Rare Book Monthly Articles - January - 2022 Issue

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The Rare Book Hub Top 500 Auction Prices for Books and Works on Paper for 2021 – It Was a Record Year

Another year has come to a close, meaning it is time to look back at the Rare Book Hub Top 500 prices paid at auction in the books and paper field for 2021. This was a spectacular year, unlike any we have seen before. Prices were skyrocketing across the board, while ephemeral types of paper continued to see an astonishing growth in prices. At the very top, the most expensive item sold for over $43 million, the highest ever for something in the collectible paper field. More amazing was the increase at #500, as this is more indicative of the high end of the field than one single item at the t...

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May you Catch and Spread the Collecting Bug

There are many kinds of collectors, their interests and focuses as myriad as the stars in the night sky.  One exceptional practitioner of the craft is sharing his story.  Such o...

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“NFT” Is the Word of the Year. But What Is It?

Collins Dictionary has named its Word of the Year, and it's one that collectors of all stripes will need to know in the years ahead. The “word,” though it isn't really a word, is &ldquo...

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Top 14 Highest Prices Paid on AbeBooks for 2021

AbeBooks has released their list of the top 14 most expensive items purchased on their website in 2021. “Abe” is the largest seller of old books with millions of titles listed. While mo...

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Living Dangerously in the Year Ahead

While I’m managing Partner of Rare Book Hub, the other hat I wear is as a private money manager, building and diversifying our family assets.  I’ve had a good record, year over yea...

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Happy Public Domain Day!

January 1 is more that just New Year's Day. It is also Public Domain Day. This holiday may not be as well known, but it is more important in the book world. It is the day when a new batch of books ...

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Tomorrow, Tomorrow and Tomorrow

For Rare Book Hub, 2021 was a complex year by every measure.  The volume of auctions and number of lots posted substantially increased.  As well, the percentage of lots sold rose as the m...

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The $20 Million Honresfield Library Has Been Saved

Britain's Honresfield Library has been saved. It took $20 million in donations to preserve the historic collection, but it will now belong to the British people, rather than being dispersed to priv...

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The Boring Journal of a Slave Trader

Today, we’re embarking on a French slave ship that set sail for Africa in 1702! A dreadful voyage for the slaves, but a boring one for the narrator—and the readers.
 

“H...

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2021: Some Highlights from the Rare Book Hub Monthly Archives

I was going to call this article, “Journal of the Plague Years Part II,” but despite operating in pandemic mode since March of 2020 most of us seem to have muddled through somehow and a...

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110 Years Overdue Library Book Finally Returned

Rebecca was off the farm for 110 years, but she has returned. Welcome home, Becky.
 
Another overdue library book has been returned a bit later than usual. In this case, the book was 110 yea...

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The Grolier Club - Safe & Busy while Soldiering On

The Grolier Club of New York is providing a busy month of bibliophilic activities this January, using both traditional and non-traditional approaches to ensure the Club’s commitment to book s...

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Harry Potter Book Sells at Auction for Almost Half a Million Dollars

If there was any doubt that books are now participating in the incredible price growth experienced by other collectibles, that doubt was put to rest at Heritage Auctions last month. We have seen un...

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$50 Million Durer Drawing Bought for $30 at Estate Sale

Have you ever dreamed of finding something cheap at a yard sale, only to learn later that it is fabulously valuable? Everyone has. That dream came true for an unidentified man in his 60s. He found ...

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Nine Bookseller Catalogues Reviewed This Month

This month we review nine new catalogues from booksellers. Some have a specific focus while others provide more of a variety of types of material. Shapero Rare Books focuses on Baedeker and other t...

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b><center>Doyle<br>Stage & Screen<br>June 24
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2065. George Gershwin. Autograph musical manuscript “Opening Scene III” from Porgy and Bess. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2079. Katharine Hepburn. Fine archive of letters and materials sent to her Song of Love piano tutor. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2095. Bert Lahr. Inscribed Photograph of The Cowardly Lion. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b><center>Doyle<br>Stage & Screen<br>June 24
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2077. Edith Head. Original costume design for Judy Garland in <i>I Could Go On Singing,</i> 1963. $2,000 to $4,000
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2080. Al Hirschfeld. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in “Private Lives.” $6,000 to $8,000 https://doyle.com/auctions/22th01-stage-screen/catalogue/2080-al-hirschfeld-1903-2003-elizabeth-taylor-and-richard https://do
    <b>Doyle, Stage & Screen:</b> Lot 2098. John Lennon. <i>Power to the People: the Political Thoughts of John Lennon.</i> $3,000 to $5,000
  • <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books<br>June 23, 2022
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> James Hamilton Young, <i>A New Map of Texas, with the Contiguous American & Mexican States,</i> Philadelphia, 1836. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> John James Audubon, <i>Common American Skunk. Plate XLII,</i> Philadelphia, 1844. $700 to $1,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> Nicolaas & Jacob Cruquius, <i>T Hooge Heemraadschap van Delflant,</i> Delft, 1712. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> William Birch & Samuel Seymour, <i>The City of New York in the State of New York, North America,</i> Bristol, 1803. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann June 23:</b> Karl Bodmer, <i>Sih-Chida & Mahchsi-Karehde. Mandan Indians. Tableau 20,</i> Paris, Coblenz & London, 1839-42. $1,500 to $2,500.
  • <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> JESSE JAMES. Autograph Letter Signed on the attack at his home which maimed his mother and killed his nephew Archie, 6 pp, March 23, 1875. THE MOST IMPORTANT JESSE JAMES LETTER EXTANT. $300,000 to $500,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> THE LETTER THAT ARRIVED TOO LATE: An important letter from Robert E. Lee to Ulysses S. Grant across the battlefield at Cold Harbor, June 6, 1864. $120,000 to $180,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> DAVY CROCKETT. Autograph Letter Signed on his political philosophy and his dispute with Andrew Jackson, "at home Weakley County," August 18, 1831. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> GEORGE WASHINGTON. Letter Signed to Colonel Richard Gridley, the first engineer of the American Army, Morris Town, January 9, 1777. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> SCOTT FITZGERALD. <i>Tender is the Night.</i> FIRST EDITION, INSCRIBED to H.A. Swanseid. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS. <i>Tarzan of the Apes.</i> FIRST EDITION. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> J.R.R. TOLKIEN. <i>The Hobbit, or There and Back Again.</i> FIRST EDITION. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> NATHANAEL WEST. <i>The Day of the Locust.</i> PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed to director Richard Wallace in the year of publication. $6,000 to $8,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> FRANCIS PICABIA. Archive of 17 Autograph Letters signed to Jennie Thiersch on art and life, 1948-1951. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> JOHN HANCOCK. Autograph Letter Signed to his wife Dolly from the Continental Congress, 4 pp, Philadelphia, March 10-11, 1777. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 28:</b> NIGHTGOWN WORN BY CHARLOTTE CARDEZA DURING THE TITANIC DISASTER AND RESCUE. $40,000 to $60,000

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