The big story, if not the biggest seller, out of the Bonhams New York sale of Books, Maps and Manuscripts on 15 December was Charles Dickens' toothpick, which sold for $9,150. Full results of the sale are here, and other highlights include:
- A fourth folio Shakespeare (1685), which made $103,700.
- A very rare pre-publication presentation copy (in a really nice binding) of a John Adams work, Letters ([London, 1786]), a collection of letters between Adams and Dr. Henrik Calkoen. This copy was presented to Adams' cousin, Ward Nicholas Boylston. It sold for $109,800.
Interestingly, there are not very many copies of this pamphlet at all, and since there were a couple different issues, it's not clear exactly how many of this particular version there are. Here's what it looks like to me: there's one here at MHS (a presentation copy to Adams' brother-in-law Richard Cranch, and obtained for us by Jeremy Belknap through a trade with Cranch); two at the Boston Athenaeum (one with the bookplate of Adams' grandson Charles Francis, the other in the Washington collection, sent to him by Benjamin Lincoln in 1788 - the record for that one is here), one at Princeton, and one in the British Library. The Washington copy is bound with other pamphlets; the Princeton copy is in marbled paper wraps, and ours at MHS was rebound in the 1960s. ESTC lists another at the American Antiquarian Society, but I don't find it in their online catalog.