The rare book world has moved online since Covid-19 lockdowns began. Thankfully, a wealth of material and resource have rapidly gone digital in the past decade. Working from home, though, I’ve noticed myself still wishing I had access to the Grolier Club Library’s printed reference collection. Despite their continued usefulness to researchers, print resources have … Continue reading Ode to a Reference Collection
In 1915 the governing Council of the Grolier Club came to the conclusion, after five years of debate, that the Grolier clubhouse at 29 East 32nd Street, built to the Club’s specifications only 25 years before, was too small for its expanding membership, too fragile to support the weight of its rapidly-growing Library, and too flammable to protect … Continue reading There goes the neighborhood: The Grolier Club(s) and environs, 1916-1918.
In a back corner of the Grolier Club’s library, a curly-bearded gentleman carved in creamy marble is perched atop a bookcase. This little noticed object, recent research has revealed, resulted from a meeting of Victorian global influencers. The portrait sitter revolutionized journalism, and the sculptor brought Australian art into the international limelight. The artifact's back-story … Continue reading Finding Our Marbles
In a previous post, I wrote about Isabella “Tibby” Tinkler (1701 or 1702-1794), an early bookseller from Richmond, Yorkshire, whose enigmatic aquatint portrait is part of our Librarian’s current display of women authors, collectors, typographers, and booksellers. This post looks at the individual behind an equally eye-catching portrait that stands in the same display. Fig. … Continue reading A Bookseller by Another Name; or, Theodora Grahn; or Baron de Verdion; or Chevalier, or Dr., or Mr. John de Verdion (1744-1802).
The books of the Daniel Press, one of England's earlier Victorian private presses, are rarely illustrated although interesting on many other counts. As a Daniel Press enthusiast and an art lover, I was thus delighted to acquire for the Grolier Club Library a copy of Robert Bridges’s Prometheus the Firegiver (Oxford: H. Daniel, 1883) with … Continue reading Marginal Pen and Ink Drawings on a copy of ‘Prometheus the Firegiver’ (Oxford: H. Daniel, 1883)
Fig. 1. Aquatint portrait of Isabella "Tibby" Tinkler in her bookshop in Richmond, Yorkshire. Original print in the collection of the Grolier Club Library. Members and visitors to the Grolier Club in recent months may have noticed our Librarian’s display of portraits of women authors, collectors, typographers, and booksellers in the elegant Regency breakfront on … Continue reading Isabella “Tibby” Tinkler (1701 or 1702-1794), an Eighteenth-Century Bookseller of Richmond, Yorkshire.
In fall 1895, Grolierites returned from their summer breaks to a heady surprise in their six-year-old clubhouse at 29 East 32nd Street. Their Romanesque Revival building’s “stiff little colonial grill room” had metamorphosed into a semblance of a Dutch tapperij (taproom), “dim with the light of tallow dips,” as Leslie’s Weekly reported. (The article’s headline: … Continue reading How the Tapperij Came to Be