Brooklyn: 1913. 4to, original dark blue half morocco, gilt; blue cloth sides; spine with five raised bands, decorated in gilt; second and fourth spine panels lettered in gilt; remaining four compartments featuring an ornate gilt floral spray; patterned endpapers. Blank leaf, xxviii, 12, (2), (13)-56, (2), (57)-96, (2), (97)-110 pages, blank leaf, 4 halftone portrait plates, 7 halftone plates of coins. Binding worn, especially at joints, but sound; corner bump. Very good. Item #5075
The rare Special Leatherbound Edition, from the library of John Beck, a collector of pioneer and territorial gold coins who died in 1924. The best edition of the first comprehensive work on the numismatic history of the California Gold Rush. Edgar Adams (1868-1940) dominated American numismatic research in the first quarter of the twentieth century. His other landmark works on patterns and storecards and his famous series of illustrated notebooks on various series, many of which reside in the library of the American Numismatic Society, eloquently attest to his virtuosity. In his obituary, Farran Zerbe noted: ìIn the passing of Edgar H. Adams ... numismatics loses a grand character, one who starred in its literature for many years.î Only a small number of special leatherbound copies of Private Gold Coinage of California appear to have been made from ìthe first complete edition of one hundred copies,î the great majority of which were apparently bound in crimson cloth. Several versions of the book were published, with introductions of 16, 20 or 24 pages. Most of the few existing copies of the leatherbound edition are well-worn, and this example is better than many. Clain-Stefanelli 12465. Ex John Beck Library; ex Wayne Homren Library; ex Armand Champa Library (Bowers/Davis Sale IV, lot 3008); ex William A. Burd Library.