Rare Book Monthly

Articles - March - 2022 Issue

Get to Know RBH: the Get Current Estimate Function

There are two powerful functions of the Rare Book Transaction History (RBTH) database that you, as a new or longtime member of Rare Book Hub, may not have noticed, so this article is a brief introduction and walkthrough of our Get Current Estimate feature.

Get Current Estimate is our attempt to make synthesizing the results you find searching the Rare Book Transaction History easier. Many records in the RBTH — both contemporary and historical auction records — include a realized price. By selecting relevant items from your results, you can quickly have us do an aggregated value calculation for specific items, including adjusting for inflation and currency, rather than manually doing it yourself.

Any time that you search the Rare Book Transaction History, you’ll notice that every result has a checkbox on the far-left side:

 

If you search with just general keywords, you’ll have more work to do sifting through the various results and only selecting relevant items. However, being too specific can also be a hinderance. I have personally found that by being general with the title (usually just one or two specific words), but very specific with an author’s last name and the year printed, relevant records are easier to find. In writing this article, I also discovered that putting the year printed in the general keyword search does not currently work

In this example, I’ve done an advanced search with “Bevier” for author, “Indians” for title, and 1846-1846 for the year printed. I’m presented with 25 records. These are all relevant records, but many of them are asking prices from dealer catalogs. In trying to establish a valuation based on realized prices at auction, I’m only selecting auction records. There are six, ranging from 1915 to 1999. After checking the selector boxes for these six records, I’m ready to “Get Current Estimate”:

 

An in-screen pop-up window appears:

As someone who studied economics in college, this is a fascinating page. Beyond the first number you see of the Average Current Estimate, we also provide other interesting data. One of these is the Probability of Reappearance at auction. This can be a useful tool when trying to determine rarity, although I would counsel other methods of due diligence as well. We also display every priced record’s adjusted for inflation — with a twist. Normal, economic inflation is calculated using a price index, specifically the Consumer Price Index (CPI). At RBH, we have enough historical and contemporary data that we have created our own Book Auction Price Index. We calculate this by finding the mean price of auctions in our database for each year and comparing them to the current mean price.

There’s one last tidbit worth mentioning. I’ve fielded requests at least a couple times by members requesting a way to convert foreign currencies to American dollars. The Get Current Estimate function also does this. If it’s an older record, it will be an adjusted dollar value. For prices from 2022, it will be a straight currency conversion.

If you have any questions or simply want to discuss this feature (or anything else about Rare Book Hub), you can reach me at tom@rarebookhub.com.

 

Rare Book Monthly

  • Gonnelli:
    Auction 50
    Books, Autographs & Manuscripts
    March 6th-7th 2024
    Gonnelli: Cramer, [Picasso, Chagall , Miró], Trente ans d'activité. Starting price 4800€
    Gonnelli: Futurism
    Gonnelli: Avienus, Opera. 1488. Starting price 1200€
    Gonnelli: Vimont, Relation de ce qui s'est passé en la Nouvelle France, en l'année 1642. Starting price 5000€
    Gonnelli: Goedart, Metamorphosis et historia naturalis insectorum. 1662.
    Gonnelli: Il Petrarcha con la spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo.
    Gonnelli: Poblacion, De usu astrolabi compendium.
  • Toronto Book Auctions
    ART-PHOTO-SIGNED-BOOKS-MILITARY(NON)FICTION
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [ART BOOK MONOGRAPH] DAVID BURLIUK WITH ORIGINAL DRAWING and Signed twice. David Burliuk Rare ACA Gallery exhibition catalogue, undated. CA$400 – 800
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [ART BOOK MONOGRAPH] KAWS: COMPANIONSHIP IN THE AGE OF LONELINESS. Text by Margaret Atwood. National Gallery of Victoria, Australia, 2019. $CA400 - 800
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: SIGNED. LAWRENCE WEINER: POSTERS. Nova Scotia College of Art, Canada,1987. CA$800 – 1,200
    Toronto Book Auctions
    ART-PHOTO-SIGNED-BOOKS-MILITARY(NON)FICTION
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: WILBUR SMITH: THE DARK OF THE SUN. Heinemann, UK, 1965. Signed First edition. CA$800 – 1,200
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: ROBERTSON DAVIES: LEAVEN OF MALICE. SIGNED Clark, Irwin, & Co., Canada. 1954. 1st edition. CA$400 – 600
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [THE NOTABLE TRAILS LIBRARY]. 8 VOLUMES SOLD TOGETHER. INCLUDING: THE TRIAL OF DR. X; ROE V. WADE; THE GALILEO AFFAIR; THE TRIAL OF BERNHARD GOETZ… CA$300 – 500
    Toronto Book Auctions
    ART-PHOTO-SIGNED-BOOKS-MILITARY(NON)FICTION
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [MILITARY FICTION]. 8 VOLUMES SOLD TOGETHER. INCLUDING: Canada's Royal Military College. REVIEW, THE STONE FRIGATE, A HISTORY OF THE RMC… CA$300 – 400
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [WW1] CANADIAN (C.S.E.F.) SIBERIA 1918-1919 PHOTO ALBUM. With approximately 303 original official war photographs, photo-postcards, and personal photographs. CA$8,000 – 10,000.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: HANS BELLMER: THE DOLL. 1995, 1st Ed. CA$150 – 300.
    Toronto Book Auctions
    ART-PHOTO-SIGNED-BOOKS-MILITARY(NON)FICTION
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: FAN HO; HONG KONG YESTERDAY. ModernBooks edition, 2006. First edition. 4to. CA$300 – 600.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: TARYN SIMON: AN AMERICAN INDEX OF THE HIDDEN AND UNFAMILIAR. Hatje Cantz, Germany, 2012. Third edition. CA$600 – 1,000.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: BARBARA KRUGER PICTURE/READINGS. [Self-Published], 1978 First edition. CA$800 – 1,200.
  • 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

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