Sunday, June 18, 2017

Links & Reviews

- Rebecca Fishbein offers "A Brief History of the Strand," founded ninety years ago this year.

- David Laskin writes for the NYTimes Travel section on "The Hidden Treasures in Italian Libraries."

- A nicely illustrated 1819 ship's log sold at Swann last week for $20,800.

- Keith Houston highlights a new punctuation mark ("a Dutch interrobang") and interviews the typographer behind it.

- Tawrin Baker writes for the Huntington's blog on "Visualizing the Anatomy of the Eye."

- Maggs Bros. new shop gets the Architectural Digest treatment.

- Over at Past is Present, an interview with Chris Phillips about his research at AAS.

- Edward Whitley asks "Where did Leaves of Grass come from?"

- On 15 July, the Massachusetts Historical Society will host a "Transcribe-a-thon" to mark John Quincy Adams' 250th birthday.

- The Chicago Tribune reports on the upcoming $11 million renovation at the Newberry Library.

- Ellen G.K. Rubin's collection of movable books is featured in Atlas Obscura.

- Ian Ehling has been appointed Director of Fine Books & Manuscripts at Bonhams New York.

- Bookseller Garrett Scott offers up a really fascinating probate inventory featuring a detailed library list.

- In the TLS, Stuart Kelly on "Writing beyond the grave."

- If you have bought from or sold to ebay user davius-9srhw8rb, please contact the ABAA.

Reviews

- Yael Rice reviews the Sackler Gallery's recent exhibition "The Art of the Qu'ran" in the LARB.

- Erica Benner's Be Like the Fox; review by Edmund Fawcett in the NYTimes.

- Rüdiger Safranski's Goethe: Life as a Work of Art; review by Michael Hofmann in the NYTimes.

- Joe Berkowitz's Away with Words; review by Allan Fallow in the WaPo.

- The British Museum's exhibition and catalog on Hokusai; review by Peter Maber in the TLS.

Upcoming Auctions

- Books, Autographs and Works at Paper at Bloomsbury on 22 June.

- Fine Judaica at Kestenbaum and Company on 22 June.

- Books and Ephemera at National Book Auctions on 24 June.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Links & Reviews

- Two notices from the ABAA about missing/stolen books: a copy of the first English edition of Melville's The Confidence Man, and an original photo album of the construction of the Madeira-Mamore Railroad.

- Rebecca Rego Barry highlights some key lots from the 15 June Christie's sale of the ornithological library of Dr. Gerald Dorros.

- NPR ran a story this week about Lovecraft-inspired board games.

- From Heather Wolfe at The Collation, "Imagining a lost set of common-place books."

- At Libraria, a report about recent research which has revealed forty sealskin binding over-covers on manuscripts from the library of Clairvaux Abbey, with indications that the practice may have been even more widespread in the collection.

- Over at the Princeton Graphic Arts Collection blog, "The Shakespeare that almost didn't happen."

- Rare Books Digest takes a look at the Vinegar Bible.

- Emily Midorikawa and Emma Claire Sweeney write for the TLS about the long-distance friendship between Harriet Beecher Stowe and George Eliot.

Book Reviews

- Sarah Perry's The Essex Serpent; review by Ron Charles in the WaPo.

- Mike Rapport's The Unruly City; review by Russell Shorto in the NYTimes.

Upcoming Auctions

- Art, Press & Illustrated Books at Swann Galleries on 13 June.

- Fine Books & Manuscripts, Including Americana at Sotheby's New York on 13 June.

- Fine Books, Atlases, Manuscripts and Photographs at Bonhams London on 14 June.

- Printed Books, Maps & Documents at Dominic Winter Auctioneers on 14 June.

- The Metropolitan Opera Guild Collection at Christie's New York on 15 June.

- The Ornithological Library of Gerald Dorros, MD at Christie's New York on 15 June.

- Fine Printed Books & Manuscripts Including Americana and the Eric C. Caren Collection at Christie's New York on 15 June.

- Rare Books & Manuscripts at PBA Galleries on 15 June.

- Books & Manuscripts at Freeman's on 16 June.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Links & Reviews

- Registration is now open for a very interesting-looking conference this September, "BH and DH: Book History and Digital Humanities."

- Over at Past is Present, a new list of recent articles and books published by members of the AAS community.

- The National Library of Norway is planning to digitize works from the collections of Nigeria's National Library published in the Hausa, Igbo, and Yoruba languages.

- At recto | verso, a look at American documentary photography around the turn of the twentieth century.

- A report in the Telegraph suggests that Italian authorities have recently unraveled an art and book theft ring in the Turin area; one manuscript was found to have been stolen from the Royal Library of Turin in 2012. If anybody has more information about this story, I'd love to see it.

- Melbourne Rare Book Week begins on 30 June this year.

- Mary McClure posts at Echoes from the Vault about a lovely Book of Hours from the St Andrews collections.

- June's Rare Book Monthly articles include an update on the California law about the sale of autographed materials, and a report from Michael Stillman on the theft of an RAF logbook.

- Boston 1775 explores Isaiah Thomas' involvement with an American edition of Fanny Hill.

- Natasha Pizzey writes for the BBC about the Luis de Carvajal manuscript recently returned to Mexico.

- Danuta Kean reports for the Guardian about the sale of the library of William O'Brien, coming up this week at Sotheby's.

Book Reviews

- Anthony Horowitz's Magpie Murders; review by Charles Finch in the WaPo.

- Max Décharné's Vulgar Tongues; review by Allan Fallow in the WaPo.

Upcoming Auctions

- Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books at Swann Galleries on 7 June.

- The Library of William O'Brien: Property of the Milltown Park Charitable Trust at Sotheby's London on 7 June.

- Fine Books and Manuscripts, including Illustration Art at Bonhams New York on 7 June.


Sunday, May 28, 2017

Links & Reviews

- Two theft notices from the ABAA: a Thomas Jefferson autograph note and a 1610 folio volume, A Display of Heraldry.

- NEH Chairman William Adams resigned from his post last week. The agency is targeted for elimination under the president's FY18 budget (call your representatives). See their FAQ on where things go from here.

- On the proposed budget cuts (which reach far beyond NEH), see Bethany Nowviskie's post to a Digital Library Federation list.

- Alcoholics Anonymous has filed suit for the return of the printers' copy of the organization's "Big Book," scheduled to be sold at auction on 8 June by Profiles in History. The annotated typescript was previously sold at auction in 2004 and 2007.

- Honey & Wax Booksellers have announced a new book-collecting prize open to women book collectors in the U.S. under 30 years old.

- Aaron Pratt has been appointed the new Carl and Lily Pforzheimer Curator of Early Books and Manuscripts at the Harry Ransom Center.

- Carla Giaimo writes for Atlas Obscura on "The Lost Typefaces of W.A. Dwiggins."

- Rob Rulon-Miller provides an overview of this summer's Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar.

- Elizabeth Savage posted a new update to her census of early modern frisket sheets (project homepage) and has a post at The Conveyor about a recent related find.

- Rare Book School's summer lecture schedule is out.

-Book curses on the BL's medieval manuscripts blog.

- Kate Mitas has begun a series on archival cataloging for booksellers.

- A new exhibition at the National Library of New Zealand, He Tohu, highlights three important founding documents in the country's history.

- From James Ascher on the UVA Scholars' Lab blog, "Visualizing Paper Evidence Using Digital Reproductions."

- At Echoes from the Vault, a look at some interesting finds from the St Andrews Burgh records.

- Mary Bendel-Simso talked to The Academic Minute about her work using digital newspaper archives to find early American detective fiction.

- At Notes from Under Grounds, Nora Benedict Frye posts about her current UVA Special Collections exhibition on Borges and bibliography.

- Rebecca Mead reports on the recent identification of a "lost" Edith Wharton play.

- Will Gore writes for the Spectator on "Why rare books are thriving in the digital age."

- Danuta Kean reports for the Guardian about Peter Steinberg and Gail Crowther's recent identification of unpublished Sylvia Plath poems found by examining a sheet of carbon paper in Plath's papers at the Lilly Library.

- Miranda Cooper writes for Tablet Magazine about "500 Years of Treasures from Oxford," an exhibition now on display at the Center for Jewish History.

- Tom Hyry highlights the current Houghton Library exhibition, "Open House 75: Houghton Staff Select."

- A few early bookplates from Princeton's collections are featured on the Graphic Arts blog.

- At Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, notes on an NYPL breviary fragment.

- Abbie Weinberg marked the 400th birthday of Elias Ashmole with a Collation post.

- Thirty-three books stolen from Jewish communities were donated to the Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Warsaw last week.

Book Reviews

- Charlie English's The Book Smugglers of Timbuktu; review by Justin Marozzi in the Spectator.

- Holger Hoock's Scars of Independence; review by Jane Kamensky in the NYTimes.

- James Barron's The One-Cent Magenta; review by Rebecca Rego Barry at the Fine Books Blog.

- John Grisham's Camino Island; review by Jocelyn McClurg in USA Today (apparently it's about rare book and manuscript collecting ... )

- Beth Underdown's The Witchfinder's Sister; review by Helen Castor in the NYTimes.

- Rüdiger Safranski's Goethe: Life as a Work of Art; review by Michael Dirda in the WaPo.

- Stephen Fry's new audiobook edition of the Sherlock Holmes stories; review by Simon Callow in the NYTimes.

Upcoming Auctions

The Richard Beagle Collection of Angling and Sporting Books, Part I on 1 June at PBA Galleries.

Arader Galleries Summer 2017 Sale on 3 June.

Books and Ephemera at National Book Auctions on 3 June.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Links & Reviews

- From the Globe and Mail, a profile of Alberto Manguel in his new role as director of Argentina's national library.

- An 800-word Harry Potter prequel written by J. K. Rowling and sold for charity in 2008 was stolen from Birmingham last month.

- The BBC reported this week on the identification of an early Caxton leaf at the University of Reading.

- Rebeccca Rego Barry writes for the Fine Books Blog about Maggs Bros. new headquarters, which will open on 24 May.

- Ruth Guilding has a "First Person" profile of T. J. Cobden-Sanderson for the TLS.

- Alex Preston writes for the Observer on "How real books have trumped ebooks," drawing on several recent studies showing a recent increase in print book sales.

- Another security alert from the ABAA, for a copy of Steele's Essay upon Gardening (1793) believed stolen from the New York Book Fair.

- Lloyd Cotsen, known for his collection of children's books which now form the Cotsen Children's Library at Princeton, died this week at age 88. See the LATimes obituary.

- A new digital archive, Early American Serialized Novels, is now available.

- Christopher Lancette writes for the Fine Books Blog about his visit to the Washington Antiquarian Book Fair, and about rediscovering a love for his own library.

- Dalya Alberge writes for the Guardian about the forged Dylan artwork mentioned here last month.

- Elizabeth Yale's piece in the Atlantic on the new film "The Circle" asks "how can the past be used to reimagine women’s technological agency?"

Reviews

- John Boles' Jefferson: Architect of American Liberty; review by Jonathan Yardley in the WaPo.

- Matthew Rubery's The Untold Story of the Talking Book; review by Matthew P. Brown for Public Books.

Upcoming Auctions

- 19th & 20th Century Literature at Swann Galleries on 16 May.

- Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps & Photographs at Lyon & Turnbull on 17 May.

- Fine Literature & Fine Books at PBA Galleries on 18 May.

- Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts and Continental and Russian Books and Musical Manuscripts at Sotheby's London on 23 May.

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Links & Reviews

Apologies for the radio silence; it's been a busy month. As I mentioned previously, I traveled to the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair two weekends ago and to the Washington Antiquarian Book Fair last weekend; both were excellent events with good, vibrant crowds.

- Garrett Scott has a really touching "In Memoriam" post on the ABAA blog about Robert Fraker of Savoy Books, who died this week after a battle with cancer. I remember well Robert's wonderful talk at the 2012 AAS event Garrett mentions. About ten years ago at the Boston Book Fair, Robert sold me one of the items I'm most pleased to have in my own collection, and consistently since then he's had something to show me at the fair that he knew would make my mouth water and/or that I would want to help find a home for. Visiting him and his wife Lillian at their booth has long been a highlight of the fair for me. My deep, deep condolences to Lillian, his family, and his colleagues, and thanks to Garrett for his lovely post.

- Entries for this year's National Collegiate Book Collecting Contest are now being accepted; they are due by 31 May.

- May's Rare Book Monthly articles include Michael Stillman on a stolen library book returning to the shelves and a report on the BPL's rare books inventory.

- Serial book thief Laéssio Rodrigues de Oliveira and an accomplice, Valnique Bueno, are suspected in the theft of more than four hundred rare books from the Rio de Janeiro Federal University in Brazil during a construction project. Via Mitch Fraas, a longer article about the thefts, in Portuguese, includes a list of the stolen titles.

- A list of stolen maps and engravings has been posted over on the ABAA blog, as has the description of a copy of Paine's Common Sense stolen by fraud to someone in Los Angeles and two more books stolen in the New England area in mid-April.

- Princeton has acquired a vellum fragment of a Gutenberg Bible preserved as a binding. Eric White has an excellent writeup.

- Lisa Fagin Davis has a thorough post on the manuscript recently returned by the Boston Public Library to the Italian government. More via the Fine Books Blog and the Boston Globe.

- The Harry Ransom Center has acquired the archive of Peter O'Toole for $400,000.

- The earliest known draft of a portion of the King James Bible, identified at Cambridge in 2015, has now been digitized and published in the Cambridge Digital Library.

- Joe Felcone talked to Wendi Maloney for an LC blog post about his work with 19th-century copyright records.

- A 13th-century manuscript stolen from a Turkish library was identified in a Sotheby's auction catalog withdrawn from sale, according to Turkish media reports.

- Fascinating post by conservator Kristi Westberg for the Huntington blog about "Preserving the Signs of Censorship."

- Adam Reinherz goes inside the Caliban Books warehouse for the Jewish Chronicle.

- The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has acquired an important collection of early Virginia maps.

- In the New Yorker, "How to Decode an Ancient Roman's Handwriting."

- Two new digital collections from the Library of Congress are now available: Manuscripts from St. Catherine's Monastery and the Margaret Bayard Smith papers.

- A manuscript copy on parchment of the Declaration of Independence in the West Sussex Record Office, while long cataloged, is being studied closely for the first time by researchers for the Declaration Resources Project; they have concluded it probably dates to the 1780s. Coverage in the NYTimes and Phys.org.

- Rebecca Romney looks at thirty years of cover designs for The Handmaid's Tale.

- Nicholas Pickwoad's obituary of Christopher Clarkson appeared in the Guardian.

- Lauren Hewes has posted a second installment of photographs showing printers at work, from the AAS collections.

- Cambridge (MA) bookseller and bookbinder Robert Marshall died on 9 April; an obituary appeared in the Boston Globe.

- From Mike Furlough, "What Libraries Did With Google Books," based in part on James Somers' Atlantic piece "Torching the Modern-Day Library of Alexandria."

- Over at Manuscript Road Trip, a stop in New Bedford to look at an important and understudied Book of Hours in the New Bedford Public Library.

- More Shakespeare's World finds for the OED.

- Among the scholarships available for this year's CABS is the new Belle da Costa Greene Scholarship for a bookseller or librarian from an underrepresented community.

- A new book has been published to mark the Houghton Library's 75th birthday. Looks like a good one! More on the anniversary celebrations here.

- Swann sold a complete copy of The Cherokee Messenger on 27 April; it fetched $4,500.

- New: a University of Surrey project, Women's Literary Culture before the Conquest.

- The UVA Law Library has received a grant to digitize copies of the books Jefferson included in his original selection of law texts for the university.

- Robert Oldham writes for the APHA blog about Adam Ramage's one-pull common press.

- The State Library of Massachusetts blog has a post on the history and travels of the manuscript of William Bradford's Of Plimoth Plantation.

Reviews

- John Julius Norwich's Four Princes; review by Alan Mikhail in the NYTimes.

- Peter Brooks' Flaubert in the Ruins of Paris; review by Sunil Iyengar in the WaPo.

- Beth Underdown's The Witchfinder's Sister; review by Carrie Dunsmore in the WaPo.

- Helena Kelly's Jane Austen, the Secret Radical; review by Ruth Franklin in the WaPo.

- Jeff Vandermeer's Borne; review by Elizabeth Hand in the LATimes.

- Charlie English's The Book Smugglers of Timbuktu; review by Peter Thoneman in the TLS.

Upcoming Auctions

- Travels, Atlases, Maps & Natural History at Sotheby's London on 9 May.

- Printed Books, Maps & Documents at Dominic Winters Auctioneers on 10 May.

- Manuscripts at Heritage Auctions on 11 May.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Links & Reviews

- Christela Guerra reports for the Boston Globe about current effort at the BPL to get a full inventory of the rare books and manuscripts in their collections.

- From John Garcia at JHIBlog, "The Other Samuel Johnson: African-American Labor in the Vicinity of the Early U.S. Book Trade."

- Over at The Pressbengel Project, making parchment out of salmon skin.

- Humanities magazine has an interview with library historian Wayne Wiegand.

- Maria Sibylla Merian is the featured subject at Echoes from the Vault.

- The NEH Impact Index is well worth spending some time with.

- Lisa Fagin Davis posts at Manuscript Road Trip about Otto Ege and the Lima (OH) Public Library.

- Jennifer Schuessler reports for the NYTimes on the James Baldwin archive, newly purchased by the Schomburg Center but some of which will remain closed to researchers for twenty more years.

- Scott Rosenberg writes for Backchannel on "How Google Book Search Got Lost."

- AAS has a podcast interview with Ezra Greenspan about his work on Frederick Douglass, editing Book History, and more.

- More on that archive of Sylvia Plath letters mentioned last month from Sylvia Plath Info and the Guardian.

- In the Irish Times, a story about a library theft that has inspired a new children's book.

- The British Library has announced a major expansion plan.

Reviews

- The Card Catalog, a new Library of Congress publication; review by Rebecca Rego Barry for the Fine Books Blog.

- Lyndal Roper's Martin Luther; review by Andrew Pettegree in the NYTimes.

- Brian Doyle's The Adventures of John Carson in Several Quarters of the World; review by Jenny Davidson in the NYTimes.

- Shelley DeWees' Not Just Jane; review by Caroline Franklin in the TLS.

Upcoming Auctions

- Images & Objects: Photographs & Photobooks at Swann on 20 April.

- Americana - Travel & Exploration - World History - Directories - Cartography at PBA Galleries on 20 April.

- The Maurice Neville Collection of Modern Literature (Part III) at Sotheby's New York on 24 April.

- Rare Books, Autographs & Maps at Doyle on 26 April [includes books deaccessioned from the College of New Rochelle].

- The Giancarlo Beltrame Library of Scientific Books (Part III) at Christie's London on 26 April.

- Printed & Manuscript Americana at Swann on 27 April.

- The Library of the Late Hubert Dingwall at Bloomsbury on 27 April.