The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments. . . Stereotype edition.
by [Fore-edge Painting] BIBLE.
Cambridge:: Printed by J. Smith, 1817, 1816., 1817. 2 volumes. Small 12mo. [iv], 600; 601-821, , ; 250,  pp. Original crimson blind- and gilt-stamped straight grained morocco, all edges gilt. Within slip-case bound in red cloth, gilt-stamped back "Foredge Paintings" [likely the box dates from the time of the fore-edge painting]. With two lovely fore-edge paintings painted on the fanned edges; not labeled, but the scenes are of British churches. Provenance: Carnegie Book Shop, New York [Dec 14, 1965] – sold to: Roland S. Bond, Dallas, TX. Probably this is the Louis H. Silver [d.1963], Chicago, copy, sold at Parke-Bernet Galleries, Nov. 16, 1965 [sold to Carnegie Book Shop, NY]. The volume was described as "one vol. bound in 2, which was an oversight as the 2nd title is deep within the second vol. Silver was a lawyer, engineer and Chicago hotel owner [Gold Coast Hotels] who was a trustee of the Newberry Library. The bulk of his collection was purchased through his agent, the noted bookseller John F. Fleming, and brought a reported [NY Times, May 15, 1964] price of 2.75 million dollars. / The University of Texas, Ransom Center reports: "In June of 1963, Silver was diagnosed with terminal cancer and enlisted Fleming's help in selling his substantial library. Silver had very specific demands for the sale—his library was to be sold en bloc and he should receive no less than $2.2 million for it. Fleming made contact with several auction houses, but on October 27, 1963 Silver died before any action towards a sale could be completed. Silver's estate, represented by Clarence A. Beutel and Silver's wife Amy, wanted the search for a buyer to continue according to Silver's specifications. / On November 15, 1963, the University of Texas at Austin expressed interest in the collection. Fleming began negotiations with Dr. Harry Ransom, Chancellor of the University of Texas at Austin. Within a month, Ransom had $2.75 million in cash for the sale. Silver's estate, though, was feeling hesitant about the sale. The first problem was that they did not want to pay Fleming his $200,000 commission. The second was that they felt pressured to keep the Silver Library in Illinois by selling it to the Newberry Library instead. In the end, that is what the estate chose to do. On May 13, 1964 the Newberry Library bought the Silver Library for $2.75 million. / Under Illinois law, Fleming, as a property broker, should have earned his commission when he produced a ready, willing, and able buyer. There is no requirement that a sale with that buyer must occur. Since Fleming produced his buyer, he requested his commission. When the Silver estate refused, Fleming filed a lawsuit in Illinois on August 6, 1964. The estate was granted summary judgment and the case was dismissed. The court found that since many of the books were damaged and the University of Texas did not examine the books prior to agreeing to buy them, it would not have actually been willing to commit to the sale. Fleming appealed to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. In John F. Fleming, Incorporated v. Beutel (395 F.2d 21), the appellate court remanded the case after finding that the lower court was incorrect in granting summary judgment. The appellate court ruled that when one was dealing with older books, some damage was par for the course, and so the buyer would have been willing to go through with the sale. However, rather than continue the court battle, Fleming settled out of court for $92,000 on December 17, 1968. / The Newberry Library took possession of the Silver Library, and, against Silver's wishes, discarded one third of the books as surplus and auctioned them." [JWRB]
(Inventory #: FF2408)
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