47 E. 60th St.
New York, NY 10022
The Grolier Club is pre-eminent among libraries documenting the buying, selling and collecting of books. The research core of the Library is a collection of over sixty thousand bookseller and book auction catalogues, perhaps the largest (and certainly the most accessible) archive in America of this notoriously rare and ephemeral material, and much consulted by book historians. The collection includes a large number of important early examples, including a 1643 French inventory of the library of Jean de Cordes; the first recorded English book auction catalogue (the Lazarus Seaman sale, London, 1676, right); and the very rare 1772 list of American bookseller Henry Knox, one of only two copies known. Many of these catalogues bear contemporary annotations concerning buyers and prices, making them doubly valuable for those trying to trace the provenance of particular books. Of equal value in their way, however, are the many thousands of obscure and unrecorded catalogues, valuable raw data in the study of the movement of books (and therefore knowledge and culture) in America and elsewhere. The Library also maintains comprehensive runs of catalogues from the major European and American houses, supplemented by archival collections documenting the activities of important dealers.