Thursday, May 7, 2009

New Exhibition

On May 4 the Library Company unveiled its new exhibition, Mirror of a City: Views of Philadelphia Recently Acquired from the Jay T. Snider Collection. Mr. Snider, a former Library Company Trustee and avid collector of historical items, sold much of his Philadelphia-related material at a November 2008 sale organized by the New York City office of Bloomsbury Auctions. Over the years, Mr. Snider had gathered a very comprehensive collection of the iconography of the growth and development of Philadelphia. From a rare 1684 Dutch edition of Thomas Holme’s plan of Philadelphia to astonishingly beautiful mid-19th-century graphics of a bustling, vibrant city, the 375 lots comprising the sale chronicled the city’s past. “It is unlikely,” wrote auctioneer Jeremy Markowitz, “that such an assemblage of important books, manuscripts, and graphics all relating to Philadelphia, could be assembled again.” Thanks in part to the generous financial assistance of Mr. Snider and the efforts of antiquarian bookseller Clarence Wolf (who represented the Library Company at the auction without charge), the Library Company successfully acquired thirty-one of the thirty-six lots on which we bid.
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