Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - July - 2018 Issue

Beautiful Books and Their Creation from The Veatchs Arts of the Book

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Book arts from the Veatchs.

The Veatchs Arts of the Book has published their Catalogue 88. It is filled with material related to the book arts. There are fine press offerings, type specimen books, proof copies, various types of printed images, fine bindings, and other features related to the physical beauty of the book. Some are the beautiful books themselves, others the instructions and products needed to create those beautiful books. Here, now, are a few selections from this recent Veatchs catalogue.

 

William Morris' Kelmscott Press remains today a symbol of the Arts and Crafts Movement, and the finest of the fine, private presses. We begin with a work that was printed by the Kelmscott press, though not by the Kelmscott Press. There is a subtle difference here. It's in the capitalization. After Morris died in 1897, the Kelmscott Press wound down its business and closed the doors. C. R. (Charles Robert) Ashbee was was also a product of the Arts and Ctafts Movement, influenced both by Morris' artistic tastes and his socialism. For years, he operated the Guild and School of Handicraft. It taught poor children how to produce fine handwork. Ashbee wasn't teaching them the book arts so much as making products like furniture and metalwork. However, he also came from a family of bibliophiles and determined to set up a private press. He wanted to create books similar to those of Morris. To achieve those aims, he purchased the press that had been used by Kelmscott, hence his books were printed on Kelmscott's press, but not by the printer Kelmscott Press. Ashbee called his press Essex House Press. Item 15 is The Psalter, or Psalms of David from the Bible of Archbishop Cranmer, published in 1902. The large pictorial initials were created by Ashbee. Type is in red and black. The archaic spelling of Cranmer's time was retained. Priced at $1,100.

 

Robert Hoe was in the business of producing printing presses, though I doubt he built one for Kelmscott. His customers would have been larger, including those of America's newspapers. R. Hoe & Co. was the largest producer of printing presses in America, likely the world, in the 19th century. Item 26 is R. Hoe & Co's Catalogue of Printing Presses and Printers' Materials from 1881. This is a "profusely illustrated" catalogue of Hoe's large presses. The catalogue was created by Francis Hart, partner of Theodore DeVinne, whose press became the DeVinne Press after Hart died in 1883. While Hoe is noted for his very successful press business, he used much of his money to create a magnificent book collection, for which he is most known in the collecting field. When it sold in 1912, it brought in by far the most money of any book auction sale in America up to its time. Item 26. $1,200.

 

Here is a book that makes lemonade out of lemons, or more specifically, beauty out of bugs. Item 4 is Diptera: A Book of Flies & Other Insects. Published in 1983 by the Gehenna Press, it features the etchings of Leonard Baskin. Baskin was an extraordinary artist, illustrator, and sculptor, as well as the proprietor of the Gehenna Press. Along with five pages of text there are 36 illustrations in color and black and white. Each has been signed and numbered by Baskin. Baskin wrote that his aim was "to lift these brushed-away small insects to special and particular beauty." $12,200.

 

This book was intended to be of practical rather than artistic value, but it is quite attractive anyway. Item 49 is The American Bond Detector And Complete History of all United States Securities Treasury Department, by Nehemiah George Ordway. It was published in 1869. It covers all bonds issued by Congress from July 17, 1861 - March 3, 1868. They were printed in the original colors from the original dies. They come with a full description along with rules for detecting counterfeits. There is even a counterfeit bond printed from its plate that was captured by government agents. Also displayed are some railroad bonds and revenue stamps for whiskey and cigars. This is followed by images of coins, embossed to provide a more life-like appearance. They are printed in metallic inks of copper, bronze, silver and gold. The Veatchs notes that there has been some oxidation of the silver ink, "but the gold ones are amazing." This is a first and only edition. $4,700.

 

Next we have an extensive collection from one of the more unusual private presses. It was known by the not very artistic or clever sounding name of the Laboratory Press. No Heavenly Monkeys here. The Laboratory Press was the creation of Porter Garnett, its purpose to instruct students at the Carnegie Institute of Technology in the details of operating a fine press. It operated from 1924-1933, when Garnett retired (it reappeared in a later incarnation in the 1950s). It focused on design, typography, composition, and printing. This archive contains 92 student projects. They used the best foundry types, handmade paper, and were printed by hand. Each project names the designer, compositor, and printer, along with the typefaces and paper used. Print runs ranged from 60-160 copies and were sent to people who would be helpful to the students. Item 38. $1,500.

 

The Veatchs Arts of the Book can be reached at 716-648-0361 or veatchs@veatchs.com. Their website is www.veatchs.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Doyle<br>Rare Books, Autographs & Maps<br>Timed auction, April 29</b>
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1032. RATZER, BERNARD. Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1011. [BROADSIDE]. Life, Last Words and Dying Confession, of Rachel Wall... $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1055. BEATON, CECIL. Scrapbook prepared by Cecil Beaton over the period 1935-1944, with some later inclusions. $800 to $1,200.
    <center><b>Doyle<br>Rare Books, Autographs & Maps<br>Timed auction, April 29</b>
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1051. ADDAMS, CHARLES. Original drawing "I hope the power doesn't go out until after Masterpiece Theatre." $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1037. The Campaign Speeches of Nixon of Kennedy, inscribed to William Safire by Richard Nixon and secretarially for John Kennedy. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1036. Celebration of the Commencement of Work on Rapid Transit Railroad. March 24th 1900, one o'clock, City Hall Park, New York. $200 to $300.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 1005. 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers signed baseball including Jackie Robinson. $3,000 to $5,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Frances Palmer, <i>Battle of Buena Vista,</i> chromolithograph, New York, 1847. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Antonio Colmenero de Ledesma, the earliest publication concerned solely with chocolate, first edition, Madrid, 1631. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Romans Bernard, <i>An Exact View of the Late Battle at Charlestown, June 17th, 1775,</i> engraving, 1776. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> <i>A Short Narrative of the Horrid Massacre in Boston,</i> English edition, London, 1770. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> William Soule, <i>Lodge of the Plains Indians,</i> albumen print, 1872. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Manuscript document to enforce New York’s “Agreement of Non-Importation” during the heyday of the Sons of Liberty, New York, 1769. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Clarence Mackenzie, <i>Drummer Boy of the 13th Regiment of Brooklyn,</i> salt print with applied color, 1861. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Moses Lopez, <i>A Lunar Calendar,</i> first Jewish calendar published in America, Newport, RI, 1806. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b><br>The Book of Mormon, first edition, Palmyra, 1830. $30,000 to $40,000.
  • <center><b>Doyle<br>Stage & Screen<br>Auction April 28</b>
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 12. OKLAHOMA! Celeste Holm's vocal score for Oklahoma! inscribed by Richard Rodgers. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 20. WILSON, DOOLEY. Fine inscribed photograph to Celeste Holm with Casablanca reference. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 79. Original production script of the Broadway musical CATS with notes written by Claude Tessier. $600 to $900.
    <center><b>Doyle<br>Stage & Screen<br>Auction April 28</b>
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 139. STEPHEN SONDHEIM. Autographed musical manuscript signed for "Broadway Baby" from Follies. $500 to $800.
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 180.<br>Cecil Beaton. Headdress for Liza at the Ball, from My Fair Lady, circa 1962. $700 to $900.
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 177.<br>Cecil Beaton. Set Design for The Gainsborough Girls, 1951. $2,000 to $3,000.
  • <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 54. Fanciful engraving of earth's interior with magma core and errupting volcanoes (1682). $1500 to $1800.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 165. Rare state of Jefferys' influential map of New England in contemporary color (1755). $8000 to $9500.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 177. Mouzon's foundation map of the Carolinas (1775). $10000 to $13000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 183. Very rare first state of De Fer's map of the Lower Mississippi Valley (1715). $20000 to $25000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 253. Scarce Scottish edition based on Ellicott's plan of Washington, D.C. (1796). $2400 to $3000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 313. Stunning view of Philadelphia by John Bachmann (1850). $3250 to $4250.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 338. Rare Civil War map based on Bucholtz map of Virginia (1862). $9500 to $12000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 667. First map to accurately show Luzon in Philippines (1590). $6000 to $7500.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 682. Rare map of Shanghai International Settlement published just after WWI (1918). $7000 to $9000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 738. Coronelli's superb map of the Pacific showing the Island of California (1697) Est. $2400 - $3000
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 743. A cornerstone piece in the mapping of Australia and New Zealand (1726) Est. $6000 - $7500
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 781. An uncommon signature during Jefferson's Governorship of Virginia (1779) Est. $9500 - $11000
  • <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Collection of a Connoisseur:<br>History in Manuscript, Part 2<br>27 April 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Ronald Reagan. Series of 37 letters to Senator George Murphy, and related material, 1968-90. £50,000 to £70,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Chaim Weizmann. Autograph letter signed, to General Sir Gilbert Clayton, 6 September 1918. £20,000 to £30,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Sir Winston Churchill. Autograph letter signed, to Pamela, Lady Lytton, 1942. £20,000 to $30,000.
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Collection of a Connoisseur:<br>History in Manuscript, Part 2<br>27 April 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Oscar Wilde. Five autograph letters signed, to Alsager Vian, 1887. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Napoleon I. Letter signed to Admiral Ganteaume, ordering the invasion of England, 22 August 1805. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Horatio, Viscount Nelson, and Emma Hamilton. Two autograph letter signed, to Catherine and George Matcham, 1805. £6,000 to £8,000.

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