Blog Posts tagged "found in the attic"

George Koppelman and Daniel Wechsler have been waiting for this day for six years– the day the world will discover they are in possession of a book they claim was owned by William Shakespeare. Koppelman and Wechsler purchased a copy of Baret's Alvearie, or Quadruple Dictionarie (1580), on eBay in 2008. While other books have more famously earned the designation of Shakespeare source texts, work... [more]

In July, I posted about a rare first English edition of Machiavelli's The Prince (1640) that the head of British auction house Keys found during a collection evaluation. Needless to say, Keys considered it a "very exciting find" and expected to bring in between 25,000 to 30,000 ($30,992 to $46,488) at auction. Unfortunately, bidders were not as enthusiastic and the book failed to sell. As a resu... [more]

A rare, first edition of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens with illustrations by Arthur Rackham was recently discovered in a UK charity shop. The 1906 limited edition is bound in vellum, has approximately 50 color plates illustrated by Rackham, and is signed by the artist. The book was donated to the Oxfam Book Shop in Alderley Edge along with a number of more commonplace titles (the ... [more]

A Columbia graduate student discovered and authenticated a previously unknown manuscript by Claude McKay, a poet and intergal figure in the Harlem Renaissance. (McKay is best known for his poetry and his novel The Negroes in America.) The manuscript, a satirical novel set in 1936 entitled Amiable With Big Teeth: A Novel of the Love Affair Between the Communists and the Poor Black Sheep of Harlem, ... [more]

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, 1964 A rare 1960 interview with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was recently discovered in an attic in Nashville, TN. Stephon Tull was going through boxes in his father's attic when he came across an audio reel labeled: "Dr. King Interview, Dec. 21, 1960". Tull borrowed a friend's reel-to-reel player and was amazed to hear his father conducting an interview with Dr. King. H... [more]

Archivist Neil Dickson with one of the newfound volumes (image via Greenock Telegraph) As you've seen from some of my previous posts, books can turn up in odd places, even within the confines of a museum, shop, or library. Greenock's Watt Library in Scotland has recently made quite a discovery within their own walls. Neil Dickson, an archivist, was working his way through the museum's holdings wh... [more]

First English edition of The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli, 1640 (image via Keys) The first English edition of Niccolo Machiavelli's seminal work The Prince, dated 1640, was recently discovered during a collection evaluation in Norfolk, UK. Andrew Bullock, the head of the book department at Keys auction house was combing through a late collector's books when he was drawn to a particular shelf. "T... [more]

UFA colour lithograph poster for 'Metropolis', Designer - Heinz Schulz-Neudamm, Berlin, 1927. Items from or pertaining to Metropolis, Fritz Lang's 1927 silent science-fiction tour de force, have a high collectible value; seven years ago an original movie poster for the film sold for $690,000. One can only imagine the excitement then that an antiquarian book firm experienced upon uncovering a 32 p... [more]

This past February, librarians at the Russian State Polytechnical Museum Library in Moscow were preparing their collection for relocation to a temporary depository when they made a surprising discovery. Behind one of the emptied stacks a librarian noticed a plywood wall that sounded hollow when knocked upon. The cover was moved aside and revealed a number of books. As librarians dug deeper and rem... [more]

Volunteers working for the CBC Calgary Reads book sale made an exciting discovery this week as they were sorting through the tens of thousands of donated booksa first edition of Hemingway's classic The Old Man and the Sea. An advisor on rare books for the sale, Gerry Morgan, says of the found copy, "The dust jacket is in very good condition which is fairly uncommon for a book from 1952 or 1953. I... [more]

The Charleston Library Society, the oldest library in the South, has been conducting a muti-year search and cataloguing project to record the multitude of volumes it contains in its vault. (The library has been moved a number of times over the years and collections have been integrated, thus necessitating the project.) Recently the search unearthed a rare, 270-year-old book on political parties, H... [more]

David Rayfield is a lettings agent who was performing a valuation at a home in Oxfordshire, UK when he noticed something peculiar: a very old book being used as a bedroom doorstop. The book was entitled "Corporation of Wallingford" and turned out to be a rare 1799 book of statutes, which detailed laws enacted by Parliament. The resident allowed Mr. Rayfield to take the book to the Wallingford Muse... [more]

Dr. David Culpin of St. Andrew's University came across a rare piece of travel literature while studying at the library of Sir George Grey, who was governor of Cape Colony (today's Capetown) between 1854 and 1861. The book was written in French by Charles-Etienne Boniface and published in South Africa in November 1829. The title has been paraphrased as Account Of The Wreck Of The French Ship The E... [more]

I was reading an article this morning about a South African man who, while on holiday in Ireland, found an American first edition of Wuthering Heights at a flea market for €3 (about $4.27). Realizing the value of the book, he brought it back home to South Africa and promptly sold it for over 77,000 rand (equivalent to more than €8,000 or $11,000)quite the souvenir! The article quoted ILAB mem... [more]

Last May, the Brooklyn Historical Society discovered a rare 1770 Ratzer map in its possession. The map was delivered to the society's office in May along with a shipment of other maps and prints from their warehouse in Connecticut. There was no catalog listing the map or any record of how the map was acquired, but the society was thrilled with the discovery nonetheless. Prior to this finding, it w... [more]

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