Historical & Antiquarian Book Auction on September 25 Highlights Value and Variety
With few reserves and low starting bids across the board, Jasper52’s upcoming sale of Historical & Antiquarian Books offers value and variety to eagle-eyed collectors and dealers alike.
Beloved children’s book author and illustrator Maurice Sendak starts things off with a first edition of his 1963 classic, Where the Wild Things Are. The scarce first issue dust jacket is present, with only moderate wear (featured above). Sendak is also represented later in the sale with a first edition of Randell Jarrell’s The Bat-Poet featuring Sendak’s illustrations (est. $20-40), and again with a signed early printing of The Juniper Tree and Other Tales from Grimm (est. $50-150).
Several literary lots are on offer, including: a first edition of Henry James’s early story collection Embarrassments, featuring the first book appearance of “The Figure In the Carpet.” This copy bears the bookplate of Arthur Desjardins, radiology professor for the Mayo Foundation and an authority on Hodgkins disease (lot 16, est. $50-150). A handsome two-volume limited edition of the poems of Keats is also up (est. $20-40), as are signed limited editions by contemporary novelists E.L. Doctorow (est. $30-90) and Alison Lurie (below; lot 19, est. $50-150).
A range of vernacular and instructional books keeps things interesting. Lot 32 is a copy of The Singer’s Companion. Published in 1860, it showcases music and lyrics for dozens of popular songs, as well as a charming frontispiece illustration, and is in lovely condition in its original publisher’s cloth binding (est. $80-120). A copy of The Good Shepherd Home Cook Book, published in Allentown, PA, in 1911, to raise funds for “crippled orphans, infant orphans, destitute children, old people, and aged or disabled ministers,” appears in its original staple-bound paper wrappers, and features many photos and line drawings (est. $40-70).
Those seeking something more glamorous will be drawn to a first edition of renowned fashion photographer Irving Penn’s beautiful 1980 monograph on Flowers (est. $100-200); as well as to an inscribed copy of A Table at Le Cirque: Stories and Recipes from New York’s Most Legendary Restaurant (est. $20-40).
An excellent presentation/association copy of Robert Capa’s dramatic book of photos of the Spanish Civil War is also on the block: it bears a gift inscription from Capa’s brother Cornell, a major force in photography in his own right, and a founder of the International Center of Photography (lot 41, est. $50-150).
Finally, a number of compelling historical imprints and documents is offered, including: an unusual American war-related pamphlet, this one entitled “Why Me?” pertaining to the Vietnam War (est. $50-80); a Colonial extract regarding the punishment of “rogues and vagabonds” (est $50-100); and a large, beautifully accomplished English manuscript land indenture on vellum, and affixed with numerous wax seals (est. $100-200).