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Random thoughts from a passionate bookplate collector.

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  • 09/19/16--14:17: Bookplate Odds and Ends
  • Fellow collector/dealer Gabe Konrad has just issued an impressive bookplate catalog. Click on the link below.

    Posted: 14 Sep 2016 02:00 AM PDT

    by Stephen J. Gertz

    The following appears as the Preface to this just published collaboration of Poltroon Press and Booktryst.

     There are legends in the Los Angeles rare and used book trade.

    In 1905, Ernest Dawson established L.A.’s first book shop exclusively devoted to rare books. Continued by his equally respected sons, Glen and Muir, the shop remained in business for 105 years. From the 1920s through the 1970s, Jake Zeitlin ran a rare book shop that became a locus for fine printing and local artists and typographers. A Texan by birth, Stanley Rose migrated to Los Angeles in the 1920s and began in the trade by peddling books on a push cart through the writers’ buildings at the movie studios  He opened a shop on Hollywood Blvd. that became a hangout for screenwriters and local and visiting novelists. Rose had a back room that after the shop closed in the evenings became an “art studies” salon that concentrated on studying the nude female form, comely models provided for the students’ edification and attention to detail. Rose was also notorious for selling clandestine erotica, and published a few one-handers written by starving screenwriters.  In the early 1960s, the Weinstein brothers established a junk store in Compton, CA that sold used books in addition to dross. Ultimately focusing exclusively on books, they developed their business into the most successful rare book firm in the world with final headquarters in a former mortuary to the stars in West Hollywood.

    And then there was the late Eli Goodman (1925-2016) of Cosmopolitan Book Shop on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. Established in 1958, Cosmopolitan was Hollywood’s oldest used bookstore. A luminary in the shade of the Los Angeles rare book trade, Eli Goodman was a legend based strictly on eccentric character. And he was a character, one too singularly colorful to have been invented; a novelist could not have dreamed-up the man.

    Refusing to ever retire, he never did. His final promotion on the Cosmopolitan website was a calculated plea for mercy and desperate tug on the heartstrings: “I’M 91 YEARS OLD – PLEASE HELP ME!  TAKE MY WONDERFUL BOOKS FOR PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR!”

    If Eli’s long-time assistant, amanuensis, and literary voice, Arnold Herr, is not exactly James Boswell, Eli Goodman will never be confused with Samuel Johnson - except for their pure love of books. Eli Goodman - within these pages “Mickey Tsimmis” - was passionate about them.

    Parts of this book were originally published in the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America (ABAA) newsletter and later episodes on my blog-site for rare books, They are collected here, as they were on Booktryst, in serial form but with additional material not found in the online edition [now offline]. The episodes are based on journal entries made by Mr. Herr over many years. Some end with a cliff-hanger. The dangler could be Eli or Arnold hanging onto a steep, flimsy bookshelf for dear life - or somebody trying to hang onto their sanity.

    In the 19th century, color-plate books were often “heightened with gum arabic” (as described in bookseller catalogues) to intensify the colors and provide a light sheen. It’s fair to say that the stories herein have been heightened. But it would be misleading to characterize them as tall-tales. They are not. But Mr. Herr was clearly wearing lifts in his shoes while writing them down.

    I could go on about Eli Goodman, who I only knew from experience, and Arnold Herr, who has been a friend for many years. But there’s a guy wedged in a truck tire rolling down the street in my direction frantically waving his arms and shouting, “Get out of the way!” And so, hello, I must be going.

    HERR, Arnold M. The Wild Ride of a Hollywood Bookdealer. Berkeley: Poltroon Press in association with Booktryst, 2016. Octavo. Photo-illustrated wrappers. 136 pp. Cover photo by Shelly Vogel. BUY NOW

    Note from Lew
    I purchased, and am currently reading this book. If you are fascinated by eccentric booksellers (as I am) you ought to obtain a copy.


    Does anyone out there recognize the artist ? 
    Initials may be CVHR or CVMR

    A British correspondent writes: The general style is familiar, being from the Art Nouveau period of the 1890s. Two reference books (Simon House & Alan Horne) on British Book Illustrators offer no obvious match, so maybe the artist was not British. The initials CVHR don't figure in the listing at

      Nor do the Oxford DNB entries for Louise Jopling and Joseph Middleton Jopling suggest any clue. Various combinations in Births/Marriages/Deaths have been tried without success.

    Maybe a reader of this blog will recognise the artist.

    The bookplate's owner, Lindsay Millais Jopling (1875-1967), was an administrator in India.  Read

      to see that his name Millais came from his godfather, John Everett Millais. At
     louise-jopling  is mention of the other godfather and more about his parents and himself

    9/20/2016 First Response  about the mystery bookplate

    Dear Lewis,
    I just saw your latest blog edition offering an artist puzzle:"CVHR".
    Well, I have a bookplate made by  John Hassal of Walmer (Kent), 1868 - 1949, for CVH de Rozsnyay, a Hungarian once living in London.
    I read before thar this CVH de Rozsnyay did also create some bookplates himself.
    He might be related to bookplate artist Coloman / Kalman Rozsnyay, but this is only a guess.
    If I am wrong with my suggestion you at least have another scan of a nice art nouveau bookplate at hand...
    Michael Kunze

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    Several years ago a collector in Finland offered me some bookplates of famous people. As it turned out the owners were famous in Finland and unknown to me.
    That is why I've decided to list these duplicates  as notable instead of famous and have included brief biographies  copied from wikipedia.

    Duplicate Bookplates for Possible Exchange. 

    William Beebe  born Charles William Beebe; July 29, 1877 – June 4, 1962)[ was an American naturalistornithologistmarine biologist,entomologistexplorer, and author. He is remembered for the numerous expeditions he conducted for the New York Zoological Society, his deep dives in the Bathysphere, and his prolific scientific writing for both academic and popular audiences.

    Sir Walter Besant (14 August 1836 – 9 June 1901), was a novelist and historianWilliam Henry Besant was his brother, and another brother, Frank, was the husband of Annie Besant

    Rear Admiral Richard Evelyn Byrd, Jr.USN (October 25, 1888 – March 11, 1957) was an American naval officer who specialized in feats of exploration. He was a recipient of the Medal of Honor, the highest honor for valor given by the United States, and was a pioneering American aviator, polar explorer, and organizer of polar logistics. Aircraft flights in which he served as a navigator and expedition leader crossed the Atlantic Ocean, a segment of the Arctic Ocean, and a segment of the Antarctic Plateau.

    James Strohn Copley (1916 - October 6, 1973) was a journalist and newspaper publisher. He published the San Diego Union The San Diego Union-Tribune and the San Diego Evening Tribune from 1947 until his death in 1973, and was President of the Inter American Press Association (1969 - 1970). His politics was "unabashedly conservative, Republican and pro-American".  He had close associations with leading Republican of the era, including Barry GoldwaterRichard M. Nixon and Spiro Agnew. Copley's presence was a chief reason that the Republican National Convention of 1972 was originally planned to be in San Diego.

    Eva Le Gallienne (January 11, 1899 – June 3, 1991) was an English-born American stage actress, producer, director, translator, and author. A broadway star by age 21, Le Gallienne consciously ended her work on Broadway to devote herself to founding the Civic Repertory Theater, in which she was both director, producer, and lead actress

    Hannibal Hamlin Garland (September 14, 1860 – March 4, 1940) was an American novelist, poet, essayist, and short story writer, Georgist, and parapsychology skeptic/researcher. He is best known for his fiction involving hard-working Midwestern farmers
    Henry Dilworth Gilpin (April 14, 1801 – January 29, 1860) was an American lawyer and statesman of Quaker extraction who served as Attorney General of the United States under President Martin Van Buren.

    No Longer Available

    Robert Tyre "Bobby" Jones Jr. (March 17, 1902 – December 18, 1971) was an American amateur golfer, and a lawyer by profession, who was one of the most influential figures in the history of the sport. Jones founded and helped design the Augusta National Golf Club, and co-founded the Masters Tournament. The innovations that he introduced at the Masters have been copied by virtually every professional golf tournament in the world.

    Donald Robert Perry Marquis  July 29, 1878 in Walnut, Illinois – December 29, 1937 in New York City) was a humorist,journalist, and author. He was variously a novelist, poet, newspaper columnist, and playwright. He is remembered best for creating the characters "Archy" and "Mehitabel", supposed authors of humorous verse. During his lifetime he was equally famous for creating another fictitious character, "the Old Soak," who was the subject of two books, a hit Broadway play (1922–23), a silent movie (1926) and a talkie (1937).

    John Pierpont "J.P." Morgan (April 17, 1837 – March 31, 1913) was an American financier and banker who dominated corporate finance and industrial consolidation. The leather bookplate he used came in several sizes and colors.

    Thomas Bird Mosher (1852–1923) was an American publisher out of Portland, Maine. He is notable for his contributions to the private press movement in the United States, and as a major exponent of the British Pre-Raphaelites and Aesthetes as well as other British Victorians. His book styles reflected those of William Pickering (publisher) and the Whittinghams, the books of the Bodley Head, the Daniel Press, the Eragny Press and Charles Ricketts of the Vale Press, among others.

    Hugh William Peel (14 September 1887 – 4 March 1975), better known as Gillie Potter, was an English comedian and broadcaster   .

    Many years ago I purchased a Hogsnorton  plate from the late James Wilson.
    He was curious about why i bought the plate since I knew nothing about Gillie Martin. I told him I purchased the plate because it reminded me of Dick Tracy.

    Harold Frederick Pitcairn (June 20, 1897 – April 24, 1960) was an American aviation inventor and pioneer. He played a key role in the development of the autogyro and founded the Autogiro Company of America. He patented a number of innovations relating to rotary wing aircraft

    Henry James Pye ( 10 February 1744 – 11 August 1813) was an English poet. Pye was Poet Laureate from 1790 until his death. He was the first poet laureate to receive a fixed salary of £27 instead of the historic tierce of Canary wine (though it was still a fairly nominal payment; then as now the Poet Laureate had to look to extra sales generated by the prestige of the office to make significant money from the Laureateship..

    Archibald Philip Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery, 1st Earl of MidlothianKGKTPC (7 May 1847 – 21 May 1929) was a Scottish Liberal statesman who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 5 March 1894 to 22 June 1895. Between the death of his father, in 1851, and the death of his grandfather, the 4th Earl, in 1868, he was known by the courtesy title of Lord Dalmeny.

    George Alfred Leon Sarton  31 August 1884 – 22 March 1956), a Belgian-American chemist and historian, is considered the founder of the discipline of history of science.[1] He has a significant importance in the history of science and his most influential work was the Introduction to the History of Science, which consists of three volumes and 4,296 pages. Sarton ultimately aimed to achieve an integrated philosophy of science that provided a connection between the sciences and the humanities, which he referred to as "the new humanism".

    John Monk Saunders (November 22, 1897 – March 11, 1940) was an American novelist, screenwriter, and film director.
    His screenwriting credits include Wings (1927), The Legion of the Condemned (1928), The Last Flight (1931) which he adapted from his own novel Single Lady, and the documentary film Conquest of the Air (UK, 1936), which he also co-directed.

    On May 16, 1929, Wings (1927), became the first film to ever win an Academy Award for Best Picture. He won an Oscar for Best Story for the writing of The Dawn Patrol (1930)

    Otis Skinner (June 28, 1858 – January 4, 1942) was a popular American stage actor active during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.

    Harry Bache Smith (December 28, 1860 – January 1, 1936)]was a writer, lyricist and composer. The most prolific of all American stage writers, he is said to have written over 300 librettos and more than 6000 lyrics. Some of his best-known works were librettos for the composers Victor Herbert and Reginald De Koven. He also wrote the book or lyrics for several versions of the Ziegfeld Follies

    Francis Wilson (February 2, 1854 – October 7, 1935) was an American actor, born in Philadelphia..
    He began his career in a minstrel show with Haverly's United Mastodon Minstrels, but by 1878 was playing at the Chestnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia, and the next year appeared in M'lisswith Annie Pixley. After several years in regular comedy, he took up some comic opera, appearing with the McCaull Comic Opera Company and making a great success in Erminie (1886). In 1889, leaving New York's Casino Theatre, he made his appearance as a star in The Oolah. Plays in which he starred subsequently include: The Merry Monarch (1890); The Lion Tamer (1891); The Little Corporal (1898); "The Little Father of the Wilderness" (1905); The Bachelor's Baby (1909), written by himself. He also appeared in several productions of Rip Van Winkle. He formed his own theater company 1899. He was the author of Joseph Jefferson: Reminiscences of a Fellow Player (1906), The Eugene Field I Knew (1898), "Francis Wilson's Life of Himself" Houghton Mifflin Company(1924), "John Wilkes Booth, Fact and Fiction of Lincoln's Assassination", Houghton Mifflin Company (1929), a book written with information from his close friend Edwin Booth, and several plays of which The Bachelor's Baby was the most successful. Francis Wilson was the founding president of Actors Equity, 1913-1920.

    Walter Wanger (July 11, 1894 – November 18, 1968) was an American film producer active in filmmaking from the 1910s to the turbulent production of Cleopatra in 1963. Wanger developed a reputation as an intellectual and a socially conscious movie executive who produced provocative message movies and glittering romantic melodramas. Wanger was strongly influenced by European films, and made many productions geared towards international markets.

    Joan Geraldine Bennett (Wanger) (February 27, 1910 – December 7, 1990) was an American stage, film and television actress. Besides acting on the stage, Bennett appeared in more than 70 motion pictures from the era of silent movies, well into the sound era. She is possibly best-remembered for her film noir femme fatale roles in director Fritz Lang's movies such as The Woman in the Window(1944) and Scarlet Street (1945).

    Note From Lew- Exchanging duplicates is one way I continually build my collection.. I am interested in bookplates used by notable people from any country. 

    If you have items for possible exchange please send scans to

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     Bob Peck collects bookplates relating to natural history and exploration

    Here is what he wrote about his own bookplate.

    Robert McCracken Peck's Bookplate byRichard E. Bishop

         When I was an undergraduate at college  I became very interested in bookplates and started a collection of those relating to my two great interests of natural history and exploration.  Since I did not have a bookplate of my own, I approached the well-known sportsman and waterfowl artist Richard E. Bishop (1887-1975), a longtime family friend, to ask if he would draw one for me. Although he was 85 at the time, and no longer making the etchings for which he is so well known, he sent me a pen and ink drawing for the plate.  It shows me with my arm holding a book dozing in an armchair in front of our summer fishing cabin’s fireplace with a small flock of Canada Geese emerging from the smoke as if in a dream. I still have the original drawing.  It measures 10 x 6.5 inches and is on a drawing board measuring roughly 12 x 10 inches. It is signed and dated 1972 in the lower right corner.

    Bishop, who designed many bookplates while at the height of his career, was the artist-author of three books: Bishop’s Birds (1936), Bishop’s Wildfowl (1948), and Prairie Wings (1962).  He was also the artist for one of the very first U.S. Federal Duck Stamps, officially known as the Migratory Bird Hunting Stamps, (1936-37).

    Note from Lew--Robert Peck, who is Senior Fellow at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in Philadelphia, would be willing to exchange copies of his Bishop bookplate for others relating to natural history and exploration  Here is his contact information.

    Mystery Bookplate Elias Lieberman
    There are several notable people named Elias Lieberman .I suspect this is the owner
    of the bookplate I recently purchased.

    "Elias Lieberman (1883–1969), American poet and educator, was a Russian Jew who emigrated to the United States with his family at the age of seven. After graduating from the City College of New York in 1903, he began working as an English teacher at a public school. Lieberman went on to earn his M.A. and Ph.D. from New York University, serving also as editor of Puck, The American Hebrew, and the Scholastic. He later worked for the New York Board of Education, as an associate superintendent of schools in charge of the junior high school division. His most famous poem, “I Am an America,” was published in 1916 by the popular periodical Everybody’s. The poem soon became a favorite, recited at graduation ceremonies and American Legion meetings"

    The information shown above came from

    The bookplate artist's initials appear to be  EB
    Here is what I have done to solve the mystery. Some of the papers of Elias Lieberman are at Syracuse University.
    The on line description includes the following information:

    "The collection contains four series: Biographical material, Correspondence, Memorabilia, and Writings. The Correspondence is arranged chronologically, while the Memorabilia is arranged alphabetically by type (i.e. advertisements, bookplates, programs, tributes). Writings is divided into two subseries, Works by Lieberman and Works by others, within which materials are arranged alphabetically by title".

    The university has been contacted  and  I am awaiting their response.

    I have a duplicate of the Lieberman plate for possible exchange.
    My last posting about exchanging  bookplates of notable people worked out very well for everyone who participated.
    Two bookplates in particular were very welcome additions to my collection.

    Ellis Parker Butler (December 5, 1869 – September 13, 1937) was an American author. He was the author of more than 30 books and more than 2,000 stories and essays and is most famous for his short story "Pigs Is Pigs", in which a bureaucratic stationmaster insists on levying the livestock rate for a shipment of two pet guinea pigs, which soon start proliferating exponentially. His most famous character was Philo Gubb.

    The second trade was for a bookplate from the library of Colette. It has not arrived yet but here is some biographical information about her.

    Colette (French: [kɔ.lɛt]Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette, 28 January 1873 – 3 August 1954) was a French novelist nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948. Her best known work, the novella Gigi (1944), was the basis for the film and Lerner and Loewe stage production of the same name. She was also a mime, an actress and a journalist.

    See you again on Sunday.-Lew

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  • 10/16/16--08:58: America in Mid- Life Crisis
  • My dad used to say there are three sides to every story, 
    your side , my side and the right side.

    I have no idea what actually occurred  during the incidents described below but it is certainly worth mentioning since as a nation we are going through some sort of mid-life crisis with two very flawed leaders and their groupies involved in a death struggle from  which  we are all at great risk.

    Feel free to respond .

    When Librarians Are Silenced- Copied from The New York Review of Books

    Video footage showing Kansas City Public Library staff member Steve Woolfolk being arrested, May 9, 2016
    Video footage showing Kansas City Public Library staff member Steve Woolfolk being arrested, May 9, 2016
    Search the Internet for news stories about public libraries in America and chances are that, sooner or later, the phrase “on the front lines” will come up. The war that is being referred to, and that libraries have been quietly waging since the September 11 attacks, is in defense of free speech and privacy—two concepts so fundamental to our democracy, our society, and our Constitution that one can’t help noting how rarely their importance has been mentioned during the current election cycle. In fact quite the opposite has been true: Donald Trump has encouraged the muzzling of reporters and the suppression of political protest, while arguing that government agencies aren’t doing enough spying on private citizens, especially Muslims. Hillary Clinton has failed to be specific about what she would do to limit surveillance, while her running mate, Tim Kaine, has promised to expand “intelligence gathering.” Meanwhile, public libraries continue to be threatened by government surveillance—and even police interference.
    In the most recent such incident, a librarian in Kansas City, Missouri was arrested simply for standing up for a library patron’s free speech rights at a public event featuring a former US diplomat. Both the librarian and the patron face criminal charges. The incident took place last May, but went largely unnoticed until several advocacy groups called attention to the situation at the end of September. In cooperation with the Truman Presidential Library and the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Kansas City, the Kansas City Public Library had invited Dennis Ross—a former advisor on the Middle East to Presidents George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama, and to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and currently a distinguished fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy—to speak about Truman and Israel at its Plaza Branch. The library hosts between twelve and twenty speakers each month, and though some of the topics and speakers have been controversial, the events have always been peaceful.
    As a matter of policy, the library declines to hire outside security guards. But because of a recent, traumatic event in Kansas City—in April 2014 a lone gunman attacked the Jewish Community Center and a Jewish retirement home, killing three people—the library administration agreed that three local off-duty policemen and Blair Hawkins, a former Seattle police officer now serving as Head of Security for the Jewish Community Foundation, could be present. According to the library, as part of the agreement nobody was to be prevented from asking a controversial question and the security team would consult with library officials before ejecting any nonviolent patrons. At the Dennis Ross event, audience members had their bags searched as they entered the library.
    During the question-and-answer session after Ross’s address, a local writer and activist named Jeremy Rothe-Kushel asked about US support for what he called Israel’s “state-sponsored terrorism.” Ross answered, and when Rothe-Kushel followed up with a more aggressive question, Hawkins and one of the other guards approached him and immediately tried to eject him from the building—despite the fact that Rothe-Kushel posed no danger to the speaker or audience members. One of the guards, Brent Parsons, shouted—incorrectly—that Rothe-Kushel was at a private event. Later Parsons added, “This is private property.” It is revealing that a policeman should have imagined, even in a heated moment, that a public library was private property.
    As the guards grabbed Rothe-Kushel, Steve Woolfolk, the library’s director of programming, who had been watching from off stage, interceded on Rothe-Kushel’s behalf and defended his right to remain in a public building and ask questions at a public forum; in a cell phone video, Rothe-Kushel can be heard saying, “Ask me to leave [and] I will leave.” The guards led Woolfolk and Rothe-Kushel through the green room toward the lobby. As Woolfolk rounded a pillar, several of the guards grabbed Woolfolk from behind. Woolfolk was kicked in the leg (resulting in a torn knee ligament), slammed against the pillar, and thrown into a chair. When he bounced out of the chair onto the floor, the guards forced him back into the chair, and handcuffed him. Both men were arrested by a uniformed police officer who had been summoned by Hawkins. Rothe-Kushel was charged with trespassing and resisting arrest, and Woolfolk with interfering with an arrest. Meanwhile, in the auditorium, the program continued; Ross answered a few more questions.
    Since May, the cases against both men have been pending. Cellphone and security videos corroborate Rothe-Kushel’s and Woolfolk’s version of events. Whether or not one agrees with the implications of Rothe-Kushel’s question, he posed no physical threat to either Ross or the audience, and was simply trying to speak. Woolfolk remained reasonable and polite. The guards’ rapid recourse to shouting and to physical violence to detain Rothe-Kushel and Woolfolk did not seem to have a basis other than that the guards were nervous in the presence of a former top US official and that Rothe-Kushel was a local activist who was well-known for asking confrontational questions at public events. On entering the library, Rothe-Kushel had been identified by Hawkins and subjected to a more thorough search than had the other patrons. The off-duty police acting as guards seem to have been confused about the exact nature of their duties—and about where they were.
    The arrests went unmentioned in the national press, in part because of the library officials’ hope that the incident—which Library Director Crosby Kemper III has described as an “overreaction”—would simply blow over and the charges against Woolfolk and Rothe-Kushel dropped. The case gained new attention, however, in late September, when the library drew support from the American Library Association and the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. (Over the years the American Library Association’s position has been that freedom of speech—and our right to information—is absolute and indivisible, regardless of the nature of that speech and the content of that information. In 2003, the ALA went to the Supreme Court in an unsuccessful attempt to reverse the Children’s Internet Protection Act, which requires that publically funded libraries install filters to screen out material that might be considered obscene or unsuitable for children.) On October 5, the Forward published an article criticizing the security guards’ behavior, and this week, a local newspaper, The Pitch, has raisedquestions about the off-duty police officers involved in the case.
    For a while, library officials hoped that an accord might be reached between the library and the prosecutor’s office; if the defendants agree to refrain from filing a civil suit, the charges against them will most likely be dropped. But the prosecutor’s office has announced that it (in co-operation with Hawkins’s employer, the Jewish Community Foundation) will go forward with the cases against the both the librarian and the patron.
    Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
    Jonathan Moreau via Flickr
    Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
    Whatever the outcome, the case adds to a growing history of attacks on libraries—simply for upholding the bedrock values that have historically made them so important. Originally passed in 2001 and since reauthorized and amended, the USA PATRIOT Act—in particular its section 215—has given the FBI the power to request library borrowing records, patron lists, computer hard drives and Internet logs. In a speech in 2003, then Attorney General John Ashcroft claimed that the understandably concerned librarians were suffering from a “baseless hysteria,” repeating the word “hysteria” several times.
    Two years later a group of Connecticut librarians (who came to be known as ”the Connecticut Four”) resisted a government request to turn over the names and online activity of everyone who had used a certain library computer; the librarians were served with a gag order forbidding them to discuss the case. After their situation attracted the attention of the ACLU, the gag order was rescinded by the FBI in 2006; the following year, the Connecticut Four received the Paul Howard Award for Courage.
    In 2005, Joan Airoldi, a librarian in rural Washington State, received the PEN/Newman’s Own First Amendment Award for defying an FBI demand for a list of patrons who had borrowed a biography of Osama bin Laden. And just two weeks ago, four off-duty policeman from the Grandview Police Department (working part-time as security guards at another Kansas City library, the Mid-Continent Library) objected to that library’s decision to put up a display case entitled “Black Lives Matter— Books About African American Experiences” and featuring novels by Toni Morrison and others. Even after the library agreed to adjust the exhibit sign’s language to read “Books about Black Lives—The African American Experience,” two of the four officers resigned in protest.  
    Part of what’s disturbing about both Kansas City incidents is the extent to which they illustrate the gap that has opened between police and the communities in which they work—a divide that, with horrifying regularity, produces far more disastrous and violent results in our inner cities. In fact, public libraries are among the very few remaining places where all Americans can meet to exchange ideas and listen to opposing viewpoints for free.
    According to the Libraries for Real Life Project, an organization founded within Wisconsin’s South Central Library System, 68 percent of Americans have library cards. Americans borrow more than two billion items from libraries every year. Anyone can go to a public library (again, for free) to learn computer skills and apply for jobs. Immigrants can receive help in obtaining green cards and passing citizenship tests, and can learn and practice English. Senior citizens can find out how to take advantage of their social security benefits, and children can attend story hours and early-reading classes. And at least partly because of their own experience with government surveillance, libraries all over the country have begun to conduct workshops designed to teach patrons how to protect their privacy online.
    I spent some of the happiest times of my childhood in Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza Library, which now, like many libraries, has expanded its services in response to the needs of the communities it serves. Along with eleven other Brooklyn libraries, it has created rooms in which the families of prisoners (especially those who cannot afford to visit their incarcerated relatives) can chat with them via video conferencing; in the same rooms with the monitors and cameras are children’s books, and during these “televisits,” prisoners are encouraged to read books with their kids. On October 29, again at the Grand Army Plaza library, a group of actors will perform a little known and especially violent Euripides play, The Madness of Hercules, and use it as the jumping-off point for a discussion of gun violence; the audience of several hundred will include local schoolchildren and members of the New York City police department.
    The right to read, to think, to discuss and listen to ideas in a public forum is essential to an open society, as is our individual privacy. One hopes that the Kansas City case—only the most recent of many—will be resolved without further cost, trouble and damage, and that librarians there and everywhere will be able to do their jobs without taking on the added burden of battling for our freedom.
    In my collection I have a number of record name labels produced by The Antioch bookplate Company. I knew very little about them and Rebecca Eschliman assisted me in my research..Her responses to my questions are noted with quotation marks.

    "Record Name Plates were also known as Record Album Plates and Phonoplates and never really took off. They were introduced in the early 1940s and were no longer included in catalogs after about 1950."
     The Blum Kaufmann plate was not done by Antioch

    Shown below is a page from an Antioch Bookplate Company catalog.
    Rebecca Eschliman supplied the following information.

    "Except for those by Jack Hubbard, the designs were provided by Antioch Bookplate's stable of freelancers.

    F-11 and F-13 were drawn by Elmo Jurkat
    F-12 was drawn by David Sarvis
    F-14 was drawn by Virginia Phillips
    F-17 and F-18 were drawn by Owen Wise
    F-19, F-20 and F-21 were drawn by Jack Hubbard (staff artist)"

    The Antioch Bookplate Company also marketed some special phonograph seals  .

    Here are some circa 1973 name labels from Antioch

    I have just added this bookplate to my list of duplicate bookplates of notable people for possible exchange.

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  • 11/01/16--14:58: Revisiting Old Friends
  • I recently purchased five additional albums to make my bookplates more  easily accessible. In getting everything organized I discovered  bookplates I  had forgotten about and in some instances I didn't even know they were in my collection.
    Here are some of the most interesting bookplates I found.
    The bookplate for TNP was designed by L.S in 1913. The owner and the artist are unknown to me. Let's call this mystery plate #1.The brayer would indicate that the owner was involved in graphic arts. Does anyone out there recognize the plate ?

    Fellow Collector Richard Schimmelpfeng just srnt the following information:
     I found a reference in Gutenberg Museum Katalog, G41,749 for a monogram plate by Joakim Skovgaard (1856-1933), Denmark. for NPT 1913. Initials over a printer's ball, ie ink ball. Measures 58x50 mm. Found in either black and white, or colored.  Usually the monogram would have the main initial larger than others, so, I thnk this may match your plate, even though the LS doesn't. 

    In three separate albums I found these bookplates by Francis Lee Jacques.
    Here is some biographical information about the artist.

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    "Francis Lee Jaques (1887-1969) was an American wildlife painter.
    Francis Lee Jaques hunted and trapped with his father and connected with editors and writers from major hunting magazines. While still a teenager, Lee paid ten dollars to buy a taxidermy shop in Aitkin, Minnesota. He toughed out a few winters scarcely earning enough money to survive and bartering paintings to pay for services. He alternated railroad work in northern Minnesota and taxidermy in Aitkin to make ends meet.
    In 1918 Jaques was drafted into the army. During his six-month stay in St. Emilione, France he recorded his surroundings in several small pencil drawings and watercolor paintings. He came home with a rank of Private First Class and returned to Duluth, Minnesota. There he met Clarence C. Rosenkranz, an artist of the impressionist style, who helped him mix color and express his feelings through art.
    In 1924, Jaques sent some of his paintings to the American Museum of Natural Historyin New York City. His talent was recognized and he was invited to join the museum's team as a background painter. The team traveled around the world gathering exhibit specimens. Jaques recorded his experiences throughout.
    Jaques was almost 40 years old when he met Florence Page, a friend of his landlord. She was a budding writer just out of a prestigious school in the East, but was originally from Decatur, Illinois. Jaques and Florence found common ground in nature and developed a friendship. They were married in 1927.
    Francis and Florence Page Jaques spent time camping in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area of Minnesota. The time provided inspiration for their now-famous books, Snowshoe Country and Canoe Country. Sales from these two books helped fund the Jaques' involvement in the conservation project at Susie Island in Lake Superior. The conservation area was later named The Francis Lee Jaques Memorial Preserve in his honor.
    The Jaques lived in New York City for over 25 years before returning to Minnesota to work at the James Ford Bell Museum of Natural History on the University of Minnesota campus. Jaques worked designing and painting diorama backgrounds until his retirement.
    The Jaques' final years were spent living in North Oaks, a few miles north of Saint Paul, Minnesota. Jaques painted daily and created a mountainous body of work. Upon his death Florence completed and arranged for publication of his biography, Francis Lee Jaques: Artist of the Wilderness World. She donated his remaining art works to the James Ford Bell Museum of Natural History in Minneapolis and to the Saint Louis County Historical Society, Duluth MN.
    Frances Lee Jaques died July 24, 1969 at the age of 81. His wife, Florence Page Jaques, died January 1, 1972 at 82 years of age."
    Note from Lew- If you have any bookplates in your collection designed
    by Francis Lee Jacques  please send me a scan and your images will be 
    added to this posting.

    Ropes End sounds like the title of a mystery novel. I'm guessing Mr .Richardson was a reporter or a mystery writer. I came up with this information while searching Google.
     "The Los Angeles Examiner paper was from 1903 to 1962 when it then became the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. In the 1940s city editor James H. Richardson encouraged and promoted his reporters to bring to light the scandals and crime in Hollywood."
    Let's call this mystery bookplate #2 until I verify with certainty who the owner was.
    You input would be appreciated.

     This charming bookplate was used in the 1920s or 30s. at P.S. 46 in the Bronx.
     The  school is still open so I wrote to the principal to see if they have any records indicating who the artist CAB was.

    This is a home made  bookplate made by Bros(?). and is high on my list of favorites.

    Here is another home made bookplate

    I'll be posting more of the  bookplates I unearthed  later in the week.

    Two Bookplate Exhibits

    Major bookplate exhibits are infrequent . Two exhibits in one month are unprecedented The first exhibit is at the Rosenbach Library here in Philadelphia.

    Bookplates and Book Collectors from 1480 to the Present

    Wed, 09/21/2016 - Sun, 01/15/2017

    Presenting beautiful and curious specimens from five centuries of book ownership, from a 15th-century coat of arms to engravings inspired by Romantic artists, The Art of Ownership delves into the stories of these bookplates.

    The second exhibit is in New York City at The Grolier Club


    November 17-Saturday, January 14

    Floor Gallery Exhibition: "Grolier Club Bookplates Past & Present," curated by Mark Samuels Lasner and Alex Ames.

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    Here are some more bookplates I unearthed while rearranging my collection in new albums.
    The designs of these two plates appear to be by the same artist although one is signed by T.Craig and one is signed JDL. They were  mystery plates when I first wrote about them in 2011 and the mystery is still unsolved.

    Note From Lew
    While I think of it I am long overdue for my annual Ebay listing of 25 very special bookplates. Send me an email and I will notify you when my listings are up and running. If you are particularly interested in a certain artist or theme  advise me accordingly and I will try to include some items for you.

    Was Arthur Frisbie an Egyptologist or a Dung Beetle enthusiast ?
    The artist appears to be JFK or FJK. Your input would be appreciated.

    At first glance you might wonder what's so special about this bookplate ?
    It is the story behind private Trumbull that is of interest,  Here is some biographical information
    about him from Time Magazine

    So he was sentenced to 26 years of hard labor which was reduced to one year and later ran unsuccessfully for congress in 1940.
    This sounds like  a John Grisham novel.

    Here is one more mystery bookplate.

    I'll see you again on Sunday by which time I may have recuperated from waking up in an alternative universe.

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    Grolier Club Bookplates, Past And Present

    A bookplate exhibit is now open at The Grolier Club located at
     47 E 60th St, New York, NY 10022
    It is in the second floor gallery
    GALLERY HOURS: The exhibition is open to the public, free of charge, Monday-Saturday 10 am-5 pm through January 14, 2017. It will be closed Thursday and Friday, November 24-25, for the Thanksgiving Holiday, and December 24-31 for the Winter Holidays.

    Update- Bookplates of Notable People For Possible Exchange
    I have updated my exchange list.The bookplate of President Coolidge was just added .

    President Coolidge was very interested in angling and included some fishing gear near the base of the tree on his bookplate .
    President Coolidge

    Clara Tice

    This Biography was copied directly from
    Clara Tice (22 May 1888 – 2 February 1973) was an American avant-garde illustrator and artist, who spent most of her life in New York City, United States. Because of her provocative art and public appearances, she was seen as representative of bohemian Greenwich Village and thus known as "The Queen of Greenwich Village."

    Early life

    According to herself and the New York Times, in 1908 Tice was the first woman in Greenwich Village to bob her hair.Around the same time, Tice was able to study under the famous artist and teacher Robert Henri. In 1910, Henri and some of his artist friends, organized the first exhibition of Independent Artist. This art show, which was with its jury-free and no-awards concept quite a revolution at that time and thus received enormous attention, was financially backed by Tice and featured her works.

    Immersion in the arts

    A few years later, namely in 1915, Tice's fame skyrocketed when Anthony Comstock, main founder of the Society for the Suppression of Vice, tried to confiscate Tice's art at the well-known bohemian restaurant Polly's. Thereafter images of Tice's artworks and photos of the artist were featured in magazines such as Vanity Fair, Rogue, The Blind Man, and Cartoons magazine. During that time she had several one-person exhibitions and also worked on numerous other projects, for example, she created posters for bohemian costume balls and played herself in the 1922 version of the Greenwich Village Follies.
    During those years, Tice not only played an important part in Greenwich Village's colorful art scene, but also joined the Arensberg Circle in their uptown location. It was probably Marcel Duchamp who introduced Tice to Walter and Louise Arensberg and their salon. There she met Henri-Pierre Roché, with whom she spent several evenings. Tice also participated in two projects by the Arensberg Circle: first, two of her works were shown in the first exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists and second, one of her works was featured in the The Blind Man.[
    During the 1920s, she illustrated about a dozen books with her erotic images, these are nowadays expensive collector's items. In 1940, her own book called ABC Dogswas published. It is a children's book in which each letter of the alphabet is represented by a dog breed whose name starts with the same letter.[8] This publication sparked renewed interest in Tice and her art. She also worked on her memoirs, which she never completed

    Clara Tice Bookplates and Ephemera
    Shown below are Clara Tice items from my  collection and the Tom Boss collection.

    If you have items not shown please send a scan and your items will be added to this posting.

    11/19/2016  These two were submitted by Nina Allen
    They were commissioned by Jack Howard Andrews, who was a dog breeder from Connecticut. The second scan is a Christmas card.

    The Quill

    The Quill was started by Arthur H.Moss, a vagabond publisher.

    "Arthur Harold Moss  was an American expatriate poet, and magazine editor.
    In 1917, he returned to Greenwich Village, founding The Quill with partner Harold Hersey and was managing editor and wrote articles. It included artists Clara TiceWood GaylorMark Toby and Alfred J Frueh .
    He married Millia Davenport (1895–1992) and worked with her at The Quill. They co-authored, The Quill: For And By Greenwich Village, vol.4, no.8, 1919.
    They separated shortly thereafter. She went on to design costumes.
    In 1920, he hired his future wife Florence Gilliam to edit Quill

    Here is a link to another website for further examples of art work by Clara Tice along with a bibliography.

    Clara Tice, Nude Woman Feeding Horse, n.d.
    Private Collection, Winthrop, Massachusetts.

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    I just  cold- called* a bookseller and explained my interest in bookplates

    1. make an unsolicited call on (someone), by telephone or in person, in an attempt to sell goods or services.

    2. Then I followed up with this email.
    Dear      ,
    I am glad we had a chance to chat and I look forward to your response.
    Bookplate collecting is my hobby and I am an active buyer.
    It's hard to nail down what interests me but this may help.
    In the best case scenario an accumulation of loose bookplates or bookplates on detached boards  are preferred.
    For bookplates pasted in books here are some of my interests;
    Any bookplates which you think are unique or attractive.

    Leather bookplates
    Angling bookplates
    Bookplates used by notable people
    Bookplates with Judaica themes

    Finely engraved bookplates.
    My preference is for books under $25.00 but for 18th century American bookplates  or bookplates used by famous people I am willing to pay
    considerably more.
    The ball is in your court..
    Perhaps you can send scans or descriptions.


    I'll keep you updated about the results but in general this approach is productive, sometimes years later.  As an afterthought , I will revise future emails to explain how to recognize universal bookplates and that they are of no interest to me.
    Here is a bookplate I just purchased from a dealer who was contacted last week.

    Thirty Five + Years of  Experience Condensed in One Article

    For those of you who are new to bookplate collecting here is a link that
    you will find helpful.

    Mystery Bookplate
    Does Anyone out there recognize this bookplate ?
    This is the first response received 
    It was sent by Mike.

    Wonderfully odd mystery bookplate
    This = This
    Buch = Book (German)
    Tillhor = Belongs (Swedish)
    a' = To (French)
    Gurgen ? = Cyrillic
    Xrinrints ? = western Armenian

    Nothing further I can figure out at this time.  Linguist? Magic?

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    Fellow Collector Peter Youatt Sent the Following Request.
      I have collected eighteenth century dated English plates since I was a school boy and I hope shortly to be in a position to do an article for The Bookplate  Journal  illustrating one from each year from my own collection.
    I have over the years acquired a good number of them,although I have several for some years, there are currently just eight years that have remained elusive. They are 1714;1728;1731;1732;1771;1772;1784and 1794. To count either the plate must itself be dated or the engraver’s signature must include a date.
    If you can assist me I would be most interested in hearing from you.

    Peter Youatt

    Note From Lew -

     While sorting through my own dated plates  I came upon this one.

     Brian North Lee wrote the following on page 22 in  the March 1998 issue of The Bookplate Journal 

     "John Walford's ex-libris seems milder until one notices the knife in the hand of the cherub at left,who otherwise might seem to be giving a simple anatomy lesson to his fellows, though the one at right is perhaps straining to hear what is being said .Whilst amorini are perhaps more acceptable than human figures in such compositions, it is more comfortable and traditional to see them as harbingers of love"


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  • 12/11/16--07:05: Clever Bookplates
  • I do not have any paid advertising on my blog but every once in a while I enjoy
    giving a bookseller or in this case a  bookish hotel free publicity. If I ever go to Portugal here is where I would like to stay, The Literary Man Obidos Hotel. .By way of coincidence, the travel section in today's New York Times  (12/11/2016) is all about bookish hotels around the world as well as book stores.

    Not too many bookplates make me laugh or at least smile.
    Here are a few that amuse me.

     If you have any bookplates in your collection which amuse you please send scans and I will try to add them to this posting.

    Martin Pacheco  is a magician in Argentina
    Dr. Hopping was a proctologist in New Jersey

    Dr Darnell 's practice was in Germantown,Pennsylvania.He was on the staff at Hahnemann Hospital.His wife Mildred Hollis Darnell designed his bookplate.

    I do not know who the owner the plate shown above  was but it sounds like someone you would not want to alienate.

    I was curious about Charles De Von LaFollette
     Here is his picture and  some   biographical information written by Beth Swift, the archivist at Wabash College


    Just this week I had a request for a scanned copy of Bob Petty’s 1982 LaFollette Lecture, “The Margins of Knowledge”  and another request for a copy of a later lecture in this series. These two requests caused me to think about all of the other LaFollette lectures over the years. This series is a source of deep, engaged thinking. Each year one speaker is chosen from the faculty to present a lecture. It is an honor and, based on those who have spoken in prior years, I would think it might be a bit intimidating…These requests also caused me to think more about the man whose name is on the series…
    Charles DeVon LaFollett 

    Lafe, as he was known to his friends, was born in Thorntown, Indiana, a very small town in Boone County. He graduated from Thorntown High School in 1916. At Wabash he was a member of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity, Managing Editor of the Bachelor, student director of the Glee Club and a leader in the Wabash Players, the forerunner of the Scarlet Masque theater group and elected to Phi Beta Kappa. LaFollette stayed a fifth year and earned his master’s degree at Wabash before heading to Harvard. At Harvard he earned his M.B.A. and was asked to stay, at first as a researcher. In 1925 was appointed Assistant Dean of the Graduate School of Business Administration. Following his Harvard years, LaFollette worked as Assistant to the President of the Bobbs-Merrill publishing company in Indianapolis.
    The scene changed from Indianapolis to Corning, NY where this smart young man quickly rose through the ranks at Corning. Starting as sales manager of the Pyrex division, he was elected Treasurer in 1939 and by 1943 was the Vice President and Director of Sales. By 1946 Lafe was a director of the company. When he retired in 1964 he continued on the Board of Directors of Dow-Corning. LaFollette served as President of the Corning Museum of Glass and was a Trustee of the Corning Glass Works Foundation.
    Yet through all of his success, Wabash was always a part of his world. In 1952 Lafe became a Trustee of Wabash College. He served for 25 years and in 1977 stepped down from the Board. It was in this year that the first LaFollette lecture was presented at Wabash. He and his wife also established the Charles D. and Elizabeth S. LaFollette Distinguished Professorship in the Humanities, first held by Eric Dean. It is a distinguished list as first Raymond Williams and then Bill Placher followed  Dean. Leslie Day  an archaeologist with significant excavations in Greece and professor in the Classics department served as the next LaFollette from 2009-2011.  This highly prized chair is currently held by theater professor Dwight Watson.
    Lafe loved this place and Wabash rewarded him for his good work. In 1956 he received the Alumni Award of Merit and in 1967 he received the Doctor of Humane Letters degree from President Paul Cook. On his retirement from the Board in 1977, faculty member Bert Stern presented, “The Businessman as Poet.” The lecture was at 4pm and was followed by a dinner. Ben Rogge spoke after dinner and ended his remarks with this toast, “To our friend, Lafe LaFollette, then, I propose this toast: May those who teach and those who learn at this college and those who guide its destinies in the years ahead be forever mindful of your example, forever aware that the finest product of a liberal education is that rarest of creatures, a truly civilized human being.”
    What a lovely thought!
    A truly civilized human being as the finest product of liberal arts education…
    Beth Swift, Archivist
    Wabash College
    Here is a photo of Mr.Andrews along with  a link to some biographical information.

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    It is that time of year again. I want to wish each and every one of you a joyful, healthy and prosperous new year

    Here are some Christmas Cards sent out by bookplate designers  bookplate collectors and others.

    From Hugh Thomson
     From Mr. and Mrs. Harold Nelson
    Designed and pencil signed 
    By Rudolph Ruzica

     Designed and Pencil Signed 
    By James D. Havens

    Two Hand Colored  Designs
     by Hugh and Margaret Eaton

    From George and Kazuko Sekine

    Designed by Sonia Zwanetz

    From Norman Kent
    From Thomas E.French

    Engraved By Stanley E. Scantlin

    Mystery Christmas Card
    Here's one which has bevelled gilded edges
    An engraved image circa 1920
    And Beautiful Calligraphy which is unreadable .
    The sender's name might be  Mrs. Amanda W. Marshall.
    What do you think ?

    12/25/2016   I received this response to my inquiry from Russ Lura

    Dear Lew Jaffe,

    Seasons’ greeting to you as well.

    I enjoy reading your emails; thanks.

    Could the name be Amanda M. Larson rather than Marshall?

    Russ Lura

    12/27/2016 Here is another response from Olli Ylönen 
    Dear Lew Jaffe,
    Your question about the mystery Christmas card:
    I read the calligraphy as Mrs. Amanda A. Carsey

    Wishing You a Happy New Year,

    Olli Ylönen
    Lähetetty iPadista

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    The Grolier Club cordially invites you to

    "The World of Bookplates”
    -- A Mini-Symposium Occasioned by the Exhibition “Grolier Club Bookplates Past & Present”

    Wednesday, January 11, 2017
    5- 7:30 pm

    47 East 60th Street
    New York, NY

    Free and open to the public


    Alexander L. Ames, PhD candidate in History, University of Delaware, curator of “The Art of Ownership: Bookplates and Book Collectors from 1480 to the Present" at the Rosenbach of the Free Library and co-curator of “Grolier Club Bookplates Past & Present”

    Molly Dotson, Assistant Director for Special Collections at the Robert B. Haas Family Library, Yale University, and Curator of the Yale Bookplate Collection

    William Butler, John Edward Fowler Distinguished Professor of Law, Dickinson School of Law, Pennsylvania State University, bookplate collector, founding editor of The Bookplate Journal and author of The Golden Era of American Bookplate Design (1986) and Modern English Bookplates (1990), both in co-authorship with Darlene J. Butler

    Reception follows

    .Mark Samuels Lasner
    Senior Research Fellow
    University of Delaware Library
    181 South College A
    Photographs from the exhibit provided by fellow collector Michael Anthony Middleton
    Click on image above to enlarge

       For rare book lovers: provided by fellow collector David Lowden

    ·       encyclopedic website devoted to the work of Arts & Crafts book publisher Thomas Bird Mosher, recently rebooted by Phil Bishop (Mr. Mosher to some of us!) -

    ·       All about the Encyclopedia Britannica 11th edition (1910) -

    Mystery Bookplates

     Does anyone out there recognize these bookplates?
    The artist's monogram on both is HC


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    My next blog project is a Norman Kent Checklist.
    This is my starting point. The checklist which appeared  in the
    1945-1946 YearBook of The American Society of Bookplate Collectors and Designers .I need scans of the following #1, #2, #8, #11, #12,#14,#22
    plus all bookplate done after 1946. Your help would be appreciated.
    Lew Jaffe

    Bookplates  and Ephemera for Possible Exchange
    A  4 by 7 inch new years card by Ismael Smith
    Finely engraved map bookplate by Roy Cooney for Cdr. A.T.
    Welch R.N.
    Bookplate by T.B.Hapgood Jr.
    By Amy Sackler
    By Margaret Overbeck 

    It's hard to believe I am starting my tenth year as a blogger.
    Here is a nine year  snapshot of pages viewed by country.
    The Chinese viewers are under reported. I suspect some Chinese bookplate collectors  somehow are able to bypass the government censors and my blog is passed around from collector to collector.
    Entry Pageviews
    United States
    United Kingdom
    South Korea

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    plural noun: cartoons
    1. 1.
      a simple drawing showing the features of its subjects in a humorously exaggerated way, especially a satirical one in a newspaper or magazine.

    2. I've selected a number of cartoonish bookplates and several done by cartoonists.
    3. Very few (if any) are humorous. Many of them seem to reflect a style of drawing popularized in the 1920s and 1930s

    This is the earliest cartoonish American bookplate I have found.It was designed by Henry L. Stephens around 1840

    Click on Image to Enlarge

    Note From Lew
    If you have any cartoon bookplates please send  scans to  and I wiil try to include them in part two , next week..

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    This week I have a few more bookplates with cartoons plus some bookplates used by notable cartoonists.
    Before I get started let me mention that I will be listing a number of choice bookplates on Ebay in a week or two. If you would like me to notify you when the listings begin send me an email.

    Disney characters are used on many universal bookplates.
    Shown below is a bookplate which mayhave been used by Walt Disney.
    I have read conflicting stories about the authenticity of the  bookplate .
    Here is another universal bookplate

    Many years ago I got the S.O.S. bookplate in the $1.00 bin  outside of Mr Allen's
    bookshop in Philadelphia..I remember that the abbreviation of the owner's name was S.O.S but for some reason I did not write down his name
    No matter what you collect it is easy to identify with Mr. Kennedy

    Remus Harris was the grandson of Joel Chandler Harris.
    Fred Hartman drew the Red Ryder Comic Strip
    Last but certainly not least is Gary Trudeau..I am not sure if he uses this bookplate in his library or for book signings (or both).

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    Fellow collector/ dealer Richard Thorner purchased the Holy Grail of presidential bookplates.
    The Clinton bookplate is inscribed to Worthington White, a White House usher who worked there from 1980 to 2012.  He and Clinton shared a love for golf.

    I received the following message from Mr. Don Dimock and I  asked him to send some biographical information.

    I don’t know if you want home made bookplates or not.  I have always made my own.  I am sending you about all that I have left.  I drew these in the early 1980’s and printed them with a copy machine.  The one I used most by far is the one with the descending  dove.  I have a shelf of books on swimming so I made the swimming bookplate,  I usually colored it by hand.  I used the one of the book when I didn’t want a figure.  I almost never used the rest of them.  You have my permission to do anything you wish with them or just throw them away.  It is up to you.  I enjoy what you post VERY much.  

    Dear Lew,
    I don’t know what to say about myself.  I have had an adventurous life.  I changed careers a few times.   
    Presently I am 86 years old.  I was born in a remote part of rural Hawaii in March of 1930.  I left Hawaii for the last time in 1952.  After attending college in Colorado I spent the rest of my life here in Oregon. 
    I have always had an interest in books.  My present residence is full of books on a wide variety of subjects.  I also have always had an interest in art.  I used to do oils.  I changed to acrylics when they became available.  And I have always had a profound interest in photography.  In recent years I have been doing wildlife photography.  And I write.  I used to do free-lance photojournalism.  That is no longer practical.  I began writing books for a hobby years ago.  I self-published some of them.  Before computers I used to illustrate my books with line drawings.  That is what prompted me to do my bookplates that way   I still come out with a hobby book every year or two – or three.  My recent ones have all been illustrated with photography.  Digital photography makes that practical.  For the last twenty years or so all of my books have been poetry.  Yes, I write poetry.  None of my books are available now.
    I used to be very active in masters’ sports such as running and swimming.  I have a lot of books on running and a shelf full of swimming books.  That is why I made the swimming bookplate.
    I have not made any bookplates since the 1980’s.  I am still using the one with the descending dove that I sent to you.  If I were to make bookplates today they would almost certainly be a mix of photography and drawing.  The logo I put on the copyright page of my books began as a line drawing.  The same drawing is now in color and there are parts of it that are photographs.
    I have done lots of wildlife photography in recent years.  If I were to make any bookplates today they would probably contain photos of birds and/or flowers.

    Thank you for your interest.  I hope I haven’t bored you.  I wish you all the best.
    Don Dimock

    Notes From Lew- If you have any home made bookplates and you want them added to this blog posting send a scan to

    I have been sorting through a large collection built between 1930-1950 .It has many duplicates from England , France Germany,Italy  Spain , Russia Australia and California.I would be interested in trading or selling the duplicates.
    Here are a few examples.

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    2017 marks the 10th year of my blog. In blog years that is a very long time
    To celebrate the anniversary I have  begun a simple bookplate contest with a nice
    prize for the winner.

    The contest relates to this bookplate for Doctor Ferdinandi Pasquinelli
    He was licensed in Italy in 1908
    The motto at the top of his plate translates as follows:
    Latin nihil sub sole novum, from the Hebrew אֵין כָּל חָדָשׁ תַּחַת הַשָּׁמֶשׁ ‎(en kol chadásh táchat hashámeshthere is nothing new under the sun), from Ecclesiastes 1:9.
    Click on Image to Enlarge

    The contest is very simple .

     Create a caption about the image in ten words or less.
    It can be serious or humorous.
    Onlyone entry per person 
    The entries must be received no later than Midnight (Eastern Standard Time) Saturday April First
    The judges are fellow collector Richard Schimmelpfeng and myself.
    We reserve the right to reject entries in poor taste (Highly Unlikely)
     The winner will receive a professionally bound hard  cover inscribed book  with all my blog postings for 2016.
    Send your Entries to

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  • 03/01/17--06:21: March Events
  • This newsletter was written by John Renjilian.

    John Renjilian
    9 Old Hawleyville Road, Newtown, CT 06470
    Phone: (203) 426-0864  
    Antiquarian History, arts, domestic science; books, manuscipts, graphics & paper

    Hold on tight, it's a busy month!

    First up is the winter sale at Westport Library, 20 Jessup Rd, Westport, CT 06880. Saturday, March 4, 9 am-5 pm, March 5, 1-5 pm, March 6, 9 am-5 pm (everything half-price), March 7, 9 am-noon (contribution day). Mass market paperbacks Hardcover and trade paperback fiction and mysteries, Children's books, from infants to teens, Nonfiction hardcover: cooking, gardening, home & crafts, travel, history, biography, etc., DVDs and CDs, Vinyl LPs, Test preparation books, Jigsaw puzzles., 203-291-4800.

    The next week begins Rare Book Week in NYC, opening with the ABAA Fair, 9-12 March, at the Park Ave Armory, 643 Park at 67th St, 10065. Opening night preview runs from 5-9, $50 includes one readmission, Friday 12-8, Saturday 12-7, Sunday 12-5; $25 each day, or $40 for the run. There will be over 200 American and international dealers there, and as always they will have magnificent items, with equivalent prices. But it's certainly an education, and dealers often do bring items within the range of ordinary collectors. The list of dealers and other information is at Sanford Smith runs the show for the ABAA, or 212-777-5218.

    Two satellite fairs piggyback on the big show, and they are on separate days this year. Friday, 10 March will see the NYC Book and Ephemera Fair, at the Wallace Hall of St Ignatius Loyola, 980 Park Ave at 83rd St, from 8AM to 7PM. A free shuttle service will run all day, beginning at 7.45, between Wallace Hall and the Armory. About 50 dealers as of now, $15 admission. The hall is well laid out and well lighted, and the dealers will have a wide variety in all price ranges. Don't miss this one, and bring coffee when you come, an 11 hour show should leave dealers bleary eyed! Forget the coffee, maybe that's better for negotiating! Marvin Getman's Impact Events Group runs the fair,, mgetman@antiqueandbookshows,com, or 781-862-4039.

    Opening the next day, 11 March, will be the second satellite, the Manhattan Vintage Book & Ephemera and Fine Press Fair, at the Church of St Vincent Ferrer, 869 Lexington Ave at 66th St, 10065, 10-5, $15 admission. This show is across the street from the back of the Armory so no shuttle will be needed. About 35 antiquarian dealers on the list, in addition to a good selection of fine presses. Again well laid out, the fine press folks are in one section and the antiquarians in the main area. An excellent selection of both merchandise and prices here as well. Flamingo Eventz runs this one, or 603-509-2639.

    if you make it through the weekend you have a week to prepare for Ephemera 37, 18-19 March, at the Hyatt Regency, 1800 Putnam Ave, Old Greenwich, CT 06870. 10-5 Saturday, 11-4 Sunday, $15 two day admission, $8 Sunday only. I haven't counted the dealers but it doesn't matter, the hall will be full and the goodies abounding. Not a book fair per se, there will still be many books present, and if you haven't yet discovered the pleasures of ephemera this would be a great place to start. The Ephemera Society holds their annual conference concurrently, with a full schedule of events beginning on Friday, you can check the list at   Marvin Getman's Impact Events Group runs this fair also,, mgetman@antiqueandbookshows,com, or 781-862-4039.

    Finishing out the month will be Paper Town, at the newly renamed Boxborough Regency, 242 Adams Pl, Boxborough, MA 01709; exit28, I-495, 25 March, 9-3. Please note, this is the same building as always, if you found it once you can find it again, it has simply changed hands and been rechristened. This is a little bit of everything show, encouraging that approach and the participation of new venders by renting by the table, a much easier investment obstacle for a new dealer or for trying something new. $7 admission, you'll want to check the website closer to showtime for a list of dealers. Flamingo Eventz runs this one also, or 603-509-2639.

    Don't know about you, but I'm tired, can't remember the last month with every weekend filled, and this one with multiples on the big weekend, all within reach rather than spreading across the geography. 

    Enjoy the beginning of spring!

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    Fellow collector Yu Xingang sent me three  bookplates images by Willy Pogany and wondered if I knew anything about him. Although I have several bookplates he designed I really did know anything about the artist . I have begun a checklist of his bookplates. If you have any not shown in this blog posting please  send a scan to and your images will be added to the checklist.
    "William Andrew ("Willy") Pogany (born Vilmos Andreas Pogány) (August 1882 – 30 July 1955) was a prolific Hungarian illustrator of children's books and others.  .] He is best known for his pen and ink drawings of myths and fables.] A large portion of Pogany's work is described as Art Nouveau. Pogany's artistic style is heavily fairy-tale orientated and often feature motifs of mythical animals such as nymphs and pixies."
    The reason not much has been written about his bookplates is that he  was primarily  involved with book and magazine illustration and movie set design. Most of his bookplates were universal and were distributed by The Castle Co.Ltd.The only custom designed bookplate shown below was done for Anna May Wong

     Fania Marinoff was a Russian-born American actress.Wikipedia
    BornMarch 20, 1890, Odessa, Ukraine
    DiedNovember 17, 1971, Englewood, NJ
    SpouseAnatole France (m. 1914–1964)

    3/24.2017  Sent by Tom Boss

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  • 03/26/17--12:17: Goodbye Dear Friend
  • Richard Schimmelpfeng (July 13,1929-March 16,2017)

    Richard Schimmelfeng was a gentleman in every sense of the word.
    He was much more than a mentor  and a passionate collector of many things including  bookplates, glass paperweights and children's literature.He was one of the most centered people I have ever met .He gladly shared his knowledge and enthusiasm with friends and colleagues 
    Have a safe journey Richard, you will be missed.

    Lew Jaffe
    March 26,2017

    The Passing of Richard H. Schimmelpfeng

    It would be difficult to find someone more dedicated to the UConn Library’s Archives  and; Special Collections than Richard Schimmelpfeng. Perhaps it is because of the solid foundation he built beginning with the Special Collections Department after his arrival in 1966. But more likely it is because of his dedication to the collections after his retirement in 1992. Mr. Schimmelpfeng began volunteering in the Archives the day after his retirement and was a daily staple until his recent illness a few months ago. In a March, 2005 article he stated “I intend to continue as a volunteer until either I fall over, am dragged out, or told to quit,” he quips. “I figure I’ve got about 15 more years to go.” We estimate that he worked more than 15,000 volunteer hours over 20+ years. As Norman D. Stevens, Emeritus Director of the UConn Library says in his obituary below, “his fifty years of service to the University of Connecticut is perhaps unsurpassed.”
    Our sadness is beyond words. We will truly miss his knowledge and dedication, but mostly the smile he brought us every day.
    Richard H. Schimmelpfeng(7/13/1929-3/16/2017)
    The son of Harold W. and Rose Schimmelpfeng, Richard was predeceased by his brother Harold W., Jr. and is survived by his niece, Margaret R. Lilly, and nephew, William J. Reynolds, and five grandnieces and nephews.
    A graduate of the University of Illinois, with a triple major in English literature, history, and modern languages, and, in 1955, of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Library Science. He began his library career as a cataloger, rising to the head of the department, at Washington University in Saint Louis.
    In 1966 he joined the staff of the University of Connecticut Libraries to protect and preserve the library’s rare and unusual books and manuscript collections. He had become head of a somewhat larger and more formal Special Collections Department by the time he retired in 1992. The day after his retirement he began working as a volunteer in what had become the Archives and Special Collections Department, where he served as its principal cataloger until early 2017. His fifty years of service to the University of Connecticut is perhaps unsurpassed.
    During the course of his official appointment he oversaw an enormous growth of special and unusual archives, books, and other printed materials in a wide variety of fields. His own interest in collecting in many areas, led to the creation of a number of specialized collections including bookplates – he was an active member of the American Association of Book Plate Collectors and Designers – and the limited edition publications of major book designers.
    He was especially adept at giving his employees, including students, support and encouragement. That led, for example, to the establishment of one of the country’s strongest collections of Alternative Press materials that continues to grow as it documents the growth and development of the counter-culture movement that began in the late 1960’s and early 1970s. It also resulted in the publication of a multi-volume annotated edition of the manuscript materials of the noted American poet Charles Olson.
    He and his father shared an interest in collecting hand blown glass paperweights that Richard continued throughout his life. He was an active member of the New England Paperweight Association. Shortly before his death a few recent purchases joined The Schimmelpfeng Collection of Contemporary Glass Paperweight at the New Bedford Museum of Glass. His love of the visual arts extended to illustrated children’s books and he was an active participant of the American Book Collectors of Children’s Books (ABCs). He delighted in dressing up for a number of years as Clifford the Big Red Dog to entertain children and their parents at the annual Connecticut Children’s Book Fair at UConn.
    For many years he used his specialized knowledge of books to assist the Mansfield Public Library in identifying and pricing items donated to their regular book sales. He was himself an avid reader who especially enjoyed detective stories.
    He was also the Librarian and a member of the Executive Council of the Mansfield Historical Society from 1992 through 2016. He had begun his service to the MHS in 1982 when he indexed their scrapbook collection.
    Richard’s love of the visual arts and music contributed to his enjoyment of concerts and programs at UConn and his active support of those programs including the donation of visual materials to the Benton Museum of Art.
    In the fall of 2017 the Homer Babbidge Library at UConn will host an exhibit Glass Animals presented by the New Bedford Museum of Glass that will include a significant number of important pieces for which he had provided the funding. During that exhibit there will be a program to honor Richard and recognize his generous support of the University and the Mansfield community.
    Colleagues and friends may post a note on the guest book for his obituary at, or may wish to share with one another their reminisces of Richard through e-mails, cards, phone calls as well as small gatherings and/or postings on social media.
    Norman D. Stevens
    March 12, 2017

     In memory of a giant

    I have known Richard Schimmelpfeng for almost twenty years. A native Midwesterner, Richard settled in Storrs, Connecticut, walking distance from the library at UConn, where he worked and volunteered for decades.

    Our relationship consisted of long emails, the occasional phone call and a yearly get together extravaganza that became a classic: I used to spend my Thanksgiving long weekends in CT to celebrate at my in-laws house and the day after Thanksgiving Richard and I always made room in our agendas to spend the day together and share stories and anecdotes and a ton of prints, which exchanged hands at a very brisk pace.

    Richard had been collecting for forty plus years, prioritizing European prints from the twentieth century and amassing a collection second to none (especially for the bookplate literature). He helped the American Bookplate society for decades and shed light  many lesser known artists and prints. His knowledge went way past bookplates: he was a true collector (paper weights, art, music among other things).

    Richard did not like traveling and never attended bookplate congresses, the exception being the Boston one in 2000, but was nonetheless known within the ex libris world for his generosity, knowledge and availability.

    I ended up acquiring the Schimmelpfeng collection. Over the last two years Richard and I arranged for the massive transfer of his boxes. The last one occurred three months ago between Christmas and New Year, with Richard’s health already declining. I am proud and grateful to have had such an opportunity and will do my best to keep his legacy and collection intact and look forward to writing about it in depth.

    I will miss Richard . I think of him while browsing through boxes and coming across his unmistakable hand writing and artistic use of marbled papers. He was not only a librarian.a friend and  scholar but also a gifted teacher.

    Luigi Bergomi
    March 26,2017

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