Spring 2022 Catalogue

New Acquisitions Spring 2022 – 39 – Bauman Rare Books Rare First Edition Of Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years A Slave, 1853 43. NORTHUP, Solomon. Twelve Years a Slave. Narrative of Solomon Northup, A Citizen of New-York, Kidnapped in Washington City in 1841, And Rescued in 1853, From a Cotton Plantation Near the Red River, in Louisiana. Auburn, 1853. Octavo, original blind-stamped brown cloth, custom slipcase. $13,200. First edition, rare first printing, of Northup’s powerful first-hand account—“one of the most authentic descriptions of slavery from the viewpoint of the slave”— documenting slavery’s brutality and electrified by his resolve “to portray the institution of slavery as I have seen and known it,” with engraved frontispiece and six full-page engravings of his torture in a slave pen, his near-escape from a lynching and much more, in original cloth. Northup, born a free man in New York, was kidnapped into slavery in 1841, leaving behind a wife and young children. He writes of being drugged and suddenly waking up in a Washington D.C., where he was imprisoned in a “slave pen within the very shadow of the Capitol!” Viciously whipped and beaten for refusing to “give in to the foul lie that I was a slave,” Northup was sold to several slave owners in Louisiana for 12 years before he found a way to send news home, leading to his return to freedom in 1853. Twelve Years A Slave, published that same year, is “one of the most authentic descriptions of slavery from the viewpoint of the slave himself” (Lieblich, Cultural Significance of… Twelve Years a Slave). On publication Frederick Douglass praised Twelve Years as a work whose “truth is far greater than fiction… It chills the blood.” Basis for the award-winning 2013 film that earned three Academy Awards, including Best Film. First edition, first printing. Containing engraved frontispiece and six full-page engraved illustrations. Sabin 55847. Brigano 448. Early inked date of “1854.” Later owner inkstamp. Faint trace of bookplate removal. Interior generally fresh with scattered foxing and light embrowning, expert restoration to text block and original cloth. “I will not fall into despair. I will keep myself hardy, till freedom is opportune!”