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2009 Acquisitions in Special Collections
The following items were acquired by the Special Collections Librarian during the 2009 calendar year, and are here listed under the collection into which they will be placed, and then by date of creation (oldest to newest). Some items are described, and some are listed in brief citations. At the end of each entry, the fund utilized or the donor’s name is given:
Deery Fund — Acquired with monies given to support the Irish Collection by Dr. Philip Deery, and administered by the Rhode Island Foundation.
Duplicate Fund — Acquired from monies or credit generated by the sale of duplicates, either by auction or to dealers directly.
Gift of — Items given directly to Special Collections, with donor’s name.
Nicholson Fund — Acquired with the assistance of the fund established to support the Nicholson Whaling Collection.
Nuggets Fund — Acquired with monies donated to “Occasional Nuggets.”
Rackham Fund -- Acquired with monies donated by Martha Sherman to add books illustrated by Arthur Rackham to Special Collections.
The Orator’s Guide; Or Rules for Speaking and Composing; from the best authorities. Comp. by E. G. Welles. (Philadelphia: [Welles], 1822). A quite snarky and opinionated guide to oratory style and manners. Here’s a random excerpt for flavor, which appears under the heading “On the Eloquence of the Pulpit”: “The importance of pulpit eloquence, is acknowledged by all; and the ungracious and slovenly manner, frequently complained of, in which many preachers treat their auditories, calls imperatively upon students in divinity, to pay more attention to this subject than has heretofore been bestowed.” Duplicate Fund.
New-England Primer, Improved; or, An Easy and Pleasant Guide to Reading. (Boston: James Loring, ca. 1830). An early 19th-century edition of the most popular schoolbook for children in New England from 1700-1820. Duplicate Fund.
King’s Pocket-Book of Providence, R.I. Ed. by Moses King. Compiled by Harry E. Manchester and Robert Grieve. (Providence: Tibbets & Shaw, 1882). “It is the design of this book to describe briefly the interesting and most important public features of the city of Providence.” Duplicate Fund.
Franklin Bibliography: A List of Books written by, or relating to Benjamin Franklin. By Paul Leicester Ford. (Brooklyn: [Ford], 1889). A seminal bibliography, still necessary for students of Franklin. Ex-libris of Jacob L. Chernofsky. Nuggets Fund.
Chin Chin Kobakama. By Lafcadio Hearn. (Tokyo: Hasegawa, 1903). Gift of Lee McIlwain.
Japan: An Attempt at Interpretation. By Lafcadio Hearn. (New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1904). Gift of Lee McIlwain.
Gleanings in Buddha-fields. By Lafcadio Hearn. (Leipzig: Tauchnitz, 1910). Gift of Lee McIlwain.
The Romance of the Milky Way. By Lafcadio Hearn. (Leipzig: Tauchnitz, 1910). Gift of Lee McIlwain.
Leaves from the Diary of an Impressionist. By Lafcadio Hearn. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1911). Duplicate Fund.
Japanese Fairy Tales. By Lafcadio Hearn. (New York: Boni & Liveright, 1924). Gift of Lee McIlwain.
The Library: Rhode Island School of Design. By Evelyn Chase. (Providence: RISD, 1942). Duplicate Fund.
Studies in Art and Literature for Belle Da Costa Greene. Ed. By Dorothy Miner. (Princeton, NJ: Princeton U.P., 1954). Festschrift for J. Pierpont Morgan’s librarian. Gift of Richard Ring.
Three Centuries of English and American Plays: A Checklist. England: 1500-1800; United States: 1714-1830. (New York & London: Hafner, 1963). Ed. By William G. Bergquist. Lists about 5,500 plays in their earliest and most significant editions. Duplicate Fund.
Instrumental Music Printed Before 1600: A Bibliography. By Howard Mayer Brown. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard U.P., 1967). Over 400 items are described. Duplicate Fund.
The Henry C. Taylor Collection. Compiled by John S. Kebabian. (New Haven: Yale U.P., 1971). 410 important books, maps and manuscripts on navigation and navigators. Duplicate Fund.
A Bibliography of the Works of Alfred Thayer Mahan. Compiled by John B. and Lynn C. Hattendorf. (Newport: Naval War College Press, 1986). Duplicate Fund.
Guide to the Records of the Merseyside Maritime Museum (vols. I & II). Vol. I compiled by Gordon Read & Michael Stammers (1995); vol. II edited by Dawn Littler (1999); published in St. Johns, Newfoundland by the Trustees of the National Museums and Galleries on Merseyside and the International Maritime Economic History Association. Volume I summarizes the holdings of organizations connected to the history of the port of Liverpool; volume II focuses on personal and family archives and includes collections relating to merchants, shipbuilding, slavery, emigration, and maritime families and charities. Gift of Michael Stammers.
The Bibliography of the Book of Common Prayer 1549-1999. By David N. Griffiths. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll, 2002). The definitive bibliography. Duplicate Fund.
The Parsons Collection: Rare Pacific Voyage Books (Parts I & II). (NSW, Australia: Hordern House, 2005-2006). The private collection of David Parsons serves as a select bibliography of Cook with excellent historical and bibliographical information. Gift of Richard Ring.
A Matter of Taste: Discrimination in Nineteenth-Century Book Collecting. (Providence: JCB Library, 2008). By Susan Danforth. Exhibition catalogue. Gift of Richard Ring.
The Oath of a Free-Man. With a historical study by Lawrence C. Wroth and a note on the Stephen Daye Press by Melbert B. Cary, Jr. (New York: Press of the Wooly Whale, 1939). From Governor Winthrop’s journals we know that the “Oath of a Free-Man” was the first thing printed on the first press in what is now the United States. No copy of it is known to exist, but the notorious Mark Hoffman, a.k.a. “The Mormon Bomber,” created what he claimed was “a recently discovered, only-known copy” of this document. It convinced many, but not all, in the field of rare Americana. His inability to sell it led to the financial crisis that precipitated his bombing spree and the subsequent discovery of his numerous forgeries of historical autographic documents supposedly written by mountain men, Alamo figures, Mormon founders, and Emily Dickenson. Duplicate Fund.
The Practice of Printing. By Ralph W. Polk. (Peoria, IL: Chas. A. Bennett Co., 1952). Gift of Jacques Bidon.
Victorian Decorated Trade Bindings 1830-1880: A Descriptive Bibliography. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll, 2003). By Edmund M. B. King. Duplicate Fund.
Whistleriana: Works By and About James McNeill Whistler from the Collection of Martin Hutner. (New York: Grolier Club, 2003). Many of the works described were produced by Updike’s Merrymount Press. Gift of Martin Hutner.
Trade Bookbinding in the British Isles, 1660-1800. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll, 2004). By Stuart Bennett. Duplicate Fund.
Printing Places: Locations of Book Production since 1500. Ed. By John Hinks & Catherine Armstrong. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll, 2005). Duplicate Fund.
The Business of Books: Booksellers and the English Book Trade 1450-1850. By James Raven. (New Haven: Yale U.P., 2007). Duplicate Fund.
Periodicals and Publishers: The Newspaper and Journal Trade 1740-1914. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll, 2009). Ed. By John Hinks, Catherine Armstrong & Matthew Day. Eleven essays on provincial printing in Great Britain. Gift of Richard Ring.
The Vandercook Book. By Roni Gross and Barbara Henry. (New York: Center for Book Arts, 2009). Printed in an edition of 100 copies to celebrate the 100th anniversary (1909-2009) of the Vandercook Proof Press (the very press, by the way, which produces the covers of Occasional Nuggets). The Vandercook Book is a portfolio of 30 specimens from master printers currently working, representing the tremendous diversity of work facilitated by the press. Included also are six essays by printers celebrating the “Joy of Vandercooking,” and a book of procedures, tips, tricks, and troubleshooting for those who use the press. Nuggets Fund.
[Act & Resolves—Great Britain]. An Act for allowing vessels employed … (London, 1803). An act allowing whaling vessels involved in the Greenland fishery to complete their crew rosters at certain ports (other than their hailing ports) for the season. This Act was passed in the midst of an uneasy peace between Georgian Britain and Napoleonic France: the Treaty of Amiens was 25 March 1802, and hostilities were renewed on 18 May 1803 (a year later Napoleon would declare himself Emperor). Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Account Book]. Ship Panama, of Nantucket (Alexander D. Bunker, Master), on a whaling voyage from 1836 to 1839. This manuscript of just of 100 pages records the crew and their “lays” (shares), names of deserters, individual sailors’ expense accounts (for clothing, tobacco, blankets, etc.), and names of seamen (American and otherwise) who floated in and out of the crew list. Nicholson Fund.
Statuten der Nederlandsche Walvischvisscherij-Maatschappij, te Amsterdam. (Amsterdam, 1843). These statutes form the articles of association of the Dutch Whaling Company, which operated under a government-granted monopoly. Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Log]. Brig Mary Ann, of New Bedford (Joseph Crocker, Master), on a voyage to the Indian Ocean from July 1832 to May 1833. This 170-page log was probably kept by the mate as a personal journal. He records daily events, shipboard evolutions, weather, vessels sighted, whales seen and taken, and similar details of the voyage. The entries stop May 22, 1833, about three months before the end of their voyage —apparently because the mate simply ran out of pages to fill. The highlights of the trip were: the first whale, the captain falling overboard — later losing his cutting spade and getting in a fight with the boatsteerer, and a stowaway discovered (he’d come aboard during a “gam” with two other whale ships three days earlier). Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Log]. Ship Congress, of New Bedford (Charles Little II, Master), kept by Samuel Robinson (a Greenhand), from June 21, 1846 to October 23, 1848. 190 pages of entries take us to the Pacific Ocean and the northwest coast. Robinson skips most of the dull parts, so this is an exceptional journal in terms of readability. Highlights include descriptions of gambling, fighting, the cruelty of the Captain, a “Nantucket Sleigh Ride,” drunken fights with another ship’s crew, floggings, and several deaths and accidents, including a stove boat. One of Robinson’s shipmates dies of dysentery (he was 17), and it affected Robinson so that he taped a lock of his friend’s hair into the journal. Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Log]. Ship William Rotch, of Fairhaven (Cromwell Morslander, Master), to the Pacific Ocean, kept by Henry DeForrest. A detailed, clearly written, and introspective account (over 300 pages) of a whaling mate’s life, by an experienced and articulate seaman who had rounded Cape Horn five times before this voyage, and passed eleven birthdays “in the whaling service.” De Forrest records incidents, landmarks, and ports of call (including Pernambuco, the Falkland Islands, Cape Horn, islands and cities of the coast off Chile and Peru, and the Galapagos Islands), and notes with varying stamps or sketches the ships spoken and some 120 whales struck — whether “saved” or lost — and the quantity of oil rendered. For the ships, he records the name, length of time at sea, and frequently the number of barrels stowed. Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Log]. Ship Catherine, of New London (Elisha Hull, Master), kept by James S. Johnson, Steward. Thirty-five pages of entries dating from November 21, 1854 to May 21, 1855 and including sketches and whale stamps. While not extensive, the logbook records this voyage to the Cape Verde Islands with a lively style. It was a relatively unsuccessful hunt, in that they only took six whales in six months. Nicholson Fund.
[Whaling Log]. Bark Samuel & Thomas, of Mattapoisett (Asa Hoxie, Master), to the South Pacific, September 3, 1859 to May 30, 1863. This 105-page journal was kept by Solomon Barstow (listed in the journal as a “Mattapoisett Yankee” with no rank). It contains many whale stamps, a diagram of a sperm whale, and a sheet of hand-colored signal flags (opposite). Nicholson Fund.
Peche de la Baleine, du Requin, de la Licorne de Mer, etc. (Epinal [France], circa 1870s). 39x28 cm. colored lithograph print, “No. 668.” A French lithograph illustrating four scenes from whaling, as well as four others of fishermen hunting a shark, a narwhal, a crocodile, and a school of herring. Elizabeth Ingalls, in her Whaling Prints in the Francis B. Lothrop Collection, shows a copy of this print [item 238] as a colored lithograph, c. 1870—a product of the town of Epinal, which produced stylized, fanciful, and humorous depictions of the French whaling industry. This is a typical ‘image d’Epinal,’ printed by Pinot & Sagaire, in the tradition of Pellerin. Pellerin was a printing firm in Epinal, a town east of Paris, that produced distinct images in a simple, fresh, and spontaneous style, originally created for illiterate adults. Founded by Jean-Claude Pellerin, in the late 18th century, the firm flourished in the 19th century. Other Epinal firms (like Pinot & Sagaire) imitated the style, thus linking the images with the name of the town. Nicholson Fund.
Humphrey W. Woolrych. A Treatise of the Law of Waters (London, 1851; reprinted Clark, NJ: Lawbook Exchange, 2005). A comprehensive work on Anglo-American water law as it stood in the mid-nineteenth century. Nicholson Fund.
Stuart A. Moore. A History of the Foreshore and the Law Relating Thereto. (London, 1888; reprinted Clark, NJ: Lawbook Exchange, 2006). A learned history of riparian rights and fishery law from 765 CE to the late nineteenth century. Nicholson Fund.
Considerations on the late bill for payment of the remainder of the national debt. By Christopher Robinson. (Dublin, printed: reprinted London, 1754). A constitutional essay defending British authority in matters concerning the governance of Ireland. Robinson was a judge of the King’s Bench in Ireland, and here seeks to allay Irish fears of usurpation. Deery Fund.
A candid review of Mr. Pitt’s twenty resolutions. Addressed to the people of Ireland. (London: For J. Debrett, 1785). An Irish nationalist’s attack on Pitt’s proposal for a new regime of free trade and reciprocity between England and Ireland, sometimes attributed to William Forbes. The plan was passed in the Irish Parliament but was sabotaged by the manufacturing interest in the English Parliament for being partial to Ireland. The author of this tract disagrees, and points out the restrictions that the resolutions would impose on Irish trade with North America, the West Indies, Africa and India. Deery Fund.
Fashionable levities, a comedy in five acts. By Leonard MacNally.(London: G.G.J. & J. Robinson, 1785). Leonard MacNally (1752-1820) was a grocer, lawyer, playwright, and spy (not necessarily in that order). During the Gordon Riots he risked his life to rescue the Lord Chancellor's brother (a Catholic) from a Protestant mob. MacNally also edited the Public Ledger for a number of years, fought a number of duels, wrote political pamphlets, and acted in sympathy with revolutionaries (defending them in court) while secretly betraying them to the government (which was not discovered until after his death). Deery Fund.
A discourse delivered in the new Dutch Church . . . before the New York Society for the Information and Assistance of Persons Emigrating from Foreign Countries. By Thomas Dunn. (New York: For L. Wayland, 1794). This celebration of Irish identity begins with a sermon of the flight of the Israelites from Egypt, drawing a parallel with Irish emigration to America. The author rails against England and its war with France and “the rights of man,” with its “grand apostate” Edmund Burke. He asks that help be extended to fellow countrymen about to seek asylum in America by supporting the Society. Deery Fund.
[MS archive—Irish National Federation of America, 1891-1895]. A collection of 24 autograph letters and 1 TLS, all written to Major John Byrne (1845-1905), railroad president and soldier, associated for over 20 years with Collins Peter Huntington, one of the big four of western railroading. In 1891, a moderate offshoot of the Clan na Gael (Fenians) broke away and formed the Irish National Federation of America with Thomas Addis Emmet as president. The federation’s goal was to get American opinion behind Irish home rule and to raise funds for the Irish Parliamentary Party. By 1893 it had grown to 150 branches, but became moribund by the defeat of a Home Rule bill in Parliament, although it survived to be replaced by the united Irish League in 1901. All the letters are about Ireland and/or the federation, including two letters totaling 15 pages by Thomas Power O’Connor, journalist and politician, about politics and the sate of affairs in Ireland. Also present is a printed leaflet (4pp.), probably by Emmet, entitled The National Federation of America. Organized to aid the Home-Rule movement in Ireland. Address. (n.p., n.d., ca. 1891), which includes a 2-page address, and a list of officers and members. Deery Fund.
On Baile’s Strand. By William Butler Yeats. (London: A.H. Bullen, 1907). On Baile’s Strand develops from a conflict between Cuchulain and Conchubar, the High King of Uladh. Conchubar, wanting to restrain Cuchulain's wildness and to maintain stability in his kingdom, forces Cuchulain to take an oath of loyalty. At that moment a young man appears and challenges Cuchulain to battle. Sensing an affinity with the young man, Cuchulain tries to prevent the battle but eventually follows Conchubar’s commands and fights and kills the young man—only then to discover that he has killed his own son. As the play ends, Cuchulain rushes down to the sea to express his rage by fighting the very waves, calling "Conchubar, Conchubar! the sword into your heart!" The entire play is very effectively framed by means of a subplot involving a fool and a blind man, who provide complex and subtle parallels to Cuchulain and Conchubar. Deery Fund.
Oscar Wilde: His Life and Confessions. By Frank Harris (Introduction by Bernard Shaw). (New York: The Author, 1918). Inscribed by the author, Harris, who was a close friend of Wilde and produced this early biography some twenty years after Wilde’s death. Deery Fund.
Reflections. By William Butler Yeats. (Dublin: Cuala Press, 1970). This was the first of a new series of books printed by the Cuala Press when it was revived in 1969. It is one of 500 copies, and was designer Carolyn Hammer’s copy. It joins several other Cuala Press books in the Irish collection. Deery Fund.
The Voyage of the Catalpa: A perilous Journey and Six Irish Rebels’ Escape to Freedom. By Peter F. Stevens. (New York: Carrol & Graf, 2002). Duplicate Fund.
Brownell Maritime History Collection
The Shipwreck. By William Falconer. (London: For John Sharpe, 1822). The poem describes the peril of the ship Britannia in a violent storm, and the subsequent survival of only three of its crew. Gift of Philadelphia Rare Books & Manuscripts.
The Shipwreck and Other Poems. By William Falconer. (London: Charles Tilt, 1836). Includes a biographical sketch of Falconer. Duplicate Fund.
A Testimonial to Charles J. Paine and Edward Burgess, from the City of Boston, for their Successful Defence of the America’s Cup. (Boston: City Council, 1887). Duplicate Fund.
Fifty Years of Fortitude: The Maritime Career of Captain Jotham Blaisdell of Kennebunk, Maine, 1810-1860. By Kendrick Price Daggett. (Mystic, CT: Mystic Seaport, 1988). Duplicate Fund.
Ubi Sumus? The State of Naval and Maritime History. Edited by John Hattendorf. (Newport: Naval War College Press, 1994). Duplicate Fund.
Figureheads and Ship Carving. By Michael Stammers. (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 2005). Duplicate Fund.
Memoirs of Elleanor Eldridge. By Harriet Francis Green. According to Sidney Rider (1833-1917), bookseller, publisher and antiquarian of Providence, Francis Harriet Whipple Green (1805-1878) always chose “the unpopular side of every question in Rhode Island.” From 1830 on she supported one cause after another—temperance, labor, suffrage, abolition, spiritualism, etc. Her most popular work was the Memoirs of Elleanor Eldridge (1838) followed by Elleanor’s Second Book (1839), the actual story of the sufferings of a mixed-race woman: “She was born at Warwick, R.I., March 26, 1785. Her paternal grandfather was a native African. He was indeed, with his family, to come on board an American slaver, under pretence of trade.” Tricked into slavery, the man, his wife, and four children suffer the “middle passage” and are sold on the auction block. Elleanor’s father, Robin, becomes Robin Eldridge, who later enlists to fight in the American Revolution (and therefore gain his freedom). Before enlisting he marries Hannah Prophet, daughter of Mary Fuller, a Native American of the Narragansett tribe, who dies at 102 in the year 1780. Elleanor eventually became a resourceful and pioneering Rhode Island entrepreneur who used the proceeds of her successful cleaning business to buy real estate. However, during a serious illness much of her property was essentially stolen from her. Representing herself in court she reached an out-of-court settlement and was able to reclaim her properties at an expense subsidized in part by this memoir, originally printed in two parts in 1838 & 1839. Eldridge’s memoir is one of the few extant narratives by pre-Civil War free black women. Duplicate Fund.
[Manuscript commonplace book]. By Benjamin H. Cook. ([Rhode Island], 1852-66). Civil War-era commonplace book collecting poems and hymns, most inscribed in one small, neat hand but a few in larger cursive script. Literary items are followed by a religious diary marking portions of scripture, sermon topics, and one recipe (“best method of keeping beef”). Maritime themes are notable in the verse, along with death, loss, and pride in the independence derived from frugality. In the back is a “list of drafted men in Burrillville, July of 1863”). Duplicate Fund.
Puck of Pook’s Hill. By Rudyard Kipling. Illus. by Arthur Rackham. (New York: Doubleday, 1906). Rackham Fund.
Animals Everywhere. By Ingri & Edgar Parin d’Aulaire. (New York: Doubleday, 1940). This rather scarce title is in an odd format—one large, accordion folded sheet (11” tall x 88” long). On one side are color lithographs of over 50 animals, and on the other, the same animals appear in the same setting with their backs turned and done in one-color. Nuggets Fund.
The Compleat Angler. By Izaak Walton. Illus. by Arthur Rackham. (London: George G. Harrap & Co., 1931). Rackham Fund.
Snickerty Nick & the Giant. By Julia Ellsworth Ford. Illus. by Arthur Rackham. (Los Angeles: The Author, 1935). Based on Oscar Wilde’s Selfish Giant, this is a fairy play. First published in 1919, there was no British edition of this title, nor was there a limited edition. It contains a nearly 50-page music section which was not included in the 1919 edition, and this copy is signed by the author. Rackham Fund.
Wings for Per. By Ingri & Edgar Parin d’Aulaire. (New York: Doubleday, 1944). Set in an unnamed European (Nordic) country, Per is a fisherman’s son who escapes his town ahead of occupying forces and eventually becomes a fighter pilot to help liberate his homeland. Nuggets Fund.
Arthur Rackham. By Fred Gettings. (New York: MacMillan, 1976). The life and work of Rackham, profusely illustrated. Rackham Fund.
A New Bibliography of Arthur Rackham. By Richard Riall. (Bath, England, 1994). The standard bibliography of Arthur Rackham. Rackham Fund.