A Monumental Collection: Early Adventure Literature from the Estate of Timothy Treacy

Lot 300: August Rothpletz, et al, Alpine Majestäten und ihr Gefolge: Die Gebirgswelt der Erde in Bildern, Munich, 1901-04. At auction October 18, 2016. Estimate $200 to $300.

Lot 300: August Rothpletz, et al, Alpine Majestäten und ihr Gefolge: Die Gebirgswelt der Erde in Bildern, Munich, 1901-04. At auction October 18, 2016. Sold October 18, 2016 for $138.

 

This year we are honored to offer material from the collection of Timothy Treacy. So prolific was Treacy as a collector that material from his estate can be found in multiple sales this season.

 

Lot 222: Oscar Johannes Ludwig Eckenstein and August Lorria, The Alpine Portfolio...The Pennine Alps from the Simplon to the Great St. Bernard, London, 1889. At auction October 18, 2016. Estimate $2,500 to $3,500.

Lot 222: Oscar Johannes Ludwig Eckenstein and August Lorria, The Alpine Portfolio…The Pennine Alps from the Simplon to the Great St. Bernard, London, 1889. At auction October 18, 2016. Sold October 28, 2016 for $4,250.

 

Treacy collected a trove of books on the history of mountaineering and early exploration. He traveled to and conquered many of those places himself, including the Himalayas, the Alps, the Pyrenees, Kilimanjaro and Denali. A large portion of these are featured in our October 18 sale of Early Printed, Medical Scientific & Travel Books.

 

Lot 311: Albert Smith, The New Game of the Ascent of Mont Blanc, circa 1852. At auction October 18, 2016. Estimate $2,000 to $3,000.

Lot 311: Albert Smith, The New Game of the Ascent of Mont Blanc (detail), circa 1852. At auction October 18, 2016. Sold October 18, 2016 for $5,750.

 

It must have been surreal to read Hans Meyer’s Across the East African Glaciers: An Account of the First Ascent of Kilimanjaro (1891) and then complete the endeavor himself some hundred years later. These early accounts of and by adventurers stimulated popular interest in mountain climbing.

 

Lot 168: Samuel Aitken, Among the Alps, 1900. At auction October 18, 2016. Estimate $2,000 to $3,000.

Lot 168: Samuel Aitken, Among the Alps, 1900. At auction October 18, 2016. Sold October 18, 2016 for $4,750.

 

One such book was The Alpine Portfolio…The Pennine Alps from the Simplon to the Great St. Bernard, a portfolio of 100 photographs compiled by Oscar Johannes Ludwig Eckenstein and August Lorria with the intention “to thoroughly illustrate, as far as possible, [the Alps’] most interesting mountains, particularly from a climbing point of view.”

 

Lot 277: Hans Meyer, Across East African Glaciers: An Account of the First Ascent of Kilimanjaro, London, 1891. At auction October 18, 2016. Estimate $1,500 to $2,500.

Lot 277: Hans Meyer, Across East African Glaciers: An Account of the First Ascent of Kilimanjaro, London, 1891. At auction October 18, 2016. Sold October 18, 2016 for $2,470.

 

Treacy gathered nearly all of the “Zamorano Eighty,” a 1945 list of what were considered the most important early books on California, including Narrative of…Adventures and Perils, while Persecuted by the San Francisco Vigilance Committee by Edward McGowan in 1857. The book, featuring seven full-page engravings, was an attempt by the author to clear his name after being accused of murder; it is part of our Printed & Manuscript Americana sale on November 17.

 

Lot 78: Edward McGowan, Narrative of...Adventures and Perils, while Persecuted by the San Francisco Vigilance Committee, San Francisco, 1857. At auction November 17, 2016. Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

Lot 78: Edward McGowan, Narrative of…Adventures and Perils, while Persecuted by the San Francisco Vigilance Committee, San Francisco, 1857. At auction November 17, 2016.
Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

 

More of Treacy’s treasures can be found in the Art & Storytelling: Photographs & Photobooks auction on October 25. Edward Vischer’s Pictorial of California is a rare compendium of 170 photographs published in San Francisco in 1870.

 

Lot 44: Edward Vischer, Vischer's Pictorial of California, San Francisco, 1870. At auction October 25, 2016. Estimate $15,000 to $25,000.

Lot 44: Edward Vischer, Vischer’s Pictorial of California, San Francisco, 1870. Sold October 25, 2016 for $10,000.

 

An avid skier, Treacy competed internationally and hosted European racers when they competed in the States. Selections from his vast collection of ski posters and memorabilia can be found in the Vintage Posters auction in February 2017.

 

For the bulk of Mr. Treacy’s collection, visit our complete catalogue of Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books.