Ten Valuable Ernest Hemingway First Edition Books
Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) was one of America's literary lions. A volunteer ambulance driver in World War I, a seasoned war correspondent and an inveterate world traveler, the macho Hemingway left in his wake a treasure trove of classic literature.
Ernest Hemingway is always big with book collectors. Here are ten valuable Hemingway first editions and their selling prices at auction. Condition, especially as it relates to the dust jacket, is of paramount importance. Also, autographed editions will carry a big premium.
The Sun Also Rises (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1926)
Hemingway's timeless story of American and British expatriates living in Europe following World War I propelled him to literary fame. The narrator is American Jake Barnes, a Great War veteran rendered impotent by an unspecified wound received in combat. Released by Scribner's in October 1926, The Sun Also Rises originally sold for $2 and had a first edition print run of only 5,090 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $5,676.25.
The Sun Also Rises (1926) sold for $5,676.25
A Farewell to Arms (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1929)
Hemingway's semi-autobiographical story of Lt. Frederic Henry, an American ambulance driver, paints a bleak portrait of World War I. The primary setting is the Italian Front, where Henry is wounded – just like Hemingway – and recuperates in a hospital in Milan, where he falls in love with British nurse Catherine Barkley. Originally serialized in Scribner's Magazine from May to October 1929, A Farewell to Arms sold for $2.50 and enjoyed an initial print run of around 31,000 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $1,135.25.
A Farewell to Arms (1929) sold for $1,135.25
Winner Take Nothing (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1933)
This is Hemingway's third collection of short stories. Among the offerings are "After the Storm," "The Sea Change," "One Reader Writes" and "Wine of Wyoming." Originally priced at $2, Winner Take Nothing had a first edition print run of approximately 20,000 copies. Auction result in fine condition: $1,792.50.
Winner Take Nothing (1933) sold for $1,792.50
Green Hills of Africa (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1935)
Hemingway's second work of nonfiction, Green Hills of Africa chronicles a safari undertaken by the author and his second wife Pauline in East Africa in 1933. Hunting and a discussion of literature dominate the book. Originally priced at $2.75, Green Hills of Africa enjoyed a first print run of 10,500 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $448.13.
Green Hills of Africa (1935) sold for $448.13
To Have and Have Not (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1937)
Hemingway's novel set in Cuba and Key West – two locales which played important roles in his life – features Harry Morgan, a fishing boat captain who is forced into black market activity by hard economic times. To Have and Have Not is the only Hemingway novel set in the United States. Released in October 1937, the novel had a first edition print run of around 10,000 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $836.50.
To Have and Have Not (1937) sold for $836.50
The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1938)
Hemingway's celebrated anthology includes a full-length play, "The Fifth Column," set during the Spanish Civil War. Other stories include "The Snows of Kilimanjaro," "The Killers," "Hills Like White Elephants," "Old Man and the Bridge" and "The Capital of the World." Released by Scribner's in October 1938, The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories had a first print run of only 5,350 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $657.25.
The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (1938) sold for $657.25
For Whom the Bell Tolls (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1940)
Hemingway's immortal classic of the Spanish Civil War features Robert Jordan, a young, idealistic American fighting in the International Brigades. Generally recognized as one of Hemingway's greatest works, For Whom the Bell Tolls originally sold for $2.75 and enjoyed a first print run of 75,000 copies. Auction result in very good condition: $418.25.
For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940) sold for $418. 25
Across the River and Into the Trees (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1950)
Hemingway's take on World War II, as experienced by his protagonist U.S. Army Colonel Richard Cantwell, garnered some bad reviews upon its release in September 1950. The novel was serialized in Cosmopolitan from February to June 1950. Across the River and Into the Trees enjoyed a first print run of 75,000 copies, with Adriana Ivancich illustrating the dust jacket and Scribner's promotion department redrawing her original artwork. Auction result in very good condition: $131.45.
Across the River and Into the Trees (1950) sold for $131.45
The Old Man and the Sea (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1952)
Written by Hemingway in Cuba in 1952, The Old Man and the Sea features Santiago, an aging fisherman who battles a giant marlin in the Gulf Stream. The short, 127-page novel was originally priced at $3 and dedicated to Maxwell Perkins, Hemingway's longtime editor at Scribner's. Auction result in very good condition: $956.
The Old Man and the Sea (1952) sold for $956
A Moveable Feast (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1964)
Hemingway's posthumously published memoir on his lean years in Paris of the 1920s comes alive, including his early impressions of such writers as Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ford Madox Ford, James Joyce, Gertrude Stein and John Dos Passos. Hemingway had completed his final draft prior to his suicide in Ketchum, Idaho, on July 2, 1961. A Moveable Feast was originally priced at $4.95. Auction result in very good condition: $179.25.
A Moveable Feast (1964) sold for $179.25
Ten More Collectible Ernest Hemingway First Edition Books, Autographs and Memorabilia
- Death in the Afternoon (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1932) $717
- Men at War (Crown, 1942), edited by Hemingway $179.25
- Men Without Women (Jonathan Cape, 1928), first British edition $776.75
- In Our Time (Boni & Liveright, 1925) $3,107
- The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway (Modern Library, 1942), inscribed and signed by the author $3,734.38
- Ernest Hemingway signed CBS-TV logo card $657.25
- Hemingway handwritten one-page letter signed "E.H.," July 15, 1959. Madrid, Spain $2,390
- Original pencil sketch of Hemingway for the dust jacket of The Sun Also Rises, signed "John Blomshield, Paris 1925" $4,481.25
- Hemingway three-page handwritten signed letter on The Lombardy, New York stationery, undated $3,585
- The Torrents of Spring (Jonathan Cape, 1933), first U.K. edition $507.88
Inscribed and signed book: The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway (1942) sold for $3,734.38
- All auction results and images courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries, Dallas, Texas
- Top image: A young Ernest Hemingway in Paris - Charles Scribner's Sons
Old newspapers have value in the collectibles marketplace. Attracting the greatest attention are the vintage papers with the big historical headlines. Also of interest are your regular newspapers – called "atmosphere" papers – which contain no significant events of the day but do provide a glimpse into a bygone era.
Here are ten valuable newspapers featuring some of history's most famous headlines. They are an eclectic bunch, giving readers a general idea as to collectibility and values. Bear in mind that condition plays a major role in determining value and that newspapers must be original, and not reprints.
Chicago Daily Tribune, November 3, 1948, Dewey Defeats Truman
The 1948 presidential election, as predicted by opinion polls, projected Thomas A. Dewey the victor. During the wee hours of the night on November 2, 1948, after voting had ceased, the Chicago Daily Tribune rushed this famous headline into print in the midst of a typesetter's strike. Later, after realizing their error, the Trib sent its employees out into the streets to retrieve as many copies as possible. The Tribune was not the only newspaper to get it wrong – just the most infamous – with President Harry S. Truman gleefully posing with the paper's embarrassing "Dewey Defeats Truman" banner headline. In excellent condition, one surviving example of this paper – bearing the stamp "Hickey Brothers Cigar Store" where it was sold – brought a top bid of $1,392.
Chicago Daily Tribune, Dewey Defeats Truman $1,392 - Robert Edward Auctions, LLC
The Stars and Stripes, May 8, 1945, Nazis Quit
The Stars and Stripes serves as the unofficial publication for the U.S. Armed Forces. An EXTRA for the European Theater of Operations, Germany edition, dated May 8, 1945, announcing Nazi Germany's official surrender is valued at approximately $215.
The New York Herald, April 15, 1865, Assassination of President Lincoln
Lincoln assassination newspapers are always in demand. One of the most famous is the April 15, 1865, edition of The New York Herald reporting on the death of the 16th President of the United States. Not surprisingly, this edition was saved by many people. Today, it carries a value of over $1,000 in excellent condition.
The New York Herald, Lincoln assassinated $1,000+ - historybuff.com
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, December 7, 1941, War! Oahu Bombed By Japanese Planes
One of the most famous newspapers of World War II, the first extra of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin of December 7, 1941, reports the sneak attack at Pearl Harbor. A complete edition in excellent condition could top the $1,500 mark. Reprints abound for this coveted issue, including ones made during the war and taken home as souvenirs by American servicemen.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor $750-1,500 - gohawaii.about.com
The Boston Daily Globe, April 16, 1912, Titanic Sinks, 1500 Die
In the annals of maritime disasters the loss of the "unsinkable" RMS Titanic on its maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York heads the tragic list. A number of Titanic newspapers were printed, with the first report editions carrying the most value. The April 16, 1912, edition of The Boston Daily Globe is worth approximately $200-400.
The Call-Chronicle-Examiner, April 19, 1906, Earthquake And Fire: San Francisco In Ruins
The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 remains one of the worst natural disasters in American history. The San Francisco Call-Chronicle-Examiner – a collective effort by the city's three wounded newspapers – dated April 19, 1906, is a rare periodical. A complete edition could sell for over $700.
The Call-Chronicle-Examiner, San Francisco earthquake $700+ - Library of Congress
The Dallas Times Herald, November 22, 1963, JFK Ambushed in Dallas, President Dead, Connally Shot
The assassination of President John F. Kennedy has been called the crime of the century. JFK assassination newspapers are legion, as they were saved by many people as historical keepsakes. The most valuable editions are titles from Dallas, Texas, the scene of the crime in infamous Dealey Plaza. The Dallas Times Herald final edition of November 22, 1963, is highly collectible, with a complete edition in excellent or better condition valued at $50-75.
Fitchburg Sentinel, May 21, 1927, Lindbergh Is Reported Over Channel
Aviation pioneer Charles A. Lindbergh's historic transatlantic flight in 1927 is the stuff of legend. The Fitchburg (Massachusetts) Sentinel of May 21, 1927, reported that Lindbergh in his Spirit of St. Louis had been sighted over the English Channel, bound for Paris. This ten-page edition is worth approximately $140.
The Macon Telegraph and News, October 16, 1931, Al Capone Guilty of Evading Taxes
In 1931 Al Capone, the czar of the Chicago underworld, was convicted of income tax evasion. Capone received an 11-year sentence, eventually winding up on Alcatraz. The Macon (Georgia) Telegraph and News of October 16, 1931, headlined Capone's stunning conviction in federal court. This edition carries a value of over $100.
New York Daily Mirror, February 14, 1935, Guilty Death For Hauptmann
The Lindbergh baby kidnapping horrified the country during the Depression-era 1930s. Bruno Hauptmann was later convicted of kidnapping and murdering Charles Augustus Lindbergh II, the 20-month-old son of aviators Charles A. Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Hauptmann got the death penalty for his crime, dying in New Jersey's electric chair a.k.a. "Old Smokey" on April 3, 1936. The New York Daily Mirror of February 14, 1935, reported Hauptmann's conviction with the bold headline "Guilty Death for Hauptmann." This edition is valued at around $60 today.
New York Daily Mirror 1935 Lindbergh kidnapping conviction $60. Also pictured is the New York Journal, February 13, 1935 - Heritage Auctions
Literally hundreds of thousands of collectible newspapers await both the collector and history buff. It's all there in black and white – wars, assassinations, moon landings, crime and punishment, sports, medicine and you name it...
- The New York Times, May 8, 1915, the Lusitania sinking $100+ - The New York Times
Copyright © 2012 William J. Felchner. All rights reserved.
The hardest thing about collecting P. K. Silesia ceramics ware is the name.
P. K. stands for Porzellanfabrik Koenigszelt. Porzellanfabrik is German for “porcelain factory.” Koenigszelt is the town near the factory’s location, in Silesia in northeastern Germany.
Even the town’s name has a complicated history. When the railroad was extended into northeastern Germany in the 1840’s, one of the junctions ended up out in the country. So railroad officials needed to come up with a name for that junction. Someone suggested Koenigszelt, or “king’s tent” because he thought that Frederick the Great might have pitched his tent nearby during the Seven Years War. That sounded good, and the railroad went with it.
A town was established near the junction, mostly to provide homes for railroad workers. Then in 1860 an entrepreneur named Silber built a ceramics factory there, because of access to the railway and because there were clay and coal deposits nearby. His production costs were so low that he outsold most of his competition. The factory attracted investors, and grew quickly.
At that time the company was called Porzellanfabrik Silber and Co. It changed hands a couple of times and ended up as Porzellanfabrik Koenigszelt, or P.K., in 1886. The company continued to expand and did quite a bit of exporting. By 1930 it had 1000 employees.
For a while P. K. Silesia had the sole concession to create Mickey Mouse and other Disney images in porcelain. Hitler apparently was not a fan of Mickey Mouse, and put a stop to the arrangement. But the factory kept up production throughout World War II.
After the war, Silesia became Polish territory and today the factory is called Zaklady Porcelany Stokowej. It’s completely modern, of course, and produces dishwasher-safe, microwaveable kitchenware.
P. K. Silesia backstamps have changed a lot over the years, because of changes in the company name, different products, and also the change in the company’s location from Germany to Poland. The backstamp in the picture below shows that this plate was made between 1914 and 1918. It’s from the back of the plate in the picture above.
How much are P.K. Silesia collectibles worth? You can find vintage serving bowls on ebay for between fifteen and twenty-five dollars. Dinner and dessert plates go for about the same. Their backstamps mostly indicate that they’re from around World War I.
P. K. Silesia backstamps from the 1870’s to around World War I tend to have eagles. For a short time in the early 1920’s backstamps had a tent, and after that many backstamps featured a crown.
P.K. Silesia vintage porcelain has a lot of antique charm. It isn’t too hard to find, and if you’re like me you can buy pieces in thrift stores for under a dollar and get a real deal. Then you can turn around and sell them on ebay. But for now I like just collecting them.
Pictures by Kathleen Murphy
The prolific Stephen King has long established himself as the undisputed master of horror fiction. Born September 21, 1947, in Portland, Maine, "King Fear" began his literary career while teaching high school English, selling short stories to science fiction/fantasy and men's magazines on the side. His first published novel, Carrie, came in 1974. And the rest, as they say, is history...
Here are ten valuable Stephen King first edition books along with their selling prices at auction. Pay attention, as many of King's first editions and limited editions can show up at second-hand stores, garage sales, flea markets and the like. And one of the most important things to remember? Condition, condition, condition, especially as it applies to the all-important dust jacket. Autographed copies will also bring premium prices.
Carrie (Doubleday, 1974)
This thin, 199-page novel is Stephen King's first published book. It's the story of Carrietta "Carrie" White, an abused, awkward teenage girl who uses her supernatural telekinetic abilities to wreak havoc on her high school tormentors. The book's dust jacket was designed by Alex Gotfryd. The original hardcover edition of Carrie was not a huge success, racking up only 13,000 copies in sales. Carrie was almost the book that wasn't, as King's wife, Tabitha, had rescued the manuscript from the trash after her husband had threw it away in frustration. Auction result in fine condition: $1,439.98.
Carrie first edition (Doubleday, 1974)
'Salem's Lot (Doubleday, 1975)
Stephen King's second published novel, 'Salem's Lot is the author's 439-page take on vampires, who take up residence in the small Maine town of Jerusalem's Lot. The novel earned a World Fantasy Award for Best Novel nomination in 1976. Auction result in near fine condition: $858.01.
'Salem's Lot first edition (Doubleday, 1975)
The Shining (Doubleday, 1977)
This terrifying 447-page novel features the main character of Jack Torrance, a struggling writer and alcoholic who goes insane while serving as the winter caretaker for the spooky Overlook Hotel in Colorado. The novel was inspired by the King family's solitary stay at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, in the reportedly haunted room 217. Auction result in near fine condition and inscribed/autographed by the author: $2,868.
The Shining first edition (Doubleday, 1977)
The Stand (Doubleday, 1978)
This big, sprawling 823-page novel is set in a post-apocalyptic America devastated by the superflu a.k.a. "Captain Tripps." The survivors band together, trying to stop the evil Randall Flagg. The Stand remains one of King's personal favorites. Auction result in fine condition: $179.25.
The Stand first edition (Doubleday, 1978)
The Dead Zone (Viking, 1979)
Johnny Smith is gravely injured in an automobile accident, later awakening from a five-year coma and endowed with the gift of prophecy in this 426-page thriller. Smith envisions an unstable congressman who ascends to the presidency and starts World War III. Auction result in near fine condition and signed by the author: $597.50.
The Dead Zone first edition (Viking, 1979)
Firestarter (Phantasia Press, 1980)
Young Charlene "Charlie" McGee, whose parents participated in a experimental drug trial while in college, is endowed with the ability to start fires at will. The Shop, a secret government agency, learns of Charlie, sending assassin John Rainbird to bring in the girl and her parents in this high-powered, pyrotechnic novel. Auction result for a signed limited/first edition – #465 of 725 copies – from Michigan-based Phantasia Press in near mint condition: $896.25.
Firestarter signed limited/first edition (Phantasia Press, 1980)
Cujo (Viking, 1981)
A rabid St. Bernard named Cujo terrorizes the Trenton family in Castle Rock, Maine, in this sometimes unintentionally humorous dog-bites-man novel. The winner of a British Fantasy Award, Cujo may not be one of King's best efforts, but then the author by his own admission was drinking very heavily at the time and "barely remembers writing [it] at all." The book's snarling dust jacket was the work of illustrator R. Adelson. Auction result in fine condition: $51.
Cujo first edition (Viking, 1981)
Christine (Donald M. Grant, 1983)
High school geek Arnie Cunningham acquires a haunted 1958 Plymouth Fury called Christine, which proves to be a murderous ride in this automotive ghost story. King dedicated Christine to noted horror filmmaker George Romero (Dawn of the Dead) and his wife Christine. Auction result for a signed limited/first edition in original slipcase – #713 of 1,000 copies – from Rhode Island's Donald M. Grant Press in near mint condition: $567.63.
Christine signed limited/first edition (Donald M. Grant, 1983)
Pet Sematary (Doubleday, 1983)
Dr. Louis Creed attempts to resurrect his dead son Gage, digging up his body and reinterring him in an ancient Indian burial ground known for its curative powers. Gage does return to the living, but is hardly the sweet little boy of old. Pet Sematary is obviously King's ode to the classic 1902 short story "The Monkey's Paw" by British writer W.W. Jacobs. The book's dust jacket was the work of Linda Fennimore. Auction result in fine condition: $34.
Pet Sematary first edition (Doubleday, 1983)
Thinner (New American Library, 1984)
Writing under the pseudonym Richard Bachman, King delivers a wild tale of obese lawyer Billy Halleck, who runs over an old Gypsy woman but is later acquitted of vehicular manslaughter. Halleck is then cursed by one of the Gypsies – "thinner," he whispers to the attorney – resulting in rapid weight loss which spirals out of control. Auction result in near fine condition with the rare thin white paper band reading "Stephen King/writing as Richard Bachman" wrapped around the dust jacket: $107.55.
Thinner first edition (New American Library, 1984)
Ten More Stephen King Collectible First Edition Books
- Cycle of the Werewolf (The Land of Enchantment, 1983)/first trade hardcover edition/fine $155.35
- The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger (Donald M. Grant, 1982)/first trade edition/near fine $478
- The Tommyknockers (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1987)/first edition/fine $36
- Bag of Bones (Scribner, 1998)/first edition signed by the author/fine $203.15
- Black House with Peter Straub (Donald M. Grant, 2002)/first limited edition signed by King and Straub/near mint in shrinkwrap $317.87
- Desperation (Donald M. Grant, 1996)/first limited edition in clamshell box signed by author/fine $334.60
- The Bachman Books containing the novellas Rage, The Long Walk, Roadwork, The Running Man (New American Library, 1985)/first omnibus edition/fine $155.35
- Night Shift (Doubleday, 1978)/first edition inscribed and signed by author/fine $1,553.50
- Gerald's Game (Viking, 1992)/limited A.B.A. edition in slipcase/fine $36
- It (Phantasia Press, 1986)/first German and world edition in red felt slipcase/fine $478
Signed Stephen King book page from 1982
- All auction results and images courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries, Dallas, Texas
- Top image: Novelist Stephen King
Copyright © 2013 William J. Felchner. All rights reserved.