First printed laws of California highlight PBA Galleries sale Feb. 23

PBA Galleries

‘Reglamento para el Gobierno de la Provincia de Californias,’ rare first edition of the first printed laws governing Upper California (est. $200,000-$300,000). PBA Galleries image


SAN FRANCISCO – On Feb. 23, PBA Galleries will offer a first edition of the first printed laws governing Upper California, Reglamento para el Gobierno de la Provincia de Californias. These series of regulations dealt with reform within California presidios and issues of defense as well as local governments, agricultural regulation, land titles, anti-corruption measures and the reduction of missionaries from the late 18th century until California became a state in 1850. The rare book is estimated at $200,000-$300,000. Absentee and Internet bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.

Three additional California lots are among the highlights. A San Francisco directory for the years 1852-53 is complete with the rare double page map. Described by Bancroft as “the first really excellent directory” of the city, it has about 9,000 names and an appendix of general information and statistics (estimate: $5,000-$8,000).


PBA Galleries

San Francisco directory for the years 1852-53, complete with the rare double page map (estimate: $5,000-$8,000). PBA Galleries image


A pair of panoramic photographs shows San Francisco before and after the April 1906 earthquake, both taken that same month. Striking and uncommon, the images depict the cityscape just a week before the devastation of earthquake and fire, and the ruins 10 days after that fateful day (estimate: $2,000-$3,000 for the pair).


PBA Galleries

One of two panoramic photographs showing San Francisco before and after the April 1906 earthquake and fire. PBA Galleries image.


A rare unrecorded map Map of Santa Clara Valley from Belmont to Sunnyvale shows the land, lots and property ownership of the area around Stanford University from 1908 (estimate: $1,000-$1,500).

Also featured is a complete set of the quarto edition of the Pacific Railroad Reports. With 12 volumes in 13, it is a massive compilation documenting the exploration for routes to the Pacific including a stunning array of maps and plates. Color lithographs of scenic views as well as black and white lithographs of geological, botanical and zoological subjects with some hand-colored lithographs of birds, presented to the world some of the first depictions of previously unexplored regions of the West (estimate: $4,000-$6,000).


PBA Galleries

Map of Northern California from Pacific Railroad Reports, 1855-1860, 12 volumes. (estimate: $4,000-$6,000). PBA Galleries imag


The sale has over 500 lots of rare, significant, curious and captivating material spanning five centuries, from seminal documents in the founding and governance of California to sublime photographs of the American West and Hawaii. Included are rare works on the exploration of the world and expansion in the Americas, manuscript and documentary materials revealing key aspects of U.S. history and culture, rare maps of townships and cities and of the world at large, and scarce ephemera.

The sale will begin at 11 a.m. Pacific Time.

For more information, contact the PBA Galleries at 415-989-2665 or