Americana from James Cummins Bookseller
For those seeking something of a more ephemeral nature, there is the Great Seal of the U.S., the carved, painted and gilt wooden eagle pictured on the cover of this catalogue. Item 31. $4,000. For a more pedestrian woodcarving, Item 1 is a circa 1910 Heinz 57 Varieties for the Table sign, featuring a carved pickle. For those wondering why Heinz has never expanded its offerings, Cummins notes that Heinz has long made more than 57 products. Founder Henry John Heinz just liked the number "57," so that is all he claimed. $1,500.
Item 89 is a remarkable item printed on an army field press at Savannah, Georgia, on January 8, 1865. It is headed, Head-Quarters Military Division of the Mississippi. In it, General William T. Sherman reviews his army's March to the Sea and congratulates his troops for their success. At the time, the march had been completed, and Sherman was resting, awaiting their advance back north into the Carolinas the following month. Writes Sherman, "We quietly and deliberately destroyed Atlanta and all the railroads which the enemy had used to carry on war against us, occupied his State Capital and then captured his commercial capital, which had been so strongly fortified from the sea as to defy approach from that quarter." Sherman goes on, "So complete a success in military operations, extending over half a continent is an achievement that entitles it to a place in the Military History of the World..." $10,000.
James Cummins Bookseller may be reached online at www.jamescumminsbookseller.com or by phone at 212-688-6441.