Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - March - 2007 Issue

Texas and Ranching from Maggie Lambeth Rare Books

Lambeth53

Texas and Ranching from Maggie Lambeth.


By Michael Stillman

The latest catalogue to arrive from Maggie Lambeth Rare Books, Maps and Prints, of Blanco, Texas, is entitled Texas and Ranching. Those two go together like Texas and oil. You either raise cattle or pump oil in Texas, or at least that's what you did in the old days. Times have changed. Oil no longer dominates the economy, most Texans live in sprawling metropolises like Dallas and Houston, and the big businesses in Texas have names like Dell and Halliburton. Still, vast areas of the state remain lightly populated, unsuited for much except running cattle. Ranching may no longer be the occupation of most Texans, but it does still dominate much of its landscape. For those with an interest in Texas and ranching, and its associated cast of characters -- cowboys, cowgirls, and those who owned ranches bigger than most cities, Maggie Lambeth has a catalogue of books you won't want to miss. Let's take a look inside.

The Johnson Ranch was not the largest of Texas ranches, but it is one of the best known. That is because it not only produced cattle, but U.S. President Lyndon Johnson as well. Johnson certainly fit the image of "large as Texas," a wheeler-dealer of legendary proportions, who rose to lead the Senate, was selected by JFK to be his running mate, and succeeded to the presidency when the latter was assassinated. Item 203 is A Family Album, written by Rebekah Baines Johnson, the President's mother. This was actually something of a scrapbook Mrs. Johnson kept of the family and their notable son, which was published in 1965, seven years after her death. The Johnsons were not wealthy ranchers, but a family that scraped by in the then rural Hill Country of Texas, long before it became some of the most highly desirable residential real estate in the state. Priced at $25.

Here is another famed Texas politician, from an earlier age, who made it almost as far as LBJ. John Nance Garner, aka "Cactus Jack," was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1902, and was elevated to Speaker in 1931. He was a major contender for the Democratic presidential nomination in the year this book was published (1932), but when it became evident the nomination would go to Roosevelt, he accepted the calling for vice-president. However, by the time of Roosevelt's second term, Garner began to split with him on numerous issues, and unsuccessfully opposed FDR for the presidency in 1940. The result was that he retired from politics, and was no longer his successor when Roosevelt died in office a few years later. Garner is best remembered for his classic description of the vice-presidency -- "not worth a bucket of warm piss." In Garner's case that was probably correct, though that would not be true for FDR's third vice-president, Harry Truman. Item 136 is The Speaker of the House; The Romantic Story of John N. Garner, by George Rothwell Brown. $25.

Item 40 is the story of a pioneering woman, A Bride on the Old Chisholm Trail in 1886. Author Mary Taylor Bunton convinced her husband to allow her to accompany him on a cattle drive along the Chisholm Trail, an unheard of idea at the time. Mrs. Bunton was given a buggy to ride, but even so it was a dangerous and exciting journey, one few women were ever allowed to make. At the time, the Chisholm Trail was used to drive cattle from southern Texas to stockyards in Kansas, where their value per head was much higher. Mrs. Bunton published the story of her ride many years later, in 1939, long after local railroads had replaced the old trail for moving cattle. $85.

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.
  • <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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