Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - April - 2006 Issue

Rare and Unusual Americana from David Lesser Antiquarian Books

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This same type of paternalism is revealed even after the Civil War in the Minutes of the Thirty-Second Annual Session of the Union Baptist Association...Tuscaloosa County, ALA., September 21-23, 1867. The Association calls for the dismissal of most Blacks from their congregations. They note that the Blacks "are yet estranged from us in their feelings, and opposed to our exercising a wholesome discipline over them." The minutes point out that the U.S. Government "has passed laws giving them all the civil rights and privileges of white citizens, thereby completely putting them beyond our control..." In terms of treating the newly freed slaves as any other people, the Association states that it would be "repugnant to our feelings to associate with them in our social and domestic relations..." Sadly, we can see the seeds of strife being planted by those who had the greatest moral authority to prevent the terrible schism between the races about to unfold. Item 14. $500.

Attitudes about slavery were not always so fixed in the South. "Marcellus" describes a point of view more common among the southern founders in the days after the Revolution in Marcellus; Published in the Virginia Gazette, November and December, 1794. This pamphlet expresses a midpoint between "advocates of extreme liberty and equality" and those who justify the institution of slavery. He describes slavery as "the most wicked policy," but "now a malady so incorporated into our social constitution, that its sudden destruction would as suddenly lead us back to a state of nature, from which it might require whole ages of misery to recover us to our present station." He advocates gradual emancipation as the means to prevent "formidable insurrections." Item 82. $2,500.

William S. Oldham of Texas was resolute in his support of the Confederate cause. Item 107 is the Speech of W.S. Oldham, of Texas, on the Resolutions of the State of Texas, Concerning Peace, Reconstruction and Independence. In the Confederate Senate, January 30, 1865. Says Oldham, "the military resources of our country are ample to enable us to maintain ourselves indefinitely against any force the enemy can send against us." "Indefinitely," in this case, turned out to be less than three months. $500.

The outcome of the Civil War led to this interesting legal question, taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court in ...Henry Miller, Plaintiff in Error, vs. Moses Joseph...in 1872. Miller had hired Joseph to take his place in the Confederate Army in 1861 for a price of $1,000. Joseph, evidently, performed his part of the bargain, but Miller failed to pay his substitute the full, agreed upon amount. Joseph had prevailed in the courts of Virginia, but Miller went to the U.S. Supreme Court arguing that the contract was illegal under U.S. laws, and so could not be enforced. The Supreme Court finessed this awkward issue by dismissing Miller's appeal on the grounds it lacked jurisdiction. $375.

Item 101 recounts a long-forgotten dispute in the New York City Militia. From 1797, it is A Statement, Explanatory of the Resignation of the New Officers of the Regiment of Artillery... Evidently, members of the Regiment of Artillery were prevented from rising above the rank of lieutenant colonel, which upset them enough to hand in their resignations. What is interesting is some of the names who participated in this resignation: DeWitt Clinton (future New York City Mayor, New York Governor, Senator, and unsuccessful Federalist candidate for president in 1812), Robert Fulton and Robert Livingston (developers of the steamboat), Nicholas Roosevelt (great uncle of President Theodore Roosevelt and a steamboat builder), Peter Irving (Washington Irving's brother), and John Swartwout, a close associate of Aaron Burr. Swartwout and Clinton would later participate in a duel in which Swartwout was nicked a couple of times before it was called off. $500.

David M. Lesser Fine Antiquarian Books is located on the web at www.lesserbooks.com, phone number 203-389-8111.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <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.
  • <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>Gonnelli Auction House<br>Books and Graphics<br>19th, 20th and 21st April 2021</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 19-21<br>Books from XVI to XX Century</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 20<br>Atlases and Maps</b
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br> Veneto and Venice, a Selection of Books from the XVI to XX century</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 20<br></b>Rossini Gioachino, Baguette de chef d'orchestre appartenuta a Gioachino Rossini, dono del Comune di Passy. 1500 €
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br></b>Manetti Saverio, Storia naturale degli uccelli trattata con metodo. Cinque volumi. 1767. 18.000 €
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br></b>Poe Edgar Allan, Double assassinat dans la rue morgue. Illustrations de Cura. 1946.
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 19-21<br>Books from XVI to XX Century</b>
  • <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

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