Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - October - 2018 Issue

Children's and Illustrated Books from Aleph-Bet Books


The latest from Aleph-Bet Books.

Aleph-Bet Books has issued their 117th catalogue of Children's Books & Illustrated Books. Almost all qualify as both, but there is an occasional title not entirely for the kids. Still, there must be 340-something of the 353 items in this catalogue that are for the children and are richly illustrated. Here are a few samples of what can be found.


We will begin with a book that was very popular in the late 19th century, and started a fashion trend that was equally popular at the time, though no one would want to look this way today. The book is Little Lord Fauntleroy by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Offered is a first edition, first issue, with the Divinne Press imprint, from 1886. It is the story of a young boy, being raised in America, who discovers his grandfather is an English lord and he is the only heir. He is brought to England where he learns to be a proper lord, while his grandfather learns to be more sympathetic to people less fortunate than himself. In the process, the little lord learns to dress in a lordly manner, his clothing starting a fashion trend for young boys that became popular in England, but even more so in America. It included such things as velvet jackets, ruffled collars, and knee breeches. Most young boys would not want to look anything like this today, but the gay 90s were a different time. This copy comes with a letter from Burnett to a friend which closes with the line, "I daresay you know that I have the greatest objection to interviews which are of a personal nature but one's books are purely impersonal." Item 56. Priced at $1,200.


Here is a book that is not so much a children's book as it is one for ages young (but not too young) to adult. The title is Old Santa Fe Trail: The Story of a Great Highway. The author is Col. Henry Inman, the publication date 1898. The trail wasn't quite so old then, its heyday running through much of that century. It covers the times of travel and trade along the trail to Spanish America, relations with Indians, later westward expansion by Americans, reminiscences of Kit Carson, and some Indian battles. Some of the illustrations were created by Frederick Remington, and the book has a preface by William "Buffalo Bill" Cody. This copy was inscribed by the author to Mary Mapes Dodge, the author of Hans Brinker. Item 185. $500.


This is another book not for children, though perhaps youth in their teens as well as adults could have learned from it. However, there is a children's book connection as this is the first book from one of the greatest children's book authors and illustrators of the twentieth century, Maurice Sendak. Sendak was only 19 years old when asked to illustrate this book written by Maxwell Leigh Eidinoff and Sendak's high school physics teacher, Hyman Ruchlis. This book was written at the dawn of the atomics age, not that long after Hiroshima, but the focus was on peaceful uses of the technology. The title is Atomics for the Masses, and if there is something more frightening than a Wild Thing, it is atomics in the hands of the masses. The book was published in 1947. Item 296. $600.


Here is an unusual book. The title is The Slant Book, by Peter Newell, published in 1910. Newell was noted for his humorous writing and illustrations. He wrote one book with a hole in it to show the path of a bullet; another which could be viewed either normally or upside down. In The Slant Book, the book itself is slanted, as are the text and illustrations. It is the story of a runaway baby carriage which rolls down the slanted pages. This copy comes with the rare dust jacket. Item 232. $3,000.


Next is an alphabet book, one tied to what was considered a heroic, patriotic struggle at the time, the Spanish-American War. The title is Army & Navy A.B.C., undated but circa 1897. I'm not sure what was used for most letters, but "R" is doubly obvious. Both Theodore Roosevelt and the Rough Riders fit there. Not as obvious is "J," which "Stands for Joy / That the Cubans now feel / To be free, and from under / The proud Spaniard's heel." Ultimately, they didn't much like being under the Americans' heel either, which led to problems later on. Item 2. $1,200.


This is a Lewis Carroll book that doesn't have the name "Alice" in its title. Rather, the title is Phantasmagoria and Other Poems. It was published in 1869, between the two Alice books. This copy is inscribed "Mary C. Dodgson, with the author's love. Jan. 1869." According to Carroll's diary, he sent out 28 copies of the book in January 1869 to friends and family. This must have been one. Mary Dodgson was his sister, and they were close. Her son wrote the first biography of his uncle. "Lewis Carroll" was just a pen name of mathematics professor Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. Item 60. $4,750.


Aleph-Bet Books may be reached at 914-764-7410 or Helen@alephbet.com. Their website is found at www.alephbet.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Walt Whitman. <i>Leaves of Grass.</i> First edition, first issue, SIGNED in block letters by Whitman. 1855. $200,000 to $300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Isaac Newton's copy of John Greave's <i>Pyramidographia,</i> London, 1646. $50,000 to $70,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Colonel John Mosby. Robert E. Lee's autograph letter to Samuel Cooper reporting on Mosby's exploits, with Cooper's autograph note ordering his appointment to Major.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Gyula Halasz Brassai. Large archive of autograph and typed letters, over 260, to his family including his wife Gilberte, 1947-1978. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Carruth, including an inscribed first edition of <i>To Kill a Mockingbird.</i> $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> VESALIUS, ANDREAS. 1514-1564. <i>De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.</i> Basel: Johannes Oporinus, June 1543. $300,000 to $500,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> HARVEY, WILLIAM. 1578-1657. <i>De motu cordis & sanguinis in animalibus Anatomica Exercitatio.</i> Leiden: Joannis Maire, 1639. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> BERENGARIO DA CARPI, GIACOMO. 1460-1530. <i>Isagogae breves perlucide ac uberrimae in Anatomiam humani corporis.</i> Bologna: Benedictus Hectoris, 15 July 1523. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> FRANKLIN, BENJAMIN. 1706-1790. <i>Experiments and Observations on Electricity, made at Philadelphia in America…</i> London, 1769. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> BENIVIENI, ANTONIO. 1443-1502. <i>De abditis nonnullis ac mirandis morborum et sanationum causis.</i>Florence: Filippo Giunta, 1507. $8,000 to $12,000
  • <b>Christie’s Paris, 20 Feb:</b> BELON. <i>L’Histoire de la nature des oyseaux.</i> Paris : Corrozet, 1555. $17,000 to $23,000
    <b>Christie’s Paris, 20 Feb:</b> MIOMANDRE – BARBIER. <i>Dessins sur les danses de Vaslav Nijinsky.</i> Paris. 1913. $23,000 to $34,000
    <b>Christie’s Paris, 20 Feb:</b> HOKUSAI. <i>Fugaku Hyakkei, Edo : Nishimura Yûzô.</i> 1834-1875. $58,000 to $80,000
    <b>Christie’s Paris, 20 Feb:</b> EDWARDS. <i> <br>A Natural History of Uncommon Birds…</i> London : Printed for the Author. 1743-1764. $35,000 to $46,000
    <b>Christie’s Paris, 20 Feb:</b> VESALIUS. <i><br> De Humane Corporis Fabrica libri septem...</i> Basle : J. Oporinus. 1555. $58,000 to $80,000
  • <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b><br>Die Französische Expedition gegen Mexico /Beilagen zum Beiheft des Militair - Wochenblattes
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b><br>The Architecture Of M. Vitruvius Pollio. London, 1791.
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b> Estatuto Provisional del Imperio Mexicano. México: Imprenta de Andrade y Escalante, 1865.
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b> Historia de Méjico... México, 1849 - 1852.
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b> Juárez, Benito - Ogazón, Pedro. Legajos de Bandos del Estado de Guadalajara, 1860-1863.
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b> Sigüenza y Góngora, Carlos. Mapa de las Aguas que por el Círculo de 90 Leguas Vienen a la Laguna de Tescuco... Méx, 1748.
    <b>Morton Subastas on Bidsquare:</b> Cruces y Campa / Aubert / Valleto. Pareja Imperial, Fusilamiento de Maximiliano, Tipos Mexicanos... ca,1875.
  • <b>Bonhams: Treasures from the Eric C. Caren Collection: How History Unfolds on Paper, Part VII (Online). March 6-14, 2019
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Albert Einstein A remarkable letter on God in English, one of his most eloquent and quoted, 1 p, July 2, 1945. $100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Benjamin Lincoln's commission as Major General in the Continental Army, February 19th, 1777. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Broadside. A Poem Upon the Bloody Engagement That Was Fought on Bunker's-Hill. 1775. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Early, full printing of the Star-Spangled Banner in The Yankee, October 7, 1814. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Paul Revere. Engraving, “The Boston Massacre Perpetrated on March 5, 1770," in <i>Massachusett's Calendar 1772.</i> $8,000 to $12,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> NASA archive with 351 photographs, silver & chromogenic prints, 1960-2002. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Edward S. Curtis, suite of 18 cyanotypes, 1910-14. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Edward S. Curtis, <i>Horse Capture, Atsina,</i> unique copper plate for <i>The North American Indian,</i> 1908. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> John Whipple, <i>Harriet Beecher Stowe,</i> salted print from a calotype negative, 1853. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Lewis Carroll, <i>Xie Kitchen,</i> albumen print, circa 1872. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Ansel Adams, <i>Taos Pueblo,</i> limited, signed first edition of the artist's first book, 12 silver bromide prints, 1930. $30,000 to $45,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b><br>JFK in his motorcade about 2 mins before his assassination, chromogenic print, 1963. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Anton Guilio Bragaglia, 6 photomechanical postcards with facsimile signatures, 1911-13, printed 1932. $30,000 to $45,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Feb 21:</b> Société Anonyme, Inc, group of 9 postcards, including 8 real photo postcards, 1920-30. $25,000 to $35,000.

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