Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2016 Issue

2015: A Strong Year for RBH / AE

A portion of Parke-Bernet records

Two thousand and fifteen is now in the record books and most of the results in the fields of books, manuscripts, maps and ephemera have been recorded.  It was a busy year.

 

The RBH database increased substantially beginning 2015 with 5,566,545 records and ending at 6,025,501, an increase of 458,956 of which 44,861 are in the category:  old auctions.  In 2016 we expect to add about 2,000,000 lots from auctions conducted between 1860 and 1960 and those old records posted recently in the category “old Auctions” are test panels for what will become a much larger RBH database by the end of the year.

 

These records will be coming from many sources.  Chief among them are sales conducted by:

 

John Anderson, Jr. later named the Anderson Auction Gallery and still later, The Anderson Galleries. [1901-1938].  This was the dominant auction house in New York during the first 25 years of the 20th century.  Their footprint in the collectible paper category is huge.

 

Bangs, Merwin & Co.  A powerhouse in the final quarter of the 19th century [New York].

 

Heartman’s Auction.  First a New England, then New York, later New Jersey and finally a southern auction house.  Recently acquired material will supplement the partial company archive we currently provide.

 

Stan V. Henkels.  He organized sales that were conducted by various Philadelphia auction houses [1890 to 1920].

 

Leavitt, Strebeigh & Co.  Active during the Civil War and in the post war era.

 

Leonard & Company, Boston.

 

C. F. Libbie [Boston]

 

Harry H. Leeds & Co, active during the mid-19th century.

 

The Walpole Galleries [New York].

 

Merwin-Clayton Sales Company

 

Parke-Bernet.  We have been lent an extensive archive that will substantially complete the thirty-year history of the firm.

 

Raines Galleries, New York

 

Scott & O’Shaughnessy.  An active New York auction house

 

Harry Simmons, Albany, New York

 

Ten million records is a fair guess at what it will take to provide a reasonably complete record of lots in the book, manuscript, map and ephemera fields from 1901 to the present.  For the period 1860 to 1900 there appear to have been roughly another 4 million lots in the United States and England.

 

The older records will help establish provenance and probability of reappearance.    

 

So there is work to be done.  We will be busy throughout the year and will be looking to buy or borrow additional records.  If you have runs of auction catalogues and would sell or lend them let us know.  The goal is a complete record.

Rare Book Monthly

  • Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Winston Churchill. The Second World War. Set of First-Edition Volumes. 6,000 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: A.A. Milne, Ernest H. Shepard. A Collection of The Pooh Books. Set of First-Editions. 18,600 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Salvador Dalí, Lewis Carroll. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Finely Bound and Signed Limited Edition. 15,000 USD
    Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ian Fleming. Live and Let Die. First Edition. 9,500 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter Series. Finely Bound First Printing Set of Complete Series. 5,650 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ernest Hemingway. A Farewell to Arms. First Edition, First Printing. 4,200 USD
  • Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Closing Time, Advance Readers Copy of Uncorrected Proof with a letter from Heller on his personal stationary
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Gates, Bill, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, N Y: Knopf, 2021; first edition, with a handwritten note from Bill Gates
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Catch-22, New York: Simon & Schuster, 1961, first edition, first printing, first issue dust jacket, inscribed on the front end paper by Heller
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Something Happened, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1974, first edition, inscribed on the front end paper by Heller
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Austen, Jane, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, London: John Murray, 1818, in four volumes
  • Manuscript Masterpieces from the Schøyen Collection
    London auction, 11 June
    BROWSE NOW
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Holkham Hebrew Bible. In Hebrew, decorated manuscript on vellum [Toledo, 2nd quarter 13th century]. £1,500,000–3,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Crosby-Schøyen Codex. In Coptic, manuscript on papyrus [Upper Egypt, middle 3rd century / 4th century]. £2,000,000–3,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Geraardsbergen Bible. In Latin, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Southern Netherlands, late 12th century]. £700,000–1,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now : Jean de Courcy (fl. 1420). The Chronique de la Bouquechardiere. In French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Paris, c.1480]. £200,000–300,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The ‘Catherine de Medici’ Hours. In Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Paris, c.1485]. £120,000–180,000
  • Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Potter (Beatrix). Complete set of four original illustrations for the nursery rhyme, 'This pig went to market', 1890s. £60,000 to £80,000.
    Forum, May 30: Dante Alighieri.- Lactantius (Lucius Coelius Firmianus). Opera, second edition, Rome, 1468. £40,000 to £60,000.
    Forum, May 30: Distilling.- Brunschwig (Hieronymus). Liber de arte Distillandi de Compositis, first edition of the so-called 'Grosses Destillierbuch', Strassburg, 1512. £22,000 to £28,000.
    Forum, May 30: Eliot (T.S.), W. H. Auden, Ted Hughes, Philip Larkin, Robert Lowell, Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes, & others. A Personal Anthology for Eric Walter White, 60 autograph poems. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum, May 30: Cornerstone of French Enlightenment Philosophy.- Helvetius (Claude Adrien). De l'Esprit, true first issue "A" of the suppressed first edition, Paris, 1758. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Szyk (Arthur). The Haggadah, one of 125 copies, this out-of-series, Beaconsfield Press, 1940. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Fleming (Ian). Casino Royale, first edition, first impression, 1953. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Japan.- Ryusui (Katsuma). Umi no Sachi [Wealth of the Sea], 2 vol., Tokyo, 1762. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Computing.- Operating and maintenance manual for the BINAC binary automatic computer built for Northrop Aircraft Corporation 1949, Philadelphia, 1949. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Burmese School (probably circa 1870s). Folding manuscript, or parabaik, from the Court Workshop at the Royal Court at Manadaly, Burma, [c.1870s]. £8,000 to £12,000.

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