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Documents & Manuscripts

Discover hand written letters, original manuscripts, historical documents, diaries, and so much more in this section. There's even a sub category for Illuminated Manuscripts, for those who search for gold! As the world's largest independent marketplace for new, used and rare books, you always get the best in service and value when you buy from, and all of your purchases are backed by our return guarantee.

Documents & Manuscripts Books & Ephemera



    Manuscript on paper on mine surveying, with 12 large & fine folding manuscript plates, heightened in grey, blue, pink, & yellow wash by (CLAUSTHAL: MINE SURVEYING)

    40 leaves (the final blank). Small folio (332 x 210 mm.), orig. paste-paper boards (spine & extremities somewhat worn), uncut. [Clausthal?: ca. 1815]. A fine and legible manuscript instructional manual on techniques and problems of mine surveying. The text is divided into five chapters: "Von der Vorbereitung zum Markscheiden" ("On preparations for measuring the area in which mining may be carried out"), "Von Bennenung der Gänge und Klüfte" ("On the naming of seams and fissures"), "Vom Observiren" ("On Observations"), "Vom Vermaß oder Verbestimmung eines Grubenfelds" ("On measuring and defining a mining claim"), and "Von Wasserfällen, Wasserleitungen und Tiefbau" ("On waterfalls, water conduits and underground mining"). This manuscript was probably prepared in 1815 - plate X has the entry "Markscheide 1.7.15" - at the newly founded mining school at Clausthal, the famous mining town of the Harz Mountains in Lower Saxony (the fine plates name mining locations in the area). The most attractive plates - all of which contain a number of figures - depict mine shafts, mine surveying methods, cartographical considerations, techniques of prospecting and identification of mineral deposits, problems of ownership rights, and the constant problems of flooding. All the plates are finely drawn in black ink and have been heightened in grey, blue, pink, and yellow wash. Internally fine. Stamp of Georg Riemschneider (1888-1946), "Oberbergrat" of Clausthal-Zellerfeld.



    TLS Thomas Parkinson to his wife, Ariel Reynolds Parkinson, January 9, 1968. RE: finances. by Thomas F. Parkinson (1920 - 1992)

    Berkeley, CA: Thomas F. Parkinson, 1968. Typed letter signed, 2 pp., 8.5" x 11". Good . Provenance: Peter Howard, Serendipity Books, Berkeley, Thomas Parkinson archive.



    Bolinas Eyewash by Berrigan, Ted, and Tom Clark

    Bolinas, CA: Ted Berrigan and Tom Clark, undated [written 1971]. 1st edition. Soft cover. Fine/No Jacket (as issued). Fine. 4to,105 leaves (printed one-side), spiral-bound with color reproduction of the original Ted Berrigan MS cover. An exceedingly scarce reproduction of the original manuscript of this 1971 collaboration between Ted Berrigan and Tom Clark.



    "Ventures in Editing" Publisher's Archive Including Both a Limited Edition & Proof Copy of Finished Work. ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT MATERIAL by Michener, James A

    Huntington Beach, CA: James Cahill Publishing, 1995. First Edition. Manuscript. Fine. The published version of Ventures in Editing included two essays, "My Advice to Young America" and "The Writer and His Machine," which takes a hard look at kidney failure. The book featured two versions of each essay, together with an introduction by Michener about the machinations of the editing process, and published in a limited edition of 300 numbered copies plus a lettered edition. Original manuscript material by Michener is quite scarce as he donated much of his manuscript material to various institutions during his lifetime. Archive includes a ten page computer printout of "The Writer and His Machine," which varies slightly from the published edition. The 17 page computer printout varies from all versions. Unsigned Michener note says about this second version ("This Fourth Version of the manuscript, the final version"): "We have indicated by bold face the new material..." His note covers several options for dealing with printing two such similar versions of the essay. Also included is a 12-page typescript fax corresponding to the first version of "My Advice to Young America." Printed on legal paper, folded to letter size, with the text written in hand where it ran off the bottom. Also includes typed note signed by Michener from 1993, declining that he has any essays suitable for an edition. Also, two (2) editions of "Ventures in Editing" (xi, 95 pp. 8vo.) Proof Edition: Proof copy bound in maroon cloth and with the colophon of the 26 copy "Lettered Edition" with "Proof Copy" written where the number of this copy would be written. Produced in an edition of 50 copies. Fine in a fine slipcase. Signed by the author and with Michener's red JAM "chop" stamped on colophon. [Groseclose A.069a] Limited Edition: #56 of 274, bound in blue cloth and matches "Proof Edition" in all other aspects of production. Fine in a fine slipcase. Signed by the author and with Michener's red JAM "chop" stamped on colophon. [Groseclose A.069b] According to the Groseclose bibliography (James A. Michener: A Bibliography), Michener only signed 148 copies of the Limited Edition.



    LETTERS FROM THE LATE REV. WILLIAM ROMAINE, M.A. Rector of St. Andrew Wardrobe, and St. Ann Black Friars; and Lecturer of St. Dunstan's in the West, To a Friend on the Most Important Subjects, during a correspondence of twenty years. Published from the original manuscripts, by Thomas Wills, A. B. Minister of Silver Street Chapel, and formerly of Magdalen Hall, Oxford. by Romaine William 1714-95

    New Brunswick, N.J: Reprinted by Ambrose Walker for Richard Scott, Bookseller and Stationer, Pearl-Street, New York, 1809. Later edition. c.1795. Full tree calf, red spine title and 7 gilt bands. 12mo. pp. [2] blank, 240, [2] blank. Very Good. Cap and corner wear with edges lightly rubbed; foxing starting internally with quill owner and one notation. Fifty-one letters from December 1762 through May 1782 with Postcript and A Sermon, by the late Reverend William Romaine, M.A. on Jeremiah 8:22 (pp.211-240)..



    ORIGINAL TYPSECRIPT OF UNTITLED STORY (Published as Geometry of Love) by Cheever, John

    Near Fine. Quarto. Offered is a near fine twelve page unbound typed manuscript typed recto only. There are several holograph corrections, probably by the author, but this MS is not signed. A working title, this story later appeared under the title "Geometry of Love" in the Saturday Evening Post and "The Stories of John Cheever." With "Russell & Volkening, Inc., Literary Agents. 551 Fifth Avenue, New York, N. Y. 10017" red ink stamp on cover page. Typscript pages are age toned.



    Joseph-Geneviève, Le Comte de Puisaye - signed letter to General Moreau by DE PUISAYE, Joseph-Geneviève, Le Comte (the Count) [1755 - 1827] & MOREAU, General Jean Victor Marie [1763-1813] provenace

    Joseph-Geneviève, Le Comte de Puisaye, 1793. No binding. Very Good. PUISAYE (Joseph of). Signed letter "Joseph cte D.P." addressed to the General Jean-Victor MOREAU. S.l., [probably 1793, and not on 19 Sept. 1796 as indicated by an old note]. 1 p. 1/2 folios, letter cut into two with the folding and repaired on the back but almost separated. Age toned paper with chipping and on the edges and a couple of small tears with one affecting the letter in the date. Nice hand-written letter. Condition otherwise very good. The count Joseph of PUISAYE (1755-1827) was one of the burning defenders of the royalist cause. Outlaw, he took refuge in 1793 in the forests at Rennes, where it reorganized bands of chouans. Then he shared his activity between London and the continent, organized landing of Quiberon in June 1795 as well as many military operations. English translation of ALS by Puisaye... "No, Monsieur the General, at least as I like to believe it (as far as I think), the fame of your new post will not at all dazzle you you and will not diminish the feelings of attachment to your King that you were not afraid of demonstrating in the most difficult (trying) circumstances. Ah! If this generosity feeling in your heart were to be extinguished for an instant, I would say to you, look back into the past, you will see there the bloody shadow of a respectable and unfortunate father fallen victim of the assassins who you now serve... If you listen closely? You will hear the cries for vengeance that he (your father) raises right to you, they (the cries) are the certain (very) expression of the pain that he feels in seeing you support the bloody side that has just murdered him...... ah! Moreau, Change your cypresses for lauriers and hasten to nurture them under the flag of honour and duty to merit the tribute of estimation and recognition that a generous monarch offers you. There will not be, I dare to assure you in his name, a greater dear joy, than that of you working for his throne and authority. Telling you the means to render this exercise an infallible success is absolutely useless; you have them (the means) in hand. Use them with your characteristic intelligence, and count on speedy good fortune and the conservation for the recognition of your Sovereign, rather than for a horde of scoundrels who just wait only to destroy you the moment you cease to be useful to them. Discretion above all. Joseph Cte de P. P.S. Render services that prove to me that we can count on you, and you will know me (see me) soon." Fascinating content. A somewhat sycophantic entreaty to turn Moreau to the Royalist side. The dating appears to have been written right after what the bio on Moreau in Wikipedia bio calls his "distinguished retreat." There is also no evidence it was ever received by Moreau. If it was received unsolicited, why on earth would Moreau not have destroyed such a dangerous invitation? The timing on the part of the Count is odd.  As a result of the British disasters in 1795 he was somewhat out of favour with many Royalists. One also wonders if the letter was perhaps a retroactive attempt to discredit Moreau. (i.e. manufactured evidence...) In 1797, Moreau drew the ire of Royalists for exposing one of his friends/colleagues as a traitor. Moreau himself became a target for suspicion. Fascinating and more questions about this letter I am sure!


    AUD $30.00

    Catalogue of the Manuscripts in the Library of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia [S.A. Branch] Inc. by Mander-Jones, Phyllis [Compiler]

    Adelaide: Branch] Inc.. 1981. Small Quarto Size. A Near Fine copy. Black & white illustrations. Limited edition of 300 copies. A lovely book in 'as new' condition. 54 pages. A catalogue of great interest to geographers of those interested in Australian history . 1st Edition. Hardback.



    The register of the Guild of Knowle in the county of Warwick 1451 1535 from the original manuscript in the Public Reference Library Birmingham - Warwickshire by Bickley, W.B. [ed]

    Walsall: For the Archaeological Section of the Birmingham and Midland Institute, printed by W.H. Robinson, 1894 xlii, [vi], 272, xxxix pages + plates. Numbered 62 and signed by the publisher. Leather spine and green cloth covered boards, some wear. Ink owner's name to the front pastedown. A heavy volume, extra postage will be required to send outside the UK. Browning to the pages adjoining the plates. Binding a bit shaken and rear hinge loose. Pages top edge gilt, others untrimmed which are browned and soiled.. Hard Cover. Good.



    TLS Thomas Parkinson to his wife, Ariel Reynolds Parkinson, January 25, 1973. RE: family by Thomas F. Parkinson (1920 - 1992)

    Berkeley, CA: Thomas F. Parkinson, 1973. Typed letter signed, Single Page, 8.5" x 11". Very Good. Written while Ariel Reynolds Parkinson was on a trip to NYC & elsewhere. Provenance: Peter Howard, Serendipity Books, Berkeley, Thomas Parkinson archive.

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