Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel

Embed this content in your HTML


Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels

Channel Catalog

Channel Description:

Random thoughts from a passionate bookplate collector.

older | 1 | 2 | 3 | (Page 4) | 5 | 6 | .... | 15 | newer

    0 0

    My own bookplate made in 2000, still looking like me.

    Michael and Elizabeth Kunze

    I did not chose to collect bookplates - it seems it lay in wait for me.
    In September 1997 a friendly second-hand bookseller  gave me a book with a bookplate. I read that book and still have it:  The German translation of Mary Holderness'  "Journey from Riga to the Crimea" (1822), printed 1824 in Jena, Germany.
     Nice but nothing special so far; However, the owner’s bookplate  "Ex Bibliotheca Serenissimae Domus Saxo-Isenacensis"  - i.e. (Library of the venerable House Saxon-Eisenach) puzzled me.

     That puzzle which drew me me into the bookplate-jungle was hidden in detail. The "Domus Saxo-Isenacensis". The last descendant of the family ruling the Duchy Saxon-Eisenach died in 1741.  So - how did it get into a book printed in 1824? All I found out was that the The Duchy was combined  in 1809 with the Duchy of Saxon-Weimar to form Saxon-Weimar-Eisenach.  After quite a time I had  called the Chief Librarian of the Duchess-Anna-Amalia-Library in Weimar by phone and asked him if he had an explanation. He did not have any at hand and  promised to call me back. Some days later he fulfilled his promise and told me that in 1809 all the books of the Eisenach-Library were brought to Weimar to be added to the Library there - together with quite a number of unused Eisenach-bookplates. And as it was obvious that from now on all books marked by this bookplate belong to Weimar, they decided to use the remaining bookplates up to the last one to mark new bought books. A nice by the way: Library director from 1797 unto his death 1832 was Johann Wolfgang Goethe.

    This initial bookplate experience had consequences. It is the main reason why my interest in this heartwarming hobby still is searching and investigating for details about the owner of a bookplate. The pictures get more focused when the outlines of a biography are unearthed. That still is what moves me most.
    Sometimes, if an owner’s name gets my attention I  only, in the second place, notice how beautiful a bookplate looks.

    Here are several of my favorites:

    Carl Otto Czeschka, born 1878 in Vienna,  lived in Hamburg when he made the elegant bookplate for Martha Hane in 1910.

                                                                 Michel Fingesten's Bookplate
    Max Klinger did this bookplate for Eduard Arnhold, a Berlin merchant and banker, in 1906

    For several years my main interest has been pictorial Judaica bookplates .
    There are other bookplates categories and artists of interest such as 
    Literary authors writing in German as owners or artists
    Max Klinger,
    Hermann Struck,
    Emil Orlik,
    Michel Fingesten,
    Fre Cohen (The Netherlands),
    Willi Geiger,
    Bruno Heroux,
    Georg Jilovsky,
    E.M. Lilien,
    Hans Thoma and others.
    There also are a lot of unsigned bookplates which excite me. Often of interest is the way a bookplate is printed.  It certainly mustn't be a copper engraving to be of interest. But on the other hand engraving sometimes says something about the skill of the artist, of his creative ability,  the love of his handicraft  and, last not least,  something about the number of exemplars probably being in circulation.
    I am not a member of any bookplate society. But there are some fellow collectors sharing my interests.  It is a pleasure to exchange stories, opinions, suppositions - and bookplates, of course.

    Michael Kunze, Dortmund, Germany
    Notes From Lew

      Thank  you Michael for submitting your profile.

    Mrs. Geri Caruso sent me this Email last week

    "I wanted to let you know that after reading your blog and looking at the bookplates for a while I decided to contacted one of the bookplate artists. She designed a bookplate for my son which I gave him as a birthday present. We did it so that he can reproduced it by printing it on sticky paper. It was a hit! Highly individual and useful forever
    Michael is reader and a gardener. The little guy in the picture is his son Nick"

    Here is the bookplate which was designed by Muriel Frega

    I really enjoyed this month's edition of the Old Book News Monthly and want to share it with you.
    Of particular interest was the article about searching on line book databases

    See you again next Sunday.

    0 0

    John Hudson Elwell

    Back in 2008 I mentioned John Hudson Elwell , a very talented engraver about whom I had very little information.

    A calling card engraved by John Hudson Elwell in 1918 ,while employed by the W.H. Brett Co. of Boston. 

    Several months ago I was delighted to receive  this link about Mr. Elwell from  fellow collector Anthony Pincott .

    If you click on to the link you will find biographical  information  about the engraver along with a checklist of the 55 known bookplates he engraved... The  website also is a tribute to Robert Strong Woodward (1885-1957)
    a western Massachusetts artist  who designed some of the nicest bookplates engraved by Mr. Elwell.

                                                  Two Plates Engraved by John Hudson Elwell


    Daniel Mitsui

      Several readers have inquired about a source for affordable tastefully designed bookplates . I am pleased to mention that Daniel Mitsui has recently issued eight different  universal bookplates.

    They are six dollars for a package of 10 or 45 dollars for a package of 100 (plus shipping)

    Here are two examples:

    You Can see all eight designs by following this link:

    See you again next Sunday


    0 0

    Tuesday, July 23, 2013

    How quickly the weeks have gone by since my notice of May 18. Just 12 days remain if you wish to participate. In other words, only two chances to bid. This is open to everyone  not solely to members of The Bookplate Society. Go to to see what’s on offer. Bids have yet to be placed on more than a third of the items, so you might pick up a last-minute bargain. Or you could scoop the pool with a Golden Bid (Lot 500) for all the 99 bookplates of military men on the last page. Remember that behind the visible prices there may be bids where the bidder’s maximum value has not yet been reached.

    Send Bids or Questions to

    Good luck with your bidding.

    0 0

    Bookplate Collecting Profile
    Andrew Peake

    I was in the Amazon in 2011 as a tourist.

    Bookplates have been within my family since before I was born in 1949.  This was because my uncle, probably as an art school project, started creating bookplates in the late 1940s.  As a result he created bookplates for his father, brothers (including my father) and himself as well as friends and for the school libraries in which he was posted as a school teacher.

    As a result I was always aware of the bookplate in my father’s books as well as books in my grand-father’s library, as we visited my grand-parents nearly every Sunday and I roamed about the house and explored the library.

    However, that was were it stayed until much later in life, until I organised a grant of arms from the College of Arms, London, for my father, with extension to myself.  In due course I received the grant from the College of Arms in 1976, but was then left with the dilemma of what to do with this grant of arms.  One use of the grant is to create a bookplate to embellish books in your library.  So I then approached an artist who advertised herself in the English Genealogist Magazine, Joan Harris who lived in Plymouth, England.   In due course she created a bookplate, which then went into my library, and I used a cut-down version on my letter-head and business card.  I subsequently discovered other plates by Joan Harris, in second hand book shops which I collected.  

    Muriel Frega

    A calligraphy plate made for me in a shop in Istanbul, Turkey.

    Gordon Collett an English artist; 

    David Frazer, an Australian wood block artist

    Tom Mitchell an Australian caricaturist

    Daniel Mitsui

    I gradually started collecting bookplates, generally from second hand charity book shops, where the books could be purchased for a few dollars and the plates floated off, and the books recycled back into the book shops.  Contact with other collectors added to my collections, either through purchase or exchange. This led to further commissions for personal bookplates and I now have quite a number of plates by Australian and overseas artists in a range of mediums.

    This refined my collecting as I soon appreciated that there were millions of bookplates out there and it was necessary to specialise, so I now concentrate on Australian and twentieth century armorial bookplates, though I have diverged occasionally into collecting plates from particular artists.

    I assembled a good collection of Australian bookplate literature.  I added to this by assembling material for my publication, Australian Personal Bookplates, a register of plates which appeared in 1999.  An Addendum and Corrigendum is now in the pipe-line.  In 2012 I published, Bookplate Artists and their Bookplates, a book on the history on bookplates and artists in Australia from the early 18thcentury. 

    I have also attended the Bookplate Congresses in Denmark, Beijing and Istanbul, which are great opportunities to meet and exchange with other bookplate aficionados from overseas.

    My Email Address for possible exchanges is         

    Notes from Lew.

    Thank you Andrew . 

    Here are some Australian links:
    The Australian Bookplate Society

    Exeter Rare Books 
    Currently listing about 99 different bookplates on  Ebay with starting bids of 99 cents each

    0 0

    I never gave much thought to what might be the oldest American bookplate until  several very thoughtful dealers forwarded a blog posting by Rebecca Rego Barr at The Fine Books Blog

    this is what she wrote  

    " This week I am at the University of Virginia's Rare Book School taking a week-long course called Provenance: Tracing Owners and Collections, taught by David Pearson. Topics include "inscriptions, paleography, bookplates, heraldry, bindings as provenance evidence, sale catalogues, tracing owners, and the recording of provenance data in catalogues" -- in other words, absolutely fascinating stuff, and a lot of it. I intend to write up a better report once the rigorous week comes to a close, but for now, perhaps an answer to a question posed today during a discussion of bookplates. What was the first American bookplate? Sources report that the 1642 bookplate of Massachusetts printer Stephen Daye (printer of the Bay Psalm Book) was the first. Finding an image, however, proved more than a quick Google search away. So classmates--and interested readers--is this the first American bookplate?

    Screen shot 2013-07-30 at 10.40.08 PM.pngAccording to The Bookplate Annual for 1921, which is where I pulled this image from, "The general consensus of opinion is that it is indeed the bookplate of the Cambridge printer." (No matter the spelling difference; as we are learning this week, that was very fluid in the 17th c.) However, is it not truly a book label since it was printed and not engraved or etched as bookplates generally are? "

    This was my response:

    Dear Rebecca,
    The question is simple enough but the answer is more complicated..Once you start delving into early 18th century American bookplates you are probably dealing with Anglo- American plates from the libraries of royal governors and large land holders like Lord Baltimore.Most of the bookplates were not dated so I suspect your quest is a major research project.
    I can ,if you wish, ask the question on my bookplate blog..
    Lew Jaffe

    The original question was posted on several websites and newsletters .
     David Szewczyk's  response was very thought provoking.

    This was David's  Response:

    Date: Wed, 31 Jul 2013 09:20:58 -0400

    From: "Philadelphia Rare Books & Manuscripts (PRB&M)"
    Subject: Re: ["EXLIBRIS-L"] First American bookplate?

    Vic and others,

    At the bottom of the blog I see:

    "However, is it not truly a book label since it was printed and not engraved
    or etched as bookplates generally are?"

    Bookplates of the 15th- and 16th-century, and well into the 17th-century, are
    woodcut or printed from type.  Very, very few of that period are engraved.
    19th- and 20th-century bookplates can be lithographed, chromolithographed,
    linocut, woodengraved, photomechanically produced, etc.  It would be very
    difficult for an Anglo-American bookplate of the 17th-century to be engraved
    (in the New World) for that art is late in arriving in the Anglo colonies and
    was not practice in the 1640s.

    Now about "America."  It is being used in a very Anglo-centric way.
    Libraries, both institutional and private, existed in Spanish America more
    than 100 years before they did in the English colonies.  The earliest
    bookplates for Mexico, as far as we know (but much research is still needed)
    are in books that belonged the Jesuit establishments and were a woodcut stamp
    on pieces of paper that were affixed to pastedowns and other blank areas.
    Other times the stamp was simply used as a stamp. These date from as early as
    the 1580s.

    Be well,

    David Szewczyk

    I Confess, I have an Anglo-centric bias and do not think in terms of the other countries which had a foothold in what was to become America.If you eliminate the Spanish settlers on the west coast , the French colonists in The Louisiana Territory and focus only on English settlers and land owners what is the earliest  American Bookplate?

    Perhaps it is this one dated 1702

    Charles Carroll the Settler
    Charles Carroll the Settler.jpg
    Charles Carroll the Settler
    Attorney General of the Maryland Colony
    In office
    Attorney General for the Calvert Proprietorship
    In office
    Attorney General of the Maryland Colony
    In office
    Personal details
    Born 1661
    Died 1720
    Maryland colony
    Spouse(s) Martha Ridgely Underwood, Mary Darnall
    Children Anthony, Charles, Charles, Henry, Eleanor, Bridget, Charles (of Annapolis), Anthony, Daniel, Mary, Eleanor
    Occupation Planter, Lawyer, Businessman
    Religion Roman Catholic
    If you know of an earlier American bookplate please send me a scan and I will update this posting..

    See You next Sunday.

    0 0

      The MacGowan plate was done by the house of B.Garfunkle .The engraver was M.Georges Habig.
    A party of Phonectian traders have landed on The Stannitee (the tin islands- Britain) and are trading dyed textiles for the tin that was necessary to harden their copper weapons.
    In the background are the white cliffs of Southern Britain .The boat was copied from a picture of a Phonecian boat found in an Egyptian carving.
    To the left are the skin clad Britons
    The Bennett A. Cerf  bookplate was designed by Rockwell Kent.
    If you examine the stone face under magnification (click on the image) you will see Mr. Cerf's name

       I have  listed a very nice selection of  thirty five bookplates on Ebay and thought they might interest you.

    Here is a link:

    I'll be back with my regular blog posting when the auction ends.

    0 0

    Daniel Mitsui is at the top of his game.
    Here is one of his recent bookplate designs.

    This is Allen* #821 , Franks** # F28032
    * American Book-Plates by Charles Dexter Allen
    ** Catalog of the Franks Collection of British and American Bookplates Bequeathed To The British Museum by Sir Augustus Wollaston Franks

    Mr. Allen attributes the bookplate to Peter Maverick but this is highly unlikely.
    It is also possible that Allen was describing a  bookplate for another person named William Stephens .
     The quest begins.  I will keep you updated as my research continues...

    From time to time I still use" archaic" words like dungarees and valise
    I  remember how Tomatoes tasted before the advent of corporate genetic alteration.
    That's why I am a card carrying member of this organization.

    .It's interesting to see how quickly words change within  a few generations
    In the 1890's men smoked Segars imported from Havana

    In the 1840's Cheap did not have a negative connotation

    The rebirth of an old idea- From The New York Times July 29,2013

     Some Hotels Offer people an escape from electronic addiction (My Words)

    Daniel Rosenbaum for The New York Time
    "Reading material in many hotel rooms has become about as spare as it can be — open the desk drawer and it might hold a Gideon Bible and a Yellow Pages.
    But some hotels are giving the humble book another look, as they search for ways to persuade guests, particularly younger ones, to spend more time in their lobbies and bars. They are increasingly stocking books in a central location, designating book suites or playing host to author readings. While the trend began at boutique hotels like the Library Hotel in New York, the Heathman Hotel in Portland, Ore., and the Study at Yale in New Haven, it is expanding to chain hotels.
    For these chains, a library — or at least the feel of one — allows a lobby to evolve from a formal space to a more homelike atmosphere, one that younger customers seek. Adam Weissenberg, vice chairman for the travel, hospitality and leisure groups at Deloitte, said, “My general impression is that this ties into changing demographics.” He added, “Younger travelers want to be part of the community.”
    As with any other change in a hotel, there is a financial angle. Room revenue in hotels rose 6.3 percent in 2012 compared with a year earlier, but food and beverage revenue increased only 2.3 percent, according to PKF Hospitality Research Trends.
    For hotels, the challenge is to persuade guests to spend more time, and money, in restaurants and bars, rather than venturing outside.
    The Indigo Atlanta-Midtown hotel, for example, has a separate space in the lobby it calls the Library, with books, newspapers and coffee. The Indigo Nashville Hotel also has a library-style seating area.
    Country Inns and Suites, with 447 hotels, now has an exclusive arrangement with Penguin Random, called Read It and Return Lending Library, that allows guests to borrow a book and return it to another location during a subsequent stay.
    Scott Meyer, a senior vice president at Country Inns, says the goal is to provide guests, 40 percent of whom are business travelers, with “something they didn’t expect.”
    Since early July (a version of the program was begun in 2001) the hotel chain has offered novels by Dean Koontz and Steve Berry and other Random House authors, as well as children’s books. A corporate blog contains an excerpt from Mr. Koontz’s March release, “Deeply Odd.” The circulating books for both authors will be from the backlist.
    Mr. Berry is enthusiastic about a new outlet for his work. He called it “the easiest, most efficient, carefree way to put books into the hands of readers.”
    In June, the Hyatt Magnificent Mile in Chicago completed a renovation that includes a bar stocked with books and magazines and a small number of computers.
    Marc Hoffman, the chief operating officer of Sunstone Hotel Investors, which owns the hotel, says he has also brought the library concept to Sunstone’s other hotels, including the Renaissance Washington, D.C., Downtown Hotel which has books about presidents and sports; the Newport Regency Beach Hyatt; and the Boston Marriott Long Wharf, where he says books about the Boston Celtics, fishing and baseball are popular.
    “We’re creating spaces people can relax in,” he said.
    Bookstores and Web sites supplying hotels report an uptick in business. The Strand bookstore in New York, for example, sells books to the Library Hotel and the Study at Yale, as well as to hotels in Dallas, Houston, New Orleans, and Philadelphia, among others. Jenny McKibben, who coordinates the store’s corporate accounts, estimates that 60 percent of corporate business stems from hotels or design firms working for hotels.
    Before the recession, she said, 15 to 20 hotels a year would call to order books. Now, with increased guest interest and newer technology that allows hotels to review pictures and title lists, the number of hotels ordering has increased to about 40 annually. “It’s a new luxury item,” she said of books.
    Meanwhile the boutique hotels are personalizing a library-like experience even more.
    At the Library Hotel in New York, where individual floors are assigned numbers from the Dewey decimal system and rooms have books within that classification, the hotel ran a haiku contest in April to celebrate National Poetry Month.
    Steven Perles, an international lawyer practicing in Washington and a frequent guest, didn’t participate in the contest, but during a recent stay he considered his choice of the hotel. “Books are so much part of the appeal,” he said, although on an earlier trip he said he stayed in a room designated for Slavic languages and couldn’t understand any of them. Still, he gives the hotel high marks for its service.
    Powell’s Books in Portland, Ore., supplies books to the Heathman Hotel in that city. Authors appearing at the bookstore or nearby Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, who stay at the hotel, go through a ritual of signing their most recent work to add to the hotel’s collection. The hotel has nearly 2,100 books signed by authors including works by Saul Bellow, Stephen King and Greg Mortenson. Guests have access to the library each evening.
    Some hotels are staging author readings. Ahead of President Obama’s second inauguration, Lewis Lapham, editor of Lapham Quarterly and former editor of Harper’s Magazine, read excerpts from “A Presidential Miscellany,” a book he wrote, at the St. Regis Hotel in Washington.
    The Algonquin Hotel in New York is looking to build on its rich literary history with a suite stocked with books from Simon & Schuster.
    On a recent evening, more than 125 people gathered in the hotel’s main lobby to hear Chuck Klosterman, the author, essayist and columnist on ethics for The New York Times, read from his latest work, “I Wear the Black Hat,” published by Simon & Schuster.
    Mr. Hoffman said that hotel books could become a souvenir. He says every book is stamped with the hotel name. And he concedes that some guests may take them home.
    “We hope they remember the trip, remember the good times and go back again,” he said."

    Whatever comes around goes around.

    Let's turn the clock back to the days when men smoked  segars.
    Many hotels had reading rooms.
    Here are just  a few bookplate examples:

                                                   Parker House    Engraved By J.W. Spenceley

    If any of you have some unusual hotel bookplates please send me a scan and I will add it to this posting

    See you next Sunday.

    0 0

    There are a number of books at LC with this bookplate and I would like to find out who was the original owner.
    The  books were bound in Rio de Janeiro.  So possibly a Brazilian owner?
    Cheryl Fox

    Collections Specialist

    Manuscript Division

    Library of Congress

    101 Independence Avenue, SE

    Washington, DC  20540-4600

    phone 202.707.3303

    fax 202.707.6269
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Note from Lew
     For good reason, I bitch and moan about all the terrible politicians in Washington and sometimes forget how many hard working dedicated people are working  at organizations like The Library Of Congress and
    The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

    I am intentionally  keeping this posting brief because I want to encourage you to look at this link from the Bureau Of Archives.


    George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams (and family), Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison. Over 119,000 searchable documents, fully annotated, from the authoritative Founding Fathers Papers projects.

    If you are an American history buff it will impress you.

    0 0

     A picture of me at work on a trompe l’œil bookcase mural.
    I have been interested in pen and ink work since a child., In fact I sold drawings whilst at school, but the pull to science was stronger leading me to study marine zoology, which I did: graduating in 1986,from  UCNW Bangor.. However, at college, I decided to be a commercial artist instead. I intended to combine both passions and establish myself as a zoological illustrator. As illustration dropped out of use in the 1990's I turned to new things which have lead to what is currently my main commercial concern, , mural work, particularly trompe l’œil. I have worked across Britain and Europe for both private individuals and commercial clients.
     I continued with pen and ink for my own pleasure and have sort of "fallen in" to bookplate designing as a valid way of using this medium. After seeing plates in some of my second hand books, I got tempted to draw one for myself (early 1990's),

    Most of my plates are in some way biographical..I started as a marine biologist and am an artist, a shell collector and a fencer.The hind's head is my family crest and the faun was a character I used in a lot of my early illustrations.

    Eleanora ,loved "Sleeping Beauty" as a little girl

    Monty likes Dinosaurs

       My plates up to now have been solely digitally printed, but I have  also found the technology to letterpress print from my drawings. Thanks to the likes of the British Bookplate Society and FISAE I am now getting interesting commissions from around the world. I am also playing with trompe l’œil in my ex libris, taking advantage of the advances in quality of digital printing and am looking forward to doing more

    Tony Bulmer "Maverick" is my latest plate and an experiment in trompe l'oeil. It is a break from tradition in that this needs sticking on the fly sheet, not the front pastedown in order for the illusion to work.

    Note from Lew- I want to thank Gordon Collett for sending this information and would encourage you to visit his website where you will find many more  examples of his bookplates and other art.

    See you next Sunday.

    0 0

    I have two links to share with you today.

    The first link should be of interest to almost anyone who lives in the U.S.
    Acxiom , one of the world's largest data compilers, knows more about you than you could ever imagine. You can  access the information they have collected about you at the link shown below.
     This sort  of data is used by banks to determine credit worthiness and  by potential employers to find out what you omitted from the employment application .

     It is in your best interest to review this data carefully to catch any significant errors.

    NOTE FROM LEW- After visiting the site I chose to opt-out of everything..
    You may find the process both challenging and frustrating. It was designed to frustrate you and prevent you from opting out

    A recent BBC article by Lucy Burns  discusses an  alleged  American Potato Beetle attack  in East Germany.
     I would like to purchase some of the posters relating to the incident .
    Here is a link to the article:

    So there you have it. One somewhat frivolous link and one very important one, neither of which has anything to do with bookplates.

    0 0

    This is an extremely scarce and wonderful printed broadside commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the first demonstration of surgical anesthesia and inviting the recipient to the celebration.

    This printed piece brings together important people in both medicine and the book arts as it is signed by both Bigelow and Warren for Massachusetts General. Additionally, the broadside, which measures about 8 by 12 inches, was designed by Bertram Goodhue, who was a typographer, book artist and maker of bookplates. The engraving was done by E D French and it may be his largest piece of work. Finally, the invitation was printed by the Merrymount Press in Boston under the watchful eye of D B Updike.

    Not many copies were printed and it is a very scarce piece of medical and anesthesia ephemera and the work of Goodhue, Updike and French.

    Note from Lew- 
    This information was sent to me by Tom Boss. 
    The item is currently available for sale.

    Upcoming Auction Modern European Bookplates

    On Friday 4 October 2 pm we will sell a beautiful collection of modern bookplates (lots 170-604)

    Marc, Anette and Nathalie Van de Wiele
    Groeninge 34, 8000 Brugge, Belgium,

    Fore-edge Paintings

    My son Steven sent me this  link about fore-edge painting

    Here is another fore-edge painting link .

    Bookplate Exchanges

    I am always interested in adding  to my collection of  Leather Bookplates by purchase or exchange.
     Here are a few duplicates for possible exchange:

    Kerrytown BookFestival ,  Michigan Sunday September 8th

    See you again on Monday September 9th

    0 0

    I've probably mentioned in the past that I am always looking for bookplates from the libraries of famous people from any country. This is usually  a challenging  hunt but from time to time I come up with a winner.
    Last week I obtained one of Edith Wharton's bookplates..She had several .

    This one was designed by D. B. Updike at the Merrymount Press.

    Here are a few more from my want list

    Green Bookplate was used by King Farouk

    At the top of my list is William Jefferson Clinton. I call it my holy grail. He has used at least two different bookplates that I know of.The most recent one was designed when some of his books were damaged after a flood in his Westchester County home. 

    The trouble is that he is difficult to reach.  His firewalls have firewalls .The one time I shook his hand at a book signing I was too intimidated to ask and the moment passed. Oh well, hope springs eternal.

    See you again on Sunday.

    0 0

    I purchased this bookplate last week  and assumed it was English. I was wrong.
    It turns out it was designed by May and Grace Greenleaf of Indianapolis, Indiana,
    It is the only bookplate I own by these artists.

    In searching through my reference books I found a partial checklist of other bookplates they designed,
    Isaac Bildersee
    Earlham Alumni, Illustrated P.98 Some American College Bookplates by Harry Parker Ward

    Hettie Elliott
    Harry Irving Miller
    Carolyn Louise Salter
    Edward L.Stevens
    If you have any bookplates by these artists please send a scan and it will be added to this posting

    Boxing is not a common theme on bookplates so I was very pleased to obtain this bookplate by
     Dugald Stewart Walker.I also have a duplicate for possible exchange.
    Every morning I receive a newsletter called  Exlibris-L-Digest
    More often than not I glance at it and then it is deleted. Yesterday and today there were very interesting topics discussed.

    Dick Lowenstein asked this question:

    I am looking for the names of successful second-hand book shops in public
    libraries. Not, for example, the N. Y. Public Library, which sells only new
    books at its main location. A real store where customers can browse and buy
    second-hand books. Small to big shops, size doesn't matter. Combined gift and
    book stores, too, as long as the books offered are not new books.

    Here are  a few of the responses:

    Try the Toronto Public Library:
    Book Ends and Book Ends South
    Lots of choice and excellent prices. Many branches of this very large
    library system also sell withdrawn and donated books.


    Dick, I am pretty sure there is such a shop in the main San
    Francisco Public Library, just inside the entrance on Grove
    Street. I do believe it is run by the library, so if you are
    looking for shops which are independently run, by a private
    individual, even though in a library, this shop likely does not
    qualify. But it does sell used books.
    For a smaller town, the Newport Public library has a nice store run by its


    To this list I would add my  favorite right here in Philadelphia.


    There was also an interesting link about 10 inspiring bookshops around the world.The ads on the site are both annoying and intrusive but it is still worth looking at.In fact I would love to visit each and every shop described.

    See You next week.

    0 0

    I just found this database and it looks like it might take  more than a few minutes to poke into all the nooks and crannies.. The bookplate portion is overwhelming.

    Mystery Bookplate

    Can anyone out there identify the owner of this plate ?

    Magician's bookplates for possible exchange

    A Quirky Bookplate for possible exchange

    It was designed by Fred B. Schlachter in 1944

    Collector Profiles

     Collector profiles are always welcome. The collector profiles are are not very structured. You just write a few paragraphs about yourself and your bookplate collection.
    Jpeg scans of your favorite bookplates increase the readership along  a picture of yourself, if possible.

    If English is not your primary language don't be concerned.
    If any editing is needed I will advise you of suggested changes before publishing.
    A few randomly selected profiles are attached.

    Send your collector profiles to

    See you next week

    0 0
  • 09/24/13--12:44: Edith A. Rights

  • Edith A. Rights wrote The Bookplates of Arthur Nelson Macdonald in 1986 and that's when I first met her..Although I did not know her very well she was someone I trusted and admired.
    She loved to do research and went out of her way to assist new bookplate collectors.
    Sadly, I have to write that she passed away on September 20th.

    0 0
  • 09/29/13--07:33: Lots Of Links
  • Last week I attended the Rittenhouse Art Show and purchased this bee bookplate from Marina  Terauds.

    She is a very talented print maker whose bookplates are worthy of your consideration , if you are finally going to bite the bullet and have a bookplate designed for yourself '
    Here is a link to her website

    Here are two European dealer websites :

    Dr. Wolfgang Rieger deals primarily in German bookplates.This is one of the items (subject to prior sale) from his website

    Soder, Alfred (1880-1957) : Ernst Rippmann. Wooden cross in rose-trees, behind houses in countryside.In 1909. 115 x 57 mm, Etching (green on white)  
    back small mounting remnants - Witte, Bibliography 3, 94 f, 31 Thieme-Becker, Vollmer 4; Gutenberg 10,621 - signed and dated in the print order number / order number: 36879 20.00 € (architectural landscapes Basel Switzerland and Ireland United States)

    Jacques Laget deals primarily in French bookplates but he does have a few items from other countries

    Here is one of the items (subject to prior sale)  from his website:

    RHEBERGEN (Jan) Ref: 00327510.00€ 
    bois gravé en couleurs , 20° , HOLLANDE - JAPON 
    Seimiya (Hitoshi) 188-1969

    Okay , I slipped this one in because it makes me feel good.
    Grandson Harrison walking with me yesterday.

    Here is a thoughtful well written blog about medieval manuscripts;

                                                     The Flight into Egypt, Walter Art Museum, MS W.188, f.112r

    One Last Thing
    Next weekend (October 5th &6th ) is the Allentown Paper show
    See you again soon .

    0 0
  • 10/03/13--12:26: Email From England

  •  I Received the following  message this morning from Anthony Pincott in England

    Dear Lew,
         I  was cursing earlier this week at UK post offices going on strike for a day.  Now there is a large republic in chaos, resulting in this sort of nonsense:

    So will you wish to reassure readers of your blog by something comforting along the following lines ?

    That argument continues about early American book labels, so maybe Samuel Phillips deserves mention in your blog if not already covered.

    Or at least a link. He doesn’t appear in Appendix A to Brian North  Lee’s Early Printed Book Labels.

    Here is the cover image and table of contents for the next issue of The Bookplate Journal (currently with the printer, for mailing end-October).

     Non-members of The Bookplate Society in the US will from

    November be able to obtain copies of the latest issue of The Bookplate Journal from The Colophon Book Shop of Exeter, NH,


    Note From Lew : For those of you who wish to join The Bookplate Society follow this link:

    See You on Sunday.

    0 0

    For the next few weeks I plan to focus on bookplate artists about whom very little has been written.
    Fridolf Johnson ( 1904-1988) was a collector , author and designer. His book A Treasury of Bookplates from the Renaissance to the Present was published in 1977 and is still one of the best starter books for  collectors . Is is readily available and inexpensive.
    With your help I hope to seed a fairly complete check list. If you have bookplates he designed which  are not shown please send me a scan(s) and they will be added to this posting.
    Send your scans to

    *Biographical Note

    "Author, illustrator and calligrapher Fridolf Johnson (1905-1988) studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and then remained in Illinois for nine years as art director for the Frankel-Rose Agency. He moved to California in 1942, free- lancing in San Francisco and operating Contempo Art Service in Hollywood. After ten years on the West Coast, Johnson left for New York in 1952 where he worked as a designer and professional calligrapher. From the 1950s into the 1960s, Johnson became increasingly interested in printing and typography. He established his own private press, the Mermaid Press, and became an active member of the Typophiles, Junkateers, Zamorano Club, and New York Chappel of Private Presses. From 1962 until 1970 Johnson was the executive editor of American Artist and contributed myriad book reviews and articles for the periodical. He wrote on topics ranging from contemporary graphic art, lithography, and printmaking to book illustrations, bookplates, and the artists Rockwell Kent and William Morris. Johnson also wrote A Treasury of Bookplates from the Renaissance to the Present, co-authored 200 Years of American Graphic Art, and edited Rockwell Kent: An Anthology of His Work. Examples of his calligraphy and print specimens can be found in the collections of several museums, galleries, and public libraries, including the New York Public Library and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Johnson resided in Woodstock, New York, until his death in July 1988".

    *Extracted from The University of Delaware Library  website where his papers (1950-1985)  are housed.

    On the back of the Robert E. Hill plate Fridolf Johnson wrote "A trial run printed on my own Mermaid Press
    before sending the drawing to Dr. Hill"

    I have a two page letter by Fridolf Johnson dated June 19, 1930 in which he explains that his friend
    Herman C. Johnson was
    "an an inveterate elbow-bender. When I made up the rough sketch I had no idea that he would ask me to complete it for I meant it only as a sly commentary on his habits."

    Mystery Bookplate
    Does anyone out there know anything about the owner/artist Margery Rand?

    See You Next Sunday

    0 0

    This is the second in a series  about bookplate artists who have not left much of a published trail.
    Edward L. Doty worked in Boston in the 1930's
    If you have any bookplates by him which are not shown below please send a scan to
    Over time, working together we may be able to build a checklist along with some biographical information for future generations.

    In my attempt to find some background information I unearthed the following:
    In 1939 Mary E. Doty of Lynn, Mass. donated bookplates engraved by Edward Leighton Doty to the Museum Of Fine Arts in Boston.

    None of the bookplates were illustrated but these are the ones for which I will try to obtain images.
    Roger Amory
    Andrew De Coppet
    General William Franklin Draper
    Tudor Gardiner
    S.M.Incedo Super Ignes
    Dennis King 
    Mission House, Stockbridge- 10/15/2013, Image found and added below
    Perth Amboy High School ,The James Chapman Prize
     Henry Parrish Roosevelt

     I plan to contact the museum in order  to obtain more information and hopefully some additional scans.

    11/13/2013    Within hours of yesterday's posting about Edward L. Doty I received the following information:


    Just some background on Edward Doty:

    Edward Leighton Doty was born in Brockton, MA  on 05 Aug 1895, the son of Edward L. and Mary E. (Dowey) Doty.  Edward had a poem entitled “Thankfully Received” published in Breezy Stories, v. 5, #5, January 1918, p. 74.    In 1918, he was employed as a copper plate engraver for J. P. Ogdin?, 7 West St., Boston.  In the 1920 census for Cambridge, MA, he is listed as an engraver in a stationery store, and in 1930 as an engraver.   It is likely that he never married, and seems to have resided with his mother until his death in 1939.    The Boston City Directories of 1916-26 list him as an engraver at various addresses, along with his brother, Kenneth R. Doty.  In 1927, he is listed at 651 Boylston, with the notation “Doty Studio.”    In the 1930-31 Boston City Directory, he is listed as a “steel and copper plate engraver, with his brother, Kenneth R. Doty also listed as an engraver at the same address.  The 1937 Cambridge, MA city directory lists Edward without this brother, as an engraver at 49 Dana.



    The Boston Public Library Bookplate was designed by Mr. Doty in 1939 and engraved by A.J. Downey

    The Cabot Fund Bookplate was engraved by Mr. Doty in 1937

     No you don't need new eyeglasses  In 1933  Mr. James D. Henderson a resident of Brookline , Mass. had Mr. Doty engrave a ridiculously small  bookplate .It is one sixteenth of an inch wide and two sixteenth inches high .It is nicely mounted in a presentation folder,If you click on the image it will enlarge slightly. ..

    Leonora  Blanche Kimball's plate was engraved in 1938

    The George Burgess Magrath  Library plate was engraved in 1934

    In Mission House bookplate Mr. Doty used the initials ELD

    Stewart Mitchell's plate was designed by Richard Andrew in 1937 and engraved by Mr. Doty in 1938

    Horton Winter Reed's plate was engraved by Mr. Doty in 1937

    Charlotte B. Webber's plate was also engraved by Mr. Doty in 1937

    That about wraps it up for today. See you next week.

    0 0

    Fellow collector David Kolstad  sent me this link with images of  Angling bookplates in the Daniel B. Fearing  Collection  at the Houghton Library.

     When you click on the link you may be surprised to find that you  currently have some of the plates but never realized they related to fishing.
    Here is an an example ( In my mind it is still a boxing plate ).
    The description  in
    A Catalogue of The Angling Bookates forming the collection of Daniel B. Fearing
    Newport, R.I is as follows :

    141 Harry , Arthur James
    "Process,Signed J.T. W.  3 15/16 x3
    Welsh.Pictorial.A disjointed rod, landing net and creel.
    Motto:Pawb yn ei arfau( (everyone to his taste)
    a Black, on cream-colored paper
    b Rose, on white paper  "


    Anthony Pincott just sent the following information:

    Dear Lew

    Tom Lloyd identifies the artist of your boxing bookplate as James Thomas Watts RCA, RBSA  (British, Birmingham 1850-1930 Liverpool). It seems that as a painter he confined himself to woodland scenes. He was not born in 1853 as given in several places on the internet. Add to this that Harry A. James wrote  A Professional Pugilist (illustrated by Kenneth M Skeaping who did a few bookplates) Leadenhall Press, 1894, and you have a bit more to add to your blog

    I'll be back  tomorrow with another excellent link. This one will keep you occupied until I return.

older | 1 | 2 | 3 | (Page 4) | 5 | 6 | .... | 15 | newer