• <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> SHAKESPEARE, WILLIAM. <i>The Tragedie of Julius Caesar.</i> London, 1623. 1st appearance in print, Complete from the First Folio. Sold for $175,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Ernst, Max. <i>Mr. Knife and Miss Fork</i>. Paris, 1932. DELUXE EDITION. Sold for $15,625
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Einstein, Albert. Signed Passport Photo for his US citizenship application. Bermuda, 1935. Sold for $17,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Verard, Antoine. Illuminated printed Book of Hours. Paris, 1507. Sold for $7,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Wetterkurzschlussel. German Weather Report Codebook - for Enigma use. Berlin, 1942. Sold for $225,000
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Morelos y Pavon, Jose Maria. Autograph letter signed to El Virrey Venegas, February 5, 1812. Sold for $6,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Milne, A.A. Complete set of <i>Winnie-the-Pooh</i> books. 4 volumes. All first issue points. London, 1924-1928. Sold for $5,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> A 48-star American Flag, battle worn flown at Guadalcanal and Peleliu, 1942-1944. Sold for $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Locke, John. Autograph Letter Signed mourning the death of his friend, William Molyneaux, 2 pp, October 27, 1698. Sold for $20,000
  • <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. July 28, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 372: Martin Luther King Jr. March for Freedom Now! Placard. Chicago, 1960. 28 x 22”. $3,000 to $6,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 567: Warhol, Andy. Tate Gallery Exhibition Booklet, Signed on the Cover by Warhol. Tate Gallery, 1971. $700 to $900
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 72: Mitchell, Margaret. <i>Gone With the Wind.</i> New York: The Macmillan Co., 1936. First edition, first issue. $4,000 to $5,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. July 28, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 468: Photo Archive Documenting the 1930s—50s Chicago Jazz and Night Club Scene. A significant collection. $2,000 to $4,000
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 143: Dr. Seuss. <i>Oh Say Can You Say.</i> 1979, First Edition, Signed. $200 to $300
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 285: [Maps] Thomas G. Bradford. <i>A Comprehensive Atlas, Geographical, Historical & Commercial.</i> Boston: William D. Ticknor, 1835. First Edition. $1,600 to $1,800
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. July 28, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 69: Herman Melville. <i>Moby Dick, or The Whale</i>. New York: Random House, 1930. First Kent Trade Edition. $400 to $600
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 295: John James Audoban. Group of 148 Lithographs from the Birds of America. Philadelphia: J.T. Bowen, ca. 1840s. $600 to $800
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 54: Langston Hughes. <i>One-Way Ticket.</i> New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1949. First edition. $300 to $500
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions: Fine Books & Manuscripts. July 28, 2018</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 7: Ray Bradbury. <i>The Martian Chronicles.</i> With a Wine Label Signed by Bradbury. Garden City: Doubleday, 1950. First edition $300 to $500
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 121. Frank L Baum. <i>The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.</i> Chicago: George M. Hill Co., 1899, 1900. First Edition. $4,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter Auctions, July. 28:</b> Lot 369. [Declaration of Independence] Peter Force Engraving of the Declaration of Independence. One page; 29 x 26”. From the "American Archives" 1837-1853 series of books. $15,000 to $20,000
  • <b>Skinner: Early English Books<br>A Single Owner Sale. July 20, 2018</b>
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Cranmer, Thomas (1489-1556). <i>Catechismus, That is to Say, a Shorte Instruction into Christian Religion...</i> London, 1548. First edition. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Donne, John (1572-1631). <i>Pseudo-Martyr.</i> London: Printed by W[illiam] Stansby for Walter Burre, 1610. First edition. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Fletcher, Giles (1549?-1611). <i>The Russe Common Wealth, or Maner of Gouernement by the Russe Emperour…</i> London, 1591. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Gabelkover, Oswald (1539-1616). <i>The Boock of Physicke.</i> Dordrecht: Isaack Caen, 1599. First edition. $12,000 to $15,000
    <b>Skinner: Early English Books<br>A Single Owner Sale. July 20, 2018</b>
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Galileo, Galilei (1564-1642) trans. Thomas Salusbury (d. 1666). <i>Mathematical Collections and Translations the First Tome.</i> London, 1661. First edition of Galileo's works in English. $35,000 to $50,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Higden, Ranulphus (d. 1364). <i>Polycronicon.</i> Translated by John Trevisa, with the 1357-1460 <i>Continuation</i> by William Caxton. Southwark, 1527. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> Randolph, Bernard (b. 1643). <i>The Present State of the Morea, Called Anciently Peloponnesus…</i> London, 1689. [Bound with] <i>The Present State of the Islands of the Archipelago…</i> $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Skinner, July 20:</b> <i>The Great Herball Newly Corrected.</i> London, 1539. Folio, ESTC lists three U.S. copies; the last copy offered at auction was incomplete and sold in 1949. $25,000 to $35,000

Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - July - 2018 Issue

American Historical Autographs from Joe Rubinfine

2932b121-2f81-4a59-9006-f208d782a749

American Historical Autographs.

Joe Rubinfine has issued List 181 of American Historical Autographs. The collection includes Americans from many walks of life, most of whose names you will recognize. The greatest concentration is in the field of politics, presidents in particular. Here you will find a range, as Rubinfine offers signed material from Washington and Lincoln, along with Tyler and Buchanan. There are also the near-greats and the ordinary in between. We also find many Americans who made their mark in the military, along with some items specifically related to the American Revolution. These are a few of the signed documents you will find.

 

We begin with an item that, frankly, is out of reach of most collectors, but is worth mentioning for its significance. It is a letter Abraham Lincoln wrote to abolitionist Congressman J. R. Giddings of Ohio on May 21, 1860. He had only learned a few days earlier that he had been nominated for the presidency by the Republican Party. May 21 was also the day that Lincoln wrote his formal acceptance of the nomination. Giddings had written his congratulations and perhaps somewhat naively said that Lincoln had won because of his honesty and independence from corrupt politicians. Perhaps, but his campaign managers did some backroom dealing to assist their absentee candidate. Lincoln writes back that he is grateful his nomination comes without strings attached. "I am not wanting in the purpose," he says, "though I may fail in the strength, to maintain my freedom from bad influences. Your letter comes to my aid in this point, most opportunely. May the Almighty grant that the cause of truth, justice, and humanity shall in no wise suffer at my hands." Item 26. Priced at $475,000.

 

This next item is Lincoln related, though not by much. It is more interesting for its author, General Daniel Sickles. Sickles was a congressman from New York, later a general for the Union during the Civil War. He lost a leg at Gettysburg when his men were routed. He disobeyed orders and they all paid the price. Sickles blamed his boss, Gen. George Meade. His leg made it to Walter Reed Hospital where it was put on display. Sickles visited it annually. However, none of this is what he is best remembered for. His greatest celebrity came before the war, when he discovered that his young wife was having an affair with the son of Francis Scott Key, author of the Star Spangled Banner. He was enraged. Sickles shot and killed the younger Key. At his trial, Sickles was acquitted. It was the first successful use of the defense of temporary insanity. Perhaps Sickles should not have been so enraged, as he had carried out an affair with a prostitute himself. There is one more thing to note about Sickles - he and his young wife were good friends of the Lincolns, particularly Mrs. Lincoln. When the injured Sickles returned to Washington, leg in hand so to speak, the President visited him. Years later, 1912 to be specific, the aged Sickles, probably in his 90s, though his claimed birth from the date he married his teenage wife would have made him late 80s, was promoting a memorial to Mrs. Lincoln. This letter was sent to Socialist leader Francis Tandy, requesting his mailing list to send a booklet promoting the Mary Todd Lincoln Memorial. Sickles hoped to raise $150,000 for a memorial to Mrs. Lincoln in her hometown of Lexington, Kentucky, to be placed on the campus of Sayre College (now Sayre School, no longer a college). For whatever reason, it didn't work out and there is no Mary Todd Lincoln Memorial in Lexington, though you can visit her childhood home there, which is now a museum. Item 45. $500.

 

This is not the typical Rubinfine item. It is something printed, rather than handwritten. It is a first edition sheet music for I Wish I Was In Dixie's Land. The songwriter was Dan D. Emmett, and his song is now known simply as "Dixie." Less known is that its writer was not from Dixie, but from Ohio. Even more surprising, "Dixie" was not a name for the South prior to the writing of this song in 1859 (the sheet music was first published in 1860). The origin of the term is unknown, some thinking it was the name of an earlier New York slave owner, others that it referred to the Mason-Dixon Line. Whatever the source, it quickly turned into a nickname for the South, and Emmett's song became the unofficial anthem of the Confederacy. Item 22. $1,500.

 

Here is another letter of historical significance. It was written by George Washington on June 8, 1788, and sent to "William Smith Esqr and the other Gentlemen Proprietors of the Ship Federalist." Smith was a Baltimore merchant who had served in the Continental Congress, and would later serve in the U.S. Congress. The Federalist was a small ship, a 15-foot long model built to scale. It was a gift to Washington, for which he was very grateful. However, that is not what makes this letter significant. This was the time when the states were considering the newly written constitution, and while Washington officially was neutral, he was behind the scenes a strong supporter of its adoption. Smith's home state of Maryland had approved of the new Constitution, but Virginia had not yet so voted. Washington writes that he is confident that Maryland's decision can't help but be on the mind of Virginia's convention. "I cannot entertain an idea that the voice of the Convention of this State, which is now in Session, will be dissonant from that of her nearly-allied Sister, who is only separated by the Potomack," writes Washington. The Constitution withstood the winds of opposition to be ratified, but the Federalist could not withstand the winds of a hurricane a few weeks later. She sank. Item 53. $150,000.

 

Item 44 is a letter from Civil War General William T. Sherman to his younger brother Hoyt, an Iowa banker, in 1885. Hoyt had requested his brother send him some sort of signed document for the state librarian. William was suspicious of the librarian's motives, as he was regularly besieged for autographs, but wished to comply with his brother's request. He produces an original, handwritten report from July 28, 1863, written 20 miles from Vicksburg, but he makes it clear this is to be given only to the library itself. Writes Gen. Sherman, "Please see your Librarian in person, and if he will file this paper with the State Archives you may deliver it to him absolutely, but if he means to use his office to get an autograph letter, you can keep it yourself or send it back to me..." $1,500.

 

Joe Rubinfine may be reached at 321-455-1666 or Joerubinfine@mindspring.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Doyle, online only: Angling Books from the Collection of Arnold "Jake" Johnson. July 13-24, 2018</b>
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Zane Grey, Inscribed photograph album depicting Grey and party at Catalina, fishing, and in Arizona. $700 to $1,000
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Eric Taverner, Salmon Fishing...London: Seeley, Service & Co., 1931. $600 to $900
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> The Gentleman Angler. $300 to $500
    <b>Doyle, online only: Angling Books from the Collection of Arnold "Jake" Johnson. July 13-24, 2018</b>
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Ken Robinson, Flyfishers' Progress. [London: The Flyfishers' Club, 2000. $200 to $300
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> G. H. Lacy, North Punjab Fishing Club Angler's Handbook. Calcutta: Newman & Co., 1890. $300 to $500
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> J. Harrington Keene, Fly-Fishing and Fly-Making for Trout, etc. New York, 1887. $200 to $300
    <b>Doyle, online only: Angling Books from the Collection of Arnold "Jake" Johnson. July 13-24, 2018</b>
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Arthur Macrate, The History of The Tuna Club, Avalon, Santa Catalina Island, California, 1948. $400 to $600
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Joseph D. Bates Jr. Streamer Fly Tying and Fishing. Harrisburg, PA: The Stackpole Company, 1966. $800 to $1,200
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Paul Schmookler and Ingrid V. Sils. Rare and Unusual Fly Tying Materials: A Natural History. $300 to $500
    <b>Doyle, online only Jul 13-24:</b> Herbert Hoover, Fishing For Fun - And To Wash Your Soul. New York: Random House, 1963. $400 to $600
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> first edition of the earliest extant manual on modern chess, Salamanca, circa 1496-97. Sold for $68,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Carte-de-visite album with 83 images of prominent African Americans & abolitionists, circa 1860s. Sold for $47,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Gustav Klimt, <i>Das Werk,</i> Vienna & Leipzig, 1918. Sold for $106,250.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Man Ray, <i>[London Transport] – Keeps London Going,</i> 1938. Sold for $149,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Thomas Jefferson, Letter Signed, to Major-General Nathanael Greene, promising reinforcements against Cornwallis, 1781. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Nicolas de Fer, <i>L’Amerique Divisee Selon Letendue de ses Principales Parties,</i> Paris, 1713. Sold for $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Russell H. Tandy, <i>The Secret in the Old Attic,</i> watercolor, pencil & ink, 1944. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ernest Hemingway, <i>Three Stories & Ten Poems,</i> first edition of the author's first book, Paris, 1923. Sold for $23,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Walker Evans, <i>River Rouge Plant,</i> silver print, 1947. Sold for $57,500.

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions