Monday, March 17, 2014

Swann Galleries: Printed and Manuscript African Americana, Sale 2342

Swann Auction Galleries will feature its 19th Annual Printed and Manuscript African Americana Sale on March 27, 2014. Sale 2342, consisting of 596 lots, will offer a rich assortment of historical material related to the African American experience. This extraordinary sale catalogued, as it is each year by Wyatt Houston Day, features items dating  back to the 18th century through the modern civil rights era, and highlights the contributions of black artists, musicians, educators, statesmen, athletes and more.  

The lots within Sale 2342, Printed and Manuscript African Americana, are divided into broad subject fields, such as the following: slavery and abolition, art, Black Panthers, business, civil rights, education, film, Marcus Garvey, literature and poetry, military, music, photography, and other areas. Every item is described in a print and online catalogue. A print catalogue may be purchased directly from Swann Auction Galleries and the online catalogue may be viewed at its website.

The items will be on public exhibition at Swann Auction Galleries on March 22, 24-26, 2014. This is an opportunity for all prospective buyers, collectors, scholars, dealers, students, and anyone with an interest to preview the exhibition and see items and their condition first-hand. However, if unable to attend the exhibition, the experts at Swann's are available to discuss any aspect of the sale, including condition.     

The following are selections from the 596 lots included in Sale 2342:
Lot 41: This item is included in the large archive of the Bourne Family . Image: Swann Auction Galleries
Lot 41: Archive of the Bourne Family, 1793-1919. Large archive of manuscript and printed matter: letters, documents, flyers, broadsides, pamphlets etc. Hundreds of items, contained in four large ring binders. Estimate for this lot is $40,000 - 60,000.  
Lot 280: This item is included in an archive of 97 G. W. Carver letters. Image: Swann Auction Galleries

Lot 280: Carver, George Washington. Archive of 97 Letters Signed, "G.W. Carver," to his friend Mrs. Sophie Liston. This lot has the  highest pre-sale estimate in this sale, and consists of letters signed by George Washington Carver to his friend Mrs. Sophie Liston who he met his first year at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa. The letters -- written from 1925 to 1937 -- cover various topics, including agricultural lecture tours, racism, conditions during the Great Depression, Tuskegee Institute life, Christian Science Church, national government policy, polio treatments, massage and oil therapy, painting and gardening, and most come with their original envelopes. The pre-sale estimate is $80,000 to $120,000. 

Lot 339A: Pullman Porter Collection. Image: Swann Auction Galleries

Lot 339A: RANDOLPH, A PHILIP. Collection of material relative to the Pullman Porters. This large collection of rare Pullman Porter material includes virtually all the equipment needed by a porter, plus personal identification, etc. This exceptional collection of Pullman Porter material is the most complete that Swann Galleries has ever offered. The pre-sale estimate is $15,000 to $25,000.

Lot 433: 48 star linen reunion flag, 14" x 23½". Columbus Ohio, circa 1900. Image: Swann Auction Galleries

Lot 433: 5th Regiment U.S. Colored Troops Survivor Reunion, Columbus Ohio. This is a circa 1900 rare survivor's reunion flag for the 5th Regiment with the lettering "U. S. Colored Troops Survivor Reunion, Columbus, Ohio". The estimate is $7,000 to $10,000. 

Lot 589: Personal archive of Eulace Peacock. Image: Swann Auction Galleries

Lot 589: PEACOCK, EULACE. Personal Archive of this great African American Track and Field star. Eulace Peacock was an American track and field athlete of the 1930s, and was often referred to as the "Fastest Man on Earth". He was Jesse Owens's chief rival, and beat Owens five times in the trials running up to the 1936 Olympics, where he was unable to compete due to injury. The archive contains gold, silver and bronze medals, correspondence, newspaper clippings, programs, the passport he would have used to travel to Berlin, and more. The estimate is $10,000 to $15,000. 

Live online bidding is available via Invaluable. Also, you may make advance  arrangements to bid by telephone during the auction, please call Swann's bid department (212-254-4710, ext. 0) during business hours (Monday - Friday, 10 AM - 6 PM). For further information, please contact Wyatt Houston Day at 212-254-4710, extension 300, or via e-mail at

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