Here are some of our most RECENT ACQUISITIONS available for purchase:
A Rare Multi-Tinted Civil War Lithograph
J. G. Keyser. “1862 Campain (sic) sketches of the 24 Reg. N.J. vols. 1862” (Stuttgart : J.C. Hensler, ) Multi-tinted lithograph. Image: 17″ x 20″. VG-, mended tears, minor ripples, discoloration to margins. Mounted on acid-free paper. $1,800
This colorful Civil War artifact was drawn by John G. Keyser of Bridgeton, NJ, a private in the 24th Regular New Jersey Volunteers, lithographed by C. Kolb, and printed by J. C. Hensler of Stuttgart, Germany. It depicts vignettes of scenes and sights familiar to the 24th, including “Barracks at Beverly N.J.,” “U.S. Vol. refreshment saloon Phila.,” “Camped in Baltimore,” “Camps Ingham East Capitol Hill,” “Camp Nixon, Chainbridge,” “Camp at Aquia Creek.” “Pickets near Langley’s, Va.” (two views), “Camp Kearney, Fort Marcy,” “Pickets near Fairfax Co., Va.,” ” Camp Cumberland, Va.,” “Camp Knight, Va.,” and “Lacy House near Fredricksburg, Va.” The images are surmounted by a scroll bearing the title of the print and by flags recording the battles of Fredricksburg and Chancellorsville, an eagle and a shield flanked by allegorical figures. Little is known of John Keyser. Prior to the Civil War, he emigrated alone from Germany to Bridgeton, New Jersey, and established a business as sign painter. With the advent of the Civil War, he traveled to Camp Cadwallader in Beverly to witness and sketch the mustering in of the New Jersey 24th. These sketches are preserved in the Cumberland County (NJ) Historical Society. Through the demonstration of his talents, he enlisted as a private and was designated as the regiment’s artist. Other Civil War art by Keyser survives. After the war, Keyser returned to Germany where in his final years his sister cared for him. He never returned to the United States. Worldcat lists a single holding (Boston Athenaeum). Rutgers University and UC Santa Barbara also own the print.
A Beautiful Lithograph of an Elegant Connecticut Home
Thomas Bonar. “Compo House. The Residence of Richard H. Winslow Esq. at Westport, Conn.” (NY: Thomas Bonar, c. 1855). Image: 16.25″ x 22.5″. Frame: 22.25″ x 28.5″. Colored lithograph. VG+, with two hardly noticeable long tears into image, visible mainly in margins. Framed under plexiglass in a handsome mid-20th century brass frame with a linen mat and metallic bevel. $500
This print depicts the elegant Westport, CT, home of Richard H. Winslow, a state representative and senator, built in 1853 on the designs of architect F. le Moulnier. The property also included guest houses, elaborate gardens, and servants’ and gardeners’ quarters. When Winslow died in 1861, the estate passed into the hands of Stephen Alden, a Westport attorney. Bonar reissued the print sometime in the 1860s with Alden’s name on it. The mansion no longer exists. It was torn down in the 1970s, after serving for many years as a sanitarium (and, in its final incarnation, a vacant party house for Westport teenagers). The iron gate is all that remains. Worldcat lists no holdings; the Library of Congress owns the original printing; AAS owns the reissue.
A Distinguished World War Two-Era Arts Magazine
Direction (Darien, CT/New York)
Vol. 1, No. 2 (January 1938) to Vol. 8, No. 1 (Fall 1945), lacking nos. 1 and 31, for a total of 40 out of 42 issues published, a near-complete run. Quartos. All VG+ or better, with an occasional scuff to front cover. One issue, with repaired spine, is marked up with grease pencil (apparently an office copy). SOLD
Direction was an ambitious undertaking. Its goal was to meld the traditional literary magazine, which offered fiction, poetry, and criticism, with the newly fashionable photographic magazine, which emphasized the visual, to create something more representative of the spectrum of the arts. So a typical issue would feature short stories, poems, essays, movie and theatrical reviews, and a good quantity of art, either standing on its own or as illustration. To the degree that it attracted the support of many of the leading literary figures of the day it must be judged a success. Contributors included Theodore Dreiser John Dos Passos Erskine Caldwell, Sherwood Anderson Kenneth Burke, Josephine Herbst, Kenneth Rexroth, Horace Gregory, Art Young, Margaret Burke White, William Gropper, Ernest Hemingway, S. J. Perelman, Granville Hicks, Ralph Ellison, Bertolt Brecht, Paul Tillich, Klaus Mann, Henry Glintenkampf, Woody Guthrie, Ralston Crawford, Stanley Kunitz, Langston Hughes, Wright Morris, Maurice Becker, Paul Rand, Ralph Ellison and many more. Unfortunately, the magazine was not a commercial success. Its editorial staff changed almost with every issue. Begun as a monthly, the most it published in a given year was nine issues. Converted to a quarterly, it couldn’t even meet that schedule. By the end there was a full year between the penultimate and the final issue. Nevertheless, there is much distinguished content here, both prose and art. It’s too bad its fortunes were so checkered. Because of its erratic publication, complete runs are difficult to assemble.
19th Century College Humor
Harvard Lampoon (Cambridge, MA)
The Harvard Lampoon (1876-current) is far and away the most important college humor magazine ever published. It served not only as a prototype and benchmark for dozens of other college humor magazines that followed, but also as the inspiration and breeding ground for the old comic Life (1883-1936) and more recently National Lampoon (1970-1998). Each issue was well illustrated with generally amateurish cartoons, often full-page or double-page, and lots of short humorous essays, editorials, and jokes. In the 19th century, the magazine was published irregularly. Some years only ten issues were published, in other years, twenty. During this period, most issues had print runs of between 1,000 and 2,000 copies. Consequently early volumes of the magazine are scarce. Periodyssey offers the following volumes:
— Vol. 10, Second Series, No. 1 (October 23, 1885) to No. 10 (February 12, 1886), near fine with slight rippling to outer margins. In advertising wrappers. $80
— Vol. 12, Second Series, No. 1 (October 15, 1886) to No. 10 (March 2, 1887), near fine with slight rippling to outer margins. In advertising wrappers. Index laid in. $80
— Vol. 13, Second Series, No. 1 (March 18, 1887) to No. 10 (June 24, 1887), near fine with slight rippling to outer margins. In advertising wrappers. Index laid in. $80
— Vol. 14, Second Series, No. 1 (October 21, 1887) to No. 10 (March 9, 1888), near fine with rippling to outer margins and puncture hole to upper left corner of every issue. Advertising wrappers dispensed with with this volume. $80
— Vol. 15, Second Series, No. 1 (March 23, 1888) to No. 10 (June 20, 1888), near fine with puncture hole to upper left corner of every issue. $80
— Vol. 16, Second Series, No. 1 (October 15, 1888) to No. 10 (February 25, 1889), near fine with puncture hole to upper left corner of every issue. Index laid in. $80
— Vol. 17, Second Series, No. 1 (March 4, 1889) to No. 10 (June 20, 1889), near fine with stain to issue 3 and puncture hole to upper left corner of every issue. $80
An Art Nouveau Classic
Frank Hazenplug. “The Chap-Book” (Chicago: Stone and Kimball, 1896) Image size: 20.5″ x 14″. Frame size: 29″ x. 22.75″. Near fine. $800
Second only to Will Bradley, Frank Hazenplug was a star in the Stone and Kimball firmament. An Illinois native, he was just twenty when he joined the newly formed publishing house. In addition to designing and decorating Stone and Kimball books, he was a cover artist and poster designer for Stone and Kimball’s Chap-Book. Hazenplug created ten posters in all for the famous little literary magazine. After the magazine folded in 1898, he continued to work for H. S. Stone and Company. Between the turn of the century and World War I, his services as a book designer were in much demand, especially by Chicago publishers. This is one of his most handsome posters for the magazine.
A Rare Pre-Civil War Children’s Book
Henry L. Stephens. The Goblin Snob (New York: De Witt and Davenport, c. 1855) Oblong octavo. VG covers, with scuffing, soiling, and loss to the decorated multi-color covers. VG+ interior with smudging. Attractively rebacked. SOLD
In the mid 1850s, H. L. Stephens was still living in his native Philadelphia cobbling together a career as an illustrator and cartoonist. For the preceding half dozen years his work had popped up in a variety of Philadelphia publications, including the comic weekly The John-Donkey and several King and Baird almanacs. His master-work up to this time was his The Comic Natural History of the Human Race (1852), which featured full-page lithographic caricatures of prominent people as animals. The Goblin Snob, his first book for children, is a long poem of forty-six pages accompanied by an equal number of full-page comic engravings detailing the antics of a mischievous goblin. Four years later, he moved to New York City to work for Frank Leslie and then established with his brothers the great comic weekly Vanity Fair. The Goblin Snob anticipates his rich output of beautifully illustrated children’s books immediately following the Civil War. Quite scarce.
“The Longest Bridge in the World”
W. S. Hunter. “Victoria Bridge, Montreal, Canada. Summer View” (NY: Major, Sarony & Knapp, 1860). Image: 11″ x 28.5″. Frame: 17″ x 34.5″. Colored lithograph. Near fine. Framed under plexiglass in a handsome mid-20th century brass frame with a linen mat and metallic bevel. SOLD
The Victoria Bridge still spans the St. Lawrence River, linking Montreal, Quebec, to the south shore city of Saint-Lambert. It was designed by the great Robert Stephenson, who died before its completion. The chief engineer was James Hodges. The contractors were the English partnership of Peto, Brassey and Betts. It was built between 1854 and 1859 and dedicated in August 1860 by the Prince of Wales. It cost $6,600,000 to build and employed during its peak construction years a total of six steamboats, 72 barges, 3,040 men (of which there were several children between the ages of 8 and 12), 144 horses, and four locomotive engines. When completed, it was the first bridge to span the treacherous St. Lawrence and the longest bridge in the world (1.9 miles). This 1860 print was intended to celebrate North America’s latest engineering marvel. As the caption states, the view was commissioned, along with one other, for Hunter’s Handbook of the Victoria Bridge (1860), but since this copy of the print was never folded, we can deduce that it was sold separately. A curious addition to the view in the foreground is a remarkable raft, powered by three sails and carrying two structures and more than a dozen people. Worldcat lists no individual holdings, but several institutions have the folded version that accompanied the handbook.
Walt Whitman on the Plains
Walt Whitman. “The Mystic Trumpeter” and “Virginia — The West” in Kansas Magazine (Topeka), February and March 1872. Octavos. VG+ in original wrappers. Light wear to spines, including small chips and splitting. SOLD
The Kansas Magazine was a respectable though short-lived attempt at a general interest monthly on the frontier. It is forever recorded in literary annals, though, as one of the most unlikely places to score first appearances of Whitman poems. From the Walt Whitman Archives, we learn: “In a letter to the English critic William Rossetti in January 1872, Whitman included a copy of a new poem, “The Mystic Trumpeter,” and explained that the poem was published in a magazine, “lately started away off in Kansas, fifteen or eighteen hundred miles inland.” Later that month, Whitman observed to his brother, Thomas Jefferson Whitman, that the Kansas Magazine is designed in the “same style as the Atlantic—intended for Western Thought & reminiscences &c—.” Whitman ultimately published two poems in the Kansas Magazine [because the editor Henry King] promised that the magazine would provide a voice from the “New West,” a cause Whitman championed.“ Scarce.