Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - November - 2005 Issue

The American West and Frontier From Arthur H. Clark

Clark922

New acquisitions from the American West and Frontier from Arthur H. Clark.


By Michael Stillman

The Arthur H. Clark Company
has issued its Catalogue 922 of material on the American Frontier and West. Generally speaking, if it occurred west of the Mississippi during the 19th or first half of the 20th century, it is a likely subject for a work in this catalogue. But then again, there was a time when the "West" was much farther east, so the Mississippi is not an absolute border here. We will take a look at just a few samples.

For a picture of life in the Old West, you might want to read Reminiscences of Alexander Toponce: pioneer 1839-1923. Toponce was born in France, but came to New York as a young man. Bored, he first ran away from home at age 10, and by the time he was 15, he was out west. His adventures included driving stage, carrying mail, mining for gold in Colorado and Montana, running a freight company, leading a wagon train, and driving cattle. He even served as mayor of the small town of Corinne, Utah, and was friendly with Brigham Young. His was an unbelievably full life, and it was the type of life of which stories are made. His story is item 277. Published in 1923 by his widow. Priced at $135.

He was a man who saved the Union, though not as heroically remembered as the other man who saved the Union, Abe Lincoln. We are referring to General, later President, Ulysses S. Grant, and item number 53 is his autobiography, Personal Memoirs of U.S. Grant. This is the book that Grant, dying of throat cancer, struggled to finish so he could leave a little money to his family. A year earlier, he had been swindled out of his money by a business associate. Grant finished the memoirs, which end at the time of his victory at Vicksburg, just days before he died. They helped to restore his reputation, which had been hurt by scandals in his administration, while earning a substantial sum of money for his heirs. $650.

In the interest of being fair and balanced, item 56 is the Recollections and Letters of General Robert E. Lee. This is a 1924 reprint of a book published in 1904. Lee is seen through the letters he wrote his family and friends, while his son provides a narrative. Lee died only a few years after the Civil War, in 1870, while Grant was president. He was pardoned over a century later, by President Gerald Ford, noted for granting pardons. $25.50.

Here is a most topical book: The Red Cross: A history of this remarkable international movement in the interest of humanity, by Clara Barton. Ms. Barton provided supplies to wounded soldiers during the Civil War, and after a trip to Europe where she observed the International Red Cross, she became convinced that a branch was needed in America. She began organizing it in 1873, and in 1881, with a gift from John D. Rockefeller, the American Red Cross was born. As we found out a few months ago, we are very indebted to her. When the government failed, the Red Cross was there. Item 11. Published in 1898 by the American National Red Cross, it covers floods and disasters up to the Spanish-American War. $45.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> first edition of the earliest extant manual on modern chess, Salamanca, circa 1496-97. Sold for $68,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Carte-de-visite album with 83 images of prominent African Americans & abolitionists, circa 1860s. Sold for $47,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Gustav Klimt, <i>Das Werk,</i> Vienna & Leipzig, 1918. Sold for $106,250.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Man Ray, <i>[London Transport] – Keeps London Going,</i> 1938. Sold for $149,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Thomas Jefferson, Letter Signed, to Major-General Nathanael Greene, promising reinforcements against Cornwallis, 1781. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Nicolas de Fer, <i>L’Amerique Divisee Selon Letendue de ses Principales Parties,</i> Paris, 1713. Sold for $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Russell H. Tandy, <i>The Secret in the Old Attic,</i> watercolor, pencil & ink, 1944. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ernest Hemingway, <i>Three Stories & Ten Poems,</i> first edition of the author's first book, Paris, 1923. Sold for $23,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Walker Evans, <i>River Rouge Plant,</i> silver print, 1947. Sold for $57,500.
  • <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Ernst, Max. <i>Mr. Knife and Miss Fork</i>. Paris, 1932. DELUXE EDITION. Sold for $15,625
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Einstein, Albert. Signed Passport Photo for his US citizenship application. Bermuda, 1935. Sold for $17,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Verard, Antoine. Illuminated printed Book of Hours. Paris, 1507. Sold for $7,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Wetterkurzschlussel. German Weather Report Codebook - for Enigma use. Berlin, 1942. Sold for $225,000
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Morelos y Pavon, Jose Maria. Autograph letter signed to El Virrey Venegas, February 5, 1812. Sold for $6,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Milne, A.A. Complete set of <i>Winnie-the-Pooh</i> books. 4 volumes. All first issue points. London, 1924-1928. Sold for $5,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> A 48-star American Flag, battle worn flown at Guadalcanal and Peleliu, 1942-1944. Sold for $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Locke, John. Autograph Letter Signed mourning the death of his friend, William Molyneaux, 2 pp, October 27, 1698. Sold for $20,000
  • <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>

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