braun & Hogenberg's first plan of Moscow in contemporary color, 1575. Est. $2750 to $3500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 346. One of the most decorative 18th century maps of Malta, 1680. Est. $1200 to $1500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 412. The first printed map devoted to the Pacific in full contemporary color, 1589. Est. $8000 to $10000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 425. Rare set of celebrated explorers of the New World, 1592. Est. $1900 to $2300
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 436. Two superb miniature atlases bound in one volume with 98 maps, 1682. Est. $5500 to $7500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 445. Part IV of de Bry's "Grand Voyages" by Girolamo Benzoni, 1613. Est. $2000 to $2500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 447. Tallis' "History of the United States of America" in six volumes, 1850. Est. $1500 to $1800
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 448. Mallet's miniature military masterpiece, 1672. Est. $1400 to $1700
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Malcolm X, Autograph Letter Signed, from prison, 1950. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Letter from Moses Walker, an enslaved Georgia man, to his mother at another plantation, 1854. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Signed cabinet card of Frederick Douglass, albumen photograph, Boston, circa 1879. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Placard from the Memphis Sanitation Worker's strike, 1968. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b><br><i>The North Star,</i> volume 1, issue 27, Rochester, NY, 1848. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Hand-tinted tintype of John Brown, circa 1860. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster signed & inscribed by Huey Newton, circa 1967. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Album of aerial views of the march on Montgomery, taken by federal troops, 1965. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster for the SNCC, photograph by Danny Lyon featuring John Lewis, circa 1962. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $80,000 to $120,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. $100,000 to $150,000
    <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. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. $200,000 to 300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. $80,000 to $120,000
  • <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>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Jenner (Rev. George Charles). <i>The Evidence at Large...Respecting Dr Jenner's Discovery of Vaccine Inoculation,</i> presentation copy from Edward Jenner to Rev. Rowland Hill, 1805. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Houdini (Harry).- Maggi (Girolamo). <i>De tintinnabulis liber postumus...de equuleo liber,</i> Harry Houdini's copy, Amsterdam, H. Wetstein, 1689. £600 to £800
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Meyer (Henry Leonard). Coloured Illustrations of British Birds, and their Eggs , 7 vol. in 2 plus Illustrations of British Birds, 4 vol., 1842-50 and [1835-51]. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Dickens (Charles). <i>An Entirely New Romantic Drama, in Three Acts, by Mr. Wilkie Collins, called The Frozen Deep,</i> 1857. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Lighthouses and Islands of Ireland, c. 125 drawings, 1867. £6,000 to £8,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Shelley (Lady Jane). Diary, 1853 & 1860. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Scottish Binding.- The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments, bound in contemporary brown polished calf decorated with the figure of a Chinese spearman, by ?James Scott of Edinburgh, 1778. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Greene (Graham). <i>The Man Within,</i> first edition, signed by the author, 1929. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Mellan (Claude, 1598-1688). The Holy Face, or the Veil of St Veronica, [c. 1649 and later]. £800 to £1,200
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    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Desaguliers (John Theophilus). <i>A Dissertation concerning Electricity,</i> W. Innys, and T. Longman, 1742. £2,000 to £3,000
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    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Stumpf (Johann Rudolph). <i>Gemeiner loblicher Eydgnoschafft Stetten, Landen und Völckern Chronicwirdiger thaaten beschreibung, </i> Zurich, Froschauer, 1586. £3,000 to £4,000

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