Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - November - 2005 Issue

Travels and Voyages from William Reese

Reese240

Travels and Voyages from William Reese Company.

'
By Michael Stillman

The William Reese Company's
240th catalogue is titled Travels and Voyages. Reese specializes in the very top level of books, manuscripts and ephemera. You will find contemporary items either written by, or concerning the voyages of the greatest explorers. Not to be namedroppers, but some of those you will find here are Magellan, Drake, Vancouver, Dampier, Hakluyt, Drake, Cook, Kotzebue, Wilkes, Bligh, Ross, and Foss.

Foss? Few explorers of this time had it easy, but no one ever suffered like poor Daniel Foss. His book is A Journal of the Shipwreck and Suffering of Daniel Foss....the Only Person Saved from on Board the Brig Negociator....and who Lived for Five Years on a Small Barren Island - During which time He Subsisted on Seals, and Never Saw the Face of a Human Creature. If all he subsisted on was seals, this might not be quite as horrible a story. According to Foss, and he being the only survivor, it is hard to verify the details, the Negociator left Alexandria (other editions say Philadelphia) in 1811 (others say 1809). On Nov. 26, 1811 (or November 15, 1809), the ship struck an iceberg in the Pacific and went down. All hands made it to the lifeboats, but nine days later, only 13 were left, the result of the extreme cold. A bit later still, the number dwindled to three, and dying of hunger, they drew lots to see which would be dinner for the others. Then there were two. They survived this way until March, when the two spotted a small island. Unfortunately, their boat overturned 100 yards from shore, and only Foss made it to the island alive. It was then that Foss began subsisting on seals and collected rainwater, a step up from his previous cuisine, but certainly very tiresome since this was all he had for the next five years. How many ways can you cook a seal? Finally, he was spotted by a U.S. ship and was saved from his island. So, is Foss' account of his story accurate? Since he was the only survivor, we'll never know, but considering that by 1816, he was publishing contradictory editions concerning the year they left, and where they left from, one might question his memory, if not his honesty. Item 57. Priced at $4,500.

Here are some fascinating, though embarrassing letters from Loring Austin. Austin set out from America to Russia to establish a trading business. His letters to his father give a picture of the port city of Archangel in Russia at the time. Unfortunately, Austin was not successful in his business ventures. A letter on his return trip is most revealing. His American ship was threatened by French and Danish privateers. They were forced to seek protection from the British fleet. Writes Austin, "To our shame it must be confessed that our flag waves in the Baltic the very emblem of impotence, and our commerce....finds its only security under the British flag, a protection we cannot request without disgrace, & which perhaps may not be granted, without some sarcastic remark upon our national imbecility too galling to be made without impunity, yet too obviously just to admit of reply." Talk about humiliation. Less than a year later, America would go to war with Britain, the impressment of U.S. sailors into the British navy a major cause. Perhaps the British were a bit more justified than we thought, since we seemed to be free riding their naval protection. Item 7. $2,000.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Exodus 10:10 to 16:15. Complete Biblical scroll sheet in Hebrew, a Torah scroll panel. Middle East, ca. 10th or 11th century.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Copernicus Refuted. (Astronomy.). Scientific manuscript of a course of studies at Collège de la Trinité, Lyon. 1660s.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Israel’s War of Independence and the Early Days of the IDF. 58 photographs presented to Israel Ber, IDF officer and later convicted spy.
    <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Early Unpublished Darwin letter on the races of man. Autograph Letter Signed [to Henry Denny]. Down, Kent, June 1, [1844].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Classic Image of American Slavery. Kimball, M. H. <i>Emancipated Slaves</i>. New York: George Hanks, 1863.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> (Underground Railroad.) Scaggs, Isaac. Important Runaway Slave Poster: $500 Reward Ran away, or decoyed from the subscriber…
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>Keep Calm and Carry On</i>, designer unknown, 1939. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen, <i>Le Journal / La Traite des Blanches</i>, 1899. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>"Let Us Go Forward Together,"</i> designer unknown, 1940. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, <i>Babylone d'Allemagne</i>, 1894. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Frank Beatty, <i>Out of the Running</i>, 1929. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Wake Up America Day</i>, 1917. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>Danté / Sim • Sala • Bim!</i>, designer unknown. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Alphonse Mucha, <i>[Zodiac]</i>, 1900. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Rick Griffin, <i>Jimi Hendrix Experience / John Mayall</i>, 1968. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Abram Games, <i>Join the ATS</i>, 1941. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Aldo Mazza, <i>Torino / Esposizione Internazionale</i>, 1911. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Robert Motherwell, <i>Julliard School / Dedication - Lincoln Center</i>, 1969. $3,000 to $4,000
  • <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Newton. <i>Philosophiae naturalis principia mathematica</i>. London, 1687.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Josephus. <i>De antiquitate Judaica.</i> Lubeck, 1475-76.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Carlerius. <i>Sporta fragmentorum, Sportula fragmentorum</i>. Brussels, 1478-79.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Fridolin. <i>Der Schatzbehalter</i>. Nuremberg, 1491.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Pinder. <i>Der beschlossen gart des rosenkrantz marie</i>. Nuremberg, 1505.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Isidorus Hispalensis. <i>Synonyma de Homine</i>. Nuremberg, 1470-71.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Durer. Sammelband including <i>Underweysung der messing</i>. Nuremberg, 1525-29.
  • <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>

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