Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2018 Issue

America 1787-1823 from the William Reese Company

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Young America.

The William Reese Company has issued a new catalogue of Young America: The United States from the Constitution to the Monroe Doctrine, 1787-1823. It begins with America, having achieved its independence, deciding to be one nation, rather than a loose confederation of small, weak states. By the end, it is asserting itself as an international power, even if it wasn't quite on that level yet. That also marked the end of the Era of Good Feelings, a time of greater unity than the nation has experienced through much of its long history. We could certainly afford to restore some of those good feelings today, but that seems a long way off. Here are some selections from America's youth.

 

George Washington was the father of his country, beloved by all. Not quite. In his time, not even Washington was free from critics in his homeland. One such person was William Duane, a Philadelphia newspaperman, a proponent of Jefferson's Democratic-Republicans and virulent opponent of the Federalists. He saw Washington as more in the latter's camp. In 1796, he published A Letter to George Washington, President of the United States; containing Strictures on his Address of the Seventeenth of September, 1796, notifying his Relinquishment of the Presidential Office. Published under the pseudonym of "Jasper Dwight," it is a response of Washington's Farewell Address. You might think Duane would be happy that Washington was leaving, but he couldn't resist some parting shots. Sabin writes of this response, "One of the most violent invectives against Washington, and far more abusive than the famous letter of Thomas Paine. An example: 'Had you obtained Promotion, as you expected for the services [you] rendered after Braddock’s Defeat, your sword would have been drawn against your country.'" Considering that Paine's more understandable beef was that Washington did nothing to save his life when he faced execution in a French prison during their revolution, Duane's level of invective was a bit over the top. Item 51. Priced at $2,750.

 

Duane would have appreciated this writing more. It represented the vanquishment of the hated Federalists. Item 90 is The Inaugural Speech of Thomas Jefferson from 1801, a broadside printed on silk. Perhaps it would not have been quite to his tastes, this message being quite conciliatory after a bitter campaign. Jefferson notes that having conquered religious intolerance, little will have been gained if we countenance political intolerance. Says Jefferson, "Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle. We have called by different names bretheren of the same principle. We are all republicans: we are all federalists." $8,750.

 

Here is a man of high moral principles. Even Jefferson could have learned a thing or two from him. Item 67 is An Enquiry Concerning the Intellectual and Moral Faculties and Literature of Negroes; Followed with an Account of the Life and Works of Fifteen Negroes and Mulattoes Distinguished in Science, Literature, and the Arts, by Henri Gregoire. This is an 1810 American edition and apparently the only English translation of the 1808 book by Gregoire written in French. Gregoire was a priest and Bishop of Blois in France, but quite a radical man for his time. He was a supporter of the French Revolution, though like so many, he ended up in prison, but escaped the guillotine. His career was devoted to promoting the causes of the oppressed, the poor and minorities. He was an opponent of royalty and Napoleon, but his prestige was sufficient to protect him. Gregoire was also a noted abolitionist, and this book promotes the abolition of slavery. Part of his method of doing so was to show the intellectual abilities of great writers and artists who happened to be black, whose achievements are remarkable considering the obstacles they had to overcome. $2,250.

 

John Hauer was not so moral a man as Henri Gregoire. Morality didn't intersect much with his life. Item 107 is A Correct Account of the Trials of Charles M'Manus, John Hauer, Elizabeth Hauer...For the Murder of Francis Shitz... published in 1798. Francis Shitz suffered misfortunes even greater than having that name. Francis and his brother, Peter, received the bulk of their father's estate when he died. However, the will provided that if the brothers had no children, part would go to his daughter. John Hauer, who happened to be daughter Elizabeth's husband, set out to make sure the brothers never had children by killing them. He half succeeded. Hauer hired four recently arrived Irishmen (including M'Manus) to kill his brothers-in-law. They got Francis with an ax, but Peter escaped. Hauer and M'Manus suffered a fate similar to Francis, except theirs came at the end of a rope. $1,750.

 

Stephen Boorn almost had a similar encounter with a noose as did Hauer. He did not deserve it, but it took a last minute miracle to spare his life. Russell Colvin, said to be mentally deficient, was married to one of his sisters. In 1812, Colvin disappeared from their Vermont home. Townsfolk assumed that Stephen and his brother, Jesse, killed him. They were convicted and sentenced to hang, though the state legislature commuted Jesse's sentence to life in prison. As a last resort, a notice was placed in newspapers seeking information about Colvin, and a farmer in New Jersey believed the description fit a hired hand in the area. That hired hand, who suffered mental issues, was enticed to Vermont, and when he arrived, people recognized who he was. Colvin had wandered off on his own. Item 23 consists of two pamphlets bound together, an 1820 second edition of Mystery Developed; or, Russell Colvin, (Supposed to Be Murdered,) in Full Life... and The Trial, Confessions and Conviction of Jesse and Stephen Boorn... and the Return of the Man Supposed to have been Murdered, from 1873. $1,000.

 

Next is the most notable of all American internal explorations, and a symbol of the young nation's rapid growth in those early years. In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson, seeking to obtain New Orleans from France to protect the nation's right to navigate the Mississippi, instead received an offer he could not refuse. France offered him the whole of the Louisiana Territory, some 828,000 square miles, for the price of $15 million. Overnight, America doubled in size. The following year, President Jefferson sent Captains Meriwether Lewis and William Clark out into the wilderness to find out what he had purchased. They returned in 1806, having made it all the way to the Pacific Ocean, with loads of information. It would take eight more years, but finally, in 1814, they published the official account: History of the Expedition Under the Command of Captains Lewis and Clark...to the Pacific Ocean. Wagner-Camp describes this book as "the definitive account of the most important exploration of the North American continent." This copy of the first edition includes the large folding map which was not supplied with all copies. $130,000.

 

The William Reese Company may be reached at 203-789-8081 or amorder@reeseco.com. Their website is www.williamreesecompany.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Chiswick Auctions<br>Books & Works on Paper<br>September 25, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Rowling (J.K.) <i>Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone,</i> FIRST EDITION, first issue, 8vo, 1997. £15,000 to £20,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Bible, Italian.- Malermi Bible, woodcut illustrations, folio, Lazaro de Soardi & Bernardino Benali, Venice,1517. £8,000 to £12,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Germany.- Homann (Johann Baptist). <i>Atlas von Deutschland,</i> engraved half title, hand coloured, 87 double page engraved maps, [folio, Erben, Nuremberg, 1753]. £8,000 to £10,000
    <center><b>Chiswick Auctions<br>Books & Works on Paper<br>September 25, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> [Mirk (John)].- <i>Liber festivalis et Quatuor sermons</i> [bound with], [Le Roy (Pierre)] <i>A Pleasant Satyre or Poesie,</i> first edition in English, Widdow Orwin for Thomas Man, 1595, 8vo. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Antoninus Florentinus (Saint Archbishop of Florence). <i>Confessionale: Defecerunt…,</i> 8vo, Pietro Quarengi, Venice, 15 February 1499. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Jesuit Letters.- [Froes (Father Luigi) & et al.)] Avvisi del Giapone de gli anni 1582, 1583, 1584…, 1586 [bound with] Avvisi della Cina et Giapone…, FIRST EDITIONS, Rome. £1,000 to £1,500
    <center><b>Chiswick Auctions<br>Books & Works on Paper<br>September 25, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Plutarch & Probus (Aemilius). <i>Plutarchi Cheronei et Aemilii Probi Illustrium,</i> folio, Nicolas de Pratis for Jean-Petit, Paris, 1521. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Bible.- English. <i>The Byble in Englyshe of the Largest and Greatest volume,</i> elaborate woodcut border, text vignettes, folio, 1541. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Fore-edge Painting.- Lord George Byron, The Giaour, a Fragment of a Turkish Tale, bound with 10 other titles, 4 plates marked 'Proof.', 1813. £800 to £1,200
    <center><b>Chiswick Auctions<br>Books & Works on Paper<br>September 25, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Manson (John). Twelve by Sixteen Papers of John Mason, a collection of 50 sheets of paper, some watermarked, 12 x 16”, c.1978. £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Fleming (Ian). <i>Dr. No,</i> FIRST EDITION, original boards, dust-jacket, 8vo, 1958. £700 to £900
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Sep. 25:</b> Eliot (T.S.) <i>Four Quartets,</i> NUMBER 121 of 290 COPIES, signed by author, 1960. £400 to £600
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Eric Carle, <i>The Very Hungry Caterpillar,</i> hand-painted collage. Sold for a record $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Charles Addams, <i>Couple passing a giant bird house,</i> watercolor cartoon for <i>The New Yorker,</i> 1948. Sold for $16,250.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Miriam Troop, <i>Rain on Laundry Day,</i> oil on canvas, cover for <i>The Saturday Evening Post,</i> 1940. Sold for $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Rockwell Kent, <i>To All Fascists,</i> ink broadside for The League of American Writers, circa 1937. Sold for $6,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Jo Mielziner, <i>Pet Shop Drop,</i> backdrop design for <i>Pal Joey</i> on Broadway, 1940. Sold for a record $55,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Lee Brown Coye, acrylic cover illustration for the 25th anniversary of <i>Weird Tales,</i> 1944. Sold for $18,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Virgil Finlay, <i>The Outsider & Others,</i> pen & ink dust jacket illustration for H.P. Lovecraft's book, 1939. Sold for $5,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Al Hirschfeld, <i>Paul Robeson as Othello,</i> illustration for <i>The New York Times,</i> 1942. Sold for $68,750
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Illustration Art:</b> Frederic Remington, pen & ink illustration for <i>A Scout with the Buffalo Soldiers</i> in <i>The Century</i> magazine, 1889. Sold for $17,500.
  • <b>Bonhams, Sep. 17:</b> EARLY AVIATION PHOTOGRAPHY ARCHIVE. Chronicling 20th century aviation from the earliest Wright Brothers images through commercial and military applications. $50,000 to $70,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 17:</b> SPUTNIK-1 EMC/EMI LAB MODEL, 1957. Full scale vintage test model of the Sputnik-1 satellite, Moscow, [February, 1957]. $400,000 to $600,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 17:</b> FIRST TELEPHONE CALL TO THE MOON. Partial transcription signed by Apollo 11 astronauts and President Nixon. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 17:</b> Apollo 11 Beta cloth crew emblem, SIGNED BY THE ENTIRE APOLLO 11 CREW. $8,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 17:</b> GEMINI 1/8 SCALE MODEL. Rarely seen large-scale contractor's model. $3,000 to $5,000
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> SMITH, CHRISTOPHER WEBB. 1793-1871. <i>Indian Ornithology.</i> [Patna, India]: 1828. $50,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> DUPRÉ, LOUIS. 1789-1837. <i>Voyage à Athènes et à Constantinople, ou Collection de portraits, vues et costumes grecs et ottomans.</i> Paris: Dondey-Dupré, 1825. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> ADAMS, JOHN. Autograph Letter Signed ("J Adams"), [to Dr. Perkins?] while recovering from his small pox inoculation, [late-April, 1764]. $30,000 to $50,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> AUSTEN, JANE. Autograph Letter Signed ("J. Austen"), to her sister Cassandra, 4 pp, "Thursday – after dinner," [September 16, 1813,] Henrietta St. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> AUDUBON, JOHN JAMES. 1785-1851. <i>The Birds of America, from Drawings Made in the United States and Their Territories.</i> New York & Philadelphia: J.J. Audubon & J.B. Chevalier, 1840-1844. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> DODWELL, EDWARD. 1767-1832. <i>Views in Greece.</i> London: Rodwell and Martin, 1821. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> JAMES, JESSE. Autograph Letter Signed ("Jesse W. James"), to Mr. Flood demanding Flood retract spurious accusations, 3 pp, June 5, 1875. $200,000 to $300,000.
  • <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. September 26, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Joyce (James). <i>Dubliners,</i> first edition, signed presentation inscription from the author, 1914. £100,000 to £150,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> The Beatles.- Baker (Geoffrey.) 3 Autograph Letters and 1 Autograph Card signed to Ann Gosnell, addtionally sgn’d by George Harrison, John Lennon, Cynthia Lennon and others, 1968. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Pilgrim Press.- Dod (John). <i>A plaine and familiar exposition of the tenne commandements ...,</i> [Leiden], [William Brewster], 1617. £15,000 to £20,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. September 26, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Automaton Chess Player & Mechanical Illusion.- Reynell (H., printer). “The Famous Chess-Player, No.14, St.James's-Street, next Brooks's,” broadside advertisement for "The famous Automaton", [1784]. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Clemens (Samuel Langhorne). <i>Life on the Mississippi,</i> first English edition, signed presentation inscription from the author, 1883. £8,000 to £12,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Arctic Sledge Flag.- Fulford (Reginald Baldwin). Sledge flag... HMS Discovery, 1875. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. September 26, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Rowling (J.K.) <i>Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone,</i> first edition, first printing, 1997. £20,000 to £30,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Piranesi (Giovanni Battista). <i>Le Antichità Romane,</i> 4 vol., 1756. £20,000 to £30,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal, called). <i>Urbis Venetiarum Prospectus Celebriores,</i> 3 parts in 1, Richard Ford's copy, Venice, Giovanni Battista Pasquali, 1751. £10,000 to £15,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. September 26, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Atlases.- Speed (John). <i>A Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World,</i> bound with <i>The Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine,</i> 1631-27. £12,000 to £18,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Sep. 26:</b> Anatomical illustration.- Aselli (Gaspare). <i>De lactibus sive lacteis venis... dissertatio,</i> first edition, Milan, Giovanni Battista Bidelli, 1627. £20,000 to £30,000

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