SAN FRANCISCO – Turner Auctions + Appraisals is pleased to present Return to Oz: Part 2 of the Joel Harris Collection of Oziana & Children’s Books on Friday, December 10. The sale offers more than 195 lots of first edition and vintage books and showcases an enchanting and extensive selection of Oz books. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.
The auction was curated by Harris, who is the Director of Special Publications of the International Wizard of Oz Club, as well as an author, long-time collector, and San Francisco Bay Area estate planning and probate attorney.
The Oz series was created by L. Frank Baum (1856-1919), a prolific American author best known for his children’s books. His first Oz book, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, was released in 1900; in the introduction, the author stated the book “… was written solely to pleasure children today. It aspires to being a modernized fairy tale, in which the wonderment and joy are retained and the heart-aches and nightmares are left out.” In total Baum wrote 14 books in the Oz series, as well as 41 other novels, 83 short stories, and more than 200 poems and 42 scripts. Some works were written under various pseudonyms, including Edith Van Dyne and Laura Bancroft, whose books are also offered in this sale. Other books by the author include L. Frank Baum’s Juvenile Speaker, The Boy Hunters in Yucatan, Phoebe Daring, Prince Mud-Turtle, The Sea Fairies, and others.
After Baum’s death, a number of other authors built on and continued the famous Oz stories that he founded. These include Ruth Plumly Thompson, John R. Neill, Jack Snow, Rachel R. Cosgrove, Gina Wickwar, and others. Their Oz books are also featured in this auction.
Among the Oz highlights in this sale are a rare, limited-edition Oz, the 100th Anniversary Edition, estimated at $1,000-$1,500, number 53 of 100. It features signatures from all 31 of its contributors, who include Maurice Sendak, Tomie dePaola, Jules Feiffer, Eric Carle and Madeleine L’Engle.
Another exceptional item of Oziana in the lineup is a deluxe The Wonderful Wizard of Oz pop-up illustrated by Robert Sabuda and published in 2001. The deluxe version includes several extras not included with the standard edition, such as a mounted metallic metal envelope containing a signed and numbered print of the Wicked Witch, and also a print of the Wicked Witch in green, signed by Sabuda and numbered #108 of 150. No previous auction prices could be discovered for this particular book. The lot also includes a first trade edition, as-new and still sealed. The deluxe Sabuda pop-up book is estimated at $1,500-$2,500.
Books by other acclaimed authors were collected by Harris’s late wife Christine. Among these highlights are noted A. A. Milne books, led by a first British edition of The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne and illustrated by E.H. Shepard. This example is in its original salmon dust jacket, and is estimated at $2,000-$3,000. Other Milne selections on offer include The Christopher Robin Story Book and Now We Are Six.
Another noteworthy lot in the sale include a 1990 Disney Bambi collectors set that contains Walt Disney’s Bambi, The Story and The Film and Bambi, The Flip Book. Both books are signed by all four artists whose work appears in them: Ollie Johnston, Frank Thomas, Marc Davis, and Maurice Noble. The set carries an estimate of $750-$1,000.
Rounding out the highlights is a 1997 limited-edition of Two Bear Cubs by Robert D. San Souci, number 190 of 200. Also included is the original full page watercolor painting by San Souci for page two of the book, depicting mother bear and the two bear cubs. The lot is estimated at $800-$1,200.
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