Showing posts from September, 2010

Vintage Japanese paper handbill

This is one of my more unusual pieces and I'm not sure what to call it--handbill, broadside, flyer... A rose by any other name and all that, it's beautiful regardless of labels. This ad for publisher and bookseller Suzando T. Aoki dates to circa 1900, as I have found a few references to books published by Aoki in the 1900-1905 date range. It measures nearly a foot in length (28 cm). The paper appears to be hand painted, though I can't say for certain. I'm way outside my knowledge base on this one. And the paper is something you have to hold and feel to appreciate the fibrous texture and quality. It's almost like a fabric. The Japanese Paper Place shares some history on traditional Japanese paper, called Washi , which I'm guessing Aoki selected more than a hundred years ago as the appropriate medium for this advertisement for his books. After perusing the history of Washi, if Japanese paper needs more superlatives, this article titled, The Art of Japanese Paper

William Augustus Brewer Bookplate Collection

I heard today from Gregg Silvis at the University of Delaware Library, who had seen my post about John Stuart Groves' bookplate and Delawareana. He thought their digital bookplate collection, William Augustus Brewer Bookplate Collection , would be of interest to readers on this blog. It certainly was to me. In addition to the bookplate collection, try the University of Delaware Library Digital Collections link and have fun with that visual feast of history. This also ties in neatly with something else I wrote earlier this year, some thoughts on digital ephemera , after receiving a digital copy of a bookplate. Quoting from the William Augustus Brewer Bookplate Collection , here' the scoop on William Augustus Brewer and his wonderful collection: Reverend William Augustus Brewer was an avid bookplate collector. His wife, Augusta LaMotte Brewer, bequeathed his collection to the University of Delaware Library after her husband’s death. The William Augustus Brewer Bookplate Collect

Bruce Rogers book prospectus

Back in June, I wrote about a 1957 Book Club of California prospectus for a forthcoming book that year about Mark Twain. This prospectus was one item in a batch of ephemera that Bill Holman gave to me for my ephemera collection. For this post, I've gone back to that folder of ephemera and have selected another prospectus from the Book Club of California: BR: A Panel Discussion of the Bruce Rogers Centenary held at Purdue University by Harry Duncan, K.K. Merker and Ward Ritchie (1981). There's more, but I'm still organizing and studying what I have, as time permits. I'm also acquiring similar ephemera directly from the Book Club of California, as I am now a member thanks to Mr. Holman's recommendation and sponsorship. The ephemera from this club have become quite collectible over the years, such as announcements, prospectuses, invitations, and other pieces, which are themselves beautiful examples of design and fine printing. One of the greatest book designers, if

Bookish swap cards

This Labor Day entry is a stretch for staying within the scope of this blog's content. But in honor of the holiday, no labor--let's play cards. Just when I think I've found all the different kinds of paper collectible relating to books, another one pops up. Swap cards. These are single playing cards out of a regular 52-card deck (plus jokers). I didn't know there was a name for this collectible. Nor did I didn't know that single cards were all that collectible, except for the truly antique. Although I have picked up a few here and there because of certain subjects portrayed on the card, it only recently dawned on me to look for book-themed cards. I'm late to the game, but deal me in. The swap cards that introduced me to this new world of collectibles are pictured below. Two cards from what appears to be companion decks, because of the color variation, contain an image of an Antebellum-looking couple browsing books through a shop window. The next set, two cards a

The Flying Bookseller in Berlin

This postcard depicts a German bookseller's wagon, or cart, on a Berlin Street around the turn of the 20th century, likely a bit before 1900. The back of the postcard, which may be a later issue, labels the photo " Der fliegende Buchhändler ." I knew Buchhändler was bookseller, but I had to look up fliegende , which translates to flying , i.e., Der fliegende Holländer (The Flying Dutchman) , the famous opera by Richard Wagner. By fliegende or flying , it is meant that this bookselling business was portable and mobile. It could move freely about to accommodate buyers in various areas of town or the countryside. Gustav Kauffmann, according to the sign off the end of the cart, owned and operated this German "Parnassus on Wheels," which appears to have made the rounds in a Berlin business district. It also looks like Herr Kauffmann is parked outside a restaurant that serves a selection of beer from the Kindle Brewery (advertising above window, visible in the firs