Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - November - 2007 Issue

Books About Books and More from Oak Knoll

Oak284

Catalogue 284 from Oak Knoll Books.


By Michael Stillman

Oak Knoll Books
has released its Catalogue 284, featuring works from the Limited Editions Club, books about books, and bibliography. Oak Knoll specializes in books that are about the art of making books, or books that are physically works of art. However, we do note some very interesting titles offered here that do not quite fit so neatly within these walls. That is more than acceptable as there are some most worthwhile historical works to be found here. So, let's take a look at this 284th catalogue in Oak Knoll's ongoing series.

Item 190 is one of the most significant books pertaining to the Colorado River: Report Upon the Colorado River of the West. Explored in 1857 and 1858 by Lieutenant Joseph C. Ives, Corps of Topographical Engineers... Ives conducted a pioneering survey of the great river, including the gathering of detailed botanical and zoological data as well as information on Indians who lived along the canyon walls. Ives led the first recorded expedition to the floor of the Grand Canyon. Along with text, this report includes many plates of geographic features and natives who lived by the river. Offered is number 90 of the copies issued to the House of Representatives, printed in 1861. Priced at $2,000.

Item 68 is a bound volume of several reports from Alaska. It includes maps, a copy of the penal code, and a report on agriculture (what grows in snow?). What makes the information particularly interesting is the timing of the material, the close of the 19th century when the Alaska gold rush was on. $225.

Jerome Kern is remembered by most as one of the greatest music writers for the theater. He composed such timeless melodies as Ol' Man River and Smoke Gets In Your Eyes. However, in the book world, he is remembered for a wonderful collection, and having the prescience to sell it at the most opportune time. Item 231 is the two-volume catalogue of The Library of Jerome Kern, published by the Anderson Galleries for his auction. There were 1482 lots, and they took in $1.7 million, a spectacular price in early 1929. Kern was amazed. What followed was even more surprising, though thoroughly unwelcome. This was the last great auction before the Depression. The days of spectacular prices came to a screeching halt with the market crash, but not until Kern had cashed out. As Oak Knoll points out, "some of the prices realized have not been seen again to this day." $225.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ian Fleming, <i>Goldfinger,</i> first edition, inscribed to Sir Henry Cotton, MBE, London, 1959. Sold for $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Joseph Brant, Mohawk Chief, ALS, writing after pledging support to King George III against American rebels, 1776. Sold for a record $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Sonia Delaunay, <i>Ses Peintures</i> . . ., 20 pochoir plates, Paris, 1925. Sold for a record $13,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Diana, Princess of Wales, 6 autograph letters signed to British <i>Vogue</i> editor, 1989-92. Sold for $10,400.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alexander Hamilton, ALS, as Secretary of the Treasury covering costs of the new U.S. Mint, 1793. Sold for $12,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Benjamin Graham & David L. Dodd, <i>Security Analysis,</i> first edition, inscribed by Graham to a Wall Street trader, NY, 1934. Sold for $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> George Barbier & François-Louis Schmied, <i>Personnages de Comédie,</i> Paris, 1922. Sold for $9,375.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alphonse Mucha, <i>Ilsée, Princesse de Tripoli,</i> Paris, 1897. Sold for a record $13,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ralph Waldo Emerson, <i>The Dial,</i> first edition of the reconstituted issue, Emerson’s copy with inscriptions, Cincinnati, 1860. Sold for a record $3,250.

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions