• <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> A Rare 3-rotor German Enigma I Enciphering Machine. $70,000 to $90,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Important collection of correspondence between Werner Heisenberg and Bruno Rossi. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Walt Whitman Autograph manuscript containing his thoughts on death. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> David Roberts. <i>Holy Land</i>. Six volumes. 1842-1849. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Extensive collection of Ray Bradbury's primary works, most signed or inscribed. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Peter Force. Declaration of Independence. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Steinbeck. <i>Grapes of Wrath</i>. A fine copy of the first edition. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Lewis & Clark. <i>Travels to the Source of the Missouri River</i>... First English edition, extra-illustrated. 1814. $10,000 to 15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Manuscript document signed by Nuno de Guzman relating to Hernan Cortes, 1528. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> “Nos los inquisidores..." The first book in English printed West of the Mississippi. [1787]. $5,000 to $8,000.
  • <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>Case Antiques: Historic Winter Fine Art and Antiques Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> <i>The Massachusetts Magazine: or Monthly Museum of Knowledge and Rational Entertainment,</i> 1789. Signed by George Washington. $28,000 to $32,000
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> George Washington Signed Letter to John Marshall. $12,000 to $14,000
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Picasso Signed “Vallauris” 1952 Exhibition Poster. $6,000 to $8,000
    <b>Case Antiques: Historic Winter Fine Art and Antiques Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Military appointment commission document signed by both President Thomas Jefferson and Secretary of War Henry Dearborn, dated January 27, 1803. $2,400 to $2,800
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Doris Ulmann and Julia Peterkin. <i>Roll, Jordan, Roll.</i> New York, 1933, deluxe edition, preceding first edition of the same year. No. 74 of 350. $5,000 to $6,000
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> John Marshall. <i>The Life of George Washington,</i> Philadelphia, 1832. Signed by author. $5,000 to $7,000
    <b>Case Antiques: Historic Winter Fine Art and Antiques Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Samuel L. Margolies (American, 1897-1974). Aquatint and etching, "Builders of Babylon," 1937. $4,000 to $4,500
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Two Robert E. Lee (1807-1870) signed documents as President of Washington College. $3,000 to $3,500
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> William C. Harris. <i>The Fishes of North America That Are Captured on Hook and Line</i>, Vol I., New York, 1898. 40 chromolithograph plates. $2,000 to $2,500
    <b>Case Antiques: Historic Winter Fine Art and Antiques Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> $100 "Date Back" bank note 1902 from the Clarksville National Bank, Clarksville, Tennessee, depicting the portrait of John Jay Knox, Jr. $1,400 to $1,800
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> View of the University of Virginia, Charlottesville and Monticello, Taken from Lewis Mountain, drawn and lithographed by Edward Sachse. $800 to $1,000
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 27:</b> Large Civil War photograph mounted on card stock depicting Rossville Gap in Missionary Ridge. $400 to $450
  • <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 39: Presidential Pardon Signed by John F. Kennedy. November 1962. $7,000 to $9,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 537: Marc Chagall. <i>Illustrations for the Bible</i>. Features 28 lithograph plates. First American edition, 1956. $2,000 to $3,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 252: Jack Kerouac. <i>On the Road</i>. 1957. First edition. $5,000 to $7,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 143: Arthur Rimbaud. <i>A Season in Hell</i>. With photogravures by Robert Mapplethorpe. The Limited Editions Club, 1986. $600 to $800
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 72: Group of 11 Harry Truman Signed Letters. Typed & signed by the former President. 1962-1970. $1,500 to $2,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 157: Arthur Conan Doyle. The Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes by The Limited Editions Club. 8 vols. 1950-52. $300 to $500
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 173: Jacob Lawrence. <i>The First Book of Moses, Called Genesis</i>. Illustrated with silkscreens by Lawrence. 1989. $2,000 to $3,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 239: William Faulkner. <i>Sartoris</i>. First edition. New York: Harcourt, Brace, & Company, 1929. $2,000 to $3,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 286: Walt Whitman. New Year’s Eve Postcard Signed, “Walt Whitman,” to the poet Gabriel Sarrazin. January, 1891. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 351: Pair of European Fine Bindings. Including Gesanbuch (1831) & Naboznych Vylevov (1911). $200 to $300
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 423: August Luben. <i> Naturhistorischer Atlas der Saugethiere </i>. Includes complete set of 30 loose plates. Leipzig: 1858. $1,000 to $1,500
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions Jan. 27:</b><br>Lot 386: <i>Famous Monsters of Filmland No 1</i>. Art by Will Elder, text by Forrest Ackerman. Warren’s first monster magazine. Feb, 1958. $2,000 to $3,000

Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - October - 2017 Issue

Rare Americana from David Lesser Antiquarian Books

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Catalogue 157 of Rare Americana.

David M. Lesser Fine Antiquarian Books has issued their 157th catalogue of Rare Americana. Most material pertains to the period ranging from the Revolutionary War era, to the era of the Civil War. That is a trip from unity to disunity, and then quickly and violently back again. The period had its share of troubles, north-south, slave-free, religious debates, political competition. We have similar battles today, and in a hundred years, future generations will look back at our times the way we do at these earlier ones, and wonder why didn't they all just get along? Here are a few selections from this latest Lesser catalogue.

 

The author of this publication spent most of his career in controversies, but this was not one of them, and it would not be until a few years later that he would become totally despised by his constituents. Item 87 is a broadside proclamation headed Province of Massachusetts-Bay, June 6, 1760. By the Honorable Thomas Hutchinson, Esq; Lieutenant Governor and Commander in Chief. It offers bonuses to people who recruit enlistees to fight in the French and Indian War. While not yet Governor, as he would later become, Hutchinson's authority was based on being Acting Governor at the time. This would hardly have been a controversial proclamation, as British and colonist interests were still aligned. However, once that war was over, and the British began taxing the colonists for the war and continued defense, Hutchinson's reputation plummeted. He attempted to steer a middle course, enforcing British mandates while arguing with his superiors not to so burden the colonies. However, the colonists of Massachusetts were becoming increasingly radicalized by British actions, and as Barry Goldwater would say years later, "moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue." The colonists shared that viewpoint. Hutchinson came to symbolize British authoritarianism, particularly after the Boston Tea Party, and was driven into exile. Priced at $2,000.

 

A century later, independence won, America unraveled. The issue was slavery. The South seceded, and churches in the South had to choose between union with their northern brethren or loyalty to the South and its "peculiar institution." Most chose the latter, sometimes by denigrating the slaves humanity, as did so many politicians, or other times by defending slavery on more "humane" grounds. Item 35 is one of those more "humane" justifications: Pastoral Letter from the Bishops of the Protestant Episcopal Church to the Clergy and Laity of the Church in the Confederate States of America. The letter was published on November 22, 1862. Written by Bishop Stephen Elliott of Georgia, it claims that the southern church finds itself, at the moment, "forced by the providence of God," to separate itself from the rest of the church. Therefore, it had to change its constitution and liturgy, but only where necessary to reflect the new nation. It then goes on to explain that, "The slaves of the South are not merely so much property, but are a scared trust committed to us, as a people, to be prepared for the work God may have for them to do in the future." Somehow, the slaves just didn't appreciate their masters' selflessness. $450.

 

Next we have a political broadside, To The Voters of the Fourth Congressional District of Mississippi, a promotional effort by William Augustus Lake, running for the Confederate Congress in 1861. Lake had served one term in the U.S. Congress, elected as a member of the American Party (Know-Nothings) in 1854, defeated in 1856 as that party's fortunes waned. However, with Mississippi seceding, he was back again, and like everyone else running in the South those days, was rabidly pro secession. In this October 1861 broadside, Lake proclaims, "...we have but one object, namely: to conquer a peace and secure our national independence. Nor can there be any controversy as to the means necessary to obtain this end. War! War! is the only way. It will, therefore, be seen that there is no chance for party divisions and party issues." Lake called for unity among southerners, but this did not apply to him and his opponent. He was killed by his opponent, Henry Cousins Chambers, not just in the election, but quite literally. For reasons unclear, the competition between the two became personal, and it ended in a duel. Each fired three times, unsuccessfully. Chambers' fourth shot hit its target. Chambers went on to handily defeat his deceased opponent, and, wisely, no one opposed him for reelection in 1863. Item 80. $3,500.

 

As the war effort grew more desperate for the South, the Confederacy turned to desperate measures. On February 1, 1864, Lee's surrender but 70 days away, the following speech was made before the Confederate Congress: Speech of Hon. Thos. S. Gholson, of Virginia, on the Policy of Employing Negro Troops, and the Duty of All Classes to Aid in the Prosecution of the War. It was desperate indeed to arm the slaves, since a Confederate defeat would mean their freedom, already recognized in the United States as a result of the Emancipation Proclamation. However, the South had virtually run out of warm bodies to fill its ranks, by then enlisting those normally considered to old or too young to maintain its ranks. Slaves were already used in non-combat roles, such as building fortifications, but they could be controlled by armed guards in these jobs. Handing over guns to slaves, who might turn on white Confederates to escape to freedom, was too great a concern. Gholson argues against the proposal, claiming "our slaves," normally "timid," would "become licentious and fanatical. They are credulous, and may be easily deceived." Perhaps a better way of explaining his fear of the slaves turning on them would be to quote Barry Goldwater again, "extremism in defense of liberty is no vice" (when was the last time Barry Goldwater was quoted twice?). Perhaps even worse, Gholson notes that if blacks and whites are put in the same army, treated practically as equals, "We will have conceded, that they are worthy of freedom." Among those who led the fight against this proposal was the aforementioned Representative Chambers, who normally rubber-stamped every Confederate proposal. Item 65. $1,500.

 

After the war, there were organizations throughout the South that sought to return that region to essentially what it had been before, except with Jim Crow replacing legalized slavery. Such organizations were sparse in the North, but here is one, formed in Indiana, which would later become a northern hotbed for the Klan. They were called the Union White Boys in Blue. It was composed of Union veterans (and others) whose views were essentially those of the wartime Copperheads. The organization, which drew most of its members from Indiana and Ohio, were opposed to the much larger Union veterans' organization, the Grand Army of the Republic, which held the "White Boys" in contempt. The "White Boys'" constitution called for an end to Reconstruction, the defeat of General Grant in the 1868 presidential election in favor of the more accommodating Democrat, Horatio Seymour, and had little trouble in expressing their racist sentiments. They sought the elimination of the Freedmen's Bureau, that attempted to aid the freed slaves, while their constitution declares, "That we are opposed to negro supremacy and the domination of an inferior, degraded race in these States [the South], by which one-third of our States are to be ruthlessly abandoned to the mismanagement and control of barbarism; and that it is not in the heart of American citizenship to brook the relinquishment of that vast southern domain to negro ownership..." Item 146 is a membership certificate in this organization, headed In the Name and by the Authority of the White Boys in Blue of Columbus, Ohio. It is dated December 1, 1868, signed by local officials, and was granted to (written in manuscript) Alexander McCoy. McCoy was made an "honorary member," which leads one to suspect he was not himself a Union veteran. Item 146. $450.

 

If, instead of membership in an anti-African American society, you would prefer membership in an anti-Catholic one, here is a perfect alternative. This is a certificate of membership in the American Protestant Society. Formed around the same time as the emergence of the Know-Nothings, the American Protestant Society regularly attacked the Catholic Church, believing the church to be contrary to republican ideals and controlled by a corrupt pope. Both organizations had arisen as a result of an influx of Catholic immigrants from Ireland and Germany at the time. However, rather than consigning Catholics to near slavery, as the "White Boys" wished for blacks, the American Protestant Society sought to convert them. Item 3 is a July 1848 certificate of lifetime membership to the organization for Col. Darius Branch, and it did not come cheaply. It required $25 in donations, a serious sum in those days. A lifetime membership was not that good of a deal for Branch as he died just three years later, but that was longer than the lifetime of the American Protestant Society. It ceased to exist as an independent entity the year this membership was granted. Instead, it combined with two similar organizations to form the American and Foreign Christian Union. The AFCU had much success in the 1850's, the high point for the Know-Nothings, but faded after that. However, the AFCU, which included foreign missions, still exists today, for the most part running an English-speaking church in Paris, which it has run since its early days, with smaller churches in Berlin and Vienna. Item 3. $500.

 

Item 40 is a campaign banner for a man who, I think, most whites and blacks, Protestants and Catholics, can agree was one of our worst presidents. It is The Democrats Choice for President & Vice President from 1853 to 1857. The Democrats' choice for President was New Hampshire's Franklin Pierce, the quintessential northern man with southern principles. Pierce essentially fiddled while Rome burned. Unlike his comparably mediocre successor, James Buchanan, who gave in to the South at every turn hoping to stave off secession, Pierce's sympathies were aligned with his southern brethren. Equal billing is given to William King, Pierce's running mate. King was sort of the William Henry Harrison of vice-presidents. Ill with tuberculosis, he traveled to Cuba, hoping the mild climate would aid his recovery. TB doesn't work that way. As a result, he was given his oath of office in Cuba, but died barely a month later without ever making it to Washington. This hand-colored banner was created by lithographer Nathaniel Currier, later noted for his partnership with James Ives. $850.

 

David M. Lesser Fine Antiquarian Books may be reached at 203-389-8111 or dmlesser@lesserbooks.com. Their website is www.lesserbooks.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 15:</b> Icons & Images: Photographs & Photobooks
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 1:</b> Vintage Posters Featuring Highlights from the Gail Chisholm Collection
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 8:</b> Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 13:</b> 19th & 20th Century Prints & Drawings
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 22:</b> Autographs
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 29:</b> Printed & Manuscript African Americana
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Apr 12:</b> Printed & Manuscript Americana
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Apr 26:</b> Fine Illustrated Books & Graphics
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries May 3:</b> Graphic Design
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries May 15:</b> 19th & 20th Century Literature
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Jun 7:</b><br>Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Jun 21:</b> Revolutionary & Presidential Americana from the Collection of William Wheeler III
  • <b>Arader Galleries Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> Snowy Heron, Plate 242. John James Audubon (1785-1851). First Edition Engravings with Original Hand Color. London: Robert Havell, 1827-1838.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> Great Blue Heron, Plate 211. John James Audubon (1785-1851). First Edition Engravings with Original Hand Color. London: Robert Havell, 1827-1838.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> The Clouded Leopard. Charles Robert Knight (1874-1953). Oil on canvas.
    <b>Arader Galleries Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> A Bouquet of Daffodils and Other Flowers with a Butterfly on the Stem. Pierre-Joseph Redouté (1759-1840). Black Chalk, Watercolor And Gum Arabic On Vellum.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> CELLARIUS, Andreas (ca 1596-1665). <i>Harmonia macrocosmica seu atlas universalis et Novus</i>. Amsterdam: Pieter Schenk and Gerald Valk, 1708.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> HOMANN, Johann Baptist (1663-1724). <i>Grosser Atlas über die gantze Welt</i>. Nuremburg: J.H.G. Bieling for the heirs of Homann, 1737.
    <b>Arader Galleries Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> LEVAILLANT, Francois (1753-1824). <i>Histoire naturelle des perroquets</i>. Paris: Levrault frères (later Levrault, Schoell & Co.), 1801-1805.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> FUCHS, Leonhard (1501-1566). <i>De historia stirpium commentarii insignes. adiectis earundem vivis plusquam quingentis imaginibus</i>… Basel: Michel Isingrin, 1542.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> Original Manuscript Map "Plano De Una Parte De La Provincia De La Luisiana..." AN EXCEPTIONALLY FINE AND HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT MAP SHOWING THE ORIGINS OF THE STATE OF TEXAS AT THE TURN OF THE 19TH CENTURY.
    <b>Arader Galleries Auction<br>January 27, 2018</b>
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> J. De Cordova's Map of the State of Texas Compiled from the records of the General Land Office of the State by Robert Creuzbaur, Houston. Hand-colored lithograph. New York: J. Atwood, 1850.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> Texas. David Burr (1803-1875). Engraved Map with original hand color in full. New York: J. H. Colton & Co., 1834. Second Edition.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Jan. 27:</b> Map of Texas with Parts of Adjoining States Compiled by Stephen F. Austin. Engraved Map with original hand color. Philadelphia, 1830. First Edition.
  • <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books and Works on Paper. January 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> <i>Verve: Revue Artistique et Littéraire/An Artistic and Literary Quarterly,</i> nos.1-38 in 26 vol [a complete set], numerous colour lithographs by Picasso, Chagall, Matisse & others. £8,000 to £12,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Wesley (John, Church of England clergyman and a founder of Methodism, 1703-91). Autograph Letter signed to Rev. John Bredin, 1782. £8,000 to £12,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Austen (Jane). Brock (Charles Edward). A group of seventeen ink and watercolour drawings for Dent's edition of Jane Austen's <i>Sense and Sensibility,</i> 1908. £6,000 to £8,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books and Works on Paper. January 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Tibullus (Albius) and Gaius Valerius Catullus. <i>Elegiae, sive Carmina,</i> Venice, Andreas de Paltasichis, 1487. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Doves Press. English Bible (The), 5 vol., one of 500 copies, signed and inscribed by Laurence Hodson, Doves Press, 1903. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Africa. Smith (Andrew). <i>Illustrations of the Zoology of South Africa,</i> 5 vol., first edition, original cloth, [1838-50]. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books and Works on Paper. January 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Longitude. <i>An Act for providing a Publick Reward for such Person or Persons as shall Discover the Longitude at Sea,</i> first edition of this highly important act, John Baskett, 1714. £3,000 to £5,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Shirley (James). <i>Six new playes, viz. The Brothers. Sisters. Doubtfull Heir. Imposture. Cardinall. Court secret,</i> first edition, 1653. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Heaney (Seamus). <i>Ugolino,</i> number 77 of 125 copies, Dublin, Dolmen Press, 1979. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books and Works on Paper. January 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Lasinio (Carlo, 1759-1838). <i>[Ritratti Originali de Pittori Esistenti Nella Reale Galleria de Firenze],</i> 99 engravings, circa 1791-96. £1,800 to £2,200
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Japan. Kusakabe Kimbei. Photograph Album, 50 hand-coloured albumen prints, oblong folio, [c.1890-1900]. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 25:</b> Polar. Expedition in search of Sir John Franklin. Arctic Expedition in search of Sir John Franklin, printed flyer, 1852. £1,000 to £1,500

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