Presidential Manuscripts, Garfield Artwork, Rare Magic Books: Auction Preview

Image: Bonhams

Detail from a typescript schedule of JFK's final day, heavily annotated by Dave Powers, his assistant appointments secretary, offered at Bonhams this week.

Here are the auctions I'll be keeping an eye on this week:

At Brunk Auctions on Wednesday, February 21, The Great Outdoors: From Audubon to Zuni, in 190 lots. A first octavo edition of Audubon's Birds, complete but with a bit of damage, is expected to lead the sale at $20,000–30,000; there is also a full set of the 2006 Audubon's Fifty Best Watercolors, expected to sell for $7,000–10,000 and a number of loose Audubon prints. Latham's General Synopsis of Birds (1781–1801) is estimated at $1,500–2,500.

University Archives sells 468 lots of Signed Manuscripts, Books, Photos, and Relics on Wednesday, including Marilyn Monroe's Connecticut driver's license; a 1989 release form signed by Steve Jobs; a 1933 Albert Einstein letter to his son Eduard about his departure from Belgium; and an Einstein autograph working document related to unified field theory. All four of these are estimated at $30,000–40,000. A group of 13 Moshe Dayan letters are expected to sell for $27,500–35,000.

Ending on Wednesday, Bonhams' American Presidency sale, in 87 lots. These include an official engrossed copy of the first impeachment vote against Andrew Johnson in January 1867, expected to reach $60,000–90,000. An autograph fair copy of John Quincy Adams' abolitionist and anti-gag-rule poem "Fragments from an unfinished manuscript" is estimated at $50,000–70,000; a typed schedule for JFK's final day, heavily annotated by his assistant appointments secretary Dave Powers, could sell for $40,000–6,000.

At Heritage Auctions on Thursday, February 22, Jim Davis: The Art of Garfield Showcase Auction, in 114 lots. Quite a lot of original artwork for the comic strips will be up for grabs in this one, including a number of weekly groups.

PBA Galleries sells 341 lots of Fine Photography on Thursday, including Carleton Watkins' On the Road to Yosemite Falls, 2674 ft. (taken about 1878), which rates the top estimate at $15,000–25,000. Several of Robert Adams' Cottonwood photographs are also on the block, as well as Diane Arbus' portrait of Christopher Isherwood (taken 1962, printed 1984), which is estimated at $7,000–10,000.

Rounding out the week, on Saturday February 24, Potter & Potter sells 448 lots from The Collection of Edwin A. Dawes, Part I. Hocus Pocus Junior, the 1663 "sixth edition", shares the top estimate of $10,000–15,000 with with only known copy of a c.1905 Adelaide Herrmann poster, "The Flight of the Favorite." The 1817 publication The New London Conjuror could fetch $8,000–12,000.