Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - January - 2010 Issue

Autographed Letters and Photographs from David Schulson Autographs

Schulson143

Autographs from David Schulson.


By Michael Stillman

David Schulson Autographs has issued their Catalog 143, a collection of 50 autographed documents, mainly letters and photographs. They come from American and European leaders in politics, war, music, art, literature, film, and science. These are people you know well, even if most died before you were born! Here are some of these signatures.

Winston Churchill is surely England's most notable leader of the last century, perhaps of any. He led his nation to victory in a war that seemed hopeless at the outset. He persevered, and taught his countrymen to persevere, until help finally arrived. However, all political careers have beginnings, usually small. In 1901, Churchill was serving his first term as a Member of Parliament, still 40 years away from greatness. On July 17 of that year, he wrote a friend that he heard the Chairmanship of the London Municipal Society had just opened up, and as a friend/politician, Churchill provided a heads-up to his correspondent. Churchill invites his friend to visit and points to various connections that might help him out. Item 6. Priced at $5,500.

Here is a letter from another great war leader, though this one was the instigator, not a defender. On August 22, 1810, Napoleon wrote his Secretary of War with plans for the Peninsular Campaign against Spain and Portugal. The French Emperor writes of creating a new regiment, and instructs his Secretary, "...you will gather a foot regiment in Turin put together in the following way: 120 men from the 13th regiment of riflemen, 40 men from the 14th, 150 men from the 19th, 130 men from the 23. A total of 440 men, whom you will march from Turin to Perpignan, where they will be incorporated into the new regiment (the 29th regiment of light cavalry). In Milan, gather together another squadron of foot troops made up of 100 men from the 8th regiment of riflemen, 100 men from the 25th, and 100 men from the 6th." Add another 300 from Perpignan, and Napoleon calculated he would have 1,040 men in the new 29th. Talk about micromanaging. Isn't this what you hire generals for? Item 32. $4,500.

Item 10 is an angry postcard from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of the famed detective Sherlock Holmes. Doyle became a dedicated spiritualist later in life, absolutely convinced there was a world of departed spirits and that the right medium could contact them. Even questioning this certainty upset Doyle, who whipped off this postcard to H.S. Hodges, a writer for the Western Chronicle. Evidently Hodges must have challenged Doyle's beliefs, as the mystery writer pens that the "article seems to be the usual ignorant abuse. What is the gentleman's opinion worth compared to... (Doyle cites four "experts" who shared his views)." Hodges evidently further infuriated Doyle by referring to the spirits as "spooks," as Doyle adds, "The mere use of the word 'spooks' for the spirits of our beloved dead is offensive and odious..." $975.

Item 22 is a first day cover honoring the 25th anniversary of Admiral Robert Peary's expedition that is usually cited as the first to reach the North Pole. It is signed by Matthew Henson. The final assault on the Pole was accomplished by Peary, a couple of Eskimos, and Matthew Henson. Though Henson was one of the two Americans to first reach the North Pole, he got little credit back home. The year was 1909 and Matthew Henson was black. Some 35 years after the event, Congress finally awarded Henson the same medal given Peary, and he lived long enough to receive additional honors from Presidents Truman and Eisenhower. $600.

Item 31 is a letter from the pioneering French Impressionist painter Claude Monet. Written on March 21, 1883, Monet thanks Gustave Geffroy for a kind article he wrote about the artist's show. $7,500.

David Schulson Autographs may be reached at 973-379-3800 or schulson@aol.com. Their website is www.schulsonautographs.com.

You will find many of David Schulson's autographs listed in "Books For Sale" on this site. Click here.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <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>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>Aurora Australis.</i> Printed at the sign of 'The Penguins'; East Antarctica, 1908. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>South Polar Times.</i> 1st edition, limited issue. from the library of Michael Barne. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> General Washington's <i>Proceedings of a General Court Martial... of Major General Lee.</i> Philiadelphia, 1778. 100 copies printed for Congress. BOUND WITH: ...Court Martial... of St Clair and ...Schuyler. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>The Voice of the People.</i> Boston, 1754. Rare pamphlet on the Excise Tax. Nathaniel Sparhawk's copy. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Autograph Letter Signed ("S.L. Clemens"), offering extensive hard-earned advice on writing, 5 pp, 1881. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> After Fra Egnazio Danti. <i>L'Ultime Parti not:e nel Indie Occid:ntli" [The last known parts of the Western Indies].</i> Painted Map of California, Western Mexico, and Japan. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Ptolemaeus, Claudius. <i>Geographie opus nouissima...</i> 1513. The most important edition of Ptolemy, containing the Admiral's Map. $250,000 to $350,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> De Arellano, Don Alonso. Manuscript, his <i>"Relación mui singular y circunstanciada... Capitán del Patax San Lucas,"</i> manuscript copy from the Sir Thomas Phillips collection. $50,000 to $80,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Purchas, Samuel. <i>Purchas his Pilgrimes.</i> First edition. With John Simth's engraved map of Virginia. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Lewis, Meriwether. Contemporary manuscript true copy of his final power of attorney, 1809. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>A New Method of Macarony Making, as Practiced at Boston in North America.</i> Mezzotint. London, 1774. $5,000 to $7,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>Scientific Base Ball Pitching: A Treatise on the Pitcher, Pitching, Origin and Philosophy of the Curve.</i> Chicago, 1897. $2,000 to $3,000
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Franklin H. Brown, <i>State Sovereignty, National Union,</i> Chicago, 1860. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Thomas Paine, <i>The American Crisis,</i> Fishkill, NY, December 1776. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b><br>The Aitken Bible, Philadelphia, 1781. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francisco Loubayssin de Lamarca, probable first edition of the first novel set in the Spanish New World, Paris, 1617. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Juan de la Anunciación, <i>Sermonario en lengua mexicana,</i> first edition, first book of sermons in Nahuatl, Mexico, 1577. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Maturino Gilberti, <i>Thesoro spiritual en lengua de Mechuacá,</i> first edition, Mexico, 1558. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Commission of William O. Stoddard as secretary to the president, signed by Lincoln, Washington, 1861. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> <i>Clay and Frelinghuysen,</i> flag banner, circa 1844. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Daguerreotype of a man believed to be Frederick Granger Williams Smith, son of Joseph Smith, circa late 1850s. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> John C. Wolfe, <i>Portrait of Abraham Lincoln,</i> oil on board in period wooden frame, circa 1860s. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Francis W. Winton, manuscript on pow-wows with indigenous Canadians, 1881. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 27:</b> Family letters from two young daguerreotype artists, 1826-79. $10,000 to $15,000.

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