Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - September - 2012 Issue

Images of Native Americans from the William Reese Company

Reesebul27

Le Moyne's Florida Indians on cover of Reese's Bulletin 27.

The William Reese Company has issued their Bulletin 27, this one with the title Images of Native Americans. The natives of this New World long fascinated Europe's natives. Their customs, appearance, clothing, were all so strange to a people whose looks and behavior, as we look back from today, were equally odd. This bulletin contains some of the earliest somewhat realistic depictions of American Indians, as seen through European eyes, but at least based on actual observations. From 16th century drawings by early explorers, up to the plethora of illustrations and portfolios created in the 19th century, we have a last look at cultures and lifestyles that rapidly disappeared with advancing settlement. Here, now, are some of these looks at America's Indians as they once were perceived.

Item 3 offers the first reliable images of the New World contained in a book by a man who actually went there - Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo. Oviedo's work, entitled La Historia General de las Indias, was published from Seville in 1535. Oviedo, who made many trips to America over the course of his life, provides woodcut illustrations of things found in the New World, including botanical specimens such as the prickly pear, and the hammock. He also provides the first illustrations of natives, not exactly those of a skilled artist, but at least a glimpse at the people who inhabited the land. Priced at $225,000.

Item 1 offers a very early look at Florida and its natives, Der Ander Theyl, Der Newloch Erfvndenen Landt-Schafft Americae. This is the 1591 German edition of Theodor De Bry's account of the ill-fated French Huguenot settlement in Florida in the 1560s. The text comes primarily from the expedition's leaders, Jean Ribault and René de Laudonniere. After a decent start, the mission went very bad. Early favorable relations with the Indians turned sour, the settlers began to fight among themselves, and finally they were attacked by the Spanish from St. Augustine, with most of the members wiped out. Among the few who escaped was Jacques Le Moyne, who accompanied the mission as its artist. Forty-two of the 43 illustrations were created by Le Moyne, and they give us a good look at the settlement, botanical specimens, and the local natives. These illustration feature contemporary hand coloring. One of them is featured on the cover of this catalogue (see image above). $300,000.

Item 17 offered the first illustrations of Indians encountered on Lewis and Clark's pioneering expedition to the American Northwest... maybe. Probably not. It is The Travels of Capts. Lewis & Clarke... published in 1809. The public was still awaiting news of this exploration, the official account not yet published (nor would it be for three more years). This work was something of a clever fraud on an anxiously waiting public. Known as the “apocryphal edition,” it was taken from other books and documents, including Patrick Gass' book, President Jefferson's message, and other material, and presented in a way that many believed it to be the official account. Of course, if this were the official report, you would think they would have spelled Clark's name correctly. About the only new piece of significance was the map, created from reports that were out there. It also contains five plates, supposedly of western Indians. Reese was able to trace one of these back to Bartram's Travels, but was not able to determine the origin of the other four. These plates have been described as “fanciful and absurd,” which seems a likely description. $25,000.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Sergio Trujillo Magnenat, <i>Bogotá 1938 / IV Centenario / Juegos Deportivos Bolivarianos,</i> 1938. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>McQueen Drives Porsche,</i> designer unknown, 1970. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>Joe Bridge, <i>Bignan / A Des Ailes,</i> 1921. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Graham Simmons, <i>The Army Isn’t All Work,</i> 1919. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Leonetto Cappiello, <i>Je ne fume que le nil,</i> 1912. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>Attack of the 50 ft. Woman,</i> designer unknown, 1958. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Raymond Tooby, <i>Festival Guiness / Have You Tried One Yet?,</i> 1952. $600 to $900.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Francisco Tamagno, <i>Terrot & Co. / Dijon / Cycles Motorettes,</i> 1909. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>A. Hori, Oakland / General Motors, circa 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Travel? Adventure? Answer – Join the Marines!,</i> circa 1918. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

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