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    George Clapp's Annotated Doughty:
    "The beginnings of my revision"

    Doughty, Francis Worcester. The Cents of the United States: A Numismatic Study. Extensively Illustrated from Selected Specimens. New York: Scott, 1890. 8vo, original olive-brown cloth, elaborately decorated and lettered in gilt, depicting a 1793 Flowing Hair large cent. (6), 115, (1) pages; text figures; 2 tables (1 folding); 4 lithographic plates of coins. Very good. Heavily annotated throughout in pencil by George H. Clapp with numerous inserts laid in, including: two handwritten letters from Charles Clapp on Classic Head large cents; two typewritten studies of 1808 cents by S.H. Chapman; one handwritten letter by George Henry Davis also on Classic Head cents; a typewritten letter by James Macallister; two handwritten letters from Howard R. Newcomb, both on large cents, one of them continuing onto a second sheet; a number of inserted notes written by George H. Clapp; 4 pages of handwritten commentary by George Clapp on 1808 cent varieties; several rubbings and impressions of large cents; a printed advertisement for the Doughty book; and a Lyman Low circular signed by Frank Higgins. Previously in the library of Frank C. Higgins, with his bookplate; signed on the front blank by Higgins and dated 1899; signed by George H. Clapp on the same blank, dated 1921, below which Clapp has written: "The notes on margins in this book are the beginnings of my revision of these early dates."

    An extraordinary volume. The Doughty work is not terribly well appreciated in our day, as it is generally regarded as little more than a compilation of existing research (most of it conducted by David Proskey)--which is true, but this particular copy of Doughty is the most exciting large cent book we have encountered in years. The commentary in the annotations is thorough and rigorous, as is all of Clapp's writing. He was not one to suffer fools gladly, and his comments on Doughty's work are not infrequently harsh, but this book has far more to offer than entertainment value. It would be important even if it hadn't a single inserted item--but it does, and the letters and other inserted notes are also substantive and important. The letters from Newcomb in particular show the level of cooperation between these two researchers and their mutually held trust and respect. The letters from Charles Clapp show quite clearly that his knowledge and observations have been underappreciated over the years, overshadowed as he was by his brother. This is a wonderful item and is one of the highlights of the Eric P. Newman library.
    Estimate $5,000.
    Ex: Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society.




    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2018
    7th-10th Wednesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 10
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    Page Views: 315

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    Truth Seeker: The Life of Eric P. Newman (softcover)
    A powerful and intimidating dealer of the 1960s, backed by important colleagues, was accused of selling fraudulent gold coins and ingots to unsuspecting numismatists. Who would go up against a man like that and, over the course of decades, prove the fraud? Who would expose a widely respected scholar as a thief, then doggedly pursue recovery of coins that the scholar had stolen from an embarrassed numismatic organization, all over the objections of influential collectors who had bought coins with clouded titles? Eric P. Newman would - and did. Reserve your copy today.
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