Rare Book Monthly

Articles - February - 2011 Issue

A Personal View of 2010

Blue jacket

Blue Jacket Books of Xenia, Ohio.

I agree with Gene and here’s my own mantra for 2011:


Big, be it Amazon or Borders may come and go, but small is forever. As small dealers we’re in the knowledge business, whatever format it takes now or in the future. The more we know the better we’ll do. What the dealer adds is the frame of reference and credibility: why it’s important and who might want it. It’s that knowledge that differentiates the wheat from the chaff.


When I finished my year end numbers I found that 90 percent of my revenue came from 10 percent of my transactions, but there were also lots and lots and lots of small sales and at least a few repeat customers whose trade though small was welcome.


My thanks to all of you who helped me make it through.


Links to the booksellers mentioned in this month’s article


Better World Books – Antiquarian Division www.betterworldbooks.com


Blue Jacket Books www.bluejacketbooks.com


Book Fever www.bookfever.com


Books Tell You Why www.bookstellyouwhy.com


Lux Mentis www.luxmentis.com


Michael J. Osborne Books www.michaeljosbornebooks.com


Motte & Bailey www.mottebooks.com/shop/motte/index.html


Old Lahaina Book Emporium www.oldlahainabookemporium.com


Tavistock Books www.tavbooks.com


Susan Halas, a long time antiquarian dealer, writes for AE Monthly.

Reach her at halas@hawaii.rr.com



Here are the links for a year’s worth of Halas’ stories in AE Monthly


Feb. - Bookselling – It’s a Business (with Chris Volk) tinyurl.com/67hf9o2


March - ABAA – Data, Knowledge Charm, New Blood tinyurl.com/64nmdhr


April - Exit Strategies: Getting out of the Book Business tinyurl.com/63lb6ej


May - Richard Minsky on Decorative Bindings tinyurl.com/672dbmj


June - Cherokee Nation Puts History on Display tinyurl.com/5rn4awb


July- Bud Plant celebrates 40 years in Comics & Illustration - tinyurl.com/6xwheet


Sept. - Vic Zoschak Talks Bibliography tinyurl.com/6gxeokx


Oct. - Bookselling tips for eBay tinyurl.com/6xwdker


Nov. - Better World Books - tinyurl.com/6k8qk3t


Dec. - Nancy Pearl: America’s Favorite Librarian tinyurl.com/5wn2nj8


Jan. – 007: Bond for Booksellers tinyurl.com/6jbghya



See all the articles published by AE Monthly in the AE Archives at:



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:</b> Ian Fleming, <i>Goldfinger,</i> first edition, inscribed to Sir Henry Cotton, MBE, London, 1959. Sold for $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Joseph Brant, Mohawk Chief, ALS, writing after pledging support to King George III against American rebels, 1776. Sold for a record $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Sonia Delaunay, <i>Ses Peintures</i> . . ., 20 pochoir plates, Paris, 1925. Sold for a record $13,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Diana, Princess of Wales, 6 autograph letters signed to British <i>Vogue</i> editor, 1989-92. Sold for $10,400.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alexander Hamilton, ALS, as Secretary of the Treasury covering costs of the new U.S. Mint, 1793. Sold for $12,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Benjamin Graham & David L. Dodd, <i>Security Analysis,</i> first edition, inscribed by Graham to a Wall Street trader, NY, 1934. Sold for $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> George Barbier & François-Louis Schmied, <i>Personnages de Comédie,</i> Paris, 1922. Sold for $9,375.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alphonse Mucha, <i>Ilsée, Princesse de Tripoli,</i> Paris, 1897. Sold for a record $13,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ralph Waldo Emerson, <i>The Dial,</i> first edition of the reconstituted issue, Emerson’s copy with inscriptions, Cincinnati, 1860. Sold for a record $3,250.

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