For someone who loves books and reading as much as I do, the inevitable demise of the printed book doesn’t bother me as much as it should. Publishers already make approximately 20% of their revenue from the sale of electronic books, a figure which grows each year as fewer publishers commit to the expensive and increasingly risky model of printing books for retail consumption. As long as young people are taught the power of reading, whether that process occurs with a printed book or an electronic device is not the issue. What is important is to have new readers make an emotional connection with what they read – something that is much harder to do without a tangible object to mark the achievement of reading that first book on their own.
Think back to your early years as a child just learning to read. When I was growing up we had colorful picture books with simple stories and characters to follow as we gradually made the connection between letters, words and meanings. As we followed the teacher and spelled out words like “Dick”, “Jane”, “run” and “jump”, each of us held an identical small book open to the same page. Well, not exactly identical since on the back cover of every book there was a student’s name carefully drawn in crayon which denoted ownership. For most of us, “Dick and Jane” was the first book we ever owned and it was our responsibility to take good care of that book for the entire school year. At the end of the year we got to take our books home for good, often decorated with little gold stars or ribbons denoting how well we progressed through the year. That book now sits quietly in a box in my closet next to other memorabilia from my early years, a very tangible reminder of when I started to love reading.
As the years and decades progressed I continued to read massive numbers of books and obviously keeping every one was out of the question. However, every so often a particular book or series would make such a lasting impact on me that I felt the need to keep those books on my shelf in case I wanted to read them again. Having a physical reminder of the books that you enjoy so much is no different than having a photograph of your favorite relative or scenic trip – it helps you to remember how good you felt when you had that experience for the first time.
Obviously, this will all change when e-books eventually replace printed books. Just as the unique nature of an old photograph cannot be replaced with the casual ease at which digital photos can be displayed and shared, the unique place a printed book holds in our emotional memory of reading cannot be duplicated when that same work is read on an e-reader. However, what can happen is something entirely new: enhancement. Consider this: a film is nothing more than a sequence of individual images set into motion, but the experience of a film is usually far more powerful and memorable than the experience of a single image. In the same fashion, the experience of reading an e-book has the potential to be far more powerful and memorable than reading words on a sheet of paper.
Independent publisher Melville House has begun to explore this potential by combining printed material with e-books through an enhancement they call Illuminations. Simply put, an “illumination” is all the extra stuff that you would ever want to know about a book: author biography, story background, research notes, rough drafts, maps, photos and so forth. You might expect this type of added value to be available with an e-book, but what Mellville does is both creative and unique: with every printed version of these special books the buyer receives a free Illumination in e-book format. This symbiotic combination of printed and e-book is called a HybridBook. From their website: “Typically when a publisher offers any sort of bonus material in an e-book, they fail to include the same material in the print edition. The Melville House HybridBook allows us to digitally offer the same supplemental materials that we offer with the e-book in the print book as well, without interrupting the text-only approach of our novellas. Our goal is to keep print books and print bookstores around for quite some time”.
Since Recycled Reads is in the business of recycling printed books, we applaud the efforts of Melville House and other publishers who are trying to postpone the slow demise of printed books and the bookstores which sell them. With creative support like that, we expect to be around to serve you for a long time to come.
A Documented Life
This past week I learned of the passing of someone whose work either has had or will soon have a notable impact on your life. This wasn’t a famous author or artist but rather a relatively unknown computer scientist named Michael Hart, age 64. In the early 1970′s while still a college student, Michael had the good fortune to be granted large amounts of computer time on his school’s machine which was connected to ARPAnet, the precursor to today’s Internet. While looking for data processing projects, Michael had the inspiration to type the Declaration of Independence into a text file (all upper-case) which he then posted for others to read on the network. Six people copied and read the document, making it the world’s first e-book.
Following this initial effort with other public-domain documents including the Bible, Michael went on to make hundreds of documents freely available for others to read. In 1994 following the advent of the Internet and the World Wide Web protocols, he created the non-profit Project Gutenberg “to encourage the creation and distribution of e-books”, a term he coined. At latest count over 36,000 public-domain documents available in over 60 languages are available for free download to the Kindle, Nook, smart phones, computers and print-on-demand services. Michael was also a tireless advocate for worldwide literacy and a frequent blog contributor to the World Public Library. According to his obituary, it was Michael’s fundamental belief in both literacy and access to information that shaped the world of electronic books in which we live today. On behalf of e-book readers everywhere: thank you, Michael Hart.
Dig The New Digs
Mark your calendar for 7:00pm Monday September 26 and make plans to attend the first public presentation of the initial design for the Austin Public Library’s spectacular New Central Library. Although little more than a large hole in the ground right now, the architects working on this multi-year, multi-million dollar project will be making their 30% complete Schematic Design presentation to the Austin Library Commission at their next monthly meeting which, as always, is open to the public. If you have never visited the Austin History Center before (conveniently located next to the Faulk Central Library on Guadalupe), this will also be your chance to experience what Austin’s first Central Library was like when it was built in the 1930′s. Hope to see you there!
This week we continue to highlight just a few of the many new additions going into to our Collectibles Cabinets. If you have questions about these or any of our Collectibles, please contact us during store hours at (512) 323-5123.
The following items will be available beginning Thursday September 22:Patrick O’Brian “Aubrey-Maturin” Set – (1993) Patrick O’Brian, CBE (1914–2000), born Richard Patrick Russ, was an English novelist and translator best known for his Aubrey–Maturin series of novels set in the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars and centered on the friendship of English Naval Captain Jack Aubrey and the Irish–Catalan physician Stephen Maturin. The 20-novel series is known for its well-researched and highly detailed portrayal of early 19th century life, as well as its authentic and evocative language. A partially-finished twenty-first novel in the series was published posthumously containing facing pages of handwriting and typescript. This set contains a softcover trade edition of each of the first 15 of the popular “Aubrey-Maturin” series.
Published by W.W. Norton & Co; Copyrights: 1970-1993; Later printing copies. Each softcover has a printed retail price of either $9.95 or $10.95 printed on the rear cover. The set of fifteen books is in overall very good condition. Books 1 & 2 have a previous owner’s address sticker as well as handwritten name on the half-title page; books 12 & 13 each have a series of numbers handwritten in blue ink on the half-title page (minor); Book 3 has a light soiled spot on the bottom page edge that shows up on the text face of the first 20 or so pages (at the extreme bottom edge) – does not effect text; and Books 8 & 10 each have a light soiled spot on the page edge that does not effect the face of the text pages.
World Book Encyclopedia Estudiantil Hallazgos – (2001) The great content of the original World Book Student Discovery Encyclopedia has been translated into Spanish. The illustrations make this special complete 13 volume encyclopedia set ideal for younger students who need a visually rich source written at a lower reading level. Age-appropriate content reflects topics of high interest to the target audience and helps to build research skills.
Published by World Book Inc.; Copyright 2001. Former Library Reference Room Set.
Rainer Maria Rilke – (1941) René Karl Wilhelm Johann Josef Maria Rilke (1875–1926), better known as Rainer Maria Rilke, was a Bohemian–Austrian poet. He is considered one of the most significant poets in the German language. His haunting images focus on the difficulty of communion with the ineffable in an age of disbelief, solitude, and profound anxiety: themes that tend to position him as a transitional figure between the traditional and the modernist poets. He wrote in both verse and a highly lyrical prose. Among English-language readers, his best-known work is the Duino Elegies; his two most famous prose works are the Letters to a Young Poet and the semi-autobiographical The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge. He also wrote more than 400 poems in French, dedicated to his homeland of choice, the canton of Valais in Switzerland. This 1941 book is considered the definitive biography of Rilke, and was written by Eliza ‘Elsie’ Marian Butler (1885-1959), the Henry Simon Professor of German Language and Literature at the University of Manchester. This comprehensive and often referenced biography includes the frontispiece drawing of Rilke at the age of twenty by Kolo Mosen, as well Author’s Note, Introduction, Biographical Note, Index of Names, and Index of Works. This particular first edition copy of Butler’s biography of Rilke was owned by well-known writer and antiquarian book dealer Madeleine B. Stern (1912-2007). Stern gained international fame as an author and editor, and as a leader in the Antiquarian Book Trade where she was a partner in Rostenberg and Stern Rare Books. She was also a Guggenheim Fellow and wrote over 30 books on feminists and American history, including Louisa May Alcott. This book includes Stern’s ownership signature and is hand-dated “July, 1941″ in black ink on the ffrep. The rear frep includes several of her handwritten notes in pencil. In very light pencil inside the backcover is written: “NOTE: THIS COPY IS MADELEINE STERN’S COPY” (unknown if written by her or by a bookseller). Also written in pencil inside the backcover is a previous bookseller note about price: “Reprint avail @ 29.50 this 1st Edition 12.50.” (Unknown if the bookseller may not have been Stern herself). The signature and writing match examples of Ms. Stern’s signature found on-line.
Published by The Macmillan Co, Cambridge, England; Copyright: Not dated; Title Page Date: 1941. This is a First Edition signed and dated by previous owner Madeleine B. Stern. Ownership signature of Madeleine Stern plus date of July, 1941 on ffrep. Missing the original dust jacket. Cover boards are worn at corners & at spine extremes; glue seep through has discolored endpapers along rear gutter; some marginalia/paragraph bracketing in very light pencil – could be erased, but unknown if by Ms. Stern or subsequent owner; other than writing as mentioned above, no additional reader marks or stains to endpapers or text pages. A very light scratch on outside page edge that has nicked a handful pages (minor).
Sonovagun Stew – (1985) This, the 46th volume of the Texas Folklore Society’s annual publications is a “traditional literary sonovagun”. Cowboy ballads, bateaus, gaucho songs, mineral wells, corridos, Aggie war stories, songs of Bob Wills, Baptist kids, coyotes, and old-time cowboys are all simmered together and spiced with discussions of folklore, heaven, neighborhood gatherings, cotton growing, and family characters. Contributors included John Graves, Charles R. Townsend, Francis Edward Abernethy (editor), Lawrence Clayton, Elton Miles, Marguerite Nixon, Joe S. Graham, and many others.
Published by SMU Press; Copyright 1985, this is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with no printed retail price. Dust jacket has very light wear, with one barely noticeable soiled spot at front bottom edge; no writing, marks or stains. A very nice copy.
Paisanos: A Folklore Miscellany – (1978) Paisanos, or roadrunners, the name given by J. Frank Dobie to his fellows, is the theme of this collection of Texas folklore published by the Texas Folklore Society, Number XLI. Included is a collection of twenty-two essays on Texas folklore by various writers including J. Frank Dobie, Lawrence Clayton, Francis Edward Abernethy (editor), Bernth Lindfors, and many others. The anthology begins with J Frank Dobie’s article on Paisanos (roadrunners) which the Folklore Society first published in 1954. The book includes some photographs, but also includes the beautiful line drawings of Linda Miller Roach. Referenced in Whaley #153.
Published by Encino Press; Copyright 1978, this is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $10.50. Dust jacket has light waviness to front panel from moisture exposure; cloth cover boards have a few light finger-handling stains, but no moisture damage; no writing, mark, or stains to endpapers or text pages. A good copy of the first edition.
Myths & Folktales Of The Alabama-Coushatta Indians Of Texas – (1977) The 46 stories included in this 1977 publication of The Texas Folklore Society were collected by Howard N. Martin, who began systematically collecting the myths and tales of the older tribal members beginning in 1931. Hi labor of love over the next ten years resulted in this fine collection of Alabama-Coushatta folk narratives, the most complete ever published at the time of publication. A card stating this book takes the place of the Society’s typical annual publication (for 1977) is laid inside the front cover.
Published by The Encino Press; Copyright 1977, this is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $8.95. Dust jacket has light wear, with a few small tears at upper edge and a few very small soiled spots along bottom edge; no writing, marks or stains. A very nice copy.
The Big Bend Of The Rio Grande - Subtitled “A Guide to the Rocks, Geologic History, and Settlers of the Area of Big Bend National Park”, this is a set of maps and geologic information published by the Bureau of Economic Geology at The University of Texas. Included in the rear pocket:
- 56×40 Inch Fold-out full-color geologic map of “The Big Bend National Park, Brewster Co, TX (1966)”
- “Structure Sections of Marathon Basin Modified After King (1937)”
- “Panoramic view of The Basin in the Chisos Mountains, Big Bend National Park, TX”
- 16×14.5 Inch Fold-out b/w map of “Big Bend National Park with principal geologic and topographic features and roads” (1962)
- 17×20 Inch Fold-out b/w “Geography of the Big Bend Region” map
All items above published by Bureau of Economic Geology, UT Austin; No copyright; 3rd Printing, Dec 1971.
Also included in this set are the following 2 Guides published by the Big Bend National History Association:
- ‘Hiker’s Guide to trails of Big Bend National Park’ (Copyright 1978, Revised 1990 Ed)
- ‘Road Guide to Paved and Improved Dirt Roads of Big Bend National Park’ (Copyright 1980, Revised 1987 Edition)
All five maps, inserts and the two additional guides are in very nice condition. The large map has light corner wear caused by being to large for the back pocket, but there are no marks or tears. The portfolio cover has some wear, primarily to back cover, as well as a small discoloration to front cover where original price sticker was removed. The two additional guidebooks retain their original price stickers. There are no marks or stains to any of the items.
Breaking Trail: Hudson Stuck Of Texas And Alaska – (1988) Hudson Stuck (1863-1920), was a missionary and explorer, who although born in London, emigrated to the United States in 1885, traveling to Texas where he worked as a cowboy near Junction City and taught in one-room schools at Copperas Creek, San Angelo, and San Marcos before entering, in 1889, the theology department of the University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee. He was ordained a priest in 1892 and served two years at Grace Church in Cuero, Texas, before moving to St. Matthew’s Cathedral, Dallas, where he became dean in 1896. Casting himself as the social conscience of North Texas, Stuck preached and practiced a “muscular Christianity” that called all individuals to be their brothers’ keepers. His sermons and newspaper articles raised every conceivable issue from lynching and what later came to be called gun control to the need for recreational areas. The dean’s more tangible accomplishments included the founding of a night school for mill workers, a home for indigent women, and St. Matthew’s Childrens’ Home. Stuck pioneered and helped bring to fruition in 1903 the first state law to curb the “indefensible abuse” of child labor in Texas.
“Comfortable and happy” in Dallas but admitting to a need to face new challenges and to “suffer hardship for the kingdom,” he moved to Alaska in 1904. As the archdeacon of the Yukon and the Arctic he administered 250,000 square miles in the interior of Alaska. Traveling incessantly by dogsled in winter and boat in summer, Stuck ministered to miners and wood choppers and championed the Indians and Eskimos, peoples whose contact with “low-down whites,” he believed, doomed them to eventual extinction. Appealing to an age that enjoyed travel literature, he built up the National Geographic Society, admired Teddy Roosevelt, and revered “the strenuous life”. In 1913 he gained international fame as the organizer and co-leader of the first successful complete ascent of Mount McKinley (Denali), the highest peak in North America. Stuck described this climb, his missionary activities, the great rivers, and the inhabitants of interior Alaska in numerous periodical articles and five books. Stuck was the Progressive era’s intrepid explorer in the far north, and his twenty-eight year labor to bring physical and spiritual solace to the isolated Indians, Eskimo, and white setters of the Yukon made him perhaps the Episcopal church’s most famous missionary. Stuck and John Muir are honored with a feast day on the liturgical of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America on April 22. Written by David M. Dean and illustrated with B/W photos and map endpapers, the book also includes Notes and Index.
Published by Ohio University Press; Copyright: 1988, this is a scarce First Edition inscribed and dated by the author to former UT Professor John E. Sunder on half-title page. Unaltered dust jacket with no printed retail price. Minimal dust jacket wear; previous owner’s bookplate on verso of ffrep; other than author’s inscription, no additional writing, marks, or stains. A very nice signed copy of this book.
Idylls Of The King – (1900′s) In the early 1900′s, Hurst & Co. produced a series of small-sized poetry books that were handcrafted to reflect the Art Nouveau era. The books were bound in suede leather with hand-tooled titles and hand painted decorations – in this case, a jeweled crown. The suede was intentionally rough-cut: the excess suede and rough edges made the book look more like a piece of “folk art”. The books included handmade decorative endpapers and the upper edge is gilt. We don’t know if these copies were special editions, however the covers and endpapers would reflect the Art Nouveau period’s emphasis on nature & organic designs.
Also included, as in the one other title of this series we’ve been fortunate enough to see, is a color painted frontis-portrait of Lord Tennyson. Idylls of the King, published between 1856 and 1885, is a cycle of twelve narrative poems by Tennyson which retells the legend of King Arthur, his knights, his love for Guinevere and her tragic betrayal of him, and the rise and fall of Arthur’s kingdom. Tennyson based his retelling primarily on Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur and the Mabinogion but with many expansions, additions, and several adaptations. Idylls of the King is often read as an allegory of the societal conflicts in Britain during the mid-Victorian era.
Published by Hurst & Co; No Copyright or Title Page Dates; Circa early 1900′s (between 1900-1910). Suede is fragile and has started to peel/split; front endpapers stuck together at top edge; no writing.
A Life For The Confederacy – (1959) Subtitled “As Recorded in the Pocket Diaries of Private Robert A. Moore, Co. G 17th Mississippi Regiment, Confederate Guards, Holly Springs, Mississippi” and edited by James W. Silver. Originally published in the Louisiana Historical Quarterly in the July 1956 issue, this was the first book form edition of Moore’s diaries. Private Robert A. Moore, aged 25, gave his life for the Confederacy at Chickamauga on September 20, 1863. This young Mississippi farmer would have been an obscure name on a muster roll had he not kept faithfully a diary of his war time experiences. His diary not only disclosed his personality but illuminated the daily life of the Confederate soldier, as Moore read every newspaper he could get his hands on and was very accurate in his descriptions of battles. This 1959 McCowat-Mercer edition includes a Foreword by Bell Irvin Wiley. Nicely illustrated with photos, facsimile documents, etc. and includes a listing of the Officers and Men, Company “G”, 17th Mississippi Volunteers (Infantry).
Published by McCowat-Mercer Press, Jackson, TN; Copyright 1959, this is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $4.00. Some sunning, light soiling and mended tears to dust jacket; no writing, marks or stains to book.
Stonewall’s Man Sandie Pendleton – (1959) This is a 1959 first edition copy of Dr. William Gleason Bean’s highly lauded biography of Sandie Pendleton (1840-1864), Chief of Staff for the famed Second Corps of the Army of Northern Virginia. It is the authentic story of a high-spirited and intelligent Confederate staff officer, who at the age of twenty-two won the confidence, admiration and affection of Stonewall Jackson. Bean’s biography of Pendleton was based on diaries, manuscript collections, and never-before published personal letters. The result is a moving, poignant treatment of the Civil War.
When first published in 1959, Bean’s work generated a surprisingly large body of critical comment for a book dedicated to a subject of such modest rank. Lieutenant Colonel Pendleton’s association with Stonewall Jackson surely drew some of the attention. So did the staff content, there being so little in print on that important subject. Most of the reviews were good, even enthusiastic. The Saturday Review called the book a “perceptive biography of this talented and widely admired young Confederate officer” and described the undeniably “romantic and tragic story” of Sandie’s courtship and ill-fated marriage. W. A. Heaps in the Library Journal “recommended” Stonewall’s Man as “scholarly, formal, solid, and heavily documented”. The Journal of Southern History suggested that men who die at the age of twenty four rarely “command book-length biographies”, yet it acknowledged that Sandie’s “crowded two years” entitled him to a place in history and applauded Bean’s businesslike craftsmanship. In the American Historical Review, Frank Vandiver called Stonewall’s Man “a sound, scholarly book”. Dudley T. Cornish’s review, the longest ot reach print, appeared in Civil War History. Cornish praised the book in great detail and made apparent his opinion that it was well worth owning – $5.00 was the publication price in 1959. He touted Bean’s “scholarship and discretion”, the “flavor” of the text, the “judicious” use of sources, and especially the impact of the poignant love story with its horrible ending. Dr. W. G. Bean was the Douglas Southall Freeman Professor of History in Washington and Lee University, and was a member of the Virginia Civil War Centennial Commission.
Published by The University of North Carolina Press; Copyright 1959. This is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $5.00. Light dust jacket wear includes some discoloration and short memded tears; no marks, writing or stains to text pages or end papers.
An Honest Preface And Other Essays – (1959) This is a collection of essays from Austinite and well-known 20th century American historian Walter Prescott Webb, including: How the Republican Party Lost Its Future, Coca-Cola and Culture, Physics, History, and Fate, For Whom the Historian Tolls, and many more. This 1959 book was published to celebrate, among Webb’s many other awards, honors, and positions, his then recent installation as President of the American Historical Association. Walter Prescott Webb was a scholar, writer, and historian who taught at the University of Texas for over forty years. This first edition, first printing copy is inscribed by Walter Prescott Webb, Joe B. Frantz, and Colleen T. Kain to Dr. John E. Sunder, well-known professor (emeritus) in the Department of History at the University of Texas at Austin for thirty-seven years.
Published by Houghton Mifflin; Copyright 1959, this is a First Printing with unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $3.75 and is inscribed by Walter Prescott Webb, Joe B. Frantz, & Colleen Kain. Edge wear and rubbing to dust jacket; wear to cover board edges; previous owner’s bookplate on ffrep; other than inscriptions as noted, no additional writing, marks, or stains.
Three Men In Texas: Bedichek, Webb And Dobie – (1967) J. Frank Dobie, Roy Bedichek, and Walter Prescott Webb: a chronicler, a naturalist, and a historian, each with a deep respect and enduring friendship for each other, and an abiding love of their life in Texas. Here are found reminiscences, essays, and letters from special editions of the ‘Texas Observer’ devoted to each of the three men, as well as pieces published elsewhere or written expressly for this volume. Profusely illustrated with B/W photographs.
Published by UT Press; Copyright 1967; this is a First Edition with unaltered dust jacket with Original Retail Price of $6.50. The nicest copy of this book we’ve seen – light dust jacket edge wear with a few very light spots on the white background; no writing, marks or stains to endpapers or text.
Uniform Regulations United States Navy – (1917) This 1917 publication includes over 30 plates, plus it includes the following “Changes” bound into the back of the book: “Change in Uniform Regulations, No. 13, dated September 19, 1917; “Change in Uniform Regulations, United States Navy, 1913. No. 11, dated June 22, 1917″; “Change in Uniform Regulations, United States Navy, 1913. No. 14, dated October 12, 1917″; “Change in Uniform Regulations No. 20″ (4 pages), plus a copy of a typed letter “Subject Uniform Regulations Reference: Change in Uniform Regulations No. 20″ which is attached to the back page. There is also a vintage (military) newspaper clipping dated March 14, 1919 which the previous owner laid-in with an article: “Change in Naval Uniform Regulations”. Newspaper clipping also includes a vintage ad for Eastman Kodak cameras and an ad for The M.C. Silley & Co of Columbus, Ohio – makers of “presentation swords and sabres”.
Although this book is a very scarce and highly collectible WWI memorabilia item, there are some condition factors noted with this copy. The book has suffered some water exposure causing the upper and lower portions of many of the pages to show some waviness. There are a handful of pages that actually show the outline of this water stain, but the stain mark is confined to the lower margin edges of the pages. All of the text pages are legible, and none of the illustrations are damaged by this moisture exposure. None of the pages are stuck together. There is a hinge crack in the middle of the book where the illustrated plates section begins, but there are no loose pages. As the previous owner obtained the amended “Changes”, some of the preceding pages of “Uniform Regulations” were crossed out with pencil – these could be erased. A few notes were made to the top margins of those pages “Annulled by Change…..” – those notes are in ink. Some of the “changes” pages have rough outer edges since they weren’t sized correctly for this binding. The previous owner’s name and date are written in pencil on the ffrep, and the owner’s military designation: “Surgeon, USNRF” is stamped in blue ink (by the Navy). The dark green cloth front cover board shows some shiny spots that are either from rubbing wear or residue from liquid (no stickiness).
Published by the United States Navy/Government Prtg Office; 1913 Pub., Revised to Jan 15, 1917. Condition listed above. Priced below market to reflect all condition factors.
Carleton Watkins: The Art Of Perception – (1999) Victorian landscape photographer Carleton Watkins (1829-1916) described his lifelong project in simple terms: to find “the best spot with the best view.” However, this self-trained but precocious man, who seemed to delight in giving away much of the work he produced, is now considered one of the most gifted American photographers of the 19th century. Perhaps best known for his pictures of the then newly discovered scenic wonder Yosemite, Watkins made thousands of remarkable, sophisticated, and historically important images that provide an unparalleled visual record of the western United States. In his spectacular depictions of the West Coast’s natural resources and the industrial outposts nested within them by way of the California Gold Rush and the Central and Southern Pacific Railroads, Watkins captured the sense of adventure and expansionist enthusiasm of the mid-1800s American imagination.
Throughout his 50-year career, Watkins traveled tirelessly under adverse conditions to remote sites, often by mule. He carried cumbersome equipment, including his giant camera, which was custom-made by a cabinetmaker. And he secured his hard-earned images on fragile glass-plate negatives. Watkins’s adventuring laid the groundwork for his pioneering in the nascent art and technique of photography. His work commanded wonder and respect from large audiences on both coasts, and the sheer beauty of his pictures helped set a national policy of scenic conservation that preceded the present system of national parks.
Carleton Watkins: The Art of Perception is a companion volume to the first large-scale exhibition to look at this photographer’s work from a critical, art-historical perspective. The show originated at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and traveled to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., from 1999 through 2000. Produced using state-of-the-art tritone printing, this catalog includes 125 of Watkins’s best images, stereo cards and multipart panoramic works among them. Includes 105 tritone plates, 20 duotone illustrations, including four gatefolds. Accompanying the photographs are compelling and informative essays by Douglas Nickel, associate curator of photography at SFMOMA, and Maria Morris Hambourg, curator in charge of the Department of Photographs at the Met, as well as Peter E. Palmquist’s notes on the plates, a list of selected references, and a chronology.
Published by Harry N. Abrams/SFMOMA; Copyright: 1999, this is a First Softcover Edition/Second Printing. Large softcover with no printed retail price. Very light cover wrap wear, including a small bump to the upper edge of front panel; no writing, marks, stains, or creases. A very nice copy.
Second View: The Rephotographic Survey Project – (1990) In the latter half of the 19th century, the great expeditionary photographers William Henry Jackson, T.H. O’Sullivan, and William Bell first photographed American western landscapes for the U.S. Geographical and Geological Explorations and Surveys West of the 100th Meridian, a United States Army survey team. This book presents 120 of those images that were rephotographed between 1977 and 1979 of sites in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Nevada, California, New Mexico and Arizona. The images are matched to document geologic and environmental changes over the course of a century, while exploring changing human perceptions of landscape. The book also includes essays on how the sites were matched to the old photographs. In 2004, the results of a third survey were published in a book titled Third View, Second Sights, although the number of rephotographs and pairings was more limited than those from the late 1970′s survey. This is a fascinating book, illustrated with B/W photographs.
Published by The University of New Mexico Press; Copyright: 1984; this is a 1990 First Paperbound Edition. Large softcover format with no printed retail price; remainder stamp on bottom page edge; some wear to coverwraps at edges; no writing, marks, or stains. A somewhat scarce book.
The Book Of Legends (Sefer Ha-Aggadah): Legends From The Talmud And Midrash – (1992) Edited by Hayim Nahman Bialik and Yehoshua Hana Ravnitsky with translation by William G. Braude, this 1992 ‘First American Edition’ offers the first complete English translation of the Hebrew classic Sefer Ha-Aggadah, the greatest and best-loved anthology of classical Rabbinic literature ever compiled. First published in Odessa in 1908-11, it was recognized immediately as a masterwork in its own right and reprinted numerous times in Israel. The Hebrew poet, Hayim Nahman Bialik and the renowned editor Yehoshua Hana Ravnitsky, the architects of this masterful compendium, selected hundreds of texts from the Talmud and midrashic literature and arranged them thematically, in order to provide their contemporaries with easy access to the national literary heritage of the Jewish peiole – the texts of Rabbinic Judaism that remain at the heart of Jewish literature today. Bialik and Ravnitsky chose Aggadah (the nonlegal portions of the Talmud and Midrash) for their anthology. Loosely translated as “legends”, Aggadah includes the genres of biblical exegesis, stories about biblical characters, the lives of the Talmudic era sages and their contemporary history, parables, proverbs, and folklore. A captivating melange of wisdom and piety, fantasy and satire.
Published by Schocken Book, NY; English translation copyright: 1992, this is a First American Edition with unaltered dust jacket with Original Retail Price of $75.00. Previous gift inscription neatly written inside frontcover (partially hidden by dust jacket fold-over); light dust jacket wear. No additional writing, marks, stains, tears or creases. A very nice copy of this classic.
Birds Of New York – (1916, 1925) A complete 1916 set of 106 “Bird” Plates produced by ‘The University of The State Of New York State Museum’ at Eaton, plus an additional portfolio with loose plates (some duplicates of the above set), as well as from unknown sources sets; also includes a copy of a hand-drawn map of the Thorncrag Stanton Bird Club Sanctuary.
The series of 106 9 x 12 inch plates are reprints from the work entitled Birds of New York issued as volumes 1 and 2 of ‘New York State Museum Memoir 12′. These plates carry the names of the birds represented and include all the birds known to breed within or to visit the State of New York.
Published by The University of The State of New York State Museum; Eaton, NY; Copyright: None Listed; Portfolios have the dates 1916 & 1925 stamped on covers. Cloth covered boards are worn; numbered Paper Plates with color print (paper has discolored with age); same creasing to plate corners; some small tears to plates; “Index to Plates” printed inside each portfolio’s front cover; a few duplicate plates in the 1925 portfolio are from the same series, but most are from unknown sources.
Plato: The Collected Dialogues – (1969) All of the writings of Plato generally considered to be authentic are presented in this single volume collection of translated works from the best British and American translators of the last 100 years, ranging from Jowett (1871) to scholars of the present day. Part of the Princeton Bollingen Series LXXI, the volume also contains editorial notes prefacing each dialogue by Edith Hamilton, and an introductory essay on Plato’s philosophy and writings by Huntington Cairns. A comprehensive Index is included that provides cross-references to assist the reader with the philosophical vocabulary of the different translators. This oversized “flex” cover volume comes with its original dust jacket and the scarce slipcase, all in very nice condition. Originally published in 1961, this well-preserved copy is a March, 1969 Fifth Printing.
Published by Princeton Univ Press; Copyright: 1961, 5th Prtg – March 1969; Bollingen Series LXXI. Unaltered dust jacket with original Retail Price of $8.50; Slip-cased. Minimal dust jacket and cover board wear; no interior signs of use: no writing, marks, stains or creases. Light age foxing to page edges. Sewn-in ribbon marker. Slip-case with paste-down title block is in very good condition with light wear and fading to color, mostly at edges. A very nicely kept copy!
The Lord Of The Rings – (1978) This boxed set of The Lord of the Rings trilogy was published by Houghton Mifflin in 1978 as a Book of the Month Club Edition. The books are hardcover and are the standard trade size. The dust jackets are very similar in appearance to the first editions, however each book has a different color “eye” and “ring”. Each book’s endpapers and upper page edge match the color of the eye and ring depicted on the front of the dust jacket, and the front cover board cloth design replicates the eye and ring for each book in embossed gilt and vivid color! Each volume retains its fold-out attached map, and all three maps are in very nice, very clean condition with no tears or markings. This boxed set is considered the superior set when compared to the boxed sets that were published after it – both in design and in print quality.
Published by Houghton Mifflin, NY; Copyright: 1965, Book 1: 16th Prtg; Book 2: 15th Prtg; Book 3: 15th Prtg. Unaltered dust jackets with no retail price (BCE). This is a Book Club boxed set with blind stamp on rear cover of each book to denote BCE. As typical in the 1978 boxed sets, the books fit tight to the box. Therefore, it is very common to see small tears at the spine extremes and top & bottom edges of the dust jackets for the books in these boxed sets. Most tears to these three books are small and have been neatly mended on the backside of the dust jackets, however Book 1 has more jacket edge wear, mostly to the back and spine. This book also has a very small discoloration on the outer page edge that is from the dye used on the endpapers (printer’s error). There are no dust jacket stains or markings, and no markings to colored endpapers or any text pages. There are no page creases. The storage box has minimal wear. Overall, this is the cleanest and nicest of the 1978 boxed sets we’ve seen. Compare price, condition and edition!
Travels In Arabia Deserta – (1940′s) Considered a classic in the fields of travel and exploration, Charles M. Doughty’s Travels in Arabia Deserta is an unrivaled encyclopedia of knowledge about all aspects of 19th century and earlier Arabia. Doughty’s work, first published in 1888, was so reliable for its anthropology of the Bedouin peoples that British intelligence relied on it for information during both the First and Second World Wars. Originally published as a two-volume set, this “new and definitive edition in one volume” was produced from the plates of the original 1936 Jonathan Cape (U.K.) edition. Included are the original illustrations (including some fold-outs), as well as the large fold-out color map tucked inside a pocket attached inside the back cover. Illustrations include a frontispiece portrait of Charles M. Doughty. The introduction is by T.E. Lawrence (“Lawrence of Arabia”). Random House first published this one-volume edition in 1936. Although this copy is undated, we believe this very well preserved copy is circa late ’30′s or early ’40′s.
Published by Random House; No copyright date; circa late 1930′s to early 1940′s. Unknown if originally published with dust jacket; cover boards are in very nice condition with no signs of wear; two very small stains on outside page edge (minor); previous owner’s vintage bookplate on ffrep; the numbers “1215″ written in very tiny script (1/8″ high) at top gutter edge of first “Contents” page, otherwise no additional writing, marks, stains, or creases. Map is in very nice condition (no signs of use). A remarkably well preserved copy of this book.
The Writings Of Henry David Thoreau – This lot consists of the twelve-volume hardcover set The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, published by Princeton University Press from the 1970′s through 2009; plus a vintage 1951 hardcover copy of Walden, published by W.W. Norton, with illustrations by Henry Bugbee Kane; plus a first edition hardcover copy of A Thoreau Gazetteer by Robet F. Stowell, published by Princeton University Press in 1970. Since the Princeton volumes were not published as a set, but rather were published over many decades as single volumes, it is very unusual to find the volumes offered for sale as a set. This set, along with the other two books, were previously owned by renowned University of Texas History Professor John E. Sunder and consist of:
JOURNALS, Volumes 1 through 8 Published by Princeton University Press; Copyrights: Various (1981-2009)). From 1837 to 1861, Henry D. Thoreau kept a Journal that would become the principal imaginative work of his career. The source of much of his published writing, the Journal is also a record of his interior life and of his monumental studies of the natural history of his native Concord, Massachusetts. Unlike earlier editions, the Princeton edition reproduces Thoreau’s Journal in its original and complete form, in a text free of editorial interpolations and keyed to a comprehensive scholarly apparatus.
EXCURSIONS Published by Princeton University Press; Copyright: 2007. Excursions presents texts of nine essays, including some of Henry D. Thoreau’s most engaging and popular works, newly edited and based on the most authoritative versions of each. These essays represent Thoreau in many stages of his writing career, ranging from 1842 when he accepted Emerson’s commission to review four volumes of botanical and zoological catalogues in an essay that was published in The Dial as “Natural History of Massachusetts” to 1862, when he prepared “Wild Apples,” a lecture he had delivered during the Concord Lyceum’s 1859-1860 season, for publication in the Atlantic Monthly after his death. Three other early meditations on natural history and human nature, “A Winter Walk,” “A Walk to Wachusett,” and “The Landlord,” were originally published in 1842 and 1843. “A Yankee in Canada,” a book-length account of an 1850 trip to Quebec that was published in part in 1853, is a fitting companion to Cape Cod and The Maine Woods, Thoreau’s other long accounts of explorations of internal as well as external geography. In the last four essays, “The Succession of Forest Trees” (1860), “Autumnal Tints” (1862), “Walking” (1862), and “Wild Apples” (1862), Thoreau describes natural and philosophical phenomena with a breadth of view and generosity of tone that are characteristic of his mature writing. In their skillful use of precisely observed details to arrive at universal conclusions, these late essays exemplify Transcendental natural history at its best.
EARLY ESSAYS AND MISCELLANIES Published by Princeton University Press; Copyright: 1975. This collection of fifty-three early pieces by Thoreau represents the full range of his youthful imagination. Collected, arranged, and carefully edited for the first time here, the writings date from 1828 to 1852 and cover a broad range of subjects: learning, morals, literature, history, politics, and love. Included is a major essay on Sir Walter Raleigh that was not published during the author’s lifetime and a fragmentary college piece here published for the first time.
TRANSLATIONS Published by Princeton University Press; Copyright: 1986. Thoreau’s activity as a translator was firmly grounded in his classical education at Harvard; his coursework there included eight terms of Latin and eight of Greek. But the impetus for the seven literary translations collected in this volume was far broader. The shape of a particular translation is governed not only by the translator’s knowledge and sensitivity, but also by contemporary assumptions about the proper method and function of translating. Thoreau’s translations display the literalism sanctioned by Transcendentalist theories of translation, which posited a purer connection between the word and the nature of the thing it named in ancient and primitive languages than in English. The influence of the original language in a faithful translation, seen in both content and style, was considered positive and invigorating and is apparent in Thoreau’s work. Includes: The Prometheus Bound; Anacreon; The Seven Against Thebes; Pindar; Fragments of Pindar; Pindaric Odes From HM 13204; and The Transmigrations of the Seven Brahmans.
REFORM PAPERS Published by Princeton University Press; Copyright: 1973. The selections from the polemical writings of Thoreau that make up Reform Papers represent every stage in his twenty-two years of active writing. Consequently, they are a microcosm of his literary career, allowing the reader to achieve a full sense of Thoreau’s evolution as a writer and thinker. The volume opens with “The Service,” one of the best examples of Thoreau’s early style and interests, and contains ten other essays as well.
WALDEN Published by W.W. Norton; Copyright: 1951, Fifth Printing Copy. Walden was first published as Walden; or, Life in the Woods in 1854. The work is part personal declaration of independence, social experiment, journey of spiritual discovery, and manual for self reliance. It details the famous author’s experiences over the course of two years in a cabin he built near Walden Pond, in forested area owned by his friend and mentor Ralph Waldo Emerson, near Concord, Massachusetts. This 1951 W.W. Norton edition includes illustrations by Henry Bugbee Kane and an introduction by Basil Wiley. The endpapers depit “The Country of Henry David Thoreau Surrounding Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts” and the book design is by John Woodlock.
A THOREAU GAZETTEER by Robert F. Stowell; Published by Princeton University Press; Copyright: 1970, First Edition. This volume contains 23 maps that outline Henry David Thoreau’s travels: from his hometown jaunts around Concord and his favorite Concord and Merrimack Rivers and Walden Pond, to his long-distance trips to Maine, Cape Cod, Canada, and Minnesota. Some images are reproductions of Thoreau’s own drawings; others are historical sources that he might/must have consulted. Each map is accompanied by explanatory text about the trip and Thoreau’s methods of transportation. The book is an invaluable volume for contemporary Thoreau disciples and researchers to own. It provides the when, where, and how of Thoreau’s excursions, and it supplements the details with period photos of places and transport. A chronology of his travels and a full index complete this useful work.
All books retain their original dust jackets with various original retail prices; Light dust jacket wear to most of the 12 volume The Writings of… set, with dust jacket of Volume 1 of the Journal having a few tape mended tears to upper spine edge; Vol 1 has a few light stains to outer page edge; some spine lean to a few volumes, and some softening of bindings (rolled spines) on a few volumes; previous owner’s bookplate affixed to ffrep of most volumes; no writing, marks, or stains noted to interior pages; Walden shows edge wear to dust jacket, as well as light foxing to dust jacket; previous owner’s bookplate affixed to ffrep (not to map pages!); outside page edges have some foxing and light soiling; no marks, writing, or stains to text or illustrations. A Thoreau Gazetteer has dust jacket edge wear, including some chips and mended tears; previous owner’s bookplate affixed to ffrep; no writing, marks, or stains to text or illustrations.