Saturday, June 7, 2008

Mostly Listing Western History

I have lots of odds and ends of western history that purchased from another dealer. As I walk through it, I learn things about the west, cowboys, outlaws, lawmen, vigilantes, soiled doves, madams and more! Some of the smallest soft covers are worth much more than the regular books. Some are quite rare, some are so common I don't bother listing them.

But as I touch each one, they touch me.

I think a bookseller learns from the books they sell, whether they happened to be a type they liked or have read before. Part of it is osmosis, part of it what we read while we're analyzing the book and how to list it, part of it is our inquisitive minds.

Some books don't make it all the way to the shelves for selling. Some end up living here in my personal library. But most of those are not the collectible books - Western history is not my field, and while I now know better what to pick up when shopping and what might sell, it's not something that I will be acquiring for personal use. That doesn't mean some don't make me keep them anyway...

Are all booksellers like this? Or is it only my nature?

Here is a treasure I found in the batch I'm working on now:

Powder River Invasion War on the Rustlers in 1892 Author Name: A S Mercer, John Mercer Boots

Title: Powder River Invasion War on the Rustlers in 1892

Edition: First Edition
Publisher: Self Published 1923

Seller ID: 017933

Small hardcover, no DJ. In good condition, moderate bumping to spine ends and corners, minor cover staining, front hinge is beginning to separate, pages are toning, text is clear and clean. This is a 1923 printing of the extremely rare 1894 book written by Asa Shinn Mercer. Even this 1923 edition is scarce. This is the story of the Johnson County, Wyoming, war pitting the settlers (rustlers) against the cattle barons of the day. A S Mercer was not originally on the side of the settlers, but he felt compelled to write the story (Banditti of the Plains, sub-titled The Crowning Infamy of the Ages) to tell of the tactics used by the cattle barons. Most of the original edition was destroyed under mysterious circumstances.

Western History Wyoming Johnson County War Cattle Ranching Rustlers Barons

Price = 500.00 USD

I also have some less expensive books that are still very much fun to read such as:



Road Agents and Train Robbers: Half a Century of Western Banditry Author Name: Drago, Harry Sinclair

Title: Road Agents and Train Robbers: Half a Century of Western Banditry

Edition: First Edition
Publisher: Dodd, Mead 1973
ISBN Number: 0396067859 / 9780396067856

Seller ID: 017972

Hardcover, ex-library. In very good condition, minimal library markings. Includes several black and white photos. The rowdy mining camps, the vast untouched wilderness, the highroads and trails that were safe neither for travelers nor gold shipments - and the men who made them unsafe, like Tom Bell, Rattlesnake Dick and gentlemanly Black Bart, amongst others.

Old West Western History Outlaws

Price = 15.00 USD

And this is just a sampling of my stock. I have much more to list, but it's certainly been interesting and entertaining along the way!

Jo Ann Hakola, The Book Faerie, www.bookfaerie.com

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