Welcome to the Bauman Rare Books Blog

We write about the stories behind great works in literature. If you have a specific question, send us an email.



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7.1.15
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The Private Library: The Living Room

We are often asked at Bauman Rare Books if we think there is a future for material books. Answer: Yes! If you build your OWN library. The more people who…


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Rare Books 1016.9.15

Collecting Rare Science Fiction: The Modern Age

A first edition, 1961, of Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein (BRB 100475)

During the Golden Age of science fiction (or “sf”), the genre set it sights on exploring starry frontiers and seemingly infinitely expanding futures. But when the atomic bomb brought World…


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Rare Books 1016.4.15

Collecting Rare Science Fiction: The Golden Age

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Isaac Asimov said, “Science fiction stories are extraordinary voyages into any of the infinite supply of conceivable futures.” During the Golden Age of science fiction (sf), roughly the 1930s-1950s, those futures…


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Rare Books 1016.2.15

Collecting Rare Science Fiction: Genesis of a Genre

A first edition copy, 1898, presented to Wells' close friend and scientific adviser (BRB 104577)

I’ll let you in on a secret. We sell more than rare books.   We sell time travel.   Sure, scientists will tell you time travel can’t happen. But bibliophiles…


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Stories About Books5.26.15

Babbitt: The Single Book that Explains American Life

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In the midst of a stultified seminar, a somewhat exasperated professor posited the following question to me and my weary-eyed cohorts. “If you had to pick a single book to…

Videos5.13.15

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Illustrating the Dramatic Works of William Shakespeare by John Boydell

Watch a short film narrated by Laura Minor on the 1803 elephant folio issue of this work, which features key scenes from the plays created by the most eminent English…

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The Secret Language of Rare Books5.5.15

The Secret Language of Rare Books: Cosway-Style Bindings

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Does the specialized vocabulary of rare book descriptions read like a secret language to you? In this series we will unveil the meanings behind a few of the more unusual and interesting…


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Stories About Books4.29.15

5 Great Books to See in Las Vegas

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That Plato should be the first of all the ancient philosophers to be translated and broadcast by the printing press was inevitable. –PMM   Printed in the midst of the…


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Books the Founders Read4.21.15

Books the Founders Read: Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England

First edition of Blackstone’s Commentaries (BRB #101037)

“In America the law is king,” Thomas Paine declared in Common Sense. The Founding Fathers’ most important and widely-owned law book was William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England. John…

Videos4.17.15

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A Photographic Atlas of Selected Regions of the Milky Way by Edward Emerson Barnard

Watch this short film featuring Rebecca Romney discussing the groundbreaking photography involved in the creation of this inspiring work.        

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The Secret Language of Rare Books4.10.15

The Secret Language of Rare Books: Fore-Edge Paintings

An example bound by the Edwards of Halifax, who popularized fore-edge paintings in the 18th century (BRB 81915)

Does the specialized vocabulary of rare book descriptions read like a secret language to you? In this series we will unveil the meanings behind a few of the more unusual and interesting…