Bookselling

WHO OWNED THIS? Libraries and the Rare Book Trade consider issues surrounding Provenance, Theft and Forgery. A symposium presented by the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB), the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA) and the Grolier Club. -- Speakers and more detailed information will be published shortly. Information When: March 5, 2019 Where: Grolier Club, 47 East 60th Street, NY 10022 Cost: Free for ILAB affiliates and guests, reservations required Organized by the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB). For more information or to RSVP contact: Angelika Elstner (secretariat@ilab.org). [more]



Carnegie Library Theft

By Susan Benne

In an effort to assist in the recovery of materials missing as a result of the Carnegie Library theft, the ABAA would like to bring to the public's attention the list of items believed stolen. Click this link to view the list. Should any member of the public identify having purchased or otherwise having knowledge of the disposition or current location of any items from the Carnegie Library—whether on this list or not—please contact one of the following detectives from Allegheny County District Attorney's Office: · Det. Fran Laquatra (412) 388-5305 flaquatra@alleghenycountyda.us · Det. Perann Tansmore (412) 388-5307 ptansmore@alleghenycountyda.us ` · Det. Lyle Graber (412) 388-5316 lgraber@alleghenycountyda.us Please note, the detectives do not have reason to believe that anyone who may have purchased any of these items was necessarily aware that the material had been reported stolen. The ABAA appreciates your attention and assistance with respect to this grave matter. Please check our post from March for further details, including additional information on collection markings. Sincerely, Vic Zoschak President, ABAA Brad Johnson Chair, ABAA Security Committee Susan Benne Executive Director, ABAA [more]

ABAA members list new items on abaa.org almost every day, and publish catalogs and E-lists of new acquisitions almost weekly. Among the items that caught the eye this week, are first editions of Armistead Maupin's classic Tales of the City, A.A. Milne's Now We are Six, and Yoko Ono's Grapefruit, along with anti-fascist paper art, Nikola Tesla's John Hancock, and a first edition of John Gould's multi-volume magnum opus The Birds of Europe. Tales of the City First Edition Paperback by Armistead Maupin (Cover map by Phil Frank) New York: Harper Colophon Books, 1978. Paperback. 240p., 7.5x9.25 inches, lightly-worn first edition stated, number line ends in "1" trade paperback original in pictorial map covers with a key to locations of the story. Originally published serially by the San Francisco Chronicle. Made into a TV miniseries and being rebooted as we speak! Offered by Bolerium Books. Metamorphic Puzzle - Hitler the Fifth Pig A 6" x 8 ¾" folding paper puzzle when open flat depicts 4 different pigs. The caption at center reads To find a fifth one fold as indicated. When folded the "business end" of the pigs creates Adolph Hilter's face. Reverse is blank. Offered by Eclectibles. Found in Eclectibles' new catalog "E-list No. 49" (item #11). This item is not listed on abaa.org. The Birds of Europe (5 Volumes; Folio) by GOULD, JOHN (1804-1881) London: printed by Richard and John E. Taylor, published by the Author, 1837. 5 volumes, folio. (21 1/4 x 14 1/4 inches). 2pp. list of sub... [more]

This morning, the ABAA leadership learned that Greg Priore, former Carnegie Library Archivist, and former ABAA member John Schulman of Caliban Books, have been charged with theft from the library. This is a truly regrettable situation for the larger book community, and one in which the Association shares the public's dismay that such a theft took place. At this point in time, to comment further would be premature, as we support the legal process currently being pursued and will await its outcome. During this period we will continue to closely monitor the developments concerning this serious matter. Sincerely, Vic Zoschak President, ABAA [more]

I've been a full-time antiquarian bookseller for over two years now, specializing in selling original materials that tell interesting American stories, with an emphasis on social movements. So my every day involves intellectual adventure as I make a living helping to preserve bits of history. Until the first week of January though, I hadn't quite experienced anything like I'm about to share, so with all due respect to Mr. Everitt, I couldn't think of a better title. I hope you'll keep reading and agree. It started the morning of Christmas Eve a couple weeks ago, when an eBay seller listed several books by the important civil rights activist, W.E.B. Du Bois. Du Bois was a prolific writer, and his books are not uncommon. But, what made these special was they had their dust jackets -- which I knew were rarely seen for these particular titles. The seller also listed a few other scarce African-American pieces, so I sent an email asking if there was anything else. 90% of the time I send an email like that the answer is "no." The other 10% will occasionally involve interesting pieces. I was having dinner at a restaurant with my family later that evening when I heard back from the seller, and his response almost caused me to choke. The seller had bought a storage unit that included the contents of several generations of a black family from Ohio, where at least two women attended Wilberforce University (the first black-owned-and-run university in the United States) and one of the men ... [more]

Love old books, book stores, or just a good story? Tune in to Brattle Book Shop's well-produced podcast: BRATTLECAST! At one of America's oldest bookshops, there are just as many stories to be told outside the pages as in them. Join bookseller Kenneth Gloss and co-host Jordan Rich as they share entertaining conversations and histories surrounding Brattle Book Shop, one of Boston's favorite spots for bibliophiles. Recent episodes cover questions about the care and preservation of books, the day in 1980 when Ken learned his shop was burning, and behind the scenes reveal of Ken's best and worst segments from his time as an expert on the Antiques Roadshow! (Photo credit: Jeffrey Dunn) Don't miss an article from The New Antiquarian blog. Subscribe to the ABAA email newsletter! * indicates required Email Address * Email Format html text #mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width:420px;} /* Add your own MailChimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block. We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. */ [more]

On March 11th, the ABAA Women's Initiative hosted a panel discussion on Collecting and Women during the New York Antiquarian Book Fair at the Park Avenue Armory. Elizabeth Denlinger, Sarah Gordon, and Molly Schwartzburg discussed topics relating to representations of women in collections, women as collectors, and women-focused institutions as Nina Musinsky moderated. More than 100 men and women booksellers, librarians, and enthusiasts attended. If you missed it, we have a recording below. Since 2016, we have held networking receptions for women in conjunction with book fairs, and honored Carol Sandberg — a longtime bookseller who has championed women in the trade. This panel is our first foray into programming and we are thrilled to have so many of you here. Please do leave your business cards or add your name to our mailing list so we can keep you informed about events and ideas. We would like to thank and acknowledge the people who have worked on this project: Claudia Strauss-Schulson — the Initiative's chairwoman — Heather O'Donnell, Rebecca Romney, Kim Schwenk, Kait Manning, Cokie Anderson, Susan Hirsch, Laurelle Swan, Joyce Kosofsky, and Mary Gilliam. We would also like to thank Jennifer Johnson and Sunday Steinkirchener for their help in organizing events. We also want to recognize the many people who have shared their stories, put forth ideas, and voiced support publically and privately for this important work. Subscribe below to receive alerts and information ab... [more]

On February 8th, at the Book Fair Exhibitor Reception in Pasadena, the ABAA Women's Initiative sponsored the first in a series of tributes to women booksellers who have left a lasting impression on the American trade. Our first honoree was Carol Sandberg, an accomplished career bookseller whose contributions extend beyond the great businesses she helped to build. Carol started bookselling in 1974, when Ken Karmiole hired her fresh out of UCLA library school to join Ben and Lou Weinstein at Heritage Book Shop. In 1985, Carol went into partnership with Michael and Kathleen Thompson at Michael R. Thompson Rare Books, working for more than three decades to make that firm a mainstay of the trade in Los Angeles. At the Pasadena event, Carol's longtime friend and colleague John Windle toasted her as “one of the finest individuals our trade has ever employed,” and shared Chris Loker's tribute to Carol as “a quiet powerhouse in our trade, and a jewel in our crown . . . with the warmest heart and kindest way I know.” Carol's long-standing commitment to California Rare Book School and the Southern California Chapter, organizing events from small seminars to international book fairs, helped create a vibrant community of booksellers and collectors on the West Coast. To her junior colleagues, she has been a generous and inspiring role model. One of those booksellers, Chris Lowenstein, contributed the following memory, read at the reception by ABAA Executive Director Susan Benne: ... [more]

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Books of the Week

By Rich Rennicks

What caught the eye while exploring the website and perusing new catalogs this week? Why these colorful items... Group of 19th Century Cuban Cigarette Labels This set of slightly risqué 19th-century cigarette cards from Cuba caught the eye. What a perfect gift for the collector of print ephemera or advertising gimmicks! From the description: Description: “Complete series of twelve chromolithograph "Marquillas de Tabaco" labels from the Para Usted Gran Manufactura de Cigarros de Eduardo Guillo, each showing a "mentira de hermosura", or a trick of beauty women use to disguise their age or less attractive feature, with a surprised man viewing each deception through a spyglass.… Each label approx. 10.5 by 14 cm. Loose as issued, housed in photograph album pages. Havana (Eduardo Guillo) n.d. (circa 1865). It was in the early 1860s that tobacco factories in Havana began to package cigarettes with illustrated labels called "marquillas de tabaco" or "marquillas cigarreras". For the tobacco companies, the newly-available chromolithography techniques provided an attractive and cost-effective way to package and advertise their products in an increasingly competitive market. Approximately 20 to 25 cigarettes were packaged together in rolls, each wrapped in one of these labels. The labels were often eye-catching combinations of text and bright colors, many incorporating humor and whimsy.” Offered by F.A. Bernett Books. The Souls of Black Folk: Essays and Sketches Du Bois, W.E. Burg... [more]

We first learned that Jack Hanrahan died from his friends Rusty and Veta Mott, who wrote to us, "It is with sadness that we yet again pass along the news of the death of a wonderful friend and colleague. Jack Hanrahan, of Wells, Maine, died at 7:30 last night, age 85. Jack, a long time member of ABAA, was a man who contributed to the world not only as an antiquarian bookseller, but as a Milton scholar, a professor at the University of New Hampshire, and as restaurateur in Brussels and Portsmouth, New Hampshire. He was a scholar, a bon vivant, and a delightful companion. Our sympathies and best wishes go out to Joyce, his wife and friend." The entire ABAA echoes the words of the Motts. Jack was a very New-England bookseller, slightly crusty but full of humor and a genuine raconteur. He started selling books soon after getting out of the Navy in 1954, and had a shop in Portsmouth, NH and also a by-appointment business in Short Hills, NJ (at one point, he and Joyce attempted to open a "fancy restaurant" in Portsmouth, but this was not successful). The two of them moved around quite a bit, spending a number of years in Brussels, Belgium, Pittsburgh, and finally back to the North East. In Brussels, Jack would buy bindings for $2, send them back to the States for $1 postage, and sell them for $6. In time, he began to specialize in early American imprints. In the old days, he says in his interview with Mike Ginsberg, people didn't pay much attention to that kind of material. He reme... [more]