Rare Book Monthly

Articles - September - 2008 Issue

Bookseller Heaven; or The Thirtieth Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar

Glaser

Ed Glaser and the writer, Karen Wright.


We needed a little break from all this heady info, so Dan DeSimone and Angela Scott, an expert book conservator and book binder from Washington, D.C., regaled us with a hands-on exhibit of books, binding styles, materials and techniques of printing, binding, illustration, and the like. By this time I felt like someone had blown a balloon up in my brain and I was very ready for the picnic dinner and early-to-bed that followed.

Terry Belanger opened the next morning's classes with a two-part discussion of the bibliographic description of books. He outlined the terminology, formats, collation, history of books, and online resources that all good booksellers need to know. This included a discussion of illustrations, condition, and pagination which was punctuated by each of us attempting to fold a single piece of paper into a duodecimo (12mo) format, as was done by all those fat friars in antiquarian times. By this time, I was boggled but thrilled by the ancient art of book making.

The afternoon practicum on How to Catalog a Book was presented by Rob Rulon-Miller who was joined by Tom Congalton, owner of Between the Covers in Gloucester City, NJ. Tom is an expert on the modern first edition phase of bookselling. This included a student's clinic on book descriptions and we were privileged to snoop through several shelves of beautiful antiquarian books that Rob had brought all the way from Minnesota. We were each asked to pick a book and then try to determine its value. This was where I figured I'd be good, as I am pretty efficient at using reference materials and I've been cataloging books for a long time. Maybe not, too! The book I chose was from 1838 and had to do with deer hunting in Scotland. I fell in love with the woodcut illustrations. I did pick up on the fact that it was a second edition and had been rebound, but it took me longer to run down the information on that one book than it does to do a whole box of books at my shop.

After the break, Angela Scott and Dan DeSimone showed and told about conservation and preservation of books including a fascinating slide show on how books are repaired by conservators. They also talked about whether and when one should repair a book or recover it, and if so, what repairs should be made by novices and what should go to a professional conservator/binder.

After a quick dinner, we were treated to a shuttle trip to Hooked on Books, a local bookstore owned by faculty member Mary Francis Ciletti and her husband, Jim Ciletti. Since Mary and Jim and their great bookstore will be an article by itself in the near future, I won't say too much here, other than they gave a really good, down to earth, no-nonsense talk about how to operate a bookstore.

On the third day, Dan Gregory gave another lecture on the technological aspects of the book trade - photography and scanning books for catalogs or the Internet. Later, Dan DeSimone encouraged us to consider selling books to libraries and other institutions. I guess I never really gave it much thought, though I do sell books to our local state archives and do some appraisals and consignments for them. This whole subject was of vast interest to me and to a number of other attendant booksellers since we are always looking for new selling venues.

Our next discussion by Ed Glaser was a very comprehensive lecture on evaluating and pricing books. I was particularly interested in listening to his talk, not just because of the subject matter but because the scholarship that I won was named after Ed from Edwin V. Glaser Rare Books in Napa, CA. He has been a faculty member since the start of the seminar thirty years ago, and this was the first year that his scholarship was offered. I was quite proud and honored to be the first recipient and to meet this gentleman who is an internationally known specialist in rare and important books on science, technology, and medicine. I thought he might be a bit scary and erudite for a little bookseller from the Wild West, but au contraire he was friendly and outgoing, as were all the faculty. But I digress.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Travel, Atlases, Maps<br>and Natural History<br>Online Auction<br>27 April – 13 May 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b><br>Daniel Giraud Elliot. <i>A Monograph of the Phasianidae, or Family of the Pheasants,</i> 1870-1872, coloured plates. £40,000 to £60,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b><br>Georg Braun und Franz Hogenberg. <i>Civitates orbis terrarum.</i> Cologne, 1597-c.1606, 5 volumes, hand-coloured, calf. £140,000 to £200,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b> Qianren Huang. "Blue Map" of China. [Daoguang, 19th century]. £60,000 to £80,000.
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Travel, Atlases, Maps<br>and Natural History<br>Online Auction<br>27 April – 13 May 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b> Abraham Ortelius. <i>Theatrum orbis terrarum,</i> 1595. £40,000 to £60,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b> Maxime Du Camp. <i>Egypte, Nubie, Palestine et Syrie. Dessins Photographiques.</i> Paris, 1852. £100,000 to £150,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 27 Apr. to 13 May:</b><br>China, Canton School. A superb album of 141 watercolours, c.1800. £70,000 to £100,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> <i>Westvaco–Inspirations for Printers,</i> 3 volumes, 1938-61. $200 to $300.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Proef van Letteren, <i>Welk gegooten worden in de Nieuwe Haerlemsche Lettergietery,</i> 1768. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Paul Klee, <i>Bauhaus Ausstellung Juli – Sept.,</i> Weimar, 1923. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Michel Seuphor & Jozef Peeters, <i>Het Overzicht Nos.</i> 22-23-24, Antwerp, 1922. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Wolfrum & Co., <i>Modern Graphik, Serie I…,</i> complete portfolio, 1909. $1,200 to $1,800.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> <i>Gravure et Fonderie deC. Derriey: Specimen-Album,</i> Paris, 1862. $5,000 to $7,500.
  • <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts,<br>Including Americana<br>Live and Online<br>May 12, 2021</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> CURRIER and IVES, publishers -- After Frances F. Palmer. The Rocky Mountains. Emigrants Crossing the Plains, 1866. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [BIBLE, in English]. <i>The New Testament of Jesus Christ, translated faithfully into English.</i> Rheims, 1582. $6,000 to $8,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [BIBLE, in Latin]. <i>Biblia latina.</i> Venice: Franz Renner of Hailbrun [Heilbrunn], 1483. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts,<br>Including Americana<br>Live and Online<br>May 12, 2021</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> SHELLEY, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822). Autograph letter signed ("P. B. S."), to Charles Ollier. Florence, Italy, 15 December 1819. “MY PROMETHEUS IS THE BEST THING I EVER WROTE.” $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> RAMSAY, David (1749-1815). <i>The History of the Revolution of South-Carolina…</i> Trenton: Isaac Collins, 1785. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [BINDINGS]. MUIR, John (1838-1914). <i>The Writings of John Muir.</i> Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1916-1924. 10 vols. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts,<br>Including Americana<br>Live and Online<br>May 12, 2021</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [CHICAGO] -- <i>Park & Guide Map of Chicago.</i> Chicago: Jas. Van Vechten, 1873. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> CURRIER and IVES, publishers -- After Frances F. Palmer. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [ALLEN PRESS]. SHAKESPEARE, William (1564-1616). <i>Romeo and Juliet.</i> Greenbrae: Allen Press, 1988. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts,<br>Including Americana<br>Live and Online<br>May 12, 2021</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> BEMELMANS, Ludwig (1898-1962). Pencil drawing on paper. 247 x 198 mm, sight, matted and framed. Showing a child shooting at a baby's balloon. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> [LOGAN ELM PRESS]. HARVEY, Rebecca. <i>Any Number of Things.</i> Ohio State University, 2013. Single sheet paper scroll. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, May 12:</b> BINYON, Laurence (1869-1943). A small archive of letters and pamphlets. $200 to $300.

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