January 2012 | Rebecca Rego Barry

The Lawbook Exchange

Catalogue Review: The Lawbook Exchange

While not properly a catalogue (though they do impressive printed catalogues), this special list issued this past week by the Lawbook Exchange in anticipation of the upcoming New York Bibliography Week Booksellers Showcase prodded me to scan their offerings. Of course any collector with an interest in the law probably already knows the New Jersey-based antiquarian bookseller and publisher, and if they don't, they should!

From a Magna Carta--printed in 1576 and containing extensive contemporary annotations ($6,500) to a rare British novella, A Railway Accident, published in 1855, that features a trial for negligence ($650), the Lawbook Exchange covers its ground well.

In this list, there is a sampling of legal commonplace books, manuscript notebooks, and printed books. You need not be a legal eagle to be wowed by a signed association copy of Clarence Darrow's The Story of My Life, with candid tipped-in photographs ($1,500) or to appreciate British caricaturist George Cruikshank's own copy of the rare Reflections on the Causes of Unhappy Marriages, and on Various Subjects Therewith Connected...printed in 1805 ($2,000).

Expected to fare well in NYC? Perhaps the 1859 Compilation of the Laws of the State of New York; Also, Of the Ordinances, Resolutions, And Orders Established by the Mayor, Aldermen, And Commonalty of the City of New York, In Common Council Convened, Relating to the Fire Department of the City of New York, From 1812 to 1860 in elaborately tooled morocco bearing the gilt arms of New York City ($750) or the printed trial proceedings of The American Print Works vs. Cornelius W. Lawrence from 1852, relating to a major fire in lower Manhattan on Dec. 16, 1835 ($650).

Don't object! Proceed: http://www.find-a-book.com/member/catalogues.php3?catnr=3654&membernr=1661