Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - March - 2020 Issue

American Pamphlets, Broadsides, and More from David M. Lesser Antiquarian Books

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Catalogue 173 of Rare Americana.

David M. Lesser Fine Antiquarian Books has released their Catalogue 173 of Rare Americana. Mostly pamphlets, broadsides, and other shorter form paper, the items are usually focused on the issues of the day. From the 18th and 19th century, topics are often political or religious, and frequently argumentative. Criticism, constructive and otherwise, is often the focus. A few items actually involve personal disputes, rather than issue-oriented ones. Here are a few of the items in this latest David Lesser catalogue.

 

Politics, then as now, has often been ugly. Here is an example from 1828, View of General Jackson's Domestic Relations, in Reference to the Presidency, by Charles Hammond. Hammond, who disliked Jackson intensely, attacks his wife as a way of getting at Andrew Jackson. Rachel Jackson was long separated from her first husband and believed he had obtained a divorce. Evidently, he had not, raising questions about the legitimacy of her marriage to Jackson. Gen. Jackson's opponents had a field day with the issue, portraying her as an immoral woman, thereby making her husband immoral too. Hammond describes Rachel Jackson as “a convicted and avowed adulteress,” making Jackson unfit for office. Hammond pontificates, “If the female head of the family be destitute of the characteristics and accomplishments which adorn the station she moves in, it never fails to produce an unfavorable effect...” The voters obviously disagreed as they elected Jackson President anyway. Item 44. Priced at $375.

 

Speaking of a man's view of women, here is another one from Albert Alden, circa 1835-1840. It is a woodcut illustration of The Life and Age of Woman, Stages of Woman's Life from Infancy to the Brink of the Grave. It depicts a woman at the ages of 1, 12, 18, 30, 50, 75, and 90. There are captions to describe each age. At 18, she risks “bestowing [her affections] on man unworthily or in vain.” She need first give her heart to God. At 30, she is at the peak of her intellectual and physical powers. It is all downhill from here. At 50 “her home is her castle,” as she spends her time devoted to her household and counseling her children. By 90, “we see all that remains of her.” She is stooped over, cane in hand. Item 1. $2,500.

 

For those who think war is Hell, Rev. Thomas Verner Moore had different thoughts. Instead, it is a gift of God. Moore gave his sermon in Richmond in the Confederate South on November 15, 1861, a day of “Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer” proclaimed by President Jefferson Davis. The sermon is titled, God Our Refuge and Strength in this War. Moore preaches that war “is a part of the agency by which God Disciplines nations.” He explains, “A long course of peace and prosperity, acting on our depraved nature, tends to emasculate and corrupt a people... War tends to break up this mammon-worship, effeminacy and selfish expediency, to show that there are nobler things to be contended for in life.” He also gave “thanks to Almighty God for that wonderful triumph at Manassas, where the destinies of our young Republic hung trembling in the balance until God gave us victory.” Evidently, God changed sides around the time of Gettysburg. Item 93. $450.

 

This is an interesting collection of printed material, not what you might expect. Item 116 is a complete set of presidential foil cigar bands. The bands are mounted chronologically, with Grover Cleveland getting only one, providing the collector's opinion as to whether his non-consecutive terms constitutes a separate presidency. These bands, which were slipped around the ends of cigars, feature an image of each President from Washington through Theodore Roosevelt and his name. The last President included most likely dates this collection to sometime during Roosevelt's presidency, 1901-1909. $375.

 

Next we have an 1876 catalogue for Wood Brother Coach Builders. These were carriages pulled by horses back in the days before automobiles. Wood Brothers was evidently a high quality builder as they provided coaches for Presidents Lincoln, Johnson, and Grant. Their main address was on Broadway in New York. The eight-page catalogue displays the various coaches the firm made. As best I can tell, this catalogue came near the end of the company's existence, the Wood Brothers aging out and selling off their assets a few years later. Item 163. $350.

 

This next item has a title that sounds questionable, but it actually represents a major undertaking in the cause of religious freedom. It comes from the state of Maryland in 1829, the title being Speeches on the Jew Bill in the House of Delegates of Maryland by H.H. Brackenridge, Col. W. G. D. Worthington, and John S. Tyson. The “Jew bill” was designed to allow Jews to hold public office. The Maryland constitution required that office holders profess to believe in the Christian religion. After passage of this bill, declaring belief in a future state with rewards and punishments was sufficient. Item 63. $20,000.

 

David M. Lesser Fine Antiquarian Books may be reached at 203-389-8111 or dmlesser@lesserbooks.com. Their website is www.lesserbooks.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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