Rare Book Monthly

Articles - June - 2008 Issue

Auctions In June

Godts.117

Lot 117 in a sale conducted by Godts of Belgium


By Bruce McKinney

As the auction season winds down for summer the pace of sales slows but never stops. There is simply too much material trying to get into the rooms. As we head into June there are 38 sales scheduled and more will be entered into the calendars as the month progresses. The July and August schedules remain substantially incomplete but are also filling in. Twenty-four of the June events are in Europe, fourteen in the United States. The distribution of sales by continent continues to favor Europe which dominates the book auctions both by number of sales and lots per sale. For the full month more than 25,000 lots are expected to be posted and 18,000 to 19,000 sell. In Europe auctions are a more broadly accepted method for redistributing material. In North America, where book listing sites and eBay came of age, these alternative methods dominate the low and to mid-range material while traditional auctions and dealers generally make a market in the upper third. Of particular note:

On June 17th, in New York, Christies is offering "Important Science Books: The Richard Green Library." It is 300 lots "from six revolutionary centuries of scientific, mathematical and philosophical thought. The sale offers outstanding works by Galileo Galilei, Nicolaus Copernicus, Albert Einstein, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Johnannes Kepler, Sir Isaac Newton, and many more including a number of works never seen on the market before." The collection is expected realize in excess of $6 million.

Swann is conducting a Maps & Atlases sale in New York on the 19th, Sothebys, the same day in New York, a sale of Fine Books and Manuscripts. Two Americana sales are on the calender: Swann in New York on the 5th, Cowan the same day in Cincinnati. Dominic Winter is offering Children's Books on the 19th, Bloomsbury material in the category on the 23rd. On the US west coast PBA offers Fine Literature on the 12th, Fine & Rare Books on the 26th. In Paris there are half a dozen sales, in London and the United Kingdom 10, Denmark 2, Belgium 2 sales over 3 days, in Rome 1. In New York there are 7 events, in Dallas and San Francisco 2 each, Cincinnati, Ohio and Falls Church, Virginia 1 each. Inevitably other sales will be announced, posted and sold.

As we go to press 34 upcoming auctions are searchable through the Rare Book Search & Research single search that searches all auctions as a single sale and provides results in declining date order. Here are some examples of searches [and the number of lots found] in upcoming auctions:

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>View Our Record Breaking Results</b>
    <b>Swann:</b> Scott Joplin, <i>Treemonisha: Opera in Three Acts,</i> New York, 1911. Sold March 24 — $40,000.
    <b>Swann:</b> Louisa May Alcott, autograph letter signed, 1868. Sold June 2 — $23,750.
    <b>Swann:</b> Anne Bradstreet, <i>Several Poems Compiled with Great Variety of Wit and Learning, full of Delight,</i> Boston, 1758. Sold June 2 — $21,250.
    <b>Swann:</b> William Shakespeare, <i>Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies. Published according to the true Originall Copies. The Second Impression,</i> London, 1632. Sold May 5 — $161,000.
    <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>View Our Record Breaking Results</b>
    <b>Swann:</b> John Bachmann, <i>Panorama of the Seat of War,</i> New York, 1861-62. Sold June 23 — $35,000.
    <b>Swann:</b> Charlotte Bronte, <i>Jane Eyre,</i> first edition, London, 1847. Sold June 16 — $23,750.
    <b>Swann:</b> Elihu Vedder, <i>Simple Simon, His Book,</i> 1913. Sold June 9 — $12,350.
    <b>Swann:</b> Frederick Catherwood, <i>Views of Ancient Monuments in Central America, Chiapas and Yucatan,</i> London, 1844. Sold April 7 — $37,500.
  • <center><b>University Archives<br>Rare Autographs, Manuscripts & Books<br>August 17, 2022</b>
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> George Washington ADS, One of the Earliest in His Hand, A Survey from 1752, the Same Year He Inherited Mount Vernon.
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Rare JFK Signed Check & Transmittal Letter During Campaign for 1956 VP Nomination, Both BAS Slabbed; Possibly A Unique Combo!
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Daniel Boone Signed Receipt as VA Delegate; During His 1st of 3 Terms, Boone Was Kidnapped by British Forces Gunning for Gov. T. Jefferson & Other Legislators.
    <center><b>University Archives<br>Rare Autographs, Manuscripts & Books<br>August 17, 2022</b>
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Benjamin Franklin Signed Receipt for “Pennsylvania Gazette,” Important & Beautifully Displayed
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Lincoln & His Civil War Cabinet: 8 Signatures, Beautifully Presented!
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> G.A. Custer ALS from Fort Lincoln, Dakota Territory to Capt. Yates, Who Also Died at Little Bighorn, Re: Acquiring “good horses” from Kentucky for 7th Cavalry.
    <center><b>University Archives<br>Rare Autographs, Manuscripts & Books<br>August 17, 2022</b>
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Jefferson Davis ALS: “the negroes are humble and generally inclined to cling to their masters…neither crop or stock could be protected from their thieving” – Incredible!
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Lee Harvey Oswald Signed Letter: “if we finally get back to the states…maybe we’ll…settle in Texas,” Warren Commission Exhibit.
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Babe Ruth First Edition Biography Signed Just Months Before His Death, Excellent Signature!
    <center><b>University Archives<br>Rare Autographs, Manuscripts & Books<br>August 17, 2022</b>
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> “B Arnold” ANS on Pre-Revolutionary War Promissory Note Dating From His Days as a New Haven Merchant
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Bob Dylan Signed LP “Blonde on Blonde” with Jeff Rosen COA.
    <b>University Archives, Aug. 17:</b> Marilyn Monroe & Joe DiMaggio Signed Checks, Handsomely Displayed.

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