Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - April - 2019 Issue

Rare Americana from the George S. MacManus Co.

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Rare Americana.

The George S. MacManus Co. has issued their Catalogue 421 of Rare Americana. There are 200 items and these are highly collectible. They are primarily quite old, ranging from early colonial times through the 19th century. There is even an occasional item that is a bit of a stretch to call it "Americana," but those are the small exceptions. This is a fine selection of material that is mostly hard to find. Here are a few of these selections.

 

We begin with one of the earliest looks at the vast interior of the southern portion of North America written in English: A Description of the English Province of Carolana, by the Spaniards Call'd Florida, and by the French, La Louisiane... With a large and Curious Preface, Demonstrating the Right of the English to that Country, and the Unjust Manner of the French Usurping of It. The author was Daniel Coxe, with this fourth issue of the first edition published in 1741. "Carolana" was the English name for a vast territory adjacent to Carolina, extending over much of Georgia, Florida, and the then great territory of Louisiana, even crossing to the other side of the Mississippi River. The name was taken to honor English King Charles I. Of course, the French did not take kindly to the English claims and did not cede its title to the land until after the French and Indian War. Coxe had a motive other than claiming the land for his country. He believed that he owned it all. His claim was based on an early grant from Charles I to a vast amount of wilderness which his father had purchased. Notwithstanding his personal interests, Coxe provides an early description of the land, his map was the most accurate for its time, removing the imaginary mountains once thought to parallel the Mississippi River, and Coxe provided the first published proposal for a confederation of the British colonies in North America. However, he never got the land. Item 138. Priced at $8,500.

 

This book also looks at this territory, a bit later, and specifically at its natives: History of the American Indians, Particularly those Nations adjoining to the Missisippi [sic], East and West Florida, Georgia, South and North Carolina and Virginia... published in 1775. The author was James Adair, an Irishman who came to this wilderness to trade with the natives. He says he stayed for 40 years, from 1735-1775, though he may have left earlier. Adair spent a great deal of time with the Catawba, Cherokee, and Chickasaw, enabling him to provide what is considered the best 18th century description of the southern Indians. The part of Adair's account that is not so accurate is his theory as to the origins of the native tribes. He believed they descended from the Lost Tribes of Israel, offering numerous arguments in favor of his belief, and discovering many similarities between the Indians and the Jews. If this seems far-fetched, this belief was held by many through the 19th century, particularly in the earlier times when the earth was believed to be only a few thousand year old. Where else could they have come from? Item 1. $4,000.

 

Here is another man who held this opinion. Elias Boudinot was an American patriot during the Revolution who served in numerous government positions in New Jersey and later in the U.S., including being a Congressman from his state in the first Congress. He was a well-respected, deeply religious man, and his "discovery" of the origin of America's natives as a Lost Tribe of Israel must have pleased him immensely. He was troubled by their mistreatment by so-called "civilized" nations, who stole their land and treated them as savages. However, actually being Israelites gave them the dignity of being biblical peoples. Rather than exploit them, Boudinot wished to Christianize them, with nothing but the best of intentions. Item 57 is his book, A Star in the West; or, A Humble Attempt to Discover the Long Lost Tribes of Israel, Preparatory to Their Return to Their Beloved City, Jerusalem, published in 1816. I'm not sure how the Native Americans would have reacted to being "returned" to Jerusalem. Confused?- Item 57. $500.

 

This is another book about America's natives, but it has nothing to do with Lost Tribes or Jerusalem. It is about a legendary leader who tried to preserve his people's land from settlers' intrusions, naturally, without success. No one succeeded. The title is The Life and Adventures of Black Hawk: With Sketches of Keokuk, the Sac and Fox Indians, and the Late Black Hawk War, by Benjamin Drake. It was published in 1838, while Black Hawk was still living, though he died later that year. Black Hawk was from the Sac or Sauk tribe and he was not a chief, but a leader of warriors. They lived in the Upper Mississippi Valley and had seen their territory pushed farther and farther west. Whites had pushed his tribe to the west side of the Mississippi, but Black Hawk was unwilling to cede his birthplace on the east side. Several times he led parties across the river, but did not engage the whites. He did so again in 1832, but some warriors and members of other tribes cooperating with Black Hawk engaged in hostilities. What ensued was a group of uncoordinated skirmishes which led to various atrocities on both sides. Soon enough, the military power of the United States overwhelmed Black Hawk and his compatriots, he surrendered, was taken to Washington to meet President Jackson (to appreciate just how powerful American forces were), and returned to his home on the west side of the river, which continued to be pushed back. But, Black Hawk fought no more, conceding to reality. His stand is known as the Black Hawk War, and it was the last Indian war east of the Mississippi. Drake understood what was being done to America's natives, the mistreatment and taking of land, and he is sympathetic to them and to Black Hawk, not common for his day. Item 176. $1,750.

 

Here is one that is only slightly Americana, but it's close enough. The title is Terra Australis Cognita: or, Voyages to the Terra Australis, or Southern Hemisphere, During the Sixteenth, Seventeenth, and Eighteenth Centuries. This is primarily an Australian and Pacific collection of voyages, recounted by author James Callander for a particular purpose. It consists of accounts of 41 Pacific voyages pre-Cook. Cook does not make the cut because the book was published in three volumes from 1766-1768, just before Cook left on his first trip. Many of the accounts were taken from a French work and some were herein published for the first time in English. Among those whose voyages are covered are Drake, Quiros, Vespucci, Cavendish, Dampier, Tasman, and Magellan. Some of these did pass by way of the Americas, so it does qualify for Americana. However, Callander's primary purpose in compiling these accounts was to convince the British to settle Australia. The Spanish and Dutch had made some earlier claims but ignored them, while Callender was particularly concerned about France taking the land ahead of England. Along with settlement, Callender suggests using Australia as a penal colony. Interestingly, at the time, the one part of Australia that had not yet been surveyed was the east coast, where the great majority of settlement would take place. This would have to await Cook's voyages. Item 82. $16,500.

 

The George S. MacManus Co. may be reached at 610-520-7273 or books@macmanus-rarebooks.com. Their website is www.macmanus-rarebooks.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <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
  • <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

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