Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - November - 2004 Issue

Travels And More From<br>The 19th Century Shop

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Recent Acquisitions plus Travel and Exploration from the 19th Century Shop

The 19th Century Shop offers its most recent catalogue of important books and ephemera titled "Recent Acquisitions plus Travel and Exploration." This is a hard catalogue to describe since it covers a wide range of material. What we can say is that all of the items are significant, and then proceed to a few examples.

P.T. Barnum wrote two autobiographies. The second was, naturally, more complete as he had lived longer by then. It was published in 1869 under the title Struggles and Triumphs; Or, Forty Years' Recollections of P.T. Barnum. Written by himself. This one is a presentation copy, containing the following inscription: "To Miss Nancy Fish with kind regards of her friend P.T. Barnum New York April 7 1871." Nancy's father had been so impressed by Barnum's earlier autobiography that he began a correspondence from his home in England, and later came to America at Barnum's invitation to follow his tours. It was then that John Fish showed Barnum some of his daughter's letters. Barnum began a correspondence with Nancy, and this copy was given to her, probably after their first meeting. Three months after Barnum's wife of 44 years died in 1873, the 69-year-old Barnum married the 24-year-old Miss Fish. They would stay together for the remaining 18 years of the old showman's life. Priced at $5,800.

Alfred Dinsdale produced the first work entirely about television in the English language. Published in 1926, Television / Seeing by Wireless covered the work of British inventor John Baird. Baird succeeding in transmitting the first televised moving images, and the first color images. His system was used to create sporadic televised events for the BBC, including the 1931 Epsom Derby. However, the system developed by Marconi and others would replace Baird's mechanical system by 1937. Still, this work, with the ghostlike image of a televised human face on its cover, is one of the most important works ever on this new medium. $3,800.

Sometimes a harmless book can be transformed into something horrible. This item is an 1899 German schoolbook, Deutsche Grammatik... by Dr. F. Willomitzer. What makes this book horrific is the student's signature within: Adolf Hitler. This is a school text the young monster would use somewhere between the ages of 11 and 15. It includes some of his marginal notes and highlights, perhaps something which would offer insights into the horrors to come. Inquire for price.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>Edward Hopper & His Contemporaries:<br>Making a Modern American Art<br>June 30, 2022
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> Edward Hopper, <i>The Railroad,</i> etching, 1922. $70,000 to $100,000.
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> Edward Hopper, <i>Sheet of Studies with Men in Hats and a Saloon Keeper,</i> pen, ink & pencil, circa 1900-05. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> Edward Hopper, <i>Night Shadows,</i> etching, 1921. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>Edward Hopper & His Contemporaries:<br>Making a Modern American Art<br>June 30, 2022
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> John Marin, <i>Woolworth Building, No. 2,</i> etching & drypoint, 1913. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> Charles Demuth, <i>Tulips,</i> watercolor & pencil, 1924. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Swann June 30:</b> Edward Hopper, <i>Under Control,</i> gouache, ink & wash, circa 1907-10. $30,000 to $50,000.

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