Saturday, July 11, 2020

Links & Auctions

- New from the University of East Anglia's Unlocking the Archive team, Discover Historic Books.

- The digital version of the BL's Harley MS 7368 (The Booke of Sir Thomas Moore), can now be viewed in full online.

- The Grolier Club's annual New Members Collect exhibition is virtual this year.

- Over on the AAS blog, a new series on their artist fellowships.

- From Richard Norman on the ABAA blog, "The History of Vellum and Parchment."

- On the Early Modern Female Book Ownership blog, Sarah Duffield's copy of Crouch's Historical Remarques.

- Teaching Manuscripts has added the first two of a series of videos about making parchment.

- Claire Voon writes for Atlas Obscura about the bookwheel built by a group of RIT engineering students.

- The booksellers of ANZAAB have issued a joint catalog.

Upcoming Auctions

- Music, Continental Books and Medieval Manuscripts at Sotheby's ends on 14 July.

- The Collection of a Connoisseur: History in Manuscripts at Sotheby's ends on 15 July.

- Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 16 July.

- Eureka! Scientific Breakthroughs of the 20th Century at Christie's ends on 16 July.

- Illustration Art at Swann Galleries on 16 July.

Sunday, July 05, 2020

Links & Auctions

- Getman's Virtual Book & Paper Fair for July opens at noon on Tuesday, 7 June. And the Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair goes virtual - it will be held 11–13 September.

- Ashley Cataldo from AAS is in the "Bright Young Librarians" spotlight this week.

- Yale's Beinecke Library has acquired the incredible Frederick Douglass collection of Dr. Walter Evans (I am in the middle of David Blight's wonderful biography of Douglass at the moment, which makes clear just how important this collection is). See also Michael Morand's announcement for Yale.

- A biblio-deal alert: A. Franklin Parks' William Parks: The Colonial Printer in the Transatlantic World of the Eighteenth Century (Penn State University Press) is available at $7.95 from Edward R. Hamilton, Bookseller (the list price was $84.95). It looks like they've also got Roderick Cave and Sara Ayad's The History of the Book in 100 Books for $7.95 too, which is also a very good deal.

- Over at Philobiblon, the 2020 Bind-o-Rama, of fish-skin bindings!

- There's a new "Crocodile Mystery" from the Folger this week.

- Rick Stattler has a new basic collector's guide to the Declaration of Independence for Swann.

- Over on the Grolier Club blog, Meghan Constantinou writes about a "Fifteenth-Century Manuscript Wrapper on a Rare Incunable" in the club's library.

- Rebecca Rego Barry notes a large collection of bookplates being offered at Swann this week.

- From the Bodleian's Conveyor blog, "Alice in Medieval Oxford."

- Another interesting provenance/marginalia mystery from the Middle Temple Library blog.

- July's Rare Book Monthly articles include Michael Stillman's report on the Schulman/Priore sentencing and a "brief update on the field" from Bruce McKinney.

- The National Library of Scotland has released datasets drawn from the library catalogs of the Advocates Library covering 1692 through 1878.

- Will Hansen is collecting contributions for his second issue of a zine about dreams concerning rare books and special collections.

Upcoming Auctions

- Fine Books and Manuscripts at Bonhams ends on 8 July.

- Livres de la Bibliothèque du Docteur Henri Polaillon: Livres Anciens et de Costumes Militaires at Binoche et Giquello on 9 July.

- Livres de Voyages – Atlas – Cartes at ALDE on 9 July.

Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books at Swann Galleries on 9 July.

- Fine Art – Photography & Prints – Food & Drink – Illustrated Books at PBA Galleries on 9 July.


Saturday, June 27, 2020

Links & Auctions

- UNC-Chapel Hill has received Florence Fearrington's collection of rare books on natural history, wunderkammern, and more.

- The Allegheny County D.A. has petitioned the judge who sentenced John Schulman and Gregory Priore to house arrest last week to reconsider and impose a stricter sentence, to include jail time (with home confinement until the judge is satisfied that a risk of COVID-19 infection in prison is diminished). Marylynne Pitz's piece about this includes comments from Travis McDade urging a "more appropriate sentence."

- Fentahun Tiruneh writes for the LC's blog about a recent addition to the LC's Ethiopian collection: the first printed edition of the New Testament in the Ge'ez language, printed at Rome in 1548.

- The Folger Shakespeare Library has acquired the collection of actor Earle Hyman.

- RIT scientists are developing a low-cost multispectral imaging hardware and software system!

- Early Modern Female Book Ownership highlights a 1526 Dutch Bible this week.

- Allie Alvis has started a YouTube series of "Bite Sized Book History" videos.

- Bogdan Horbal writes for the NYPL blog about the late nineteenth-century Riga bookseller N. Kymmel.

- Barbara Basbanes Richter highlights Mark Argetsinger's new book A Grammar of Typography: Classical Book Typography in the Digital Age.

- Jerry Morris posts about some books from his collection of books about the English language with interesting ownership marks.

- From the Bodleian's Conveyor blog, "Decades of manuscript photography on Digital.Bodleian."

- Over at Past is Present, a look at the beautiful new AAS conservation lab.

Upcoming Auctions

- Livres et Manuscrits at Sotheby's ends on 30 June.

- Curiosités Typographiques – Reliures Remarquables: Collection C. L. at Binoche et Giquello on 1 July.

- Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 2 July.

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Links & Auctions

- John Schulman and Gregory Priore were sentenced yesterday for the thefts from Pittsburgh's Carnegie Library. Schulman received four years of home confinement and twelve years' probation, and was ordered to pay $55,000 in restitution to purchasers of stolen books. Priore was sentenced to three years of home confinement and twelve years' probation. The judge stated that the sentences would have been "significantly more impactful" were it not for the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The judge further ordered that neither Schulman nor Priore may profit in any way from books, films, &c. related to the case. Paula Reed Ward and Marylynne Pitz reported for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette earlier in the week that the day before Schulman entered his guilty plea in January, he sent an email to other booksellers declaring his innocence. This letter came up as the sentencing hearing opened on Thursday, with the judge questioning Schulman and his lawyers "Why should I accept a plea from somebody who says he's innocent?" The judge then conducted the guilty plea colloquy again before moving to sentencing. Both Schulman and Priore apologized, though Mary Frances Cooper, head of the Carnegie Library, told the court "We do not want an apology. Any apology from these thieves would be meaningless. They are only sorry we discovered what they did." See also the ABAA statement.

- Over at Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, "Whitehead-Holford-Malcolm" and "The Holford Album."

- From Heather Wolfe for The Collation, "Pandemic Paleography."

- Spencer Stuart is highlighted in the "Bright Young Things" Fine Books blog series.

- A tiny replica of John Fleming's bookselling gallery will be on the auction block this week.

- New from Library Juice Press, Archives and Special Collections as Sites of Contestation, edited by Mary Kandiuk.

- Another week, another Voynich "solution." Nope, says Lisa Fagin Davis in a Twitter-thread.

Upcoming Auctions

- Fine Books and Manuscripts, including Americana at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers on 23 June.

- Francis Hopkinson Family Americana Collection at William H. Bunch Auctions on 23 June.

- Printed Books, Maps & Documents, Modern Literature, First Editions, Children's & Illustrated Books at Dominic Winter Auctioneers on 24–25 June.

- Rare Books, Manuscripts & Relics including Forbes & Kerouac at University Archives on 24 June.

- "Tendrement vôtre" – Lettres et Manuscrits Autographes d'auteurs Français at Christie's ends on 25 June.

- Americana – Travel & Exploration – World History – Cartography at PBA Galleries on 25 June.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Links & Auctions

- SHARP in Focus events begin on Monday, 15 June, and will run through 19 June. See the full schedule and registration instructions. Lots of interesting discussions to be had.

- Scott Casper has been named the eighth president of the American Antiquarian Society. Congratulations to both Scott and to AAS!

- Anthony Tedeschi surveys the (now digitized) medieval and Renaissance manuscripts at the Alexander Turnbull Library.

- Georgianna Ziegler writes for The Collation this week: "Early women buying books: the evidence."

- The National Library of Israel is digitizing more than 2,500 Arabic, Persian, and Turkish manuscripts and books. More from Smithsonian.

- From the Princeton Graphic Arts collection blog, "Famous Wood Engravings."


- Richard Sheaff writes for the Ephemera Society's blog on "Wacky Victorian Imagery."


- Luke Henter writes for Past is Present about the AAS' Caribbeana Project.

- From Georgia Thurston for the Cambridge University Libraries special collections blog, "Nineteenth-century dialect writing."

- Also from the Bodleian, from their Archives and Manuscripts blog, Hannah Jordan on "The Library of St. Michael's College, Tenbury."

- Ian Maxted has updated his register of Mesoamerican codices and inscriptions over at Exeter Working Papers in Book History.

- Ed Redmond writes for the LC's Worlds Revealed blog on "18th-Century Maps of North America: Perception vs. Reality."

- The Middle Temple Library has posed another provenance mystery for us all to ponder.

- Tom Bentley writes for FB&C about the Shakespeare Society of America's challenges to maintain and make available its eclection of Shakespeareana.

- If you miss Aaron Pratt's very useful demo of camera setups and software useful for sharing special collections remotely, it's now up on the BSA's YouTube channel (along with many other of the interesting virtual events they've been sponsoring).

- Amber Kehoe and Heather Brown write for the Harry Ransom Center blog about conserving daguerreotypes.

- Up on the Grolier Club's Vimeo is "Medieval MSS at Social Distance," with Barbara Shailor, Lisa Light, Lisa Fagin Davis, Consuelo Dutschke, and William Stoneman.

- An amazing new biblio-offering from Jonathan A. Hill, Bookseller: the manuscript catalogue of Claude Pierre Goujet's (1697–1767) 10,000-volume library.

Upcoming Auctions

- Beaux-Arts (Aristophil 29) at Druout on 16 June.

- Littérature Française du XXe Siècle (Aristophil 30) at Artcurial on 17 June.

- Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps & Photographs at Lyon & Turnbull on 17 June.



- Sciences: Archéologie, Savants et Philosophies (Aristophil 31) at Ader on 18 June.

- Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 18 June.



- Publications of the Arthur H. Clark Company at PBA Galleries ends on 18 June.

- Littérature Les Années 1920–1930 (Aristophil 32) at Aguttes on 19 June.

Sunday, June 07, 2020

Links & Auctions

- The ABAA Virtual Book Fair ends later today; Firsts London continues through 12 June.

- Oak Knoll Books & Press has started posting some author interviews on their YouTube channel.

- David Pearson has a great post for Early Modern Female Book Ownership about some uniformly-bound and labeled volumes he was recently able to acquire from the library of Jane Pearce.

- Type & Forme have launched a new online exhibition and catalog, "Joseph Banks: A Lincolnshire Botanist in Australia." See also Rebecca Rego Barry's post on the Fine Books Blog.

- From Past & Present, a look at what some AAS staff members have been have up to during quarantine, sharing in the transcription of the Society's first donation book.

- Over at Jot101, a sniff at an early 20th-century book advertising gimmick, the perfumed novel.

- Henry Widener gets the "Bright Young Librarians" treatment this week.

- From the BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog, "Late manuscripts, bad manuscripts?"

- Rebecca Rego Barry has a rundown of some new books about books.

- Catherine Ansorge writes for the Cambridge University special collections blog about "Some Islamic manuscripts from Africa."

- Peter Kidd has a followup post identifying the collector(s) of a now-dispersed album of illuminated cuttings.

- BYU has acquired a collection of the Book of Mormon, including several copies of the first edition and first editions of all 149 translations.

Upcoming Auctions

- Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 9 June.

- Militaria Autographs at Alexander Historical Auctions on 9 June.



- Arts of the Islamic World & India at Sotheby's London on 10 June.


- Early Summer Sale at Arader Galleries on 13 June.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Links & Auctions

The book fairs are coming!

- Marvin Getman's first Virtual Fair opens at noon EDT on Tuesday, 2 June and runs through 6 p.m. EDT on Thursday, 4 June. He's planning a fair for the first Tuesday of each month.

- The ABAA Virtual Book Fair kicks off at 10 a.m. EDT on Thursday, 4 June, and will run through 7 June.

- Firsts London's virtual Firsts Online will open at 9 a.m. EDT on Friday, 5 June.

- Haylie Swenson has a great post for the Folger's Shakespeare & Beyond blog on "Owls in the Early Modern Imagination." See also "Meet Cornelius," about the c.1625 owl-based image that's been my online avatar apparently since 2007(!).

- Aristophil sales 29–32 will be held on 16–19 June.

- From Kurt Zimmerman at American Book Collecting, a very poignant post "A Book I Shouldn't Have Yet."

- Jason Scott-Warren talked about his new book Shakespeare's First Reader with Natale Vacalebre (English starts at about 2:50).

- Arvid Nelsen has a memorial post to Colin Franklin on the Bridwell Library's site.

- Kate Ozment's article "Rationale for Feminist Bibliography" was published in Textual Cultures.

- From Chris Burgess for the Cambridge University Special Collections blog, "'I dared not dream that this dream had come true': musings on special collections in lockdown."

- New video from two BSA webinars this week: Karen Sánchez-Eppler's on juvenile marginalia, and Elaine Treharne's on medieval mise-en-page (see also the accompanying bibliography for the latter).

- Rebecca Rego Barry recaps the Christie's "Book Collecting in the Digital Age" webinar, a video of which is coming.

- Over on the N-YHS blog, "A bibliographic mystery, courtesy of Milton Halsey Thomas."

- At Early Modern Female Book Ownership, "Books owned by the Canonesses of the Holy Sepulchre."

- Jackie Penny writes for the AAS blog about the process of designing the exhibition catalog for the Paul Revere show Beyond Midnight.

- John Garth's The Worlds of JRR Tolkien is highlighted in the Guardian. Garth seeks to identify many of the buildings and areas that may have inspired settings in Tolkien's writings.

Upcoming Auctions

- Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 3 June.

- Comic Books: Pre-Code Horror, Silver Age Marvel and Undergrounds at PBA Galleries on 4 June.

- Worlds Beyond: Fine Books and Manuscripts at Christie's ends on 4 June.

- Bibliothèque Robert Beauvillain at Binoche et Giquello on 5 June.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Links & Auctions

- A new short film by D.W. Young focuses on the jargon of the antiquarian book trade; Susannah Kemple has a short introduction for the New Yorker (the film is embedded at the top of the page).

- Tony Grafton did a talk for Labyrinth Books and the Princeton Humanities Council about his new book Inky Fingers: The Making of Books in Early Modern Europe, published by Harvard University Press. Watch on YouTube.

- I was able to tune into Marina Rustow's excellent talk this week on "The Cairo Geniza in the Digital Age," which is now available on YouTube.

- A former University of Illinois employee was sentenced to two years of "second-chance probation" after he pleaded guilty to the theft of two rare books from the University of Illinois Music Library.

- There's a virtual book launch for Nick Basbanes' new biography of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow on 2 June. Free, but registration is required.

- The submission deadline for this year's Honey & Wax Book Collecting Prize is 1 June.

- From the Bodleian's Conveyor blog, the medieval manuscripts team talks about how they're able to work remotely during the pandemic.

- Biblio listings for used books are now available through the Bookshop.org platform (where new copies of a title are not available).

- The University of Buffalo has received a 30,000-edition collection of pulp fiction from alumnus George Kelley.

- Kevin Wisniewski has some updates on the AAS Program in the History of the Book, including that the program's newsletter from 1983 to 2008 is now available digitally, and that they'll be hosting their first virtual book talk on 28 May, with Derrick Spires talking about his book The Practice of Citizenship: Black Politics and Print Culture in the Early United States (which I hope will be recorded, since I have to be in another meeting at the time).

- Speaking of AAS, they are selling one of their two copies of the first newspaper printing of the Star-Spangled Banner, with proceeds to benefit the collections fund. The auction ends on 18 June, and the newspaper issue is estimated at $300,000–500,000.

- From Sara Schliep at The Collation, "Inside the Folger Archives: Uncle Henry's Pipers."

- The BL's medieval manuscripts blog looks back at the 2018 Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms exhibition.

- Eric White writes for Notabilia about comparing multiple Princeton copies of 15th-century books.

- Aaron Pratt is in the "Bright Young Librarians" spotlight this week.

- UVA posted some last pictures of the now-empty Alderman Library before the renovations begin in earnest.

- Another provenance mystery from the Middle Temple Library.

- The Council of State Archivists have released a series of new emergency preparedness documents.

- Biblio-human Colin Franklin died this week. Peter Kraus has a memorial post on the ABAA blog.

Upcoming Auctions

Books and Manuscripts: A Spring Miscellany at Sotheby's now ends on 27 May.

Livres Rares et Manuscrits at Christie's on 27 May.

Printed Books, Maps & Autographs at Dominic Winter Auctioneers on 27–28 May.

Art & Archaeology of Asia – Travel & Exploration – Cartography at PBA Galleries on 28 May.

The Martin Magovsky Collection of Children's Books and Books & Manuscripts at Freeman's on 28 May.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Links, Reviews & Auctions

- The IOBA Virtual Rare Book Fair continues through the end of the weekend - well worth having a look through the many and varied offerings, though I confess, I miss chatting with the booksellers. Much looking forward to when we can all be in the same place again!

- Dan Cohen posted this piece on guidance for reopening library facilities, put together by IFLA. See also WebJunction's information hub.

- Great biblio-human Robin Myers, 94, is walking in her garden to raise money for World Jewish Relief.

- Princeton's fabulous Shakespeare and Company Project is highlighted in the Guardian.

- New from AAS, Black Self-Publishing.

- Ariel Sabar has a piece in the April Atlantic about the Dirk Obbink scandal.

- Michael Vinson is interviewed on the AbeBooks podcast about his new biography of Johnny Jenkins.

- From Simon Beattie, a look at the second issue (1733) of The Catch Club, a collection of humorous songs by English Baroque composers.

- At Early Modern Female Book Ownership, a copy of Hannah Woolley's The Queene-like Closet.

- Over on the University of Glasgow's Special Collections blog, the first installment of a series about the conservation of a 14th-century manuscript of Higden's Polychronicon.

- Distraction reading has increased in the UK, the Guardian reports.

- Research has revealed text on four Dead Sea Scroll parchments in the John Rylands Library previously believed to be blank.

- Sarah McMillan writes for Swann about the mixographia printing process. Hadn't heard of it? Me neither.

- Karin Wulf talked to Whitney Martinko for Smithsonian about "How Historic Preservation Shaped the Early United States."

- UC Berkeley has released a set of responsible access workflows for digitization projects.

- From A Bookhunter on Safari, "A Cambridge Binding – John Bird Hawes."

- Boston Athenaeum programming for the spring has gone virtual.

- The University of Liverpool library has started a blog series taking readers on an A–Z tour of the historic counties of Britain.

- The National Archives has awarded $2.9 million in grants for historical papers publication projects.

- Stephen Grant has posted the third part of his profile of first Folger director William Adams Slade.

- Famed collector Peter Spang has died. He was on the MHS board when I worked there years ago, and was unfailingly kind and interested in what we were up to. Donald Friary has a nice memorial post on Antiques and the Arts Weekly.

Book Reviews

- Nick Gadd's Death of a Typographer; review by Alex Johnson for the Fine Books Blog.

- Kevin Hayes' The Road to Monticello; review by Breck Baumann for the Colonial Review.

Upcoming Auctions

- Churchill in Charge at Sotheby's ends on 20 May.

Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 21 May.

- Americana from the George M. Steinmetz Collection – Literature – Miscellaneous Books at PBA Galleries ends on 21 May.

- Books and Manuscripts: A Spring Miscellany at Sotheby's ends on 21 May.

- Livres Rares et Manuscrits at Christie's on 27 May.

- Printed Books, Maps & Autographs at Dominic Winter Auctioneers on 27–28 May.

- Art & Archaeology of Asia – Travel & Exploration – Cartography at PBA Galleries on 28 May.

- The Martin Magovsky Collection of Children's Books and Books & Manuscripts at Freeman's on 28 May.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Links & Auctions

- IOBA, the Independent Online Booksellers Association, has announced a Virtual Book Fair for 15–17 May, with "doors opening" at 1 p.m. ET on Friday.

- The ABAA will also hold a virtual book fair, from 4–7 June, and London's Firsts fair will be held virtually on 5 June starting at 2 p.m. UK time.

- Over on the NLS blog, "Delivering a Bestseller: Culpeper and Midwifery."

- From the Cambridge University Special Collections blog, Francis Young writes about a thirteenth-century poem marking the construction of Salisbury Cathedral. And their conservation department highlights some treatments being undertaken on some parchment deeds.

- At the Junto, "Early American Women Unmasked."

- Devon Eastland writes for Swann on "Introduction to Bookbinding: Folding & Sewing."

- From Caroline Duroselle-Melish for The Collation, "A Red Proof Sheet Used as Printer's Waste."

- Over on the Grolier Club blog, "Finding Our Marbles."

- Also at The Collation, Drew Thomas on "Following the Trail of Counterfeits in the Folger's Reformation Collection." False imprint detective work!

- The Middle Temple Library is trying to identify the annotator of their 1566 Copernicus.

- The Open University's History of Books and Reading Seminar has started a blog series on "Reading and Wellbeing."

Upcoming Auctions

- English Literature, History, Children's Books, and Illustrations at Sotheby's ends on 12 May.

- Rare Golf Books, Memorabilia & Ephemera at PBA Galleries on 14 May.

Sunday, May 03, 2020

Links & Auctions

- Over at Sammelband, Cait Coker on "The Special Collections Classroom in the Time of COVID-19."

- From Aaron Pratt for the HRC blog, "Gutenberg's Blanks."

- Newly online from the Library of Congress, digitized collections of the papers of Andrew Johnson, Chester Arthur, and William McKinley.

- Jane Mainley-Piddock is editing a volume of M.R. James' letters: you can support it via Unbound (I have!)

- Over at Teaching the Codex, "Goatskin in the garden: how does it feel to prepare your own parchment?"

- Now online from the Yale Law Library, Mike Widener's exhibition "Precedents So Scrawl'd and Blurr'd: Readers' Marks in Law Books."

- Among the May Rare Book Monthly articles are Susan Halas' "Bookselling in a Time of Coronavirus" (rounding up responses from various booksellers about how they're dealing with the craziness); Michael Stillman's report on the Dirk Obbink happenings; and Bruce McKinney's check-in with Marvin Getman about the potential of holding some virtual book fairs.

- From Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, "Missing Initials from the Murano Gradual."

- In Atlas Obscura, Rebecca Rego Barry writes about a recently-sold "chocolate museum in a box."

- A large collection of Civil War photographs from the Medford History Society are now being stored at Tufts University (and are available digitally through Digital Commonwealth).

- From Jerry Morris at My Sentimental Library, "Ventures in Book Collecting During This Coronavirus Pandemic."

- Over on the Cambridge Libraries Special Collections blog, "Rare Caribbean Pamphlets."

- Cynthia Smith writes for the LC's Worlds Revealed blog about "Ortelius: A Legendary Mapmaker."

- Rebecca Rego Barry notes the upcoming Freeman's sale of William Toplis' Wodehouse collection.

- From the BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog, "Designing the Arnstein Bible."

- On the Bodleian blog, a look at a 17th-century book of magical charms from their collections.

Upcoming Auctions

- Rare Books, Manuscripts & Relics, Forbes Collection Part II, Kerouac Estate Part III at University Archives on 6 May.

Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 7 May.

- Printed & Manuscript African-Americana at Swann Galleries on 7 May.

The P.G. Wodehouse Collection of William Toplis at Freeman's on 7 May.

- Americana – Travel & Exploration – World History – Cartography at PBA Galleries on 7 May.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Links & Auctions

- If you need a few minutes' daily respite from <  all this  > I heartily recommend Sandi Toksvig's "Vox Tox" YouTube channel. She's doing a short segment each day from home, usually featuring some interesting bits she's found amongst her books. They are pure delight. I've also been enjoying my school-librarian aunt's readings of childrens' books, and Mary Chapin Carpenter singing songs from her kitchen (both on Facebook). And if ghost stories are your jam, Robert Lloyd Parry has been posting videos of his readings on the Nunkie Films YouTube channel.

- Today is Audubon's birthday, and over on the Library of Congress blog, Ashley Cuffia has some suggestions for "Celebrating John James Audubon with Citizen Science."

- Harvard invites crowdsourced transcription help for the recently-digitized Colonial North America collection. Get started here.

- Lisa Fagin Davis' webinar "Fragments and Fragmentology in the Twenty-First Century" is now available on YouTube.

- Also newly available on YouTube, the 9 March "Feminist Bibliographies" event at UCLA.

- Penn Today highlighted the "American Contact" conference, held virtually this week with pre-circulated video papers and then Zoom discussion sessions. The papers were excellent, and though I didn't get to join as many discussion sessions as I would have liked, those I did see were also great.

- David Pearson guest-posts on the Middle Temple Libraries "Provenance Mysteries" blog about frustrations in provenance research.

- Over on Notabilia, Eric White on some new finds among the Princeton binding fragments.

- From the Princeton Graphic Arts collection blog, "Lord Temple and His Stolen Stationery."

- Scott Ellwood writes for the Grolier Club blog about eighteenth-century Yorkshire bookseller Isabella "Tibby" Tinkler."

- The Bodleian blog highlights a new catalogue of the papers of post Edward Blunden.

- From Erin Blake at The Collation, "The 'Greco Deco' Folger Shakespeare Library."

- Devin Fitzgerald is in the "Bright Young Librarians" spotlight over on the Fine Books Blog.

- More on the continuing Dirk Obbink fallout over on the ARCA blog.

- From the Cambridge University Libraries Special Collections blog, Sally Kent on "An Earthen Pot of Bones: True Crime in Sutton."

- On the BL's Untold Lives blog, "Solving a Provenance Puzzle: Papers of Henry and Robert Dundas, Viscounts Melville."

- Over on CNN, "Solving the 1,000-year-old mystery of rare blue medieval paint." And here's the Science Advances article.

- The Book Collector has launched a podcast, featuring articles from the journal's archive.

- From Sarah Werner, "Picture Books." I love the subhead: "Pictures. That's it. Just pictures of things so you can rest your brain."

Upcoming Auctions (online)

- From the Curious to the Extraordinary at Chiswick Auctions on 28 April.

- Modern Literature, Childrens', Private Press and Original Illustrations at Forum Auctions on 29 April.

- Literature, Americana, History, Collectible Books at PBA Galleries (timed sale, no reserves) starts ending at 11 a.m. PDT on 30 April.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Links & Auctions

- "The Booksellers" documentary is now available for streaming rental, and if you rent via this link, 50% of the proceeds go directly to the ABAA. I'm looking forward to watching later today!

- Yesterday afternoon's BSA webinar "What is a Feminist Practice in Bibliography?" was excellent. It was largely based on small-group discussion (and thus not particularly suited for video) but I found it really inspiring to hear about the great projects folks are working on.

- Dirk Obbink was arrested in March on suspicion of theft and fraud, according to the Guardian. Background and more on the ARCA blog. The arrest was first reported by the Oxford Blue, but at the time of writing their article is not currently available.

- Dawn Hoffman writes for The Collation, "Hooked on Book Furniture ..." Clasps and bosses and corners, oh my!

- Also in The Collation, Bénédicte Miyamoto on "Marks in Manuals" and Caroline Duroselle-Melish on "The Many Different Ways to Make a Lacemaking Pattern Book."

- Abram Van Engen is giving a virtual book talk about his new book City on a Hill: A History of American Exceptionalism at the MHS on 1 May. Register (free) here.

- From Kathleen Monahan on the John J. Burns Library blog, "Virtual Reference, or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Local Note."

- Over at Early Modern Female Book Ownership, a look at Thomas and Isabella Hervey's copy of Thomas More's Utopia.

- The Royal Library of Belgium has digitized 213 manuscripts from the Library of the Dukes of Burgundy.

- From the Cambridge University Library's Special Collections blog, "Spreadsheets, Shelflists & Scones: Special Collections Works from Home."

- Rebecca Rego Barry notes the ongoing celebrations marking the 500th birthday of Christophe Plantin.

- Ellen Gleason writes for the Clements Library blog about her work processing two recently-acquired whaling logbooks.

- The BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog highlights a 1547 inventory of the possessions of Henry VIII, including several extant books and manuscripts.

- From Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, the first part of a series on "A Recently Dismembered Copy of Giordana Ruffo, De Medicina Equorum."

- The Marian Library's exhibition "Mary in Miniature: Books of Hours in the Marian Library Collection" is now available for online viewing.

- Video from the ILAB seminar on COVID-19 and the antiquarian bookselling world is now available.

Upcoming Auctions (online)

- Rare Books, Autographs & Maps at Doyle New York ends on 22 April.

Historical Manuscripts at Heritage Auctions on 22 April.

- Autograph Seeker: The Estate of Gary Combs at Doyle New York on 23 April.

- Americana from the George E. Steinmetz Collection (with additions) at PBA Galleries on 23 April.

- Books and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 23 April.

- Miscellaneous Books at PBA Galleries on 30 April (no catalog yet)

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Links & Auctions

- CABS 2020 has been cancelled.

- Rebecca Rego Barry summarized this week's ILAB webinar about the effects of COVID-19 on the antiquarian bookselling community for the FB&C blog.

- Brian Cassidy talked to the AbeBooks "Behind the Bookshelves" podcast this week.

- Over on the Beinecke's blog, Michael Morand offers "Some Early Notes on Teaching Online with Special Collections in a Time of Quarantine."

- From Past is Present, Jeff Cooper on "Hidden Histories and the Digitization of New England's Earliest Manuscript Church Records."

- Don't miss the excellent "At Home with Books" catalog put out this week by Heather O'Donnell, Ben Kinmont, Simon Beattie, and Justin Croft.

- Devon Eastland writes about the "long s" for the Swann blog.

- Two new stories this week about the opening of Emily Hale's letters from T.S. Eliot at Princeton: James Parker writes for the Atlantic on "The Secret Cruelty of T.S. Eliot," and Princeton's Daniel Linke writes about the robust security (literal metal bands around the boxes!) used to keep the letters secure until they could be released.

- From Matt Kirschenbaum, "Bibliologistics: The Nature of Books Now, or a Memorable Fancy."

- Mike Widener has a post on the Yale Law Library's rare books blog about "Epidemics and Quarantine in 17th-century Rome."

- Hannah Alpert-Adams has a Medium post about "What the Humanities do in a Crisis."

- Over on the library blog for Catholic University, Henry Granville Widener has a post about Brazilian incunabula.

- From the BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog, "Illuminating the Worms Bible."

- From Jay Moschella, "Notes From a Lost Renaissance Library."

- More useful resource compilations, this one on #VastEarlyAmerica from the Omohundro Institute.

- Over on the Met's "In Circulation" blog, Mindell Dubansky offers some "Reminiscences of a Bookbinder."

- From Lisa Fagin Davis, "Fragmentology Under Quarantine." (Also, Lisa's "Breakfast Paleography" threads on Twitter are great, too!)

- At Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, "A Collector's Mark Re-Interpreted."

- From the Middle Temple Library blog, another fascinating provenance mystery for us to mull over.

- Over on the Princeton Graphic Arts collection blog, "Museum of the History of the Recorded Word."

- Elizabeth DeBold writes for The Collation on "All the Purposes of a Library: A Piece of Blue Ephemera."

Upcoming Auctions (online)


Fine Books and Manuscripts at Potter & Potter on 18 April.

Sunday, April 05, 2020

Links & Auctions

If you can support your favorite bookstores and booksellers and publishers in any way during all this, please do. It's rough out there. Oh, and if you're a library administrator, close the library for now, please.

Courage, friends.

- Probably inevitably, London Rare Books School has cancelled its sessions for 2020.

- The Sammelband post for April is "Teaching Materiality with Virtual Instruction." 

- Over in the Ransom Center blog, "Picturing the Plays of Shakespeare and His Contemporaries."

- Scott Ellwood has a post on the Grolier Club's blog about what seems to be Sir Thomas Phillipps' earliest book catalogue.

- Don't miss Aaron Pratt's "Sometimes You Want Your Blank Blank."

- From the Middle Temple Library blog, "Provenance Mysteries: Injury by Beard."

- Some great, timely character sleuthing by Keith Houston at Shady Characters in "Miscellany No. 87: A Coronavirus Conundrum."


- The Bewick Society blog highlights a new book by Nigel Tattersfield, Dealing in Deceit: Edwin Pearson of the 'Bewick Repository' Bookshop, 1838–1901.


- From Laura Cleaver at History Matters, "The Sauce of the Middle Ages."

- Elizabeth Ryan writes for the Stanford Hidden Treasures blog, "Encounters with Binder's Waste in Stanford Libraries' Conservation Department." 

- From Penn's Special Collections Processing blog, Cory Austin Knudson offers "Some Thoughts on my Favorite Dissertation Ever Written."

- April's Rare Book Monthly articles are up.

Upcoming Auctions (online)

- Jiao Bingzhen Album at The Potomack Company on 8 April.


- Fine Books and Manuscripts at Potter & Potter on 18 April.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Links & Auctions

- On the TCD blog, "A Bibliographical Alphabet."

- Via IMLS, "COVID-19 Resources for Libraries and Museums."

- From Sarah Werner, "Blanking out," on what blank pages have to tell us if we look closely enough.

- The Yale University Library's new exhibition "Trial by Media: The Queen Caroline Affair" is now online.

- Robert Oldham writes for the APHA blog on "Restoring a Coisne Stanhope Hand Press."

- Over on the Providence Public Library Special Collections blog, "Archives in the Time of COVID-19."

- Stephen Grant has the second part of his profile of Folger director William Adams Slade at The Collation.

- Over on the Manhattan Rare Book Company's blog, "Beyond the Page: Finally, the Perfect Gift."

- From Swann Galleries, a short piece on the value of manuscript journals.

- Nolin Deloisin-Baum is in the "Bright Young Collectors" spotlight.

- Over on the BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog, a profile of Humfrey Wanley.

- Anke Timmerman writes about book collecting on a budget, for the FB&C blog.

- The NYSL has posted video of their recent event with Sean D. Moore about his book Slavery & the Making of Early American Library.

- From the Audubon Society's blog, "The Woman Behind The Birds of America," about Juditha Dowd's new biography-in-poems of Lucy Bakewell Audubon.

- More useful things: the BPL's guide to their medieval manuscripts, and Heather Cole's guide to online instruction with primary sources from Brown.

- Released this week, Matt Kirschenbaum's Mellon-funded report "Books.Files: Preservation of Digital Assets in the Contemporary Publishing Industry."

- From the Innerpeffray Library blog, "Meet the Borrower – Thomas Stalker Part I."

Upcoming Auctions

- Books and Works on Paper including Autographs and Memorabilia at Chiswick Auctions on 31 March.

- The Alex Raymond Flash Gordon Collection at Profiles in History on 31 March.

- Spring Auction at Alexander Historical Auctions ends on 1 April.

- April Auction at Arader Galleries on 4 April.


Sunday, March 22, 2020

Links & Auctions

And I thought things were looking weird last week ... gosh. As you can, please support your local independent, used, and antiquarian booksellers in any way that they need it right now (check their websites and social media for details). Support your local public and academic libraries by strongly encouraging them (if they haven't already) to close for now and carry on their missions remotely. Trust me, there is plenty we librarians can be doing, even without being in close proximity to the books in our collections.

Speaking of which, I should have thought of this sooner, too, but if it's even the tiniest bit of help to anyone (student, teacher, professor, librarian, bookseller), the list of my library is online, and if I have a book that you need to consult for reference, need a citation from, &c., just say the word and I'll be happy to get you whatever information would be useful.

- Several exhibitors at the New York International Antiquarian Book Fair (all known to many of us) have tested positive for COVID-19, according to messages sent via the ABAA and ILAB this week. Please be aware of this in case it is relevant to your personal situation, and I know all readers of this blog join me in wishing our friends a speedy recovery.

- The BSA is offering the first in a series of free webinars this week, and are calling for volunteers to help with future installments and/or to assist with other timely programming.

- From my dear friends at LibraryThing, who've been working at home for years, "Work From Home Like LibraryThing Does."

- Many university presses are offering sales on books they were planning to exhibit at conferences this spring and summer; I'm sure there are others, but here are the relevant pages for JHUP and UVA Press.

- Over on the N-YHS blog, "Martha Lamb: New-York Historical Society Pioneer."

- Rebecca Rego Barry writes for CrimeReads: "Carolyn Wells, in the Library, with a Revolver." Rebecca also has a post on the FB&C blog about "Saving the Baskerville Bible."

- From Kyle Clark for the Beyond the Reading Room blog, "Unveiling the Mystery inside a Greek Manuscript Binding."

- The Culture Minister for Wales has placed a temporary export bar on a 15th-century Lewis of Caerleon manuscript to allow a UK buyer to raise the £300,000 required to keep it in the UK.

- Megan Cook and others have been crowd-compiling a spreadsheet of Digital Repositories for Book History Teaching.

- At Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, "A Dispersed Album of Illuminated Cuttings."

- A number of NYC-based philanthropic organizations have formed the "NYC COVID-19 Response & Impact Fund to support New York City-based social services and arts and cultural organizations that have been affected by the current coronavirus public health crisis."

- More on the Dead Sea Scrolls fragments fakery from the Guardian.

- From Elizabeth DeBold and Heather Wolfe at The Collation, "A Wyncoll's Tale."

- Over on the Princeton Graphic Arts Collection blog, "Need a Project, no. 2? Chromolithography." They've also pulled together a collection of links of "Online Content for Printing History and Art History."

- More useful online resources from the Folger, too.

Upcoming Auctions

- Rare Books, Manuscripts & Relics, Forbes Collection Part I, Kerouac Estate Part II at University Archives on 25 March.

- The Birmingham Assay Office Library at Forum Auctions on 26 March.

- Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 27 March.

- Rare Books, Manuscripts & Ephemera at Addison & Sarova on 28 March.


Courage, friends. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Links, Auctions & Courage

Well. What a time. Honestly it's sort of hard to know what to say through all this, other than to make a heartfelt offer to help in any way that I can. If there's anything you need that I might be able to help with, I'm here. I'm looking forward to trying some experimental instruction sessions with some classes I've been working with this semester, and hope to be able to continue to make progress on many fronts. This is going to be a challenging time for us all. Courage, friends. Stock up on books. Wash your hands. Wash 'em again. Take care of yourselves. 

- Rebecca Rego Barry is tracking postponed or cancelled book fairs.

- Quite a story from Michael Greshko for National Geographic: testing has reportedly proven that the Dead Sea Scroll fragments acquired for the National Museum of the Bible are all modern forgeries. Much more from Art Fraud Insights, including their full report on the findings. See also, The Lying Pen of Scribes. There are implications here for other fragments in collections around the world.

- From American Book Collecting, "In the Midst of It: A Book Hunter Down the Cataloging Rabbit Hole."

- Some great new marbled paper sample books in the Graphic Arts collection at Princeton.

- The recently-recovered 14th-century Divan of Hafez is scheduled to be sold at Sotheby's on 1 April.

- From Sarah Werner, "notes on feminist bibliography."

- Julie Stoner writes for the LC's maps blog, "Solving a Burning Question."

- Jon Munster is in the "Bright Young Booksellers" spotlight.

- The NYTimes ran an obituary for Andreas Brown of the Gotham Book Mart.

- The Philadelphia Inquirer has a feature on the arrival of the books and other materials from the David Library of the American Revolution at the American Philosophical Society.

Upcoming Auctions 

- Backal Collection and Library at Morton Subastas on 17 March.

- Art & Archaeology of Asia – Travel & Exploration – Cartography at PBA Galleries on 19 March.

- Livres Anciens et Modernes at Binoche et Giquello on 20 March.

- The Partridge Fine Arts Research Library at Forum Auctions (online) on 20 March.

Saturday, March 07, 2020

Links & Auctions

- The Library Company of Philadelphia and Penn have announced a joint symposium in honor of Michael Winship on 1–2 May.

- Christine Jacobson writes about the book trades as depicted in the new film version of Little Women.

- Over at Sammelband, "Teaching Manuscript: Lessons Learned from Quill-Cutting."

- The new Booksellers documentary opens this weekend; it is noticed in the NYTimes, NPR, the CSM, and the Guardian.

- Tony Dunnell writes for Mental Floss on "18 Surprising Things Stolen from Libraries."

- Two bibliospheric passings to note: Andreas Brown, longtime owner of the Gotham Book Mart, and Katharine Kyes Leab, editor of American Book Prices Current. Several of Kathy's excellent Rare Book School lectures are available to listen via their website, and I recommend them most highly.

- Heather O'Donnell speaks on the Biblio File podcast about the joys of buying, selling, and collecting books.

- The BL's Untold Lives blog reports on an exciting new Wynken de Worde acquisition.

- From William & Mary, some interesting work being done to identify the annotator of their copy of Newton's Principia.

Upcoming Auctions

- Livres Anciens du XVe au XIXe Siècle at ALDE on 10 March.

- Printed & Manuscript Americana at Swann Galleries on 10 March.

- Fine Books, Atlases, Manuscripts & Historical Photographs at Bonhams London on 11 March.

- The Medical & Scientific Library of W. Bruce Fye, Part III at Bonhams (online) on 11 March.

- The Erwin Tomash Library on the History of Computing (residual part) at Forum Auctions (online) on 12 March.

Sunday, March 01, 2020

Links & Auctions

- Rare Book Week New York is here!

- The group of Romanian nationals charged with the theft of rare books from a shipping warehouse near Heathrow at the end of January 2017 went on trial this week. Quite a lot more detail than I'd previously seen about the machinations ...

- Federal and state prosecutors were in court this week urging the return of a 1780 Alexander Hamilton letter (to Lafayette) to the Massachusetts State Archives. It is believed to have been among the items stolen by a library cataloger between 1938 and 1946, but is not specifically listed among the known stolen items when a list was released in 1950. It turned up after it was consigned to a Virginia auction house in 2018.

- Jennifer Schuessler writes for the NYTimes about recently-unveiled plans for a merger of the Brooklyn Historical Society and the Brooklyn Public Library.

- Don't miss Heather O'Donnell's tweet thread about a really fascinating manuscript she acquired last year.

- From the library of the Peterhouse Perne and Ward Libraries, "Independence Day," largely about the long-ago thefts from the libraries by Mark Fitzgeorge-Parker.

- Rare Book Monthly's March articles are available today.

- A 19th-century manuscript of Inca history stolen from the National Library of Peru during the Chilean occupation of Lima in the 1880s has been returned.

- TheBookGuide will cease publication at the end of March.

Upcoming Auctions

- Printed Books, Maps & Documents, Books from the Library of Dawson Turner, and the John Lawson Reference Library at Dominic Winter Auctioneers on 4 March.

- Rare Books at Heritage Auctions on 4 March.

- Maps and Atlases at Forum Auctions (online) on 5 March.

- Rare Photography: Books & Images – The Robert Enteen Collection. With Illustration & Fine Books at PBA Galleries on 5 March.

- Fine Books and Manuscripts at Bonhams New York on 6 March.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Links & Auctions

- David Segal writes for the NYTimes about the ongoing Aristophil scandal. This is the most in-depth account of the case I've seen so far.

- In the March Texas Monthly, "The Legend of John Holmes Jenkins" by Chris O'Connell. Michael Vinson's biography of Jenkins, Bluffing Texas Style, is scheduled for publication in March by the University of Oklahoma Press. I'm very much looking forward to this book ...

- The Chicago Sun Times has an obituary for Kenneth Nebenzahl, famed antiquarian map dealer.

- The Times (paywalled) ran a report on luxury handbags being made which each contain a fragment of a manuscript written by a well-known person (Dickens, Queen Victoria, Casanova, &c.).

- Contextual Alternate's "Drafts of History" project is calling for volunteers to send copies of their local newspapers from 10 March 2020 (in part to replicate a similar attempt made on 10 March 1888). Please join if you can!

- Antiquarian bookseller Barbara Rootenberg was honored at this year's California International Antiquarian Book Fair; an introductory speech given by her granddaughter (and third-generation bookseller) Madison Rootenberg Schwartz is up on the ABAA blog.

- Book Patrol highlights the Prismatic Jane Eyre project, which explores translations of Jane Eyre.

- From Stephen H. Grant for The Collation, "First Folger Director: William Adams Slade, Part I."

- In the "Bright Young Booksellers" spotlight, Will Baker of W. C. Baker Rare Books & Ephemera.

- The Library of Congress has acquired the archive of photographer Shawn Walker, as well as Walker's collection of the Harlem-based Kamoinge Workshop.

- Texas A&M University will host an exhibition this spring and summer, "The Eternal Passion: Nicholas A. Basbanes and the Making of A Gentle Madness." A symposium on 19 March will feature Basbanes, Rebecca Romney, Kurt Zimmerman, and curator Kevin O'Sullivan.

- Simon Beattie highlights an unrecorded variant of Goethe's edition of Ossian.

Upcoming Auctions

- Classic & Contemporary Photographs at Swann Galleries on 25 February.

- A Collection of Edward Gorey at Doyle New York (online) closes on 25 February.

- Travel & Exploration at Bonhams London on 26 February.

- Bibliothèque Georges Pompidou and Éditions Originales du XIXe au XXIe Siècle at ALDE on 26 February.

- Autographs, Books & Relics Include Kerouac Estate & Hemingway at University Archives on 26 February.

- Livres Avant Garde Surréalisme at Binoche et Giquello on 28 February.

- Magic Collection of Jim Rawlins, Part III at Potter & Potter on 29 February.