Sep 28, 2017 - Sale 2455

Sale 2455 - Lot 155

Price Realized: $ 1,062
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 1,000 - $ 1,500
WITH THREE RELATED LETTERS (MASSACHUSETTS.) Hough, Franklin B.; compiler. Papers Relating to the Island of Nantucket. Hand-tinted folding map. xviii, 162, [1] pages. 4to, contemporary full morocco gilt by Van Antwerp of Albany, light scuffing on front board, otherwise minimal wear; printed in red and black, all edges gilt, one of 150 copies. Albany, NY: [Joel Munsell], 1856

Additional Details

A finely printed compilation of 17th-century Nantucket records found in the New York state archives. Among this book's other charms, it is believed to be the first 19th-century American book printed in Caslon type, which later became quite popular for finely printed antiquarian works of this sort. Printer Joel Munsell later recalled: "The founts being rather small, the progress of the work was necessarily slow, the more so as I undertook to filch time from my business to set the types myself, and did compose the whole work with my own fingers. I could not then find suitable paper, nor get a paper-maker to understand what I wanted by a cream-white of the right shade. One of them, who seemed to catch a glimpse of the art, exclaimed, 'Oh! Yes, I see, you want some dirt in it!' It was hard printing upon the porcelain surfaces of the paper which composes the first volumes, although we know how to do it much better now"--Historical Magazine, August 1866 supplement, page 44. See also Edelstein, Joel Munsell: Printer and Antiquarian, page 277. with--three letters from the author's correspondence files, suggesting that this is his personal copy: two letters from Alexander Starbuck of Waltham, MA to Hough dated 9 and 18 July 1872, concerning the book's references to early Nantucket whalers and the possibility of purchasing the original manuscripts; and Hough's draft response dated Lowville, NY, 22 July 1872.