Peck, Leilani, Leonora Moragne, et al | Focus on Food
First edition. One of the authors of this home economics textbook was the prominent Black nutrition scientist Lenora Moragne (1931-2020) who worked as a hospital dietician before earning her doctorate at Cornell.
“With an illustrious career that spanned 60 years, Moragne held positions in hospitals, industry, nutrition publishing, academia and government. Her positions within the federal government include head of nutrition education and training for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service; nutrition coordinator at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; and a professional staff member for Sen. Bob Dole (Kan.), specializing in nutrition. She was the first professional female (of any race or ethnic group) to be employed by the Senate Agriculture Committee. From 1970 until she was recruited by Dole, Moragne taught at Hunter College and was the college’s first African American professor. During her years in Washington, D.C., she wrote nutrition legislation, improved school lunch programs and developed a pamphlet titled ‘Nutrition and Your Health…Dietary Guidelines for Americans 1990.’ Moragne often traveled throughout the U.S. to promote nutrition and dietetics and delivered lectures to nutrition professionals” (”Remembering Leonora Morage”, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation website, February 5th 2021).
New York: Webster Division, McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1974.
Quarto. Original orange laminate boards printed in green and purple. Colour illustrations throughout. Binding a little rubbed and bumped, mild waviness to text block. A very good copy.
Cole, Dandridge M. & Roy Scarfo | Beyond Tomorrow. The Next Fifty Years in Space.
First edition, first printing of this uncommon classic written and illustrated by two of the most influential futurists of the mid-20th century.
Dandridge M. Cole (1921-1965) was an engineer with the Martin Company, where he worked on the design of the Titan II rocket, and then moved to General Electric’s Missile and Space Division. Cole was particularly interested in developing futurism as a serious academic field embraced by both civilian and government bodies. He developed ideas about colonising and exploiting asteroids, coining the term macrolife to describe human colonies in space. He also warned about nuclear proliferation and population growth, suggesting that humanity was at a turning point in its development.
The present volume explores the breadth of predications about humanity’s future in space, including colonising other bodies in the solar system, closed-cycle communities, terraforming, biological and evolutionary changes in humans in space, and the religious and moral implications of leaving Earth.
The fabulous illustrations are by Roy Scarfo, who, more than any other single artist, was responsible for the “look” of the Space Age. Scarfo was creative director at GE’s Space Technology Centre and worked as a consultant for NASA and other agencies. He collaborated with numerous science fiction authors and futurists, including Isaac Asimov, and his illustrations appeared in more than forty books and countless newspaper and magazine articles.
...With Space Art Originated by Roy G. Scarfo. Amherst, WI: Amherst Press, 1965.
Quarto. Original mottled brown cloth, titles to spine and upper board in metallic green. With the dust jacket. Colour and black and white illustrations throughout. Ownership ink stamp of Marvin M. Foote dated 1974. Dust jacket adheared to the spine in a couple of spots, metallic titles degrading a little, contents clean. A very good copy in the rubbed and nicked jacket with some short closed tears and dampstain affecting the upper panel.
Webb, James E. | Three uncommon imprints by NASA administrator James E. Webb
James E. Webb (1906-1996) was NASA’s second administrator and one of its most significant, seeing the agency through the Mercury and Gemini programs and the preparation for the Apollo missions.
To Webb, “the space program was more than a political race. He believed that NASA had to strike a balance between human space flight and science because such a combination would serve as a catalyst for strengthening the nation's universities and aerospace industry... Webb's vision of a balanced program resulted in a decade of space science research that remains unparalleled today. During his tenure, NASA invested in the development of robotic spacecraft, which explored the lunar environment so that astronauts could do so later, and it sent scientific probes to Mars and Venus, giving Americans their first-ever view of the strange landscape of outer space. As early as 1965, Webb also had written that a major space telescope, then known as the Large Space Telescope, should become a major NASA effort. By the time Webb retired just a few months before the first moon landing in July 1969, NASA had launched more than 75 space science missions to study the stars and galaxies, our own Sun and the as-yet unknown environment of space above the Earth's atmosphere. Missions such as the Orbiting Solar Observatory and the Explorer series of astronomical satellites built the foundation for the most successful period of astronomical discovery in history, which continues today”. Webb also “enhanced the role of scientists in key ways. He gave them greater control in the selection process of science missions and he created the NASA University Program, which established grants for space research, funded the construction of new laboratories at universities and provided fellowships for graduate students” (”Who is James Webb?”, NASA James Webb Space Telescope website).
Webb’s legacy has been complicated by allegations that at the State Department and NASA he played a leading role in the lavender scare, in which hundreds of gay personnel were fired from the federal government. In 2021 four astronomers published an op-ed in Scientific American requesting the renaming of the soon-to-be-launched James Webb Space Telescope, but NASA administrators announced that an inquiry into Webb’s actions determined it was unlikely he had played a key role in the firings and the name would be kept.
These pamphlets deal with various aspects of space science and the space race. “Man Must Take Environment into Space” discusses the hostile environment of space and the ways that NASA scientists have prepared their vehicles and crew for it. “Administration and Management of Space Exploration” lays out the structure and goals of NASA, and “From Runnymede to Ganymede” is the text of a historical talk that Webb gave at the Celebration of the Prelude to Independence in Williamsburg, Virginia on May 27th, 1967.
...“Man Must Take Environment into Space, Project Gemini.”, “Administration and Management of Space Exploration, Project Apollo”, and “From Runnymede to Ganymede” in Speaking of Space and Aeronautics Vol. IV, No. 1. Washington D.C.: NASA, 1962 & 1967.
3 16-page, wire-stitched pamphlets. The first two in white self-wraps printed in blue. The third in yellow wrappers printed in black and grey. Illustrations from photos within the texts of the first and second pamphlets. Just a little creasing and rubbing. Excellent condition.
Tickell, Crispin | Climatic Change and World Affairs
Second edition, published the year after the first, of one of the earliest books to tackle the potential effects of global warming, particularly on international relations, and promote international restrictions on greenhouse gases. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “Nigel Davies —with the affection and respect of Crispin Tickell, Mexico, 1 October 1981”. The recipient was almost certainly the prominent historian Nigel Davies (1920-2004), a specialist on the Aztecs, Toltecs, and Inca whose books are considered the standard references.
Both the 1977 Harvard University first edition of Climatic Change and World Affairs and this 1978 Pergamon press edition (with a different foreword) are rare in commerce. A revised edition published in 1986 is sometimes referred to as the “second edition”, but is in fact the third.
The distinguished diplomat Sir Crispin Tickell (1930-2022) began his career with responsibility for the British Antarctic Territory, which inspired his interest in the climate and other environmental causes. “In 1977, while taking a sabbatical at Harvard he wrote Climatic Change and World Affairs. This was one of the first, and for at least a decade, the only book on the coming climate crisis, and what governments should do to prevent it. He argued for mandatory international pollution control, something that is finally taking shape. Margaret Thatcher credited him with convincing her of the science of global warming and the danger that it posed for the planet, which resulted in her speech on the subject to the Royal Society in September 1988. This brought climate change into the mainstream of British politics. Tickell was also concerned with the controversial subject of world population and the fact that extra billions of people were inevitably going to cause problems for biodiversity and the climate. But rather than draconian measures to curb population growth his emphasis was on being positive – better reproductive health, education for women and lifting millions out of poverty. He thought economic security was the best way to reduce family size. Whenever the government position allowed him to do so he helped to steer environment goals in the right direction – and was proud of his successful efforts as permanent secretary at the Overseas Development Administration (1984-87) to put an end to all aid for anything to do with tobacco” (Guardian obituary, January 30th, 2022).
...Foreword to this edition by Lord Zuckerman of Burnham Thorpe. Foreword to the original edition by Paul Doty. Oxford: Pergamon Press, 1978.
Octavo. Original red laminate boards, titles to spine and upper board and text to the lower board in black and white, illustration of fencers below a cloud to the upper board in black and white. A fine copy.
Ferguson, Lloyd N. | Organic Chemistry. A Science and an Art.
First edition, first printing and a lovely copy of this uncommon work by the prominent chemist and educator Lloyd N. Ferguson (1918-2011). As Ferguson notes in the foreword, he wrote this volume as a supplement to standard organic chemistry textbooks, to offer “more commentary on the uses of organic substances... It can make a chemistry course more relevant and motivate those who have not yet developed an interest in the subject”.
Lloyd’s interest in science dated to his childhood, when “he bought himself a chemistry set at age 12 and did chemistry experiments in a backyard shed... He put together a moth repellent, invented a spot remover and a silver polish, and developed a lemonade mix. A budding entrepreneur, as well, he sold his inventions to his neighbours” (Spangenburg, African Americans in Science, Math and Invention, p. 80). Ferguson attended Berkeley for both his undergraduate and graduate degrees, and was the first African American to earn a PhD in chemistry at the university. In 1945 Ferguson joined the faculty at Howard University, where he would remain for the next two decades. “He served as department head as well from 1958 to 1965. In this capacity, he built the first doctoral program in chemistry at any Black college in the nation” (Spangenberg, p. 80). Later he went to California State University at Los Angeles, serving as chemistry department chair between 1968 and 1971.
Ferguson’s research between the late 1940s and early 60s “included studies of the chemical properties of aromatic molecules... Ferguson also studied the molecular components and biochemical processes of taste—research that is valuable, as Ferguson argued in his 1958 article titled ‘the Physicochemical Aspects of the Sense of Taste,’ in gaining a fuller understanding ‘about the ways chemicals stimulate biological activity’” (Krapp, Notable Black American Scientists, p. 117). At Cal State his research focused on alicycles, which he described as supplying “models for elucidating the chemistry of natural products such as steroids, alkaloids, vitamins, carbohydrates, [and] antibiotics” (Krapp). Ferguson was also very active in administrative roles, and was publicly recognised for his extensive work mentoring science students from under-represented backgrounds.
Boston: Willard Grant Press, 1972.
Octavo. Original white wrappers printed in red and orange. Diagrams within the text. Spine faintly toned, binding very lightly rubbed with a few light marks and a small scuff and dent on the lower wrapper. Excellent condition.
Pye, Edith M. | Food Conditions in Europe
First and only edition of this uncommon pamphlet by the nurse and aid organiser who was awarded the Legion d’Honneur for her work during the First World War. WorldCat locates copies at only four institutions, the Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh, Haverford College, and the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.
Edith M. Pye (1876-1965) “trained as a midwife and a nurse. She is best remembered for the Quaker Society relief work done after she became a member of the Society of Friends in 1908. Her friend Hilda Clark organized the Friends War Victims Relief in 1914 and together they devised an international scheme to supply milk to millions starving in Vienna. In France they organised a maternity hospital within the war zone itself and helped women and children war victims... Pye organized the Friends’ work in Spain during the Spanish Civil War and was involved with the International League for Peace and Freedom. She argued for the partial lifting of the Allied blockade during World War II so that food and medical supplies could be sent to the starving in Europe. A leading member of the Famine Relief Committee, she lobbied the Ministry of Economic Warfare for compassionate aid... and continued her efforts for peace and relief until she was quite old” (Ogilvie, Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science, p. 1061).
...A Statement on the Effects of War and Blockade on People in German-Controlled Countries. London: Friends Service Council, 1942.
12-page pamphlet, wire-stitched. Contemporary ownership signature in blue ink to the cover. Staples rusted, with small rust stains in the gutters and on the spine, wrappers a little rubbed and dulled, minor crease affecting the upper corner.
Rothschild, Miriam & Theresa Clay | Fleas, Flukes and Cuckoos
First edition, first impression of this classic by a leading British parasitologist.
Miriam Rothschild (1908-2005) was a member of the prominent banking family and was introduced to zoology by her father, an amateur naturalist, and her physician uncle. Though Rothschild had only a limited formal education, she was intellectually self-directed and was recommended for study at the Naples Biological Station, where she “developed a strong interest in parasitology, noting that the molluscs with which she was working were infected with flatworms” (Ogilvie, Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science, p. 1128). She then went to the Biological Station at Plymouth where she continued researching parasites and their hosts until her laboratory was bombed during the Second World War.
During the war Rothschild opened her childhood home to refugees and worked with Alan Turing on the Enigma project. “In addition to her active war work, she continued with her natural history investigations, cataloguing her father’s collections and studying human and animal parasites, especially fleas. She studied flea reproduction, their host preferences, and the mechanics of flea leaping. In collaboration with Nobel laureate Tadeus reichstein, she demonstrated the manner in which the monarch caterpillar’s diet of milkweed plants protects it from birds and other predators” (Ogilvie). Rothschild published more than three hundred scientific articles in addition to several successful popular works, and 2,000 of her microscope slides are now part of the Natural History Museum collections.
...A Study of Bird Parasites. With 90 Black and White Photographs, 4 Maps & 22 Drawings. London: Collins, 1952.
Octavo. Original green cloth, titles to spine gilt. With the dust jacket. 20 plates, illustrations within the text. Cloth very slightly faded along the edges of the boards, gilt spine titles dulled, light partial toning of the free endpapers. A very good copy in the rubbed and dulled jacket with two closed tears and associated creasing at the top of the upper panel, as well as a few other small nicks and a crease along the fold of the upper flap.
(Newton, Isaac) Brewster, David | The Life of Sir Isaac Newton
First edition of the first scholarly biography of Isaac Newton, written by the man who would go on to uncover Newton's previously unknown alchemical studies. This copy with an 1884 gift inscription presenting the work to a woman, Betsy Motherwell.
Author Sir David Brewster (1781-1868) was a highly regarded scientist and university administrator who did significant work on optics, contributed to the invention of the stereoscope and the kaleidoscope, and was an intimate of William Henry Fox Talbot, being "involved in the history of photography from its very beginning" (ODNB).
But he is best remembered for his two important biographies of Isaac Newton, written in the hope of defending Newton from accusations of madness. This, his first attempt, was published in an affordable, popular format in 1831, and was was well-received. Brewster had sought out unpublished material and was able to incorporate a group of previously unknown letters between Newton, Samuel Pepys, and the physician John Millington.
Building on this success, Brewster continued to seek material that would shed further light on the great man's life. In 1837 he was finally able to access the tightly-controlled Portsmouth manuscripts, which revealed for the first time Newton's deep interest in alchemy and his unorthodox religious views. "Despite these traumatic discoveries—which essentially negated the purpose behind his historical biography—Brewster attempted to synthesize his findings." His second biography, Memoirs of the Life, Writings and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton, published in 1855, "remained the best available until 1980" and "managed to include all the problems of the enigmatic figure of Newton for the first time, and attempted to solve them in the light of Brewster's own times. The work is remarkable as much for the insights it gives about Brewster, as it is for information about Newton" (ODNB).
London: John Murray, 1831.
Duodecimo (141 x 92mm). Later blue-green half calf, spine gilt in compartments, black morocco label, marbled sides, rear endpapers pink, all edges gilt. Engraved frontispiece after the portrait by Sir Godfrey Kneller, vignette title, engravings within the text. Gift inscription dated 1884 to front blank. Front pastedown renewed and front free endpaper lacking. Binding rubbed and scuffed, frontispiece and titled toned and a little spotted, foxing to M8, N1, and N2. Very good condition.
Mather, John C. & John Boslough | The Very First Light
First edition, first printing and a beautiful copy inscribed by the author on the title, “Best wishes to my longtime good friend Sy Coleman! John Mather”. The recipient may have been the Sy Coleman who founded Aspen Public Radio and died in 2020.
John C. Mather (1946 - ) is one of the most prominent astrophysicists working today. He was the recipient of the Noble Prize alongside George F. Smoot for their joint work on the cosmic background radiation using data from the COBE satellite, launched in 1989. This groundbreaking research on the energy patterns of the early universe “provided increased support for the Big Bang scenario for the origin of the Universe, as this is the only scenario that predicts the kind of cosmic microwave background radiation measured by COBE. These measurements also marked the inception of cosmology as a precise science” (Nobel Prize announcement).
The Very First Light is Smoot’s first-hand account of the COBE programme and its results, written for a popular audience. Today Smoot is the Senior Project Scientist for the newly launched James Webb Space Telescope, which can see further and in greater detail than any telescope before, promising to revolutionise the field of cosmology.
...The True Inside Story of the Scientific Journey Back to the Dawn of the Universe. [New York]: Basic Books, a division of Harper Collins, 1996.
Octavo. Original black boars, black cloth backstrip, titles to spine in silver, Harper Collins device to upper board in blind. With the dust jacket. Illustrations within the text. A fine copy in the jacket.
Merriam, Florence A. | Birds Through an Opera-Glass
First edition, the Chautaqua Press issue with their imprint on the title page.
Florence Merriam Bailey (1863-1948) was encouraged in scientific pursuits by her family and then attended Smith College, where she “became interested in ornithology, established a chapter of the Audubon Society, and began to publish articles in the Audubon Magazine” (Ogilvie, Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science, p. 69). These articles were collected to form the nucleus of Birds Through an Opera-Glass, her first book, written to “provide hints to laypersons on bird identification” (Ogilvie).
After spending three years in the American Southwest, she moved to Washington D.C. and married the naturalist Vernon Bailey, with whom she had a “symbiotic collaborative marriage: he was interested in mammals, reptiles, and plants, whereas she was interested in birds. The couple spent the next thirty springs and summers in the West collecting for the U.S. Biological Survey”, writing books on their findings during the remainder of the year (Ogilvie). Among her key books are the comprehensive account of the birds of the Southwest, Birds of New Mexico.
This issue of Birds Through an Opera-Glass was published jointly by the original publishers, Houghton, Mifflin, and the Chautaqua Press, the publishing arm of the popular educational summer camps for adults which had been founded in 1874. All issues of the first edition are rare, particularly in such nice condition.
Cleveland, OH & Cambridge, MA: The Chautaqua Press & Houghton, Mifflin & Co., 1889.
Octavo. Original brown cloth, titles and border to upper board locked in black, titles to spine gilt. Minor bumps to edges of upper board, lightly rubbed at the tips, small spot on page 185. An excellent copy.
(Landsberg, Peter) Hawking, Stephen W. | A Brief History of Time
First edition, the corrected second printing of this landmark popular work on the quest for the Grand Unified Theory. From the library of physicist Peter Landsberg, with his ownership signature, notes and highlighting, and letter to him loosely inserted.
Peter Landsberg (1922-2010), was a German Jewish refugee to Britain who earned his PhD in quantum mechanics at Imperial College London in 1949 and joined the faculties of the Universities of Cardiff and Southampton. “Landsberg was not solely interested in one branch of physics, he was interested in physics in general and this boyish enthusiasm took his research to all areas of theoretical work”, among them the quantum phenomenon known as bose condensation, the relationship between quantum mechanics and living things, thermodynamics, cosmology, and applications of solar energy. He is best known for his explication of “Landsberg efficiency”, the theoretical limits on how much solar power can be converted to electricity in a given situation (obituary in The Scotsman, May 23, 2010).
Landsberg has made numerous short notes — often page number references — and underlined a number of passages, primarily in chapters 8: The Origin and Fate of the Universe and 9: The Arrow of Time, that deal with thermodynamics and the inflationary model of the universe. Loosely inserted is a typed letter signed to Landsberg from Canon Robert Winnett (1910-1989), to whom the book had been loaned, and who writes that it conveyed to him “a sense of the infinite mystery of the universe, and of unplumbed depths still to be explored, an attitude which is surely akin to the religious”. He goes on the discuss how scientific ideas about the origin of the universe might align with Christianity and other religions, ending with the thought that “we are dealing with probabilities rather than certainties... The origins of religion lie in dimensions of human experience other than the scientific, and any cosmological theory can be interpreted theistically, or if we will, atheistically”.
...From the Big Bang to Black Holes. Introduction by Carl Sagan. Illustrations by Ron Miller. New York: Bantam Books, 1988.
Octavo. Original black quarter cloth, dark grey boards, title to spine in silver, Hawking’s monogram to upper board in blind. With the dust jacket. Illustrations throughout the text. Binding a little rubbed and bumped. A very good copy in the rubbed and creased jacket with some bubbling of the plastic coating, especially along folds.
G. Nicolis & I. Prigogine | Self-Organization in Nonequilibrium Systems
First edition first printing. Presentation copy inscribed by Nobel Prize winner Ilya Prigogine, and also signed by co-author Grégoire Nicolis, for fellow physicist Peter Landsberg. Books signed by either Prigogine and Nicolis are uncommon. With a small pencilled notation of Landsberg’s on page 34 also repeated with a question mark on the front free endpaper.
Ilya Prigogine (1917-2003) is today one of the most well-known figures in the field of chaos theory. Though others before him, primarily Lars Onsager, had investigated the thermodynamics of irreversible processes (such as metabolic reactions in living things, or the boiling of an egg), it was Priogione who extended our understanding of them to systems that were far from equilibrium. His most important contribution was the discovery that in these systems chaos can lead to the development of ordered structures that only exist in conjunction with their environment. These he called “dissipative structures” to differentiate them from equilibrium structures (such as crystals) that can exist as isolated systems. “The most well-known dissipative structure is perhaps the so-called Benárd instability. This is formed when a layer of liquid is heated from below. At a given temperature heat conduction starts to occur predominantly through convection, and it can be observed that regularly spaced, hexagonal convection cells are formed in the layer of liquid. This structure is wholly dependent on the supply of heat and disappears when this ceases” (Noble Prize biography). The present volume covers all aspects of this new field, from the mathematical models underpinning it, to its application in chemistry, cell biology, and even the flows of energy across whole ecosystems.
Co-author Grégoire Nicolis (1939-2018) was also a leader in this new field of complex systems in statistical mechanics. His work — frequently in collaboration with Prigione — produced important “early discoveries in chaos theory” that “constitute part of its foundations as they brought forth deep connections on nonlinear dynamics and out-of-equilibrium processes in physics and chemistry at large” (Basios, “Grégoire Nicolis of the Founders of Complexity Science, a Recollection”, Nonlinear Phenomena in Complex Systems, vol. 23, no. 2, 2020, p. 102).
The recipient of this volume, Peter Landsberg (1922-2010), was a German Jewish refugee to Britain who earned his PhD in quantum mechanics at Imperial College London in 1949 and joined the faculties of the Universities of Cardiff and Southampton. “Landsberg was not solely interested in one branch of physics, he was interested in physics in general and this boyish enthusiasm took his research to all areas of theoretical work”, which included the quantum phenomenon known as bose condensation, the relationship between quantum mechanics and living things, thermodynamics, cosmology, and applications of solar energy. He is best known for his explication of “Landsberg efficiency”, the theoretical limits on how much solar power can be converted to electricity in a given situation (obituary in The Scotsman, May 23, 2010).
...From Dissipative Structures to Order through Fluctuations. New York: a Wiley-Interscience Publication, John Wiley & Sons, 1977.
Octavo. Original blue-grey cloth, titles to spine and ISBN on lower board in metallic blue, publisher’s device to upper board in blind. With the dust jacket. Diagrams and illustrations throughout the text. Cloth slightly rubbed at the tips, two small worn spots on the edge of the upper board. A very good copy in the jacket that is creased and worn with some closed tears and small chips.
Baikie, James | Through the Telescope
First edition. A handsomely bound prize copy awarded in 1914 by the Merchant Taylor’s School in Crosby, Liverpool. The well-illustrated text covers the history and use of the telescope, the sun and each planet in the solar system, comets and meteors, the stars, and star clusters and galaxies.
Author James Baikie (1866-1931) was a Scottish minister and fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. Through the Telescope was his first book, and he followed it up with several popular works on ancient Egypt.
...With 32 Full-Page Illustrations from Photographs and 26 Smaller Figures in the Text. London: Adam and Charles Black, 1906.
Octavo (202 x 132 mm). Contemporary school prize binding of blue calf by Rowell of Liverpool. Spine elaborately gilt in compartments, brown morocco label, double gilt fillets and decorative roll in blind, school crest roundel to the upper board in gilt, blind roll to turn-ins, marbled endpapers and edges. Frontispiece and 31 plates from photographs, engravings within the text. Prize bookplate. A little scuffing and some small marks to the binding. Excellent condition.
Baker, Henry | An Attempt toward a Natural History of the Polype
First edition of this uncommon and charmingly illustrated work on polyps, one of the two body plans of creatures in the phylum of the jellyfish, anemones, and corals (the other type being the medusa). This copy from the library of distinguished collector Robert J. Hayhurst, pharmacist and inheritor of John Hayhurst & Son, a successful chain of retail pharmacies.
Author Henry Baker (1698-1774) was apprenticed as a bookseller before becoming a successful teacher of deaf people. He was also a fellow of the Royal Society, “a typical natural philosopher of his time, keenly interested in the wonders of nature, as manifesting the power of the creator. From 1740 Baker's literary skills were used in prose, embodying his scientific discoveries... The book that established his name as a scientific writer was The Microscope Made Easy, which appeared in 1742, and achieved five editions in the author's lifetime, as well as translation into Dutch and French” (ODNB). His most important scientific study, for which he was awarded the Copley Medal, was a microscopical investigation of crystal structure.
“His other main microscopical research involved repeating the experiments on freshwater polyps (Hydra viridis) of Abraham Trembley. Trembley's discoveries, reported to the Royal Society in January 1743, caused a sensation, since the polyps, when cut in two, grew into two complete specimens, a plant-like property strangely combined with the animal-like ability to move and ingest worms. Baker, in association with Martin Folkes, examined the creatures with the microscope, and, with due acknowledgement to Trembley, published in November 1743 An Attempt towards a Natural History of the Polype” (ODNB).
Reference: Freeman, British Natural History Books 165
...In a Letter to Martin Folkes, Esq; President of the Royal Society... London: for R. Dodsley and sold by M. Cooper and J. Cuff, 1743.
Octavo. Recently rebound to style in olive calf by Bayntun, spine gilt in compartments, red morocco label, blue speckled edges, new endpapers and blanks. Engraved frontispiece and woodcut illustrations throughout the text. Lacking the advertisements. L4 misprinted as K4. Bookplate of Robert J. Hayhurst. Small paper repairs to the edge of the frontispiece and the margin of the title, not affecting the text or image, contents fresh. A very good copy.
Duncan, P. Martin | Natural History Rambles. The Sea-Shore.
A very handsome copy of this popular work that was first published in 1879. It describes and illustrates a wide variety of seashore creatures, including plants, microorganisms, jellyfish and hydrozoans, anemones, corals, worms, starfish, crabs, shellfish, birds, and bony fish.
Author Peter Martin Duncan (1824-1891) practised as a medical doctor, pursuing science as a hobby, until his appointment to a professorship in geology at King’s College. His speciality was “the corals and echinids, although he also took much interest in ophiurids, sponges, and protozoa. He adopted the viewpoint of a philosophical zoologist for this research, but also investigated the relationship between species distribution and palaeoenvironments. He described fossil coral fauna from different parts of the world and the echinids of Sind” and contributed two important papers on them (ODNB).
“Duncan's industry was unflagging. He undertook a great amount of work, of both a popular and a scientific character. He was editor of Cassell's Natural History (1876–82), to which he contributed several important articles. He wrote a Primer of Physical Geography (1882); a small volume of biographies of botanists, geologists, and zoologists entitled Heroes of Science (1882); another on The Seashore (1879); and an Abstract of the Geology of India (1875), which reached a third edition in 1881. He also assisted in preparing the third edition of Griffith and Henfrey's Micrographic Dictionary (1875), and in revising the fourth edition of Lyell's Student's Elements of Geology (1885)” in addition to authoring at least a hundred academic papers (ODNB). Duncan was a member of the Geological Society and was awarded its Wollaston Medal in 1881. He was also a Fellow of the Royal, Linnean, and Zoological Societies.
This copy was awarded as a prize for achievement in drawing at the York High School for Girls in 1895. The York high school was opened by the Girls Public Day School Company in November 1880 and operated until 1907.
London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1891.
Octavo (163 x 101 mm). Contemporary school prize binding of burgundy calf by Bickers & Son, spine elaborately gilt in compartments, double gilt fillets and school roundel to the upper board gilt, marbled endpapers and edges, turn-ins blocked in blind. Steel engravings throughout. Prize bookplate. Spine a little faded, edges and ends of spine just a little rubbed, spotting to the endpapers and lighter spotting to the title and final leaf of text. Excellent condition.
Shields, E. Floyd | Coachella Valley Desert Trails and The Romance and Sex Life of the Date
First edition of this charming tourist booklet promoting the Coachella Valley and Shields Date Gardens, the famous “home of the date shake” on Highway 111 in Indio, California.
Date agriculture was introduced to the Coachella Valley when the US Department of Agriculture set up an experimental station in the region in 1904. “In the following decades, crop production grew exponentially, from approximately 100,000 pounds in 1919 to 1 million pounds in 1926, and then by 1955 to 48 million pounds of dates” (Conrad, “From Experiment to Celebrated Product, Dates Find a Home in Coachella Valley”, The Desert Sun.) Today the valley is home to the majority of US date farms.
The Shields Date Gardens were founded by E. Floyd and Bess Shields in 1924. Floyd was a pioneering agriculturist who developed several of his own date varieties and invented products like date sugar and date crystals for use in cooking, including in the date milkshakes sold at the gardens. He was an indefatigable marketer, directing tourists to the farm shop with a giant knight in armour, the “guardian of quality”, and offering lectures on date cultivation to the public. “The lectures proved to be a popular draw, leading Shields to incorporate a slide show and recorded soundtrack into a multimedia production. The 15-minute presentation, ‘The Romance and Sex Life of the Date,’ modified only slightly over the years, is still shown today in a small theater” (Sellers, “A Date in the Desert, California Bountiful, the California Farm Bureau, March/April 2009).
This guidebook directs tourists to local sites in “the land of romance and sunshine”, including 29 Palms and Joshua Tree (created as a National Park only fifteen years previously), the Salton Sea, Palm Springs, Painted Canyon, the All American Canal, and the annual “Arabian Nights” pageant. The second half is based on ‘The Romance and Sex Life of the Date’. Well-illustrated from photographs taken on the Shields’ farm, it focuses on the difficulty of propagating, caring for, and hand-pollinating the palms, and educates consumers on the economics of date agriculture, suggesting the prices they should expect to pay for high-quality fruit.
Also advertised in the booklet are Shields’ unique products, including date sugar, butter, and crystals, with suggestions and recipes for their use. “Two-thirds grapenuts and one third Shields Date Crystals make a wonderful breakfast. Shields Date Crystals can also be used dry on any kind of cereal, salads, ice cream, etc... As an after school snack for the children Shields Date Crystals will make a delicious and healthful sandwich — suggest using graham crackers.”
Indio, CA: Shields Date Gardens, 1952.
40-page, wire-stitched pamphlet. Original buff wrappers printed in brown and orange with an image of the rising sun over a desert landscape to the upper wrapper and a cartoon of a knight pointing to the Shields farm on the lower wrapper. Illustrated throughout with photographs and maps. Partially erased price and a little light dampstain to the cover. Occasional tiny spots to contents, which are faintly toned. A clean and fresh copy in excellent condition.
Baxter, James Finney | Scientists Against Time
First edition, first printing of the Pulitzer Prize-winning account of Allied technological development during the Second World War. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Betty Way Brown, with best wishes, James P. Baxter 3rd”.
Author James F. Baxter (1893-1975) was a historian and for more than twenty years the popular president of Williams College in Massachusetts. During the Second World War he served as research coordinator of information (1941-1943) and director of the Office of Strategic Services (1942-1943), and the work for this book was undertaken during the latter part of the war while he served as the historical researcher for the Office of Scientific Research and Development. It includes chapters on submarine and air warfare, radar and LORAN, rocketry, proximity fuses, fire control technologies, new explosives and propellants, antimalarials, blood transfusion, penicillin, aviation medicine, and the Manhattan Project, among others.
...With Illustrations. An Atlantic Monthly Press Book. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1946.
Octavo. Original grey cloth, titles and design to spine and upper board blocked in red and blue, top edge dyed red. Frontispiece and 33 double-sided plates from photographs, 3 illustrations within the text. Spine toned, cloth slightly rubbed, endpapers tanned, light spotting to the edges of the text block and occasionally to the contents.
Gifford, Isabella | The Marine Botanist; an Introduction to the Study of the British Sea-Weeds
Third edition of this nicely illustrated work, an unusually attractive copy.
Gifford “lived much of her life in Falmouth and then in Minehead, Somerset. She wrote a book on marine botanists in 1848 and contributed plants, primarily specimens of seaweed, to the Somerset Archaeological Society. Sensitive to the conribution of other women botanists, she memorialised Elizabeth Warren in 1865 for her zealous and careful collections. She corresponded with the Glasgow professor of botany G. A. Walker Arnott and her letters are included in his correspondence in the British Museum of Natural History. One of her papers appeared in the Journal of Botany in 1871. Her plants are at the Taunton Museum. She is memorialised by the algae genus Giffordia Batt” (Ogilvie, Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science, p. 501).
...Containing Descriptions of all the Species, and the Best Method of Preserving Them. Third Edition. Greatly Improved and Enlarged, with Illustrations Printed in Oil Colours by W. Dickes. Brighton & London: R. Folthorp, Longman and Co., 1853.
Octavo. Original green cloth blocked in blind with a ivy-leaf border, title to spine gilt, yellow coated endpapers. Westley’s & Co. binder’s ticket to rear pastedown. Errata leaf. 8-page publisher’s catalogue at rear. Chromolithographic frontispiece and 5 plates, 6 lithographic plates. Spine a little tanned and spotted, cloth lightly rubbed at extremities with a couple of small worn spots at the ends of the spine, light spotting to the edges of the text block, occasional small spots to the plates. Very good condition.
Yamahata, Yosuke | Twelve Photographs Taken the Day After the Atomic Bombing of Nagasaki
A set of fifteen photographs of the aftermath of the atomic bombings of Japan, twelve of which can be attributed to photographer Yosuke Yamahata (1917-1966) and were taken in Nagasaki on August 10th, 1945, the day after the attack. These include the well-known images of a nursing mother, a dead horse by a wagon, a man holding his injured child, a dead woman and child at the Uragami train station, a bandaged woman and child holding rice balls, and a torii still standing in the wreckage. The other three photos form a panorama of a levelled city as seen from across a river with hills in the background. These are not in the same format as the Yamahata photos and it is unclear whether they depict Nagasaki or Hiroshima (though the manuscript note on the back describes the scene as Hiroshima). All of the photos were owned at some point by the same person, who has numbered them and in some cases written short captions on the backs.
Yamahata was born in Singapore, the son of photographer Shōgyoku Yamahata, who owned the studio G. T. Sun. Yamahata spent his early career employed by his father and in 1940 became a military photographer, working mainly in China and South East Asia. He returned to Japan shortly before the atomic bombing of Hiroshima — travelling through the city by train only the day before — and was near Nagasaki when the second bomb was dropped. Together with the writer Jun Higashi and the painter Eiji Yamada, Yamahata was immediately assigned to document the destruction, and the three travelled by train for twelve hours, arriving at three in the morning. Over the course of the day he took around 119 exposures, the only extensive photographic record of the immediate aftermath of either atomic bombing.
Recalling this experience seven years later, Yamahata wrote that “the explosion and the fires had reduced the entire city (about four square kilometers) to ashes in a single instant. Relief squads, medical and fire-fighting teams, could do nothing but wait. Only the luck of being in a well-placed air raid shelter could be of any use for survival. Even if the medical and fire-fighting teams from the surrounding areas had been able to rush to the scene, the roads were completely blocked with rubble and charred timber. One had not the faintest idea where the water main might be located, so it would have been impossible to fight the fires. Telephone and telegraph services were suspended; the teams could not contact the outside world for help. It was truly a hell on earth. Those who had just barely survived the intense radiation — their eyes burned and their exposed skin scalded — wandered around aimlessly with only sticks to lean on, waiting for relief. Not a single cloud blocked the direct rays of the August sunlight, which shone down mercilessly on Nagasaki, on that second day after the blast” (Yamahata, “Photographing the Bomb, A Memo”, 1952).
A few of Yamahatas’ photographs appeared in the Japanese daily Mainichi Shimbun, but the occupying American regime prevented further publication. Yamahata hid the negatives, of which 71 have survived, and clandestine copies began circulating privately, though these were confiscated whenever discovered by US officials (see the album of a US M.P. officer sold at Bonhams NY in June 2014). It was only in 1952, with the removal of restrictions, that Yamahata was able to speak out and share the photos publicly. The provenance of these copies is unclear. The notes are in a typical American hand of the early to mid-20th century, and they may be confiscated copies, or perhaps were purchased later by a visitor to Japan. One is annotated “wrecked house, most are made of wood” as if the writer had some experience of the region. One of the notes on the back of the panoramic set is, “full view of Hiroshima”, and the other reads, “Notice most concrete buildings still standing”, so perhaps these were mailed from someone in Japan to a correspondent back at home in America, to illustrate experiences conveyed in a letter.
15 black and white photographs. 12 of the prints are 142 x 104 mm and have white borders. The remaining 3 (149 x 108 mm), which form a panorama when placed side by side, have been printed without borders..All the photos were numbered at the time in manuscript, identifying the two sequences, the first set running 1-12 and the second 1-3, and 5 also have informative manuscript notes on the backs. All are a little rubbed at the extremities, the three larger photos are slightly creased, one has a small reddish mark on the image, and another has a small spot of a gummy substance like bluetack on the back. Very good condition.