A Californian sale of March 7 certainly offered great variety in age, content and price range. Promoted as A Biblio-Medley for All Tastes, it ran to well over 500 lots across its printed and supplementary, online catalogues – with at least one lot, a volume of the works of Arthur Hallam, sold for just $10.
Extracted from Antiques Trade Gazette | Ian McKay
One of the high spots of this PBA Galleries (20/15% buyer’s premium) sale of March 7, was a Mickey Mouse Waddle Book of 1934 that sold for $3750 (£2865), but much earlier lots included a 1485, Reutlingen printing by Johann Otmar of Jacobus de Voragine’s Lombardica historia.
This example of a 13th century bestseller on the lives of the saints, more familiarly known as the ‘The Golden Legend’, showed substantial worming to the early part of the book. However, in a recent but antique style calf binding, it made $3000 (£2290)
In full period vellum, a 1606 Roman edition of the …Exercitia Spiritualia of St Ignatius of Loyola, comprising meditations, contemplations, and prayers that are the fundamental text of Jesuit spirituality and training, sold at $2000 (£1525).
Top lot, at $4800 (£3665) was one of 50 large paper copies of JBB Sauvan’s Picturesque Tour of the Seine…, published by Ackermanns in 1821 with map and 24 coloured aquatint plates.
The plates in these special copies are generally regarded to be superior in both engraving and colouring, said the PBA cataloguer. The binding was a modern one of full calf gilt.
Published in Omaha in 1919, Pauline’s
Practical Book of the Culinary Arts… provided an excellent entrée for an earlier PBA sale, selling for $7500 (£5770) on February 21.
The first lot offered on the day, Carrie Pauline Lynch’s cookbook, one whose extended title states that it is aimed at clubs, home or hotels, was described at the time by Innkeeping Hotel Monthly as “the only cook book written by a negro woman”.
Though certainly very rare, there are a couple of earlier claimants to that honour, works by Malinda Russell and Abby Fisher having appeared in 1866 and 1881. This was, however, a book that appears to have no presence in auction records nor such major resources as the Lupton collection of African American Cookbooks at the University of Alabama.
The 700 or so recipes, said the cataloguer, comprise an eclectic mixture of distinctively southern recipes and dishes such as ‘Birds a la Parisenne’ that the author “…probably considered suitable for a sophisticated hostess in Oklahoma”. The latter would have included the dedicatee, Anna Robinson Welsh, for whom Pauline had worked for five years.
This copy, inscribed by the author on the occasion of her first wedding anniversary, features on one of the blank leaves intended for users’ own notes an autograph recipe for Prince of Wales cake.