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Homemade Book

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Homemade Book

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Tales of Pollux the Rabbit, Anonymous.  [H]
1 Anonymous. [H] Tales of Pollux the Rabbit
Cloth Very Good 
Imaginative, whimsical verse and illustrations of an upper crust rabbit, Pollux, and his frivolous cares and activities. N.d., early 20th century and World War One era. Oblong 4to, 24.5 by 30 cm. 21 pp. (and leaves) of original pen and ink and watercolored drawings. Each page has a mounted illustration, with inked verse next to it, poking fun at Pollux's dress, his vanity, his helplessness, his manners, etc. Other characters include Jenkins, card players, a pining woman, all of whom are rabbits. While we do not know the identity of the cartoonist, the level of work is plausibly professional, with details rendered meticulously. The various verses and illustrations are somewhat loosely linked -- there isn't so much a continuous narrative as much as an overarching archness. The artist and versifier is shooting arrows at the idle nobility. Also included are 10 additional cartoons on separate sheets, only one of which involves Pollux, and only two with colored watercolors. These additional cartoons, including the one with Pollux, relate to the First World War. From these and the album proper we can infer that the artist was of a more left leaning sensibility. 
Price: 1750.00 USD
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[Manuscript] A Record of the Marriage of Swagar Sherley and Mignon Critten, Twenty First of April, Nineteen Hundred and Six [together with] loose clippings, announcements, an issue of "Town and Country", etc. related to this society wedding, Croninger, Louie B., artist (credited with both design and execution)
2 Croninger, Louie B., artist (credited with both design and execution) [Manuscript] A Record of the Marriage of Swagar Sherley and Mignon Critten, Twenty First of April, Nineteen Hundred and Six [together with] loose clippings, announcements, an issue of "Town and Country", etc. related to this society wedding
1906 Card. String ties. Fine 
An outstanding example of original "keepsake art". Oblong, 28 by 38 cm. 14 leaves, including cover, with all versos blank. In all respects, this is a gorgeous production, from the front cover with its thick three ribbon bow, with the ribbons running above and below the card, and its monogram surrounded by a laurel wreath, to the final watercolor of a coach heading off in the sunset on a country road, impliedly on the couple's honeymoon and more broadly, to a blissful life together. The artwork is unabashedly pretty, in a confectionary rococo sensibility that even with the more brutal dictates of modernism, doggedly remains dear to the dreamscape fantasy of most aspiring brides. Thus we have a page with two oval slots for photos of the couple surrounded by seraphs and garlands of roses, a wash of baby blue serving as the backdrop. Or the watercolor of three very pretty maids-of-honor, right out of the artwork of Charles Dana Gibson, Howard Chandler Christy, Montgomery Flagg or Maud Humphrey, dressed in the elegance that was the hallmark of fashion at the time. Even a page meant for the pasting of telgrams and featuring telephone poles is of an unalloyed sweetness, with its sprays of violets and a page sounding a horn and dressed in gold and violet. The album was only partly used, with spots intended for photos and clippings remaining blank. It would seem quite plausible that the couple did not fill these spaces because they wished to preserve the album which was already so exquisite in a pristine state. Regardless, the couple were socially important. Among the items included are congratulatory telegrams from soon-to-be President William H. Taft and Nicholas Longworth, the future speaker of the House and the husband of Alice Roosevelt. J. Swagar Sherley (1871 - 1941) was a Democratic U.S. Congressman from Kentucky, elected to seven terms and a one time chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. After being voted out of office in 1918, he practiced law in Washington. Franklin Roosevelt asked him to be his first Director of the Budget but Sherley declined on account of ill health. The bride, Mignon nee Critten, was from Staten Island society -- there was such a thing in those days -- who was featured on the title page of the July 29th, 1905 issue of Town & Country, where we learn she was about to embark on a trip to the Philippines with the Secretary of War William H. Taft's party. Her family estate, "Olivecrest" at Grymes Hill, was where the wedding took place. Also included is a printed copy of Psalm 91, with original watercolored floral decoration and some original pen and ink and watercolored calligraphic lettering. 
Price: 2000.00 USD
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