Sale of Rare Books, Autographs & Photographs on November 22, 2016
The Hillsborough Colonial Returns Achieves $394,000
Featuring The Explorers Club Collection and an Important Collection of Letters, Documents and Books Relating to Simon Bolivar and the South American Independence Movement
Doyle's November 22, 2016 auction of Rare Books, Autographs, Maps & Photographs saw much competitive bidding with the top lot, the remarkable 500 page manuscript titled The Present State of British Colonies in America, hammering down at $394,000, far exceeding its estimate of $100,000-150,000. This manuscript provides important contemporary accounts of most of the colonies from the perspective of their respective crown-appointed governors during the tense period from 1773-1775 when America was on the brink of revolution. More
From the same period, an extremely rare July 1776 printing of the Declaration of Independence in a Philadelphia newspaper achieved $150,000. Both results attest to the demand for primary materials relating to the foundation of the United States. In autographs, an unusual 1802 legal document settling the land-tract dispute between Aaron Burr and J.J. Angerstein, the powerful head of Lloyd's of London, was signed by Alexander Hamilton as attorney for Angerstein. This settlement cost Burr greatly and certainly fueled the fire between him and Hamilton -- the underpinnings of this document fueled competitive bidding to $18,750, many times its estimate of $4,000-6,000.
The fine American Presidential Autograph Collection of Dr. Julius Dintenfass, amassed decades ago, was well received among current collectors. It was highlighted by a fine example of a Federal Era shipping passport, printed in three languages and permitting a Boston vessel passage to Cadiz, was signed by President Washington and Thomas Jefferson as Secretary of State. The document sailed to $21,250, surpassing its estimate of $15,000-20,000.
Lastly in Americana, an uncommon offering in the sale were the first four editions of The Book of Mormon, printed in 1837 through 1842 in the unlikely locations of Palmyra, New York; Kirtland, Ohio and Nauvoo, Illinois. They provided a rare instance in which the rarity of a book increases with each subsequent edition. These volumes, which truly document the Mormon's westward diaspora of their early years, was bid for intensely, and while sold individually, the group brought a total of $104,375.
While they are best remembered for their first appearance on American television, The Beatles performed twice on The Ed Sullivan Show. A group of autographs collected by a lighting technician during their August 1965 taping topped their estimate of $10,000-15,000 and fetched $16,250.
A section of rare and valuable books on early travel, navigations, and voyages deaccessioned New York's famed Explorers Club were very popular in our exhibition and performed quite well on sale day (comprising lots 1-78). Prices were particularly strong for materials relating to Asia, such as the $10,000 reached for Staunton's 1797 Authentic Account of an Embassy from the King of Great Britain to the Emperor of China and $10,625 for Dalrymple's Oriental Repertory, both of which were estimated at $4,000-6,000.
An important collection of letters, documents and books relating Simon Bolivar and the South American Freedom Movement was an area of worldwide interest within the sale. A very fine hand-colored portrait of El Libertador Simon Bolivar signed upon his entry to Lima in 1823 was bid to $16,250 and General Sucre's glowing report and battle maps after the military victory at Ayacucho, which effectively ousted Spain's forces from South America, brought $10,000. More
Very fine bindings from the Estate of Walter Ward, Jr. created much excitement and generated competitive bidding for the finest examples, including a special edition of Dante printed on vellum and sumptuously bound that brought $9,375 and a very fine Estelle Doheny copy of the Kelmscott Press's 1894 The Story of the Land of Living Men or the Glittering Plain that brought $6,875. Also in finely printed books, early editions of Cervantes garnered much attention, including the $11,250 bid for the 1662 first illustrated edition of Don Quixote in Spanish and $13,750 for a set of the four volume 1829 Madrid printed Ibarra edition of Don Quixote in fine un-faded red morocco of the period.
In science and literature, an unrestored set of the notoriously fragile first edition in English of Karl Marx's Capital brought $10,625, an inscribed portrait of a young W.B. Yeats brought $4,687, and from The Thurston Collection a fine 38 volume set of the Works of Mark Twain, which included a signed leaf prepared for the edition before the author's death, reached $8,125. In the Artist's Books section Daumier's Parisian Album Comique achieved $6,875 and, always an auction favorite, Andy Warhol's early book 25 Cats Name[d] Sam and One Blue Pussy scurried up to $62,500.
The Photographs section of the auction offered fine art, early photography, such as travel albums and daguerreotypes, and photographic literature, comprising lots 475 - 602. More
All prices include the Buyer's Premium.
We Invite You to Auction!
Consignments are currently being accepted for the Spring 2017 auction of Rare Books, Autographs & Maps. We invite you to contact us for a complimentary auction evaluation. Our specialists are always available to discuss the sale of a single item or an entire collection.
For information, please contact Edward Ripley-Duggan at 212-427-4141, ext 234, or Peter Costanzo at ext. 248, or email [email protected]