"May blessings be upon the head of Cadmus, the Phoenicians, or whoever it was that invented books." -Thomas Carlyle
Welcome to my virtual book collection. Since collecting actual books is somewhat cost-prohibitive, I've begun to amass all of the books I would love to have if I had the means. Some are new, lots are old, all are unique or beautiful or unusual or in some other way have captured my fancy. Enjoy browsing!
Special Collections: Fine Bindings ~ Fairies and Fairy Tales ~ Terror and Madness ~ Poetry ~ Food, Drink and Apothecary ~ Science Fiction ~ Illuminations, Lettering and Hand-Coloring ~ Magic ~ Supernatural and Occult ~ Alchemy ~ Science and Technical ~ Maritime ~ Costumes ~ Humor ~ Children's books ~ Legend of King Arthur ~ Americana ~ 18th Century ~ 19th Century Authors and illustrators: Edgar Allan Poe ~ Jules Verne ~ Edmund Dulac ~ Kay Nielsen ~ Arthur Rackham ~ Edward Gorey ~ Charles Dickens ~ H.P. Lovecraft ~ William Hope Hodgson ~ Mark Twain ~ Lewis Carroll ~ Salvador Dali ~ George Cruikshank ~ Emily Dickinson ~ Geoffrey Chaucer ~ H.G. Wells
Humboldt County California Wants Your Factory
Publisher: Times Publishing Company
 pp. 30.5x23 cm. (12x9”) original illustrated wrappers. First Edition.
Elaborate and uncommon promotional brochure for Humboldt County, issued by the Humboldt Times. OCLC locates only 7 copies of this title.
Catalogue of the Inaugural Bench Show of the San Francisco Kennel Club
Mechanics’ Pavilion, San Francisco, Cal. May 19, 20, 21, 22, 1897
With 4 inserted plates with photographs of trophies awarded; numerous illustrated advertisements. 23x14.7 cm. (9¼x5¾”), original color lithographed pictorial wrappers.
Rare and fascinating catalogue listing the many participants in the first dog show of the San Francisco Kennel Club, with hundreds of categories, from Mastiffs and St. Bernards to Dachsundes and Yorkshire Terriers. The lineage of each of the participating pooches is given, and other details, including whether they were for sale, and if for sale, the price. A quick perusal reveals prices as high as $10,000, that for a St. Bernard named Tammany. The advertisements are equally entertaining, many relating to dog-related products, breeding fees, etc. No copies are listed in OCLC/WorldCat.
Hand Book of Gasoline Automobiles - twelve volumes
Association of Licensed Automobile Manufacturers / National Automobile Chamber of Commerce, 1909-1925
Marvelous guides from the infancy of the automobile, each page devoted to a different model, with a picture and full specifications, including price, number of cylinders, horsepower, wheel base, tire size, body styles available, etc. The manufacturers include such familiar names as Cadillac, Buick, Oldsmobile, Packard, Renault, and Studebaker, as well as the bygone Locomobile, Hotchkiss, Franklin, Peerless, Waltham-Orient, etc.
Minstrel Songs Old and New
Condition/Details: Bound in original pictorial paper wrappers, this antique volume is a scarce collection of “world-wide, famous minstrel and plantation songs, including the most popular of the celebrated Foster melodies, arranged with Piano-Forte accompaniment.” This work includes songs still known today, such as “Buffalo Gals,” “Camptown Races,” and “Oh, Susannah.” The volume shows advanced external age/wear, with age-toning and moisture indications to the delicate wrappers and pages, as well as chipping and tearing along the edges. The book measures approximately 10” x 12 1/2” and contains 215 pages.
Scenes in the Life of Harriet Tubman
Sarah H. Bradford. Auburn, W.J. Moses, 1869.
[iv], 132 pp. Woodcut frontispiece. (8vo) original terracotta cloth, titles in gilt, all edges gilt.
The first biography of Harriet Tubman, sold by subscription to provide financial support to Tubman in her old age. List of subscribers at rear. Scarce.
Cover design by Bohdan Bocianowski (Warsaw, 1956).
My father is a huge Jack London fan. Took me to the Jack London State Historic Park in Sonoma when I was younger. It’s a beautiful area, but it’s sad to see the ruins of his and his wife’s home, known as The Wolf House, which burned down before they moved in.
Our First Century: Being a Popular Descriptive Portraiture of the One Hundred Great and Memorable Events of Perpetual Interest in the History of Our Country
R.M. Devens. Springfield MA, C.A. Nichols & Co, 1876.
First Edition. 1007 pp. Chromolithograph title page; woodcut illustrations throughout. (Large 8vo) original brown cloth stamped in gilt. A centennial history of the United States.
Life at Puget Sound, with Sketches of Travel in Washington Territory, British Columbia, Oregon, and California, 1865-1881
Caroline C. Leighton. Lee & Shephard, Boston, 1884.
Seattle Architecturally, 1902
Compiled by M. Hume. Bebb & Mendel, Sauders & Lawton and de Neuf & Heide, 1902.
Scarce view of turn of the century Seattle architecture published jointly by three of its leading architectural firms. Unpaginated. Illustrations from photographs and sketches throughout. Oblong, 24x31.5 cm., original wrappers, string bound. First Edition.
Picturesque America; Or, The Land We Live In
Bryant, William Cullen. New York: D. Appleton, (1872-74)
First edition in book form, illustrated with 49 full-page steel-engraved early American views, including title pages and wonderful frontispiece plate of Niagara Falls, together with numerous in-text wood engravings, in handsome publisher’s deluxe morocco-gilt bindings.
“One of the great books of American illustrations… The best landscapes engraved in this country are to be found here” (Hamilton, 216).
Jesse James: The Life and Daring Adventures of This Bold Highwayman and Bank Robber and His No Less Celebrated Brother, Frank James. Together With the Thrilling Exploits of the Younger Boys. Written by ***** (One Who Dare Not Now Disclose His Identity.) The Only Book Containing The Romantic Life of Jesse James and his Pretty Wife Who Clung to Him to the Last!
Philadelphia, Barclay & Co, 1886
19)-96 pp. Woodcut illustrations. (8vo), original pictorial wrappers. Housed in custom folder. Third Printing. Woodcut portrait of Jesse James on front wrapper and of Jesse’s father on rear wrapper (neither correct).
B-A Note: “Written by One Who Dare Not Now Disclose His Identity” - and neither portrait is correct. Hmm… might not pass the sniff test, but still a classic little book with a thrilling title!
Low Down on Calamity Jane
Rapid City, SD, 1932.
“…written by a woman who claimed to have known Calamity Jane…” -Adams, Six-Guns 644.
12 pp. Photograph on front and rear wrapper covers. 21.9x15 cm. (8½x6”), yellow wrappers. First Edition.
B-A Note: Thanks to a plentiful auction of Americana at PBA, I think today shall be a Characters of the Wild Wild West day. We will return to regular randomness tomorrow. ;)
The True Story of the Killing of “Billy the Kid” (Notorious New Mexico Outlaw). As Detailed by John W. Poe, a Member of Sheriff Pat Garrett’s Posse, to E.A. Brininstool, in 1919
Privately Printed by E.A. Brininstool, 1923.
The three illustrations plus the letter did not appear in the First Edition of the separate printing, which was issued in wrappers in 1922. The account first appeared in Wide World magazine, London, in 1919.
Mead Cycles 1911 Chicago, The Oldest Exclusive Bicycle House in America - catalogue
Illustrated with photographs and drawings. 23x30.5 cm. (9x12”), original dark blue wrappers with gilt-embossed lettering, cover pictorial label, “Leaving the Bunch Behind.”
With a “Confidential Discount Sheet,” tipped in at verso of front wrapper. A nice catalogue from this bicycle company with a branch in Liverpool, England in addition to Chicago, Illinois. In it are illustrated all parts of the bicycle for sale, in addition to complete bicycles such as the “Sentinel,” and the last page details, “The Evolution of the Bicycle.” Only one copy located by OCLC Worldcat at Hagley Museum & Library.
Frank Leslie’s Historical Register of the United States Centennial Exposition, 1876 - two editions. New York, Frank Leslie, 1876-1877.
Includes: 324 pp. Profusely illustrated with wood engravings, some full or double-page (including the large folding bird’s-eye view plate of the Exposition in Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park); 3 chromolithograph plates of flags from different nations; facsimile of the Declaration of Independence. 40.5x29.5 cm. (16x11¼”), original green gilt-lettered and decorated cloth. * 320 pp. Lacks non-illustrated title page. Many woodcut illustrations within, some full page, plus a chromolithograph illustrated title page. 39.9x28 cm. (15¾x11¼”), half calf and boards, gilt-lettered.