speaking-2.jpg (15015 bytes) SPEAKING of Books...

The Joslin Hall Rare Books Newsletter
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July 20th, 2004

The Book Elves all stayed up late to watch the Red Sox games on the West Coast this weekend (somehow they began and ended the weekend in the same place in the standings -what's up with that?).  When the Book Elves watch late-night ball games there's usually lots of popcorn and soda cans flying around, so Amy and I hightailed it up to Vermont, to stay a few nights at the Seth Warner Inn in Manchester.

If you stay there ask Stasia, the owner, about picking blueberries and raspberries (in season) or anything else going on in Manchester.  She's also glad to share from her store of knowledge about Vermont lore and history.  The Inn has wonderfully decorated rooms and great breakfasts, as well as a long, painting-filled living room where you can sip wine (you can bring your own and keep it in the fridge) and converse with your fellow vacationers, play chess in the library, or relax on the deck in front of the duck pond, before driving the five minutes into Manchester to explore the many restaurants there. 

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You can play chess in the Library at the Seth Warner Inn.
photo from their website

If you visit, be sure and stop about a hundred yards down the road at "Hildene", the former home of Robert Todd Lincoln, the only surviving son of Abraham Lincoln.  This estate and its gardens have been lovingly restored, and is a wonderful place to spend a morning or afternoon wandering around... .  Right now they have a Civil War exhibit in place on the 2nd floor which features the 5th Vermont Brigade.  You can also see one of Abraham Lincoln's few authenticated hats.  This one has a small black, silk ribbon around the base, which marks it as the one he wore when he gave the Gettysburg Address.   Hildene will have a Civil War encampment at the end of July and a Cavalry encampment at the beginning of September, and the Seth Warner Inn is always open...


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - NEW ON THE WEBSITE - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

justcat02.jpg (3913 bytes) Our Just Catalogued pages have just been updated.  We have a good selection of books about antiques, including furniture, silver, ceramics, fakes & forgery, and much more.  There is also some interesting Massachusetts-related history, including a nice 1912 study of the April 19th battles in Lexington and Concord, and some Cambridge-related items.

Other highlights include:

- An 1851 guide to Copp's Hill Burying Ground in Boston, and an 1839 guide to Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Mount Auburn is one of the oldest garden cemeteries in America, and opened in 1831, just a few years before this guidebook was published.

- An interesting copy of Brigham's classic work "Paul Revere's Engravings", inscribed to Francis Henry Taylor, former Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

- A nicely bound set of John Addington Symonds translation of Benvenuto Cellini's masterful autobiography.  Cellini, the famous Florentine goldsmith, was observant, shrewd, witty, bawdy, and vain, and his book continues to shine and entertain centuries after he put pen to paper.

- The first German edition of Luke Vincent Lockwood's "Colonial Furniture in America", an odd book for the furniture collector who has everything else.

- Several interesting books about early printing in Britain, including a nice copy of Plomers' "Abstracts from the Wills of English Printers and Stationers from 1492 to 1630", nicely bound by Zaehnsdorf.

- A lovely copy of the important 1924 Burlington Club exhibition of fakes and forgeries.

- A nice copy of the 1948 Walpole Society Note Book, with sample paint chips from historic Virginia houses.

... and much more!


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FREE BOOKS - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

index-2.jpg (9007 bytes) I found these in a box; I don't really want to sell them, but thought someone might like to have them- a small group of pamphlets about Florida and England- "British Pensacola 1763-1781" by Robert Rea (1974); "A Guide to Florida's Museums" (1977); "Westminster Abbey" (1972); "King's Lynn Regalia" (1977); "Looking at Lynn" (1979); and "An Introduction to the Black Fens" by Mason (1973).  If you would like these send us an email at office@joslinhall.com with the subject line "England".  We only have one set of these, so we will randomly draw the name of one of you on Thursday and send them out to the lucky winner!


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FEATURED ARTICLE - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Still a Star after all these years...

britannica-thumbnail-1.jpg (3764 bytes)The Magic of the Britannica 11

Among all my reference books, there is one standout, a star, a work that retains its dusty luster and a fierce band of loyal adherents almost a hundred years after it was published. This book is the so-called "Britannica 11", or the 11th edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, published in 1910 and 1911. It is the ultimate encyclopedia, for once and all time, and although it is nearly 100 years old, weighs about 75 pounds and takes up nearly 3 feet of shelf space, its' owners are all swear they would never dream of parting with their set... READ MORE


Recent Acquisitions and other interesting books for Summer, 2004 features 263 books and is now available. Send us your mailing address if you would like a free copy.

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fakes1.gif (7883 bytes) FAKES, FRAUDS & FORGERY

Our new catalog of fakes, frauds and forgeries will be released later this Summer. This catalog will feature books on art and antique fakes and fraud, as well as literary forgery, counterfeiting, exploration hoaxes, nefarious imposters with devious intent, and much, much more.

Send us your mailing address if you would like a free copy.

"According to the enlarged edition of his oeuvre catalogue,
Corot painted over two thousand pictures. Of these, more
than five thousand are in the United States.

-Frank Arnau, The Art of the Faker


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FREE BOOK - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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Here's something fun- "The Investor's Guide to Undervalued Art & Antiques" by Jim Powell, 1983.  This is one of those "Alan the Airline pilot bought a painting for $40 and sold it for $1000 and asked himself 'what am I flying jumbo jets for?', and he became a successful art dealer." type books.  Well, yeah...  sure he did.  Still, these books are entertaining reading, and it's always interesting to see what was being touted as "Undervalued" in 1983 (brilliant cut glass, art pottery, 19th century French bronzes and mission oak furniture, among others). 

If you would like this, send us an email at office@joslinhall.com with the subject line "Art".  We only have one copy, so we will randomly draw the name of one of you on Thursday and send it out to the lucky (?) winner!   And, if you end up making a million bucks from reading this, a small gratuity would not be unappreciated...


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - INTERNET NEWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

English Trade Directories on the Web?

leicester_directories.gif (3015 bytes)  The University of Leicester Digital Library of Historical Directories is a great new resource, and they explain it better than I could-

"The University of Leicester's New Opportunities Fund project is creating a digital library of eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth century local and trade directories from England and Wales. Directories of counties and towns are among the most important sources for local and genealogical studies. They include lists of names, addresses and occupations of the inhabitants of the counties and towns they describe, and successive editions reflect the changes in the localities over a period of time. High quality digital reproductions of a large selection of these comparatively rare books, previously only found in libraries and record offices, will be freely available online to anyone with an Internet connection. This online collection will bring together a greater number and range of directories than any one repository could provide. There is also a powerful search engine available so that names, occupations, addresses and other key words or phrases can be located to their exact places on pages within the text."

Cool!  Click here


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - BOOK NEWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

As we approach the 150th anniversary of the publication of Henry David Thoreau's "Walden" next month, a part of the historic original manuscript has been put on display at the Thoreau Institute near Walden Pond in Concord.   The manuscript, along with most of Thoreau's papers, is owned by the Huntington Library in California, but a portion of the 7th draft, "Version G", was loaned to the Institute for the anniversary, and can be seen at the Museum.  Read the full story from the Boston Globe here .

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"Thoreau's Cove" at Walden Pond
from a c.1900 postcard


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FREE BOOK - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

More Summer reading!  "The Facts in the Case of E.A. Poe -A Novel" by Andrew Sinclair (Holt: 1979).  E.A. Pons lives a quiet life, working for a New York publisher.  But he is convinced that he is EdgarAllan Poe.  He looks like Poe, dresses like Poe, and knows Poe's works by heart.   Eventually his obsession reaches such proportions that he turns for help to the only Manhattan psychiatrist who shares a name with Poe's famous detective -Dupin. "Sinclair weaves a detective story in which Pons/Poe is both the perpetrator and the victim, the stalker and the stalked".   If you would like this, send us an email at office@joslinhall.com with the subject line "Poe".  We only have one copy, so we will randomly draw the name of one of you on Thursday and send it out to the lucky winner!

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- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - SUMMERTIME - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

What's the link between food and books?  Well, for one, most "foodies" get almost as much pleasure reading about food as eating it.   More than a fair share of my bookie friends are also into food, and vice-versa.  And I suppose that many of us have at one time or another read during meals...   One Summertime food we touched on last week was corn, the first corn of the season.  Really good corn, fresh and cold from the field, is one of the best foods around, but to get the most out of it, you need to treat it with care. 

First, corn should be kept cold, from the field to the boiling pot.  When it gets warm those sugars begin converting to starch, and the flavor disappears.  If you can, avoid supermarket corn (which has not usually been kept cool), and go to a farmstand instead.  If you live in the city as I do, go to your weekely farmer's market.  Go early.  Find ears that are still cool from the field.  You do not need to spend a lot of time peeling back the ears to look inside.  Look for ears that are well formed, plump, and have all brown tassles, and have no outward evidence of insect or borer damage.  If you do this, 99% of your ears will be just fine.  Get them home quickly, and put them in the refrigerator, and do not take them out again until you are ready to boil them.  Corn kept cool can easily last three or four days.  It's best on the first day, but it can last a bit longer.  When you shuck it, do not break the stem off at the ear.   If you do that, what do you then have to hold onto?  Take a sharp knife and make a score around the stem an inch or two from the ear, and snap it off at that point, leaving a "handle".  It makes eating much easier.

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Your Corn Fanatic hurrying
ears from the stalk to
the pot at age 3

Plop the corn into boiling water and boil it for 3-5 minutes.  Remove the ears and cover them with a heavy towel to keep the heat in, and eat them before they cool.   The sweet, tender kernels will POP in your mouth.  I learned these rules from my grandfather and father up in New Hampshire when I was no more than four.  It's never too early to teach young ones about the proper way to treat vegetables... various people have suggested that I am somewhat obsessive on the subject of corn; the words "fanatical" and "pedantic" have also been used, but that's always *before* they taste it when done this way.  Like the song says in "West Side Story" - Keep Cool, Boy!

That's going to do it for today.  I hope you find some interesting books on our Just Catalogued pages, and now I have to go shuck corn...



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