Category Archives: Acquisitions

new acquisitions

Publicaciones revolucionarias

Publicaciones revolucionarias [Revolutionary publications]. 1. ed. (Bogotá, Colombia: Silueta Ediciones, 2016). Nine volumes. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2017- in process.


The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired a set of nine publications from La Silueta, a fine press in Bogotá, Colombia:

No. 1 – Avocados by Santiago Rueda
No. 2 – Labor by Lucas Ospina
No. 3  – Ceiling by Gabriela Pinilla
No. 4 – LMCP by WIlson Diaz
No. 5 – Liberating orgasm by The fulminant
No. 6 – Present! I presented! by Andrés Felipe Uribe
No. 7 – Poscon by Chócolo
No. 8 – 33 Revolutions per minute by Hernán Sansone
No. 9 – The Penitent by Alfredo Greñas

“Hacemos el tipo de libros que nos gustaría que existieran” /
“We make the kind of books that we want to exist,” write their editors.

“We are an independent publisher who works to publish the books we would like to see in bookstores, to buy and read. We edit authors who represent, in one way or another, a fresh and novel proposal; whose drawings, texts, and stories help open the minds of those who acquire them and become tools that help them take creative directions different from traditional ones.

Our titles, their designs, and the themes appeal to that playful side that we all still have alive inside us. A color, a source, an illustration, or a specific function can reactivate in such a way that the experience of having them in the hands always goes to Be gratifying and pleasurable.

Our books are designed to be explored both physically and in terms of content because in La Silueta we are convinced that both form and substance are important. We believe that there are contents that must exist and that they must be presented in such a way that they are striking to the senses because, in the end, everything enters through them.”

La Silueta editors Andrés Fresneda and Juan Pablo Fajardo with printing press.

One of the finest Venetian illustrated books of the Settecento

Giovanni Marco Pitteri (1703-1786) and Francesco Bartolozzi (1727-1815), after Giovanni Battista Piazzetta (1682-1754), Studi di pittura già dissegnati da Giambatista Piazzetta ed ora con l’intaglio di Marco Pitteri [Painting Studies Drawn by Giambattista Piazzetta and Now Together with Marco Pitteri’s Engravings] (Venice: [Giambattista Albrizzi], 1760). 28 pp. text and 48 engravings after 24 drawings. Includes Alcuni avvertimenti per lo incamminamento di un Giovani alla pittura di Gian Pietro Cavazzoni Zannotti (Giampietro Zannotti, 1674-1765). Graphic Arts Collection 2017- in process

In 1750, the celebrated painter and draftsman Giovanni Battista Piazzetta was appointed director of the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice but at the same time, came under increasing financial difficulties. His good friend, leading Venetian publisher Giambattista Battista Albrizzi commissioned a series of instructional life drawings for aspiring artists.

Piazzetta died in 1754 and over the next six years, Francesco Bartolozzi and Marco Pitteri each engraved their own representations of his drawings, which Albrizzi published both sets in 1760 as a manual for painting students; 48 engraved plates after 24 drawings. Bartolozzi emphasizing the line and Pitteri the light and shadow.

Piazzetta, Male Nude in a Landscape. Black chalk on paper. Morgan Museum and Library, Gift of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. 1961.12:53

This rare volume of virtuoso talent also includes the only surviving etched self-portrait of Piazzetta dated 1738 and a biography of the artist written by Albrizzi. The Graphic Arts Collection is honored to now hold one of the only complete first editions reproducing Piazzetta’s master drawings. Half a generation older than Giambattista Tiepolo, Piazzetta exercised a profound influence on the work of the younger artist, which continues into the 21st century.

Print historian Suzanne Boorsch wrote, “Giambattista Albrizzi’s final tribute to Piazzetta is the Studj di pittura, a sort of model book reproducing twenty-four drawings of nude figures by Piazzetta. During much of his life Piazzetta directed an art school, and Albrizzi’s aim was to put into a more lasting form Piazzetta’s role as teacher. The book, not published until six years after Piazzetta’s death, includes two plates reproducing each drawing, one by Francesco Bartolozzi, which is quite conventional, with outlines and cross-hatching, and the other in Pitteri’s singular, arresting manner.” –Venetian Prints and Books in the Age of Tiepolo (1997). Marquand (SA) NE2052.4.V46 B66 1997



Les vierges de Lesbos



Joseph Méry, Les vierges de Lesbos [The Virgins of Lesbos]. Poème antique (Paris: Georges Bell, 1858). Illustrated with photographs by Auguste Nicolas Bertsch (1813–1870) and Camille d’Arnaud (active 19th century) after paintings by Jean-Louis Hamon (1821–1874). Signed by Bell on verso of half-title. One of 300 copies. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2017- in process

The Graphic Arts Collection is pleased to have acquired one of the first books of French poetry illustrated with original photographs. The poem’s first edition had no illustrations and was published together with Méry’s Nuit lesbienne. According to Monselet (Catalogue . . . d’une jolie collection de livres rares, Paris, 1871, n. 215), the volume was printed in an edition of only five or six copies for friends, probably too sexually explicit for the era. Later, Georges Bell funded a larger and more elaborate edition.

In 1854 the photographer Auguste Nicolas Bertsch (1813-1870) became a founding member of the Société française de photographie, serving on the board of directors from 1858–1870. Sometime before 1855 he began a collaboration with the writer and photographer Camille d’Arnaud at his studio at 27 rue Fontaine Saint Georges, Paris. For the first illustrated edition of Méry’s poem, Bertsch and Arnaud made 900 salted paper prints from collodion-on-glass negatives, which were trimmed and pasted into each volume; three each in an edition of 300.

The photographs are after paintings by Jean-Louis Hamon (1821-1874), who worked at the Sèvres porcelain factory until he received recognition in the Paris International Exhibition of 1855. Ten new paintings were accepted into the 1857 International and in 1861, another five, including one titled Vierge de Lesbos.



See also Joseph Méry (1798-1865), Le dernier fantome; illustré par G. Staal (Paris: Publié par Gabriel Roux … ; , 1853). Purchase; Acquired with matching funds provided by the Program in Hellenic Studies with the support of the Stanley J. Seeger Hellenic Fund; 2003. Rare Books (Ex) Oversize 2004-1239Q


Nuit lesbienne (first verse)

La fille de l’Erèbe, à la rose étoilée,
La nuit couvre le temple et sa douce vallée ;
Comme une ombre plaintive échappée au cercueil,
Alcyone se plaint, seule sur un écueil :
C’est l’heure des frissons, et des songes funèbres !
Rhodina, sur son lit, a peur dans les ténèbres,
Un bruit vague a troublé l’écho du corridor :
La lampe va s’éteindre au candélabre d’or,
Et sa pâle lueur, jouant avec les ombres,
De sinistres reflets couvre les lambris sombres :
Rhodina se recueille ; elle invoque en tremblant
La Reine de la Nuit, au diadème blanc,
Diane de Délos, dont les regards austères
Ne sont point indulgents aux amoureux mystères,
Diane de Délos, triple divinité
Qui des pieux hymens garde la chasteté.

1,100 San Francisco Boxers

[Boxers of San Francisco] (1910s-1930s).1 album; 36 cm. Gelatin silver prints. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2012-0036Q

Back in 2011, we acquired an album containing 1100 portraits, presumed to be boxers from the San Francisco area in the early 20th century. It has become one of our most requested resources, especially relatives asking if their fathers and grandfathers are listed.

Each of the photographs are numbered and a typed list was included identifying a small number of the 1100 men. Thanks to Ananya Malhotra, class of 2020, we now have this list in digital form so it can be searched online: Francisco Boxers.pdf

The public can now identify the man on the left as Jimmy Cumpston who fought Al Ramus in 1920:

Another of the fighters is Al Delmar, a middleweight boxer from San Francisco. His first professional fight took place on June 23, 1920 against Earl Biddle. Delmar won this fight in a knock out and went on to win twelve more, losing seven, and had nine end in a draw.

Eddie McGovern, alias Iron Man, was a light heavyweight from San Francisco. He boxed from 1920 to 1932, winning sixty-two matches (thirty-four in a knock out), lost thirty-four, and finished in a draw thirty-four times.

We would be glad to add to this list, if anyone can identify other boxers. Here are a few more images:

Decline and Fall of Hoops in the Roman Empire

Attributed to Emily “Lille” Maingay (1837-1890), The Decline and Fall of Hoops in the Roman Empire. Bound with The Christmas Robin ([London, privately printed? ca. 1872]). Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2017- in process

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired two small books bound together, both attributed to Emily “Lille” Maingay (1837-1890). The first is an illustrated satire on 19th-century women’s fashion and the Catholic Church, in which Pope Pius IX decides to ban women’s hooped skirts because they might prevent women from going to confession (doorway too narrow).


One section concerns a deacon who puts on a hoop and is chased by cardinals. “When caught, the pope amazed at his singular reserve did immediately confers on him priests orders (to cure him of the same).”

Maingay made the books using anastatic printing, also called metal relief, similar to what William Blake used with his illuminated books. Rockwell Kent also like the look of metal relief. Many of the copies of this book in other collections are called ink drawings, although they might also be anastatic printed copies. When the ink is transferred gently onto the paper, the result looks similar to an ink drawing.

Emily “Lille” Maingay (1837-1890) and her three sisters moved back to London from St. Petersburg in the 1860s. They were active in various charities. “The St Cyprian’s Orphanage for Girls is thought to have been founded in the 1870s at Allsop (or Allsopp) Mews, Marylebone, by the Misses Maingay of 39 Dorset Square. It was one of several homes in the area set up under the St Cyprian’s name, along with establishments for orphan boys, the aged, the incurable, and the fallen . . . the Maingay sisters donated the home to the [Waifs and Strays] Society” along with money to support it. —

It may be for the children of the orphanage that Maingay produced these small, humorous books.


The Guernsey Magazine obituaries for January 1891 announced “On Christmas Day, at 39, Dorset-square, London, Emily Lille Maingay, youngest daughter of the late William Maingay, Esq., at St. Petersburg.”

Yellow Barn Press

The Graphic Arts Collection has substantial holdings of twentieth-century fine press editions but we recently filled in some gaps in our collection of Yellow Barn Press (YBP) books with wood engravings by John DePol (1913-2004). These represent a collaboration between DePol and YBP printer Neil Shaver that lasted from 1983 until the DePol’s death in 2004.

Here’s a biographical note from the records of the YBP, held at the University of Iowa Libraries. “In 1966, Shaver and his wife Fran moved to rural Iowa, outside of Council Bluffs. On the property was a barn, which Shaver and Fran cleaned up and turned into his printing studio. Fran is credited with coming with the name Yellow Barn Press. In 1980, Shaver sold his grocery business and retired, turning his printing avocation into his vocation. He printed about two books a year. The first books were on the Washington press, but after his sixth book, he began printing his books on a Vandercook, which is easier for one person to operate.

In 1983, he took a course from John Anderson at Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey, and he and Anderson communicated from that point on until Anderson died in 1997. One of Shaver’s books about printing is about Anderson’s Pickering Press. . . Due to failing eyesight, Shaver closed the press in 2005, having brought out over thirty books.”

Photograph posted with the records of the Yellow Barn Press at the University of Iowa Library.

Here are the titles we’ve been able to acquire and a few images:
1. American Iron Hand Presses, #40/180, signed by Steve Saxe.
2. Ben Franklin on Lead Hazards, inscribed & dated by John.
3. Does Literature Exist, #9/175. John’s copy with his bookplate, inscription from Neil Shaver at Yellow Barn Press, signed twice by John. A second bookplate is also on the inside front cover with a different DePol engraving. With prospectus, ordering postcard, & typed note initialed by John.
4. Dress, by Eric Gill. #7/200, signed by John.
5. Goudy Memoir, YBP bookplate & Emerson G. Wulling’s bookplate too, with EGW’s traditional penciled notes on ffep, prospectus laid in.
6. Not Barn Again, inscribed & dated by John.
7. John Anderson & The Pickering Press, #102/150, inscribed & dated by John.
8. Liberty Bell on the K-G Press, #205/215, inscribed & dated by John.
9. Travels with Pat, with handwritten presentation note on his 1994 birthday laid in.

See also John J. Walsdorf, The Yellow Barn Press: a history and bibliography (Council Bluffs, Ia.: Yellow Barn Press, 2001). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2004-0798Q

Selling Cigarettes with Suffragettes

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired an original watercolor advertisement for Park Drive cigarettes depicting suffragettes marching outside the House of Parliament in October 1908. The women’s sashes read “Vote for … Park Drive.” It is a rare and curious piece of commercial ephemera for a proposed advertisement that never found its way into print.

In 1857, Thomas Gallaher (1840-1927) started his own one-man business hand-rolling tobacco and selling it from a cart. Gallaher became a limited company in 1896 and a few years later received a Royal Warrant from Queen Victoria.

The conglomerate, Imperial Tobacco, was formed in 1901 by the combination of thirteen leading British tobacco companies. Gallaher alone refused to join and all his advertisements from that time on included the statement: “We belong to no ring or combine.”

The introduction of machine-made cigarettes, called Park Drive, led to enormous growth and by 1907, the company employed more than 3,000 people, primarily women. Their first London factory opened at 67 Clerkenwell Road, the same area where Sylvia Pankhurst sought to unite the women’s movement with that of the working class. It’s possible someone, maybe even Gallaher, thought it would be useful to associate his company with the interests of the “Gallaher’s Girls,” who were sympathetic with the suffragettes.

Later a series of cigarette cards were marketed, including pretty girls, movie stars, and military officers.

For more on the history of the Gallaher Firm see:



Advertisements that were published include:

Early Soviet Sheet Music Online

Last spring, the Graphic Arts Collection, together with Thomas Keenan, Slavic, East European, and Eurasian librarian, purchased 100 pieces of illustrated Early Soviet sheet music:

Over the year, the collection has been conserved, catalogued, rehoused, and digitized. We are happy to announce these fragile sheets are now available online at:

The collection includes music scores published from 1920 to 1937, with numerous composers and lyricists (primarily Russian but also European and American) represented. Most scores were published in Moscow or Leningrad. Other imprints include Rostov-na-Donu, Kiev, Kharʹkov, and Tiflis; and most are popular music, jazz or dance music. The covers were designed by many different artists.

Many staff members worked on this project but thanks in particular to Joyce Bell, who did the coding in record time so that the collection would be ready for the spring semester.

Here is the call number if you would like to come to our reading room and see them in person: Graphic Arts Collection. F-000050. Here is a pdf list of the complete set of 100 pieces of music: Link

An unrecorded subversive almanac for 1794


Les Romances du temps présent. Almanach nouveau (Paris: chez les Marchands de Nouveautés, [between August and mid-October 1793]). 100 mm. Collation: [1]32 [2]8 (nested quires). 33, [16], 34-64 pp. Calendar for 1794. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2017- in process


The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired an unrecorded subversive almanac, innocuous in appearance but containing openly anti-Revolutionary poems, songs, and invocations.

The “Romances of the present day” [above] opens with several heart-rending poems on the plight of Marie-Antoinette, who, on August 1, 1793, had been transferred at dead of night from her prison in the Temple to a solitary cell in the Conciergerie. She would be guillotined 77 days later on October 16.

Other poems set to popular tunes include an invocation of the Dauphin (age 10, separated from his mother on July 3); a “romance” of the ghost of Louis XVI (executed on 21 January 1793) addressing the French people; a song relating the last words of the dying King, “found in his papers”; and a song “to the Sans-Culottes”: Rhabilles-toi peuple Français. Ne donnes plus dans les excès De nos faux Patriotes! [Get dressed French people. Do not give in excess of our false patriots!]

There is a racy pair of couplets, “to the Emigrés, by the French Ladies,” and vice-versa, each verse ending with the equivocal line “ce qu’on fit en nous [vous] faisant” (e.g., “Et jurons qu’un brave Emigré / Seul aura droit de nous faire / Ce qu’on fit en nous faisant),” along with a series of “Ariettes, written from the siege of Maastricht” (winter of 1793).

Beside these subversive texts are normal apolitical songs and a calendar for 1794.

Taufenpatenbrief or Godparent’s letter, 1781

Baptism Certificate. Folding, stencil-colored, engraved, and letterpress congratulatory “baptism letter” from a godparent ([Bavaria or Austria], July 20, 1781). Graphic Arts Collection 2017- in process

A square half-sheet (158 x 155 mm) with letterpress text on the inner side and nine stencil colored engraved scenes, each in its own compartment, on the outer side. The certificate is filled in with a place name (?) abbreviated Hoh., a date: 20 July 1781 and a name: Maria Sabina Schneiderin.


The Graphic Arts Collection is fortunate to have acquired a very well-preserved devotional ephemeron: a Taufbrief or Taufenpatenbrief, i.e., “Baptism letter” or “Godparent’s letter.”

It was customary in Germany for godparents to send their godchildren painted, handwritten, or printed good luck wishes on the occasion of their baptisms. These folded paper objects often contained small coins, and served as both a certificate of blessing and as religious instruction for young children: illustrated with scenes related to the meaning of baptism, they were preserved for the child’s edification when he or she reached an appropriate age.

In the 18th century printers developed a gamut of formats for these delightful paper-toy documents, which are now understandably rare. The earliest engraved folded baptism letters known to Spamer, as well as similarly presented marriage greetings, dated from the mid-18th century. See Adolf Spamer, Das kleine Andachtsbild, vom XIV. bis zum XX. Jahrhundert. Mit 314 Abbildungen auf 218 Tafeln und 53 Abbildungen im Text (München, F. Bruckmann, 1930). RECAP  Oversize N7640.S78q p. 242.

Earlier examples were usually handwritten on parchment. See also Michael Twyman’s chapter on ‘Baptismal Papers’ in: Maurice Rickards (1919-1998), The Encyclopedia of Ephemera… edited and completed by Michael Twyman (GARF  Oversize NC1280 .R52 2000q)


To see the letter in action, play this very short video. Thanks to Patrick Crowley, Project Cataloging Specialist, for his help unfolding the sheet.