Sunday, June 29, 2014

This Week in Bookplates 6/29/2014

Bookplate Exchanges
Getting together with other collectors and exchanging duplicates is, from my perspective one of the most enjoyable aspects of this peculiar hobby.
Skype also enables you to conduct these exchanges with collectors from all over the world.
If you wish to exchange duplicates with other collectors please send me a brief list of the artists, themes,countries time periods etc. that interest you. If you have a Skype number send that also.
This is important.I plan to publish a list of everyone who responds on a future blog posting.
If you do not want your contact information shown on the blog posting be sure to tell me.
Send your brief exchange want list to

From last week's blog posting about Bookplate exchanges I have received two responses thus far

Oliver Furrer
Thank you for organizing this list of bookplate collectors for exchange of duplicates.
I am interested in armorial bookplates from Switzerland and France from 18s and early 19s centuries. I also have some German armorial bookplates I am ready to exchange.
My email address is
 Skype id is: olivierfurrer.
Olivier Furrer

Kevin Fry

I have no experience with this kind of thing and wasn't sure how to keep displaying new elements of a growing collection. I was looking for a framing or display system that is infinitely expandable, affordable, and doesn't require constant professional framing intervention .. or chew up wall space I don't have. 

I use acrylic magnet frames from Crate and Barrel. This method allows me to display endless numbers of bookplates, as long as I have spare shelf space. They are placed on bookshelves so they’re visually connected to the idea of books, and the frames are transparent so the display doesn’t really block the book collection. The bookplates sort of float in front. (None of them are in direct sunlight, of course.) These photos show a portion of my Rockwell Kent section … about 47 in total now. I keep other people’s plates on other bookcases on the other side of the room, so the Kent collection is unified.  

The acrylic frames, which use powerful tiny magnets to keep the two halves together, keep a tight, firm, flat hold on the paper, which I assume it’s a good way to keep them from harm, as long as they aren’t in direct line of a window. The plates remain completely undamaged (and easily removable) in this system since they aren’t really attached to anything. 

The frames you see here are all from Crate and Barrel and are 4” x 6”. They sell other sizes on their website and in their stores ( For the Kent collection I want everything to be uniform in the display so they’re all in the same size frame no matter how big the bookplate is, although smaller frames are available and theoretically could be used and mixed and matched.

Although I have no duplicate Kent items for exchange at this time, I am interested in adding to my Kent collection.

My Own Want List
I am interested in English and American Leather bookplates and currently have the following duplicates for possible exchange:

Two Interesting Links Sent In  By Blog Readers.

Lew , I hope you are doing well. I came across this website and figured  you would know about it already but thought it an excuse to say hi. Tim

Tim James
The American Bookbinders Museum
856 Folsom Street
San Francisco CA 94107

Hi Mr. Jaffe,
     My name is Ari and I work in the Genealogy, Local History and Rare Books and Special Collections department at the Cincinnati Public Library. I don't know if you've seen our collection of digitized book plates at our Virtual Library, but I think you might enjoy them. I really like your blog!
Ari Lavigne

Note From Lew- Both of the links are loaded with information and should be bookmarked.
See You Again Next Sunday.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Bookplate Exchanges

In last week's blog posting about keeping up with bookplate inflation I neglected to include the following:

Bookplate Exchanges
Getting together with other collectors and exchanging duplicates is, from my perspective one of the most enjoyable aspects of this peculiar hobby.
Skype also enables you to conduct these exchanges with collectors from all over the world.
If you wish to exchange duplicates with other collectors please send me a brief list of the artists, themes,countries time periods etc. that interest you. If you have a Skype number send that also.
This is important.I plan to publish a list of everyone who responds on a future blog posting.
If you do not want your contact information shown on the blog posting be sure to tell me.
Send your brief exchange want list to

Earlier this week fellow collector  Yosef  Halper visited me.

Since Yosef is also a bookseller in Israel he finds  all sorts of interesting  ephemeral items to tempt me.
Here are three examples:

Wounded man’s kit label

Exhibition Image One


A label similar to this was tied to George Arnott’s kit, when he was admitted to hospital. OHMS stands for On His Majesty’s Service. It had a reference number: AFW 3042. The wounded man’s Army number, rank, name and unit were to be written in. If the kit belonged to a soldier missing or a Prisoner of War, then WOUNDED MANS KIT was to be scored out and a cross was to be inserted under M or PW.


Date: 1945
Contributor: George Arnott
Location: Germany
Original Source: Courtesy of George Arnott private collection
Pen and ink drawing on a blank postcard

Other than Wie es geht ? I do not know what it says so a translation would be appreciated.

6/21/2014 Fellow Collector Wally Jansen sent this translation:

Hi Lew,

I'm not truly fluent in German but I'll take a stab at the text on that card:

(The bird in the tree is an owl.)

Whoo, whoo,
So hoot
the owls.
Little person you,
with the wolves
you must hoot (or howl).
And he howls: woo woo.
And the wolf speaks: I will not gobble you up.
And that is a true story.

Of course the German words have a cadence and rhyme that make it more appealing.  The word used for hoot and howl appear to be the same in German.

It seems a bit mysterious and I have a feeling that it may be related to some old fable.
Dear Lewis,
just had a look to your recent blog and found the handwritten card and
the translation by collector Wally Jansen.
Maybe it is worth to add that the German "mit den Woelfen heulen" ("to
howl with the wolves")
has a double meaning. It also means: "When in Rome, do as the Romans do".
This can be used as a friendly advice or even as a veiled threat...
There might be a language behind the language, I presume.
Kind Regards
Michael Kunze

Printed card 4 inches wide by 5 1/2 inches high
I know this was published in 1943 and probably is asking for money
 .Your help in translating would be appreciated.

Here are some duplicates I got from Yosef which are currently available for possible exchange:

  1. Hallie Flanagan
    Theatrical producer
  2. Hallie Flanagan was an American theatrical producer and director, playwright, and author, best known as director of the Federal Theatre Project, a part of the Works Progress Administration. Wikipedia
  3. BornAugust 27, 1890, Redfield, SD
  4. DiedJuly 23, 1969, Old Tappan, NJ

Carl Van Vechten
Self-Portrait of Carl Van Vechten Crisco edit.jpg
Photographic self-portrait by Carl Van Vechten, taken in 1934
BornCarl Van Vechten
June 17, 1880
Cedar Rapids, IowaU.S.
DiedDecember 21, 1964 (aged 84)
New York CityNew York, U.S.
EducationWashington High School
Alma materUniversity of Chicago
Spouse(s)Anna Snyder (?–1912),
Fania Marinoff (m. 1914–64)

Dubose and Dorothy Heyward-Wrote Porgy and Bess


 The paper cut illustration on the bookplate was done by Sarah E. Cowan

Dorothy and Dubose Heyward

Mystery Bookplate- 

Does anyone out there know who designed this bookplate ?

That's all for today. See you next week

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Keeping Up with Bookplate Inflation

There has been a steady increase in the cost of bookplates sold on Ebay.This is partially fueled by spirited bidding from Chinese , English and American collectors. It's good for sellers and not so good for collectors.
I wear both hats but I am primarily a collector so I would like to make some suggestions and encourage your participation by sending additional thoughts and comments to
Find A Hand Bookbinder
   Bookbinders are hard wired pac rats. They often save old boards and keep bookplates when the customer does not want them.You should be able to find one or two  . If you need help ask your local antiquarian bookseller for a name. .My experience has been that bookbinders generally are very helpful.

Antiquarian and Used Booksellers.
  Make yourself known to your local bookseller(s) and ask them to keep you in mind if they get a book (within your price range) which has an impressive bookplate.While you are at it ask if they have a box with detached boards or ephemera.From time to time I have purchased some exceptional bookplates that way.

Bookplate Societies
Join The American and or The English Bookplate Societies..There are links to both organizations in the column on the left side of the blog.

Local Book Sales and Book Shows
This one is a no brainer.You need to get on their mailing list

Tomorrow if all goes according to schedule
I'll be in New York City for the Herring Festival.
If you plan to be in New York City this month and you like Herring here is a link.  

One Last Thing- Here is a Herring Bookplate:

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Bookplates and Peacocks

Several weeks ago fellow collector/dealer Denetia Arellanes sent me this photo of feral Peacocks in her backyard.. L.A. has at least 4 distinct populations of feral peafowl thriving within the metropolis.  Glendora, where she lives has one.  The Palos Verdes peninsula has one.  La Canada-Flintridge has one and the city of Arcadia has, by far, the largest one .

If you are curious about how these birds wound up in California follow this link:

Many of the Peacock bookplates in my collection are from Californians. If you have any Peacock bookplates to add to this blog posting send scans to

Anita Baldwin's bookplate was designed by Harry French and engraved by Schreve And Co..She was the daughter of Lucky Baldwin the man responsible for bringing Peacocks to California..

Dell Dibble's bookplate was designed by Yvonne Greer 

Nelle Richmond Eberhart (August 28, 1871 – November 15, 1944) was an American librettist, poet, and teacher. Her bookplate was designed by Margaret Postgate .

Dawn O'Farrell's bookplate was designed by Anthony Euwer

Mildred Pearce's bookplate was designed by R. Carex.

Josephine E.S. Porter's bookplate was done by W.F. Hopson

Mr. C.J. Peacock of England has a hand colored punning bookplate  

Bookplate drawn by George Auriol for Alexis Natahn, around 1900

 Submitted by fellow collector/dealer Jacques Laget

Rebecca Eschliman Submitted the two Antioch Bookplates Shown Below

G-516 was from the 1930s (no documentation, because much of the documentation associated with the early years was either lost in a fire or discarded in later years in bouts of overzealous housekeeping. It appeared to be one in a series of experiments with color and unusual paper stocks (this one was ungummed, which was unusual for the universals).

B-125 was offered in the late 1970s, and was offset-printed from a photograph of a needlepoint (actually, it was a needlepoint I had done as a gift for my mother). It never sold particularly well and was withdrawn after only about three years

The Karl Plath plate was sent by fellow collector Nina Allen.It was designed by Carl Junge

6/9/2014 This one by VonBayros (subject to prior sale) is currently on Ebay

Some Interesting Links

Old books (stock image) have a sweet smell with notes of vanilla flowers and almonds, caused by the breakdown of chemical compounds in the paper, while new books smell how they do because of chemicals used in their manufacture

If you have ever wondered why many old books have a delightful aroma follow this link:

From the Special Collections Processing Blog  (University of Pennsylvania) I have extracted  postings about some owners of  bookplates

See You Again Next Sunday.

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Henry Grandin's Bookplate

 Do any of you recognize the owner's name or the artist AM ?
I suspect it is a California plate. It was purchased in San Francisco ( Paul  Elder Bookseller label)

The book it was in was about etching and was published in 1926.

Fellow Collector Wally Jansen
would like some help in identifying this artist's monogram
The actual  bookplate monogram is shown on the left . 
The image on the right is a sketch which is a close but not  exact reproduction.
See you on Sunday,

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Abraham Lincoln-My Shining Star by Robert Weinberg

This week I am pleased to publish a guest article submitted by fellow collector Robert Weinberg
(A.K.A Bookplate Bob)

Abraham Lincoln-My Shining Star

As a high school student studying American history and the Civil War , I was asked to memorize and recite
The Gettysburg Address .From that time on,Abraham Lincoln was my hero.When I started to collect bookplates, Lincoln and his life were always at the forefront of my thinking.
.Adding to that,I was fortunate n being able to buy a small collection of Lincoln Exlibris.

From that time forward I found myself a Lincoln stalwart .A few years ago.I had the privilege of donating  a Henry Horner bookplate(Governor of Illinois) to The Abraham Lincoln Museum in Springfield ,Illinois
 The governor's collection of Lincolniana is the backbone of the Presidential Lincoln Museum..

I have been searching for "Honest Abe" for over forty years and would like to hear from other collectors who share my passion

A Few Bookplates From My Collection

Engraved by A.N. Macdonald

By Bernhardt Wall

By Will  Simmons

Notes  From Lew- Thank you Bob.

 If anyone out there would like to submit an article for inclusion in the blog please contact me.

Here is a link about Hollywood Bookplates with a number of items from The Jim Lewis Collection:

Philadelphia Book Show

I plan to attend the book show on Friday evening  if you are attending and have bookplates for sale or trade please contact me.
.Here is the show information:

June 13 & 14, 2014
The Philadelphia Vintage Book & Ephemera Fair
  Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel, 201 North 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA  19103
A Fabulous Vintage Book & Ephemera Fair  For Philadelphia!
  This is one of the most requested Book & Ephemera Fairs in our stable! We  were asked by so many dealers to find the right location to revive an old  favorite and give it a fresh, new start. So we did our homework and here it is!
  Exceptional Exhibitors from throughout the Northeast will offer Fine, Rare  &  Unusal Old Books, Plus Maps, Autographs,  Prints, Posters, Playbills, Ephemera, and Much, Much More at the Sheraton  Philadelphia Downtown, 201 North 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Hours are Friday 5-9pm & Saturday 10am-4pm
  Adult Admission is $67 Young Collectors 12-21 $3, Under 12 free w/Paid Adult,  plenty of free parking, refreshments.
Special Events: Appraisals Saturday 1-3pm by  John Bruno, Star of Market Warriors! Also Book  Binding, Restoration & Preservation Presentations!
Next week I will be writing about Peacocks on Bookplates.


Maywyn Studio has left a new comment on your post "Abraham Lincoln-My Shining Star by Robert Weinberg...":

Interesting post. I look forward to next week's peacocks in bookplates.
For a treat, Jeri Landers, the artist has a baby peafowl post that's adorable.