Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - July - 2006 Issue

Mexican and Latin Works from Plaza Books

Plaza18

List 18 of Latin American works from Plaza Books.


By Michael Stillman

Arriving in our mailbox a short time ago was List 18 from Plaza Books of Santa Rosa, California. Plaza specializes in books from south of the border. While anything from Tijuana to the Straits of Magellan is fair game, and so even are items from within the USA with a Latin connection, most of the books in this catalogue pertain to Mexico. The linguistic mix is fairly even here, between English and Spanish language works, with a few in French. The time period covered ranges all the way from the days before the Spanish conquest to the Mexican Revolution. It offers a most worthy selection for collectors of Mexicana and Central America. Here are a few samples.

Item 4 is a contemporary work concerning the Mexican Revolution, though it would only have covered the initial stages. Author Henry Baerlein was a correspondent for the London Times who published his book in 1912: Mexico, the Land of Unrest: Being chiefly an Account of what produced the Outbreak in 1910, together with the Story of the Revolutions down to this Day. In 1910, Mexicans overthrew the longstanding dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz, and installed Francisco Madero as President. He would still have been in office at this time, but by 1913, Madero too was overthrown, executed, and a series of other leaders would come and go until the PRI would gain control. That control was not relinquished until the most recent Mexican presidential election. Priced at $115.

Item 31 relates to an earlier change of government in Mexico, though this was more invasion than revolution. During the 1860s, France invaded Mexico and established Emperor Maximilian on the thrown. It didn't work out. However, in 1863, a year before Maximilian's installation, John de Havilland could not foresee what would transpire. De Havilland was an ultra-conservative royalist who believed that an emperor was just what Mexico needed. At the time, he could point to America, engaged in its civil war, as proof of the failure of democracy. De Havilland recalled that Americans had appreciated France's involvement in their revolution against the British, and concluded the Mexicans would feel the same. What he failed to notice is that the Americans were fighting a foreign power, not each other. A year later, de Havilland got his wish, but within three years, Mexicans united to throw the French out of the country, and Maximilian lay dead in front of a firing squad. The book, in French, is Le Mexique sous la Maison de Habsbourg. $500.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books<br>June 23, 2022
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> James Hamilton Young, <i>A New Map of Texas, with the Contiguous American & Mexican States,</i> Philadelphia, 1836. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> John James Audubon, <i>Common American Skunk. Plate XLII,</i> Philadelphia, 1844. $700 to $1,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> Nicolaas & Jacob Cruquius, <i>T Hooge Heemraadschap van Delflant,</i> Delft, 1712. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> William Birch & Samuel Seymour, <i>The City of New York in the State of New York, North America,</i> Bristol, 1803. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> Karl Bodmer, <i>Sih-Chida & Mahchsi-Karehde. Mandan Indians. Tableau 20,</i> Paris, Coblenz & London, 1839-42. $1,500 to $2,500.
  • <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> JESSE JAMES. Autograph Letter Signed on the attack at his home which maimed his mother and killed his nephew Archie, 6 pp, March 23, 1875. THE MOST IMPORTANT JESSE JAMES LETTER EXTANT. $300,000 to $500,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> THE LETTER THAT ARRIVED TOO LATE: An important letter from Robert E. Lee to Ulysses S. Grant across the battlefield at Cold Harbor, June 6, 1864. $120,000 to $180,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> DAVY CROCKETT. Autograph Letter Signed on his political philosophy and his dispute with Andrew Jackson, "at home Weakley County," August 18, 1831. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> GEORGE WASHINGTON. Letter Signed to Colonel Richard Gridley, the first engineer of the American Army, Morris Town, January 9, 1777. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> SCOTT FITZGERALD. <i>Tender is the Night.</i> FIRST EDITION, INSCRIBED to H.A. Swanseid. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS. <i>Tarzan of the Apes.</i> FIRST EDITION. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> J.R.R. TOLKIEN. <i>The Hobbit, or There and Back Again.</i> FIRST EDITION. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> NATHANAEL WEST. <i>The Day of the Locust.</i> PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed to director Richard Wallace in the year of publication. $6,000 to $8,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> FRANCIS PICABIA. Archive of 17 Autograph Letters signed to Jennie Thiersch on art and life, 1948-1951. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> JOHN HANCOCK. Autograph Letter Signed to his wife Dolly from the Continental Congress, 4 pp, Philadelphia, March 10-11, 1777. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> NIGHTGOWN WORN BY CHARLOTTE CARDEZA DURING THE TITANIC DISASTER AND RESCUE. $40,000 to $60,000

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