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West, Benjamin (1730-1813) Bickerstaff's Boston Almanack.

Auction:
2950B
Lot:
6
Sold for:
$11,070$9,000

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Auction:
Books & Manuscripts - 2950B
Location:
Boston
Date / Time :
October 30, 2016 11:00AM

Description:

West, Benjamin (1730-1813) Bickerstaff's Boston Almanack. Danvers, MA: E. Russell, 1777. Small octavo pamphlet that employs the earliest published woodcut portrait of Washington in its second appearance in print; other woodcuts used in the text; stab-stitched, first leaf detached, some leaves loose, light wear, contemporary ink notes on title, interleaved with contemporary notes, 7 x 4 1/4 in.
The primitive profile portrait of Washington used on the title page is the first known American print of George Washington. His portrait is facing a portrait of Horatio Gates. The woodcut was first used in 1776 on a Salem imprint of the Declaration of Independence. (See George Washington, an American Icon: The Eighteenth-Century Graphic Portraits, by Wendy C. Wick, Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian, 1982).
A contemporary notation on July's calendar notes "four persons hanged at Worcester for murder on July 2nd," referring to the case of Bathsheba Ruggles Spooner (1746-1778). Spooner was the first woman executed in this country after the passage of the Declaration of Independence. She was defended by Levi Lincoln, prosecuted by Robert Treat Paine, and found guilty of orchestrating the murder of her husband. When she was executed she was five months pregnant.
Provenance: The Estate of David Spinney.
Estimate $3,000-5,000


The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of aging. Condition requests can be obtained via email (lot inquiry button) or by telephone to the appropriate gallery location (Boston/617.350.5400 or Marlborough/508.970.3000). Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner Inc. shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.

Keywords

George Washington, Robert Treat Paine, David Spinney, Horatio Gates, Levi Lincoln, Danvers, Washington, D.C., Bathsheba Spooner, Ruggles, Spooner, Woodcut

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