Rare Books Auction Nets Heritage Auctions $736K

Ernest Hemingway, Edgar Allan Poe, Salvador Dali, Willa Cather, and Maurice Sendak led the way among top performers whose pieces sold well at Heritage Auctions’ Rare Books Event in Beverly Hills, California, earlier this month.

Three Stories & Ten Poems, a rare edition of Ernest Hemingway’s first book was the most expensive item at $68,500. The book contains an inscription from Mr. Hemingway to the editors of one the most influential "little magazines" of that time, The Little Review, which published the works of established and emerging writers. Another early work by Hemingway, Men Without Women, sold for more than twice its pre-auction estimate at $5,313. 

"There was great enthusiasm across the board in this auction, especially for classic American literature, with Hemingway asserting his authority as the perennial favorite,” said James Gannon, director of rare books at Heritage Auctions.

Edgar Allan Poe’s first prose collection, Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, stirred interest among collectors. The book, which is one of the 750 first-edition copies, sold at $21,250. The next highest selling lot was Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather. The book is number 40 of 50 copies that were signed by Cather and printed on Japanese vellum. The book established a world record price for this title selling at $16,250. "This is a beautiful copy of one of the rarest finds in the Cather canon,” said Gannon, “and this price was at least three times as much as any edition of this same book had ever brought at auction.”

Another top-selling item of Heritage Auctions’ rare books included Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland that sold for $7,500. The book features an original etching and is signed by artist Salvador Dali. For more information, visit

James Rothaar

James has written content for and other leading online luxury lifestyle magazines. Rothaar previously served as the senior-tenured staff writer for JustLuxe, having worked with the digital magazine since 2005. He resides in Jacksonville, Florida, and works as an independent marketing consultant and freelance writer and copywriter. He is the co-owner of Wild Owl Digital, a boutique mar...(Read More)

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