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Rare & Classic, American or English Literature Books for Sale Online

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Showing 1–20 of 89 results

  • Rare African hunting rifle from the collection of Ernest Hemingway; obtained by him in Africa and later gifted to his best friend and biographer A.E. Hotchner

    [HEMINGWAY, Ernest; A.E. Hotchner].

    Ernest Hemingway African Hunting Rifle.

    Rare African hunting rifle from the collection of Ernest Hemingway; obtained by him in Africa and later gifted to his best friend and biographer A.E. Hotchner. The African musket-rifle measures 5 feet in length and is elaborately decorated with intricately hammered beaded and etched metal wrappings and garnet gemstones. Hemingway began collecting guns at the age of 10 when his grandfather gave him a 20 gauge shotgun. Throughout his lifetime he bought, sold, and gifted several guns from his collection and was often photographed proudly displaying a variety of rifles while bird and big-game hunting in Idaho and Africa. The present rifle was obtained during Hemingway’s 1953-1954 winter safari trip to Africa with his fourth wife Mary, during which they survived two near-fatal plane crashes and were for several weeks presumed dead. Hemingway later gifted the gun to his closest friend and biographer A.E. Hotchner. The gun is accompanied by a signed letter of provenance from Timothy Hotchner, A.E. Hotchner’s son, which reads in part, “This item was given to my father by Ernest Hemingway in his youth. My father met “Papa” in 1948 and remained close friends with him… until Hemingway’s death in 1966. Hemingway was very connected to Africa, and several of his writings were influenced by the time he spent there including Green Hills of Africa, The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber, and his classic work, The Snows of Kilimanjaro… My father proudly displayed this gun in his study, where he would tell people, including me, about its storied history. He liked to say that it probably took two people to fire it: one to pull the trigger and the other to have the barrel rested on his shoulder. My father had many keepsakes from Hemingway, including letters, photos, and matador outfits, which he sold over many years. However, this gun was perhaps his favorite, and he kept it until his death.” In very good condition. From the collection of A.E. Hotchner. Exceedingly rare with exceptional provenance.

    Price: $18,000.00     Item Number: 117552

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  • “Undoubtedly, philosophers are in the right when they tell us that nothing is great or little otherwise than by comparison": Rare First Edition of Jonathan Swifts's Classic Work Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World

    SWIFT, Jonathan.

    Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, first Surgeon, and then Captain of several Ships (Gulliver’s Travels).

    London: Benjamin Motte, 1726.

    First editions of Jonathan Swift’s masterpiece, Gulliver’s Travels. Octavo, bound in three quarters contemporary calf over marbled boards, engraved frontispiece of Lemuel Gulliver, woodcut initials, five engraved maps, gilt titles to the spine. In near fine condition. Housed in a custom cloth slipcase. Bookplate to the pastedown and period ownership signature to each volume. Both volumes are the Teerink B edition. A very nice example of this classic in English literature.

    Price: $18,000.00     Item Number: 95317

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  • "Our land is of every kind geologically and climatically and our people are of every kind also - and yet our land is one nation, and our people are Americans": First edition of Steinbeck's America and Americans; inscribed by him to fellow American author John Updike

    STEINBECK, John [John Updike].

    America and Americans.

    New York: The Viking Press, 1966.

    First edition of Steinbeck’s final book. Quarto, original half cloth, illustrated, cartographic endpapers. With 136 pages of photographs, 24 in full color by 55 of the most prominent American photographers of the era including Ansel Adams, Sam Siegel, and Todd Webb. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the half-title page, “For John Updike with admiration John Steinbeck.” American author John Steinbeck published his most notable works between 1937 (Of Mice and Men) and 1952 (East of Eden), and was awarded both the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1940 and Nobel Prize in Literature in 1962. One of the most prolific American authors from the early 1960s until his death in 2009, fellow recipient of the Pulitzer Prize John Updike identified Steinbeck as one of his literary heroes at a young age. Both writers’ works explored themes of crises related to faith, injustice, and family dynamics applied to small town ‘everyman’ protagonists. Both Steinbeck and Updike wrote in a realist tradition featuring their own distinctively rich and imaginative vocabulary and style of prose. Near fine in a very good dust jacket. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Jacket design by Christopher Harris. Photograph of Steinbeck to the rear panel by Paul Farber. From the library of John Updike. An exceptional association linking two of the greatest writers of twentieth century America.

    Price: $15,000.00     Item Number: 55056

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  • The Works of Jonathan Swifts's From the Library of Founding Father Robert R. Livingstone

    SWIFT, Jonathan [Robert R. Livingstone].

    The Works of Jonathan Swift: Including, Gulliver’s Travels.

    Edinburgh: Printed by Mrs. Mundell, 1778.

    First of 4 issues, Scotch editions, from the library of Robert R. Livingstone, with his bookplate to the pastedown of each volume. Small octavo, bound in contemporary calf, spine compartments ruled with Greek key tooling, morocco spine labels. From the library of founding father Robert R. Livingston. As one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, Livingston played an important role in the early development of the newly formed country. He was known as “The Chancellor”, after the high New York state legal office he held for 25 years. He was a member of the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence, along with Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Roger Sherman. Livingston administered the Oath of Office to George Washington when he assumed the presidency in 1789.He was a member of the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence, the administrator for George Washington’s Oath of Office when he assumed presidency in 1789, and the chief negotiator of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. In very good condition. An exceptional set with noted provenance.

    Price: $15,000.00     Item Number: 119642

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  • H. Rider Haggard's King Solomon's Mines; inscribed by him to his sister Ella Green

    HAGGARD, H. Rider.

    King Solomon’s Mines.

    London: Cassel & Company, 1885.

    First edition, third issue of Haggard’s immensely popular Victorian adventure novel the first great “Lost World” action-adventure, a precursor to Indiana Jones. Octavo, original cloth, folding facsimile of the map of the route to King Solomon’s mines. Association copy, signed by the author opposite the half-title page with an additional note inscribed to his sister, Ella Green, pasted to the same page, “your loving brother H. Rider Haggard.” In very good condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional association.

    Price: $12,500.00     Item Number: 118637

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  • "Here the lilies were higher than my head, and the sunshine was warm enough for palms": Finely Bound Set of The Manuscript Edition of The Writings of John Muir

    MUIR, John.

    The Writings of John Muir: The Manuscript Edition.

    Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1916-24.

    The Manuscript Edition of The Writings of John Muir. Octavo, 10 volumes, bound in contemporary gilt paneled and gilt floral full crushed brown niger morocco, gilt floral spine compartments, top edges gilt, green and brown gilt morocco doublures with the coat of arms of Anna W. S. Keator, green silked free endpapers, raised bands. Manuscript page from Muir bound into volume one from The Mountains of California. Illustrated with numerous photogravure and halftone plates, the gravure plates, tissue guards, each with photogravure frontispiece, with the first seven hand-colored; folding map in volume two. Edited by William Frederic Badè. With a manuscript leaf from John Muir in volume one. In fine condition. An exceptional example.

    Price: $12,500.00     Item Number: 73083

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  • "Keep close to Nature’s heart... and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean": Finely Bound Set of The Manuscript Edition of The Writings of John Muir; With Eight Original Photographs

    MUIR, John.

    The Writings of John Muir: The Manuscript Edition.

    Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1916-24.

    The Manuscript Edition of The Writings of John Muir. Octavo, 10 volumes, bound in original special deluxe three quarters morocco over marbled boards, leather edges ruled in gilt, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, raised bands, matching endpapers, top edges gilt. With Volumes 1 through 8 of this set each containing an original gelatin silver photograph at the front, each with a printed tissue guard. Kimes does not describe an edition with these additional real photo frontispieces. The binding matches that of Kimes 342. The scenes depicted in the inserted photographs are: The House of John Muir, Martinez, California; The Cathedral Spires, Yosemite National Park; Eucalyptus on Muir’s Ranch, Martinez, California; An Orange Tree in Front of Muir’s House, Martinez, California; The Lower Fall of the Yosemite (Telephoto view); A Cabin in the Muir Woods, on Mt. Tamalpais, California, used by John Muir, Joaquin Miller, and others; Arctic Ptarmigan; Crater Lake, Oregon. Manuscript page from Muir bound into volume one from Chapter 4 of The Mountains of California. The holograph text is written in brown ink with additional pencil emendations. The edited text begins: “I found a good camp-ground on the rim of a glacier.” Illustrated with numerous photogravure and halftone plates, the gravure plates, tissue guards, each with photogravure frontispiece, with the first seven hand-colored; folding map in volume two. Edited by William Frederic Badè. In fine condition. An exceptional example, rare with the original silver gelatin prints.

    Price: $12,000.00     Item Number: 76020

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  • "They call me 'Lucky', but luck isn't enough": Rare First Edition of Charles Lindbergh's We; inscribed by him to Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford

    LINDBERGH, Charles A. [Henry Ford].

    We.

    New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1927.

    Rare first edition association copy of Lindbergh’s definitive autobiography. Octavo, original pictorial cloth, pictorial endpapers, illustrated. Association copy, inscribed by the author to close personal friend Henry Ford and his wife Clara, “To Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford Sincerely Charles A. Lindbergh.” Lindbergh developed a long-term friendship with Ford who was well known for his newspaper The Dearborn Independent, also known as The Ford International Weekly. The paper reached a circulation of 900,000 by 1925, second only to the New York Daily News, largely due to a quota system for promotion imposed on Ford dealers. Lawsuits regarding anti-Semitic material published in the paper caused Ford to close it, and the last issue was published in December 1927.Lindbergh, too, gained a reputation as an anti-Semite with the publication of a controversial Reader’s Digest article in November 1939 and a series of nationwide radio addresses criticizing the Roosevelt administration for attacking Germany. In late 1940 Lindbergh became spokesman of the non-interventionist America First Committee, soon speaking to overflow crowds at Madison Square Garden and Chicago’s Soldier Field, with millions listening by radio. President Franklin Roosevelt publicly decried Lindbergh’s views as those of a “defeatist and appeaser”, comparing him to U.S. Rep. Clement L. Vallandigham, who had led the “Copperhead” movement that had opposed the American Civil War. Lindbergh promptly resigned his commission as a colonel in the U.S. Army Air Corps, writing that he saw “no honorable alternative” given that Roosevelt had publicly questioned his loyalty. In 1927, the year of the present volume’s publication, Charles Lindbergh flew his Spirit of St. Louis to Ford Airport in Dearborn, Michigan. Upon arrival, Henry Ford accepted Lindbergh’s invitation for a ride. Though Ford had been invested in aviation since 1909, this was his first trip in an airplane. Laid in is a Western Union telegram dated August 15, 1947 from Clara Ford to Irving Imoberstag, the husband of Clara Ford’s niece Frances Imoberstag née Bryant. Near fine in the original dust jacket which is in very good condition. A remarkable association copy.

    Price: $11,000.00     Item Number: 109846

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  • First British Edition of Isak Dinesen's Out of Africa; King Edward VIII's Copy with his ownership inscription

    DINESEN, Isak [Karen Blixen] [King Edward VIII].

    Out of Africa.

    London: Putnam, 1937.

    First British edition of the author’s masterpiece, a lyrical meditation of the years she lived in Kenya, from the library of King Edward VIII. Octavo, original cloth. With numerous original photographs and newspaper clippings affixed to the front few pages. Originally from the collection of the author’s brother Thomas Fasti Dinesen with two original black and white photographs of him hunting affixed to the verso of the front free endpaper and half-title page above which he has annotated, “My first lion April 6th 1922” and “Shot from boma April 11th 1922 The boma only five feet from the hill on account of my alias Thomas Dinesen.” In 1918, Thomas Dinesen moved to British East Africa to help his sister manage her coffee farm in the Ngong hills southwest of Nairobi where he designed a largely built the farm’s coffee roasting plant. Subsequently, from the library of Edward VIII with his ownership inscription to the front free endpaper, “‘The son of the sultan’ Edward Duke of Windsor.” Edward VIII was King of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Empire, and Emperor of India, from January 1936 until his abdication in December of the same year, after which he became the Duke of Windsor. And finally, inscribed on the title page, “To Hubert Gough with best wishes from Maj ‘one’ Sotheby March.” The recipient, Sir Hubert de la Poer Gough was a senior officer in the British Army in the First World War. Also affixed throughout are numerous clippings related to the Duke of Windsor and Blixen including a clipping with a photograph of her with Marilyn Monroe and original black and white photographs of her in 1921, later in life, and views of the plantation farmers and Ngong Hills. In very good condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A unique example.

    Price: $8,800.00     Item Number: 110991

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  • "with pleasant memories of Kabul": First Edition of Robert Byron's The Road to Oxiana; Inscribed by Him to Major Ted Fletcher; in the rare original dust jacket

    BYRON, Robert.

    The Road to Oxiana.

    London: Macmillan & Company, 1937.

    First edition of the author’s masterpiece. Octavo, original cloth, frontispiece, 15 plates and a map. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Ted Fletcher with pleasant memories of Kabul from Robert Byron.” The recipient, was Major Fletcher, a member of the British Legion in Kabul in the late 1930s and early 1940s, acting as a war military attache and intelligence officer. Fletcher is mentioned in this volume by Byron that the Major had driven him out to see Dar-al-Aman and Paghman on an excursion from Kabul. Near fine in a very good dust jacket with some rubbing and wear to the extremities. Rare in the original dust jacket and with such an association.

    Price: $8,200.00     Item Number: 111475

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  • "I WAS MUCH SURPRISED TO HEAR FOWLS SPEAK, AS THEY WERE TO SEE SUCH A MONSTER AS I APPEARED TO BE": RARE FIRST EDITION OF ONE OF THE EARLIEST PROTO-SCIENCE FICTION NOVELS: A VOYAGE TO CACKLOGALLINIA

    BRUNT, Samuel.

    A Voyage to Cacklogallinia: with a Description of the Religion, Policy, Customs and Manners of that Country.

    London: J. Watson, 1727.

    First edition of this early 18th century satire published in imitation of Jonathan Swift’s masterpiece Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, or, Gulliver’s Travels. Octavo, bound in full brown morocco by Charles Thurman, Binder. Raised bands, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, embossed front and rear panels, engraved frontispiece. From the library of NASA scientist and science fiction expert Frederick I. Ordway III, best known for his contribution to the development of close personal friend, Stanley Kubrick’s, epic film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Rare.

    Price: $7,800.00     Item Number: 36011

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  • “It can destroy an individual, or it can fulfill him, depending a good deal on luck. No one should come to New York to live unless he is willing to be lucky": First Edition of E.B. White's Here is New York; Inscribed by Him

    WHITE, E.B.

    Here Is New York.

    New York: The Curtis Publishing Company, 1949.

    First edition of this classic meditation on the City of New York. Octavo, original cloth, frontispiece. Presentation copy, signed by the author on the front free endpaper, “E.B.White Dec. 1949.” Presented above by Katherine White, “Merry Christmas from the Whites.” White was a writer and wife of the author. She was the fiction editor for The New Yorker magazine from 1925 to 1960. In 1977, William Shawn wrote, “More than any other editor except Harold Ross himself, Katharine White gave The New Yorker its shape, and set it on its course.” Near fine in a near fine dust jacket. An exceptional example, most rare and desirable signed and inscribed.

    Price: $7,200.00     Item Number: 74056

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  • "Keep close to Nature’s heart... and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean": Finely Bound Set of The Manuscript Edition of The Writings of John Muir; With Eight Original Photographs

    MUIR, John.

    The Writings of John Muir: The Manuscript Edition.

    Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1916-24.

    The Manuscript edition of The Writings of John Muir. One of only 750 numbered copies, this is number 461. Octavo, 10 volumes, bound in the original green with morocco spine labels with gilt titles, containing the original gelatin silver photographic frontispiece to each volume with tissue guards present, illustrated with numerous photogravure and halftone plates; folding map in volume two. Edited by William Frederic Badè. The scenes depicted in the inserted photographs are: The House of John Muir, Martinez, California; The Cathedral Spires, Yosemite National Park; Eucalyptus on Muir’s Ranch, Martinez, California; An Orange Tree in Front of Muir’s House, Martinez, California; The Lower Fall of the Yosemite (Telephoto view); A Cabin in the Muir Woods, on Mt. Tamalpais, California, used by John Muir, Joaquin Miller, and others; Arctic Ptarmigan; Crater Lake, Oregon. Manuscript page from Muir bound into volume one, the text begins, “…are more & more ancient, & more & more obscured by vegetation & all kinds of post-glacial weathering. These studies invariably show, that the soils on which the forests are growing were not produced by the…” In near fine condition. An exceptional example, rare with the original silver gelatin prints.

    Price: $7,200.00     Item Number: 96258

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  • First British Edition of Isak Dinesen's Out of Africa

    DINESEN, Isak [Karen Blixen] .

    Out of Africa.

    London: Putnam, 1937.

    First British edition of the author’s masterpiece, a lyrical meditation of the years she lived in Kenya, from the library of King Edward VIII. Octavo, original cloth. Near fine in a near fine dust jacket with a touch of rubbing. An exceptional example, uncommon in this condition.

    Price: $6,000.00     Item Number: 118446

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  • "The way to find a needle in a haystack is to sit down": First Edition of West With The Night; Signed by Beryl Markham

    MARKHAM, Beryl.

    West With the Night.

    Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1942.

    First edition, first state with the date of 1942 to the title page of Markham’s classic autobiography. Octavo, original green cloth. Boldly signed by Beryl Markham on the front free endpaper. Near fine in a very good dust jacket. Books signed by Markham are uncommon.

    Price: $6,000.00     Item Number: 114376

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  • First Edition of Paul Theroux's The Great Railway Bazaar: By Train Through Asia; Signed by Him; From the Library of V.S. Naipaul

    THEROUX, Paul [V.S. Naipaul].

    The Great Railway Bazaar: By Train Through Asia.

    Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1975.

    First edition, first issue binding with “By Rail Through Asia”. Octavo, original cloth, cartographic endpapers. Signed by Paul Theroux on the title page. Ownership signature to the front free endpaper of Nobel Prize-winning author V.S. Naipaul. Naipaul was a close friend of Theroux’s for many years. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with a touch of wear. Front cover collage by Joe Hendrick. A unique example.

    Price: $5,500.00     Item Number: 90522

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  • First Edition of Robert Byron's The Road to Oxiana; In the rare Original Dust Jacket in Stunning Condition

    BYRON, Robert.

    The Road to Oxiana.

    London: Macmillan & Company, 1937.

    First edition of the author’s masterpiece. Octavo, original cloth, frontispiece, 15 plates and a map. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with a touch of wear. An exceptional example.

    Price: $4,000.00     Item Number: 119727

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  • First Editions of Rudyard Kipling's The First and Second Jungle Books

    KIPLING, Rudyard.

    The Jungle Book and The Second Jungle Book.

    London: Macmillan, 1894-95.

    First editions of both volumes of The Jungle Book. Octavo, two volumes, original blue cloth decorated and lettered in gilt, all edges gilt, engraved frontispiece with tissue guard present. Illustrated by J. L. Kipling, W.H. Drake and P. Frenzeny. In very good condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.

    Price: $4,000.00     Item Number: 120935

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  • First Editions of Henry Yule's The Book of Ser Marco Polo, the Venetian, Concerning the Kingdoms and Marvels of the East; finely bound in full morocco by sangorski and sutcliffe

    YULE, Colonel Henry.

    The Book of Ser Marco Polo, the Venetian, Concerning the Kingdoms and Marvels of the East.

    London: John Murray, 1871.

    First edition of Yule’s important work which correlated Polo’s travels with their present-day locations. Octavo, two volumes. Bound in full morocco by Sangorski and Sutcliffe with gilt titles and tooling to the spine, gilt ruling and vignettes to the front panels, gilt turn-ins and inner dentelles, all edges gilt, patterned endpapers, with maps and engraved illustrations many folding and in color. From the Adventure and Exploration collection of James Stephen “Steve” Fossett with his bookplate to the pastedown of each volume. American businessman and record-setting aviator Steve Fossett became the first person to fly solo nonstop around the world in 2002 in his 10-story high balloon Spirit of Freedom. He completed the 2002 trip in 13 days, 8 hours, and 33 minutes and set records for both the Longest Distance Flown Solo in a Balloon and Fastest Balloon Flight Around the World. Fossett was also one of sailing’s most prolific distance record holders set the Absolute World Speed Record for airships with a Zeppelin NT in 2004. He received numerous awards and honors throughout his career including aviation’s highest award, the Gold Medal of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), which he was awarded in 2002. Fossett disappeared on September 3, 2007 while flying a light aircraft over the Great Basin Desert, between Nevada and California. In near fine condition. First editions are uncommon.

    Price: $3,800.00     Item Number: 111068

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  • "Have gone to Patagonia": First Edition of the Author’s Masterpiece In Patagonia; Signed by Bruce Chatwin

    CHATWIN, Bruce.

    In Patagonia.

    London: Jonathan Cape, 1977.

    First edition of author’s most well-known work and one of the great travel books of the last half of the twentieth century. Octavo, original cloth, frontispiece map and 4 black and white photographic plates. Signed by Bruce Chatwin on the title page. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with a touch of rubbing. A very nice example, rare signed.

    Price: $3,500.00     Item Number: 44025

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