BERKELEY, Calif. – PBA Galleries will hold an Americana – Travel & Exploration – Maps and Views auction on December 16th. The sale comprises 400 lots of books, manuscripts, maps, ephemera, and other items, covering the exploration and exploitation of the American continents and the far reaches of the globe, and also their cultural, social, and economic development, and their paths through history. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.
A superbly restored circa-1810 example of the renowned Blue Map of the Chinese World leads the sale. The Qing dynasty-era map markedly departs from the European notion of a map of the world, with its centralized and marginalizing construct confirming the Qing/Chinese notion of the Central Kingdom. Russia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and Korea are clearly defined. To the upper left of the map lie the Mediterranean (described as a ‘Small Western Ocean’), and Atlantic (dubbed the ‘Great Western Ocean’), with both the Netherlands and Great Britain shown as islands. It is estimated at $150,000-$200,000.
Another notable lot in the lineup is a pictorial letter sheet with a lithographed view of Mission Dolores in San Francisco – the only letter sheet devoted to a California mission. It is estimated at $2,000-$3,000. Also from California is a sheet of three unused stock certificates in the Bodie Bluff Consolidation Mining Co., each signed in ink by Leland Stanford as President of the company. This lot also carries an estimate of $2,000-$3,000.
Other highlights of the auction include six photographs of the 1900 fire that destroyed Honolulu’s Chinatown, estimated at $2,500-$3,500, and Sioux Indian Painting, two large portfolios from 1938 with collotype plates reproducing ledger book drawings and pictographs by Amos Bad Heart Buffalo and other artists. It was published by C. Szwedzicki in Nice, France, and limited to 400 sets. This example is estimated at $3,000-$5,000.
PBA continues to safeguard the health of employees and clients and is open by appointment only. For more information about upcoming sales, to schedule a Zoom preview or phone bidding for a future auction, please contact the galleries at 415-989-2665 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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