Rare Book Monthly

Articles - July - 2016 Issue

Case Antiques Auctions Features Outstanding Collections from Tennessee Estates, Including Slavery, Presidential, and other Antebellum Material

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Over 500 albumen prints and CDVs that descended in the family of Nashville photographers Otto and C.C. Giers are offered.

There will be an amazing collection of Americana sold by Case Antiques Auction & Appraisals of Knoxville on July 30. Books, autographs, early photographs, maps, and other paper, including a slave archive will be featured. Much of the material is from the antebellum period, with collections of two Tennessee plantations, Devon Farm of Nashville and Hamilton Place of Maury County, featured. Other items come from different Tennessee estates and collections.

 

Among the archive lots are more than 60 slave bills of sale and receipts related to David Morris Harding of Oak Hill Plantation in Nashville (later renamed Devon Farm). They are accompanied by two of Harding's notebooks recording slave transactions, some in Baltimore, others around the South. Also coming from that estate are over 500 early albumin prints and cartes de visite covering people from slaves to generals. Most came from the archives of the business of Nashville Civil War era photographer C.C. Giers and his son, Otto Giers, who married into the Devon Farm family. Other images chronicle the growth of Nashville in the post-war and post-Reconstruction era.

 

Two dozen autograph lots also come from the Devon estate, mostly related to land grants from the family of patriarch John Davis. Davis was an original surveyor of Nashville, back from when it was still part of North Carolina. Signatures include the very scarce signature of James Robertson, founder of Nashville, along with those of North Carolina Governors Alexander Martin, Richard Dobbs Spaight, and Samuel Ashe, and Tennessee Governors Sam Houston (3), James K. Polk (2), Andrew Johnson, Willie Blount, William Carroll and Joseph McMinn. Three of those governors would go on to be presidents, Polk and Johnson Presidents of the United States, Houston President of the Republic of Texas.

 

Speaking of presidential signatures, two from Abraham Lincoln are offered. One is a presidential signed pardon for Wilburn Bybee of Kentucky in 1864. The paperwork indicates he had been imprisoned for "robbing the mail," but it is of the same format used for freeing Confederate prisoners – Bybee agrees to defend the Constitution and obey all laws relating to slaves (notably the Emancipation Proclamation). The pardon is adhered to a copy of volume 1 of Abraham Lincoln: A History, published in 1890 by Lincoln’s former secretaries, John G. Nicolay and John Hay, whose autographs are also included. The second Lincoln signed document, also signed by Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, confers the rank of captain in the Veterans Reserve Corps to James Remington of Rhode Island. Remington was seriously injured after only a short period of military service and had to be discharged, but wished to continue serving in some capacity despite his disability.

 

Other items offered include a Gold Rush diary, Civil War diary, a rare Civil War broadside, an autograph album containing signatures of members of the Tennessee legislature in 1875-76, and an archive related to the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railway. There are family archives from the John Davis-Edward Hicks-Otto Giers families of Nashville and the Lucius Polk-Henry Clay Yeatman families of Maury County. Books from those same historic families’ libraries include Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia (well preserved, but lacking map); an 1837 first edition of Dana’s System of Mineralogy, the complete first 15-volume run of Appleton’s Journals; Richardson’s Dictionary 1839; a first American edition of Davy’s Devon Herd, numerous scarce 19th century books on botany, fishing, and hunting; The Troopers Manual or Tactics for Light Dragoons and Mounted Riflemen by Col. J. Lucius Davis, published Richmond, 1861, and a group of 19th century books with rare Tennessee and Virginia binder’s tickets. There are archives from Civil War soldiers from Tennessee and Virginia, and one for English Crimean War General J. Scott Robertson.

 

There are many southern maps being offered in the auction as well. Included are a Pierre Mortier / Nicolas Sanson map of South Carolina, published in Amsterdam in 1696 (the first map of South Carolina printed in Europe), a Johann Baptist Hamann map of Virginia, Maryland and Carolina circa 1714, and maps of Texas, Tennessee, and Kentucky, along with a prospect view of Charleston, South Carolina, engraved by William Henry Toms and published 1779.

 

You will also find some more recent items in the sale. There is a crew patch and flag with astronaut autographs from the first Space Ship Columbia, and a 1965 Supreme Court photograph signed by all nine justices.

 

Along with the works on paper, there is much else from these estates to be found, such as art work, figurines and other collectibles, furniture, weapons, coins, rugs, jewelry, silverware, and more. Books and paper are featured at items 221-289, 710-764, 872-874, and 896, but the other items are fascinating as well.

 

The auction will be held in Knoxville on Saturday July 30, beginning at 9:00 a.m. Eastern time. You don't have to be present as absentee and phone bids will be accepted, along with the more common internet bidding via LiveAuctioneers. Case Antiques Auction & Appraisals may be reached at their Knoxville office at 865-558-3033, their Nashville office at 615-812-6096, or info@caseantiques.com. Their website is found at www.caseantiques.com.

 

If you go to their website, you will find both photographs and descriptions on the Case site and a link to the LiveAuctioneers page for bidding in the sale – www.caseantiques.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams: Treasures from the Eric C. Caren Collection: How History Unfolds on Paper, Part VII (Online). March 6-14, 2019</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Albert Einstein A remarkable letter on God in English, one of his most eloquent and quoted, 1 p, July 2, 1945. $100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Benjamin Lincoln's commission as Major General in the Continental Army, February 19th, 1777. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Broadside. A Poem Upon the Bloody Engagement That Was Fought on Bunker's-Hill. 1775. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Early, full printing of the Star-Spangled Banner in The Yankee, October 7, 1814. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Paul Revere. Engraving, “The Boston Massacre Perpetrated on March 5, 1770," in <i>Massachusett's Calendar 1772.</i> $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Bonhams: Treasures from the Eric C. Caren Collection: How History Unfolds on Paper, Part VII (Online). March 6-14, 2019</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Earliest known newspaper coverage of Babe Ruth, "a St Mary's schoolboy," Baltimore, April 4, 1914. $6,000 to $9,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Franklin, Benjamin. <i>The Independent Whig.</i> First Magazine Published in America, Philadelphia: Keimer, 1723-4. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Smith, Joseph. <i>The Book of Mormon.</i> Palmyra: Printed by E.B. Grandin for the Author, 1830. First printing. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Last Words of Joseph Smith. Autograph Letter Signed from a Mormon disciple, conveying a contemporary account of the Prophet's final words, Nauvoo, July 27, 1844. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> John Brown's Body. Autograph Letter Signed from the daughter of John Brown attempting to arrange the return of her father's body, North Elba, Essex Co, NY, November 29, 1859. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Powell Expedition. Autograph diary of Rhodes C. Allen kept during the Powell Expedition of 1868, June 29, 1868 - November 16, 1868. $20,000 to $40,000
  • <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Walt Whitman. <i>Leaves of Grass.</i> First edition, first issue, SIGNED in block letters by Whitman. 1855. $200,000 to $300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Isaac Newton's copy of John Greave's <i>Pyramidographia,</i> London, 1646. $50,000 to $70,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Colonel John Mosby. Robert E. Lee's autograph letter to Samuel Cooper reporting on Mosby's exploits, with Cooper's autograph note ordering his appointment to Major.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Gyula Halasz Brassai. Large archive of autograph and typed letters, over 260, to his family including his wife Gilberte, 1947-1978. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Carruth, including an inscribed first edition of <i>To Kill a Mockingbird.</i> $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> VESALIUS, ANDREAS. 1514-1564. <i>De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.</i> Basel: Johannes Oporinus, June 1543. $300,000 to $500,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> HARVEY, WILLIAM. 1578-1657. <i>De motu cordis & sanguinis in animalibus Anatomica Exercitatio.</i> Leiden: Joannis Maire, 1639. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> BERENGARIO DA CARPI, GIACOMO. 1460-1530. <i>Isagogae breves perlucide ac uberrimae in Anatomiam humani corporis.</i> Bologna: Benedictus Hectoris, 15 July 1523. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> FRANKLIN, BENJAMIN. 1706-1790. <i>Experiments and Observations on Electricity, made at Philadelphia in America…</i> London, 1769. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> BENIVIENI, ANTONIO. 1443-1502. <i>De abditis nonnullis ac mirandis morborum et sanationum causis.</i>Florence: Filippo Giunta, 1507. $8,000 to $12,000
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, <i>El Ingenioso Hildalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha . . . Nueva Edición,</i> first Ibarra edition, Madrid, 1780. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Illuminated Prayer Book in Latin and French, France, 1530-40s. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin, France, mid-15th century. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b><br><i>Die Ernsthaffte Christenpflicht,</i> earliest known edition of the first complete Mennonite prayer book, 1708. $300 to $500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Georg Agricola, <i>De ortu & causis subterraneorum Lib V.,</i> first edition, Basel, 1546. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Frederick Ruysch, <i>Icon durae matris in concava [convexa] superficie visae,</i> with 2 mezzotints by Jan Ladmiral, first edition, Amsterdam, 1737. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, <i>Eine Neue Art von Strahlen,</i> Würzburg, 1895. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Pietro Carrera, <i>Il Gioco de gli Scacchi,</i> first edition, Militello, 1617. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> William Lithgow, <i>The Totall Discourse, of the Rare Adventures</i> [etc.], London, 1632. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Michel de Nostradamus, <i>The True Prophecies or Prognostications,</i> first complete edition in English, London, 1672. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Pseudo-Methodius, <i>De revelatione facta . . . beato Methodio,</i> Basel, 1504. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Hrabanus Maurus, <i>De laudibus sancte crucis opus,</i> Pforzheim, 1503. $1,000 to $2,000.
  • <b>Chiswick Auctions: Autographs & Memorabilia. February 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Autograph album featuring signatures by prominent actors, politicians, musicians and authors, including Rudolph Valentino. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> An extremely rare working radio script for Crazy People No 29, the first series of <i>The Goon Show.</i> £600 to £800
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Manuscript prayer book, in German. 8vo, 1755 £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Italian Manuscript on Geometry, with diagrams, 18th century. £500 to £700
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Ornithology, Zoology & Voyages. February 27, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Thorburn (Archibald). Sparrowhawk, original watercolour & gouache, signed & dated lower right, 1917. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Burton (Sir Richard Francis). <i>Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to El-Medinah and Meccah.</i> 3 vol., FIRST EDITION, 1855-56. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> [Mount (Richard) & Page (Thomas)]. <i>The English Pilot. Describing the Sea-Coasts…</i> 31 engraved maps, W. & J. Mount, T. Page, 1756 £4000 to £6000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Ornithology, Zoology & Voyages. February 27, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> D’apres De Mannevillette (Jean-Baptiste Nicolas Denis). <i>Le Neptune Oriental.</i> Paris & Brest, [1775 – 1781]. £10,000 to £15,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Loring (Josiah). Terrestrial Globe Containing all the Late Discoveries and Geographical Improvements. Boston, Gilman Joslin, 1846, £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Shelley (G. E., Capt.). <i>A Monograph of the Nectariniidae, or Family of Sun-birds,</i> FIRST EDITION, by the Author, 1876-80. £4,000 to £6,000

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