Rare Book Monthly

Articles - October - 2010 Issue

The 17th Annual Sacramento Antiquarian Book Fair

Blastfrompast

Owner, Jeanette Stedifor and Children's Author, Dawn Lairamore on 2010 Book Fair Stage.


By Karen Wright

It was a gorgeous day in Sacramento for the Sacramento Antiquarian Book Fair; sunny and warm, but not too hot! Almost too nice to be inside all day. There was a more positive feeling in the air at this fall's fair than we have seen in a while at the fairs we have been to in Sacramento, San Francisco, Denver, and Grass Valley this year. We spoke with a number of booksellers and many said that their businesses have been slowly but surely picking up.

Speaking from my own point of view, my business has been much better this past three months after an abysmal early half of the year. I'm happy to say I did quite well at this fair. Some said they hadn't done too well, and that may have been a matter of what books they brought or whether their prices seemed too high to the buyers. I can testify that it is a crap shoot; what to take every time I do a fair?!

Customers and booksellers alike are, it seems to me, paying more attention to price. There were a lot of folks who come to every fair and if they have seen a book in a seller's stall that has been there for two or three fairs in a row and the price is still too high for them, they may be more aggressive about asking the dealer for his or her best possible price instead of just paying the asking price for the book. Of course, all dealers do that anyway, but I've noticed that the general public often doesn't ask.

Though I was plenty busy in my own booth, I did have a chance to chat with some of the booksellers that have been doing the fair for a long time thanks to my husband who minds the store for me as I traipse around chatting.

John Hardy from Hardy Books in Nevada City was the fearless leader for the Gold Rush Book Fair for many years. He has also been doing the Sacramento Fair for seven or eight years, he said. He was quite excited about one book he was offering; Maps of San Francisco Bay from the Spanish Discovery in 1769 to the American Occupation. It is a 1950 Grabhorn Press book and John thinks it is the most beautiful book Grabhorn ever made.

One new bookseller to the Sacramento Fair was Jeanette Stedifor from Blast from the Past Books in Carmichael, California. She got involved in bookselling when she was laid off from her job. Her father and uncle gave her books from their libraries as a start up. She wanted to become more familiar with the book market world and has designs to become a children's book author. She had a nice eclectic selection of Western Americana, Native Americana, and children's books. She also had a children's author at her booth, Dawn Lairamore, who was signing her book Ivy's Ever After, a fairy tale where the princess and the dragon are not exactly as they are expected to be.

Strolling along the aisles, my eye was caught by a booth containing only books on art and artists, and all were pretty reasonably priced. I stopped to talk to them as they had a book by a western artist I liked. Alice and Art Nauman are volunteers for the Sacramento SPCA. They don't normally do a booth, but they were given nearly 1000 art books by the heirs of a Sacramento physician who was also an avid book collector. The art books are priced, according to Mr. Nauman, at about 30-40 percent of what they saw as retail on the internet at ABE, Ebay, and the like. All the books are in pristine or near new condition – some still in shrink wrap. It was quite an impressive collection and the ones they had with them were just the tip of the iceberg. The Naumans said they would be having a big sale in November in Sacramento, and it's not just limited to art books. If you are interested contact the Sacramento SPCA or anauman@sbcglobal.net.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Sergio Trujillo Magnenat, <i>Bogotá 1938 / IV Centenario / Juegos Deportivos Bolivarianos,</i> 1938. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>McQueen Drives Porsche,</i> designer unknown, 1970. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>Joe Bridge, <i>Bignan / A Des Ailes,</i> 1921. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Graham Simmons, <i>The Army Isn’t All Work,</i> 1919. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Leonetto Cappiello, <i>Je ne fume que le nil,</i> 1912. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>Attack of the 50 ft. Woman,</i> designer unknown, 1958. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Raymond Tooby, <i>Festival Guiness / Have You Tried One Yet?,</i> 1952. $600 to $900.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Francisco Tamagno, <i>Terrot & Co. / Dijon / Cycles Motorettes,</i> 1909. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>A. Hori, Oakland / General Motors, circa 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Travel? Adventure? Answer – Join the Marines!,</i> circa 1918. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

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