August 2010 Archives

National Book Auctions August Sale

ITHACA, NY National Book Auctions, located in Ithaca, NY, held an August 29th auction with a Civil War-themed catalog that also featured another round of Maurice Sendak signed books, artwork and posters as well as a rare collection of FOC Darley original illustrations.
A collection of letters featuring Reverend William Salt, Catholic priest and renowned figure at Seton Hall University, fetched a hammer price of $3,000 (plus buyer’s premium). These letters spanned a decade that include the Civil War and document communication between Upstate New York and the Vatican. Also included was likely his last letter before he died of consumption. Another lot of American Civil War ephemera reached a hammer price of $1,145 (plus buyer’s premium) and ran alongside over 200 additional lots of Civil War books and ephemera.
A 4-volume collection of Civil War and South Carolina Yankee History sold for $1,300 (plus buyer’s premium) and featured “The History of a Brigade of South Carolinians” by J. F. J. Caldwell published in 1866 by King & Baird.
The auction showcased another array of children’s author and illustrator Maurice Sendak’s work whose combined offerings totaled nearly $4,000 (plus buyer’s premium) for signed books, illustrations, and posters. An oversized book titled “Mother Goose Collection” that featured Sendak fetched a $1,200 hammer price (plus buyer’s premium) and an illustration from “Chicken Soup with Rice” reached a $900 hammer price (plus buyer’s premium).
FOC Darley (1821-1888), an American illustrator and painter, was also part of the half-day auction with original artwork that reached a combined hammer price of over $2,300 (plus buyer’s premium). One signed and framed illustration at auction was featured in the book “The Scarlet Letter.” This original piece features a pen and sepia ink drawn book illustration from 1870 and prominently displays Darley's signature in the bottom left corner.
National Book Auctions is a public auction service specializing in books, ephemera, and art. National Book Auctions is a targeted service offering experience and expertise unique to marketing antique and modern books and ephemera for consignors and collectors alike. The upcoming September auctions will feature a wide assortment of Africana collectibles, sheet music, signed and first edition books. For more information, please contact David Hall at 607-269-0101 or email

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Art Book Collection to UNL Library

Lincoln, Neb., August 10th, 2010 —University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries announced that it has received more than 11,000 books and exhibition catalogues donated by Stuart P. Embury, M.D., of Holdrege, a 1966 graduate of UNL and 1969 UNMC graduate. Embury amassed what is considered one of the top private book collections on American art in the United States over 40 years.

The Stuart P. Embury MD Library of American Art contains primary material and books covering all major and many minor figures in American Art, including painters, sculptors and printmakers. There are thousands of exhibition catalogues including nearly complete runs from the National Academy of Design and Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Some of the titles were published in the 1800s. There are numerous catalogue raisonnes of major artists work such as Whistler, Remington, Inness and many others.

"The UNL Libraries is proud to have the Stuart P. Embury Library of American Art and we've been working with Dr. Embury to renovate the archives reading room to properly house and showcase the incredible collection," said Joan Giesecke, dean of libraries.

A celebration of the donation and renovated reading room is in the early planning stages. The cataloging of the books is almost complete. Staff will then catalog the thousands of exhibition catalogues.

Norman Geske, professor emeritus of art, said "The Stuart P. Embury Library of American Art is an important asset to the libraries and the university, especially for graduate students working on the master's of arts in art history. I am so pleased that it was donated."

Wendy Katz, associate professor of art and art history, finds the rich collection of exhibition catalogues and books published in the early 20th century helpful to her research on the painter James McNeill Whistler. "The Embury Library contains primary resource material contemporary to Whistler and demonstrates how early 220th-century authors and scholars were thinking about Whistler at that time."

Dr. Embury's collection began soon after he moved to Holdrege and with the need to decorate the new home. Purchasing prints for the walls led to a thirst for learning more about the artist, which led to the purchasing of reference materials and catalogues.

"I bought a Mary Cassatt etching and of course I needed a book on Cassatt. This pattern was repeated many times," he said.

Two dealers became his major source of books, one in New York and one in Philadelphia. They both sent Embury their choice items. Gradually over 40 years the collection grew to more than 11,000 volumes. Rare and unusual items include: "The Book of the Tile Club," the original Armory Show Catalogue from 1913, a signed copy of a book by Rembrandt Peale (c. 1823), an inscribed copy of "The Gentle Art of Making Enemies" signed by Whistler and inscribed to Degas, and many other items.

According to Embury, the library could not be duplicated today for any amount of money as many early items have disappeared from the marketplace. "Searching for and collecting the books and fine art has provided a great counterpoint to my medical practice and has greatly enriched our life," he said.

Embury said his motivation for moving the collection to the University Archives and Special Collections, is because he wants "to share it with the world."

The University Archives and Special Collections is in Love Library, Room 29, open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., and can be reached at (402) 472-2531.

WRITER: Joan Barnes

(Chicago, Illinois) August 9, 2010 - Leslie Hindman Auctioneers’ August 12 Fine Books and Manuscripts auction boasts a wide range of highlights, including a fine first printing of Samuel Johnson’s groundbreaking Dictionary of the English Language (Lot 65), in two volumes, which carries an estimate of $10,000-15,000, and a first edition of Lewis and Clark’s History of the Expedition (Lot 148), estimated to sell between $8,000-12,000.   

Digitization in the Real World

New Book Highlights Recent Digitization Projects Involving Historically Significant Collections at Leading Libraries and Research Centers
Digitization in the Real World outlines efforts to digitize rare and important materials at Columbia, Yale, Pratt Institute, American Museum of Natural History, Jewish Theological Seminary, and Leo Baeck Institute, among others.

Collected case studies provide important how-to examples for libraries and other research centers planning to digitize important collections in the years ahead.

NEW YORK, NY, [August 2, 2010] — More than 30 examples of successful efforts to digitize historically significant materials at leading libraries in North America are profiled in the new book Digitization in the Real World, published this week by the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO), one of the nation’s leading service providers for libraries and research organizations.  The new book is the first to present case study examples of small and medium-sized digitization projects, with information developed by library professionals for library professionals.
Digitization in the Real World identifies the specific strategies used by top libraries to digitize a range of collections in recent years.  Examples include recent digitization efforts at Columbia, Yale, the American Museum of Natural History and many other leading library and research centers.  Case studies include examples of smaller digitization projects with very limited budgets, projects involving a range of public, specialty and university libraries and research centers, and digitization efforts that required collaboration between multiple institutions.
“Digitization continues to be a major focus of library organizations in the U.S., and in many cases practitioners proceed without a clear roadmap to success.  The projects profiled in this book together represent a major new information resource and guide for library professionals considering digitization projects in the months and years ahead,” said Kwong Bor Ng, associate professor at the Graduate School of Library and Information Studies at Queens College, CUNY, and co-editor of Digitization in the Real World.
Digitization in the Real World includes perspectives from library practitioners at small archives, public and specialty libraries, repositories of unique cultural and historical collections, and library consortia.  Projects include several examples of working with open source software to build digital collections.   Many case studies highlight the critical role of collaboration in the success of digitization efforts.
In one case study, curators at the American Museum of Natural History in New York review an effort to produce a web exhibit of almost 1000 historically significant images from the museum’s photography collection.  Another reviews a digitization effort involving a range of materials at Pratt Institute, requiring management of significant differences in metadata content and interpretation.  A digitization project at the Leo Baeck Institute highlights the special challenges in efforts to digitize rare books.
“One of the key findings in pulling together case studies from all across the U.S. was the fact that, while all digitization projects are different, key learnings from successful projects at one library can provide very effective guidance and support for projects at other libraries.  This book also presents real-world perspectives tailored to the needs of library professionals, so the guidance is targeted and specific,” said Jason Kucsma, emerging technologies manager at METRO and co-editor of Digitization in the Real World.
Digitization in the Real World is available at online vendors including (now) and (beginning in September).  The print version is $60.  The full text book is also available for electronic download for $10.
The Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) is a non-profit organization working to develop and maintain essential library services throughout New York City and Westchester County. METRO's service is developed and delivered with broad input and support from an experienced staff of library professionals, the organization's member libraries, an active board of trustees, government representatives and other experts in research and library operations.

As the largest reference and research resources (3Rs) library council in New York State, METRO members reflect a wide range of special, academic, archival and public library organizations. In addition to training programs and support services, METRO also works to bring members of the New York City and Westchester County library communities together to promote ongoing exchanges of information and ideas.
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