On Jon’s Desk: A gift from Ed Firmage raises questions


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front board

front board

title page

title page

Title: Life of Brigham Young; or, Utah and Her Founders
Author: Edward W. Tullidge
Published: New York, (s.n.), 1876

Pages: 458 with 81 additional pages comprising a supplement containing biographical sketches of other prominent Utah leaders (Contains Errata slip: “Biographical sketches of the late Willard Richards, Joseph A. Young, and others, not received by the printer in time for this issue will be inserted in subsequent editions.”)

Bound in ornamental gilt stamped purple cloth. Blind stamped borders; blind stamped title on rear cover; coated end papers.

Signed, presentation copy: “Presented to G. Henry Snell by Brigham Young [signed], Salt Lake City, U.T., October 16th, 1876”



Includes an engraving of Brigham Young by H.R. Hall & Sons (of New York)

Brigham Young portrait

Brigham Young portrait

A gift from Ed Firmage (University of Utah Professor Emeritus) to the Rare Books Department raises intriguing questions. In the front of this well preserved copy of the Life of Brigham Young; or, Utah and Her Founders, published in 1876, is a calligraphic inscription wherein Brigham Young presents this copy to G. Henry Snell. According to an obituary, George Henry Snell was a successful business man in the Salt Lake City area during the latter half of the 19th century. Born in St. Louis, he moved to the Salt Lake Valley as a young child. Mr. Snell operated the Utah Soap Company and was one of the original stockholders in the Saltair Beach Resort. He suffered from a heart condition that resulted in an early death at fifty years of age. What is not known is the nature of the relationship between Henry Snell and Brigham Young, the then President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and, as the memoir shows, one of the most powerful men in the American West at the time.

Written by Edward W. Tullidge, this biography of Brigham Young includes memoirs concerning many of the prominent early LDS church leaders in Utah. Despite evidence Brigham Young was not opposed to this biography (the fact that he presented copies as gifts, as seen above), Tullidge was not sanctioned by the LDS church to write it. The author himself tells us his reasons for undertaking the work in the preface:

“That the matters embodied in the chapters of this book are eminently worthy an enduring record will, I think, be cheerfully conceded. Of myself let me say, if the manner in which I have handled the subject betrays my love for the Mormon people, I confess it. But it must not be forgotten that I have been, for many years, an apostate, and cannot be justly charged with a spirit of Mormon propagandism. Rather have I striven to treat the subject with an artist’s fidelity, and with the earnestness of one concerned.”

So we see that Edward Tullidge wrote his account because of his love for the Mormon people and believed the events of the time period covered in his book were “worthy an enduring record.” But he also divulged he was an apostate, or one who had left the church.

Born in England in 1829 and having been introduced to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints there in the 1840’s, Edward Tullidge immigrated to the Salt Lake valley in the early 1860’s where he became a literary critic, newspaper editor, playwright, and historian. He wrote numerous journal articles, several plays, and five books (including the Life of Brigham Young). Although still technically a member of the LDS Church at the time of writing the biography (despite the claim of being apostate in the preface), Tullidge participated in the Godbeite movement (which initially sought to reform the church by breaking Brigham Young’s hold on secular and economic matters) and then in the late 1870’s joined the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Some LDS church leaders did not approve of the biography Tullidge wrote about Brigham Young. There is evidence of this in an article published in the Millenial Star in November of 1878. The article relates an interview between President John Taylor and Edward Tullidge concerning his publishing of Life of Brigham Young and his interest in writing a biography on Joseph Smith. During the interview President Taylor inquired about the statement in the biography’s preface concerning him being an apostate and forbade Tullidge from having access to the church’s Historian’s Office.

Millenial Star

Millenial Star

Life of Brigham Young is a historical treatise dealing primarily with the socio-political developments of the Latter-day Saints from their arrival in the Salt Lake valley in the late 1840’s to the mid 1870’s when the book was published. At publication Brigham Young was seventy-five years old and still the leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but the book shows many ways in which the federal government and dissidents in the Salt Lake valley had drawn secular power away from him over the previous two decades (1850’s – 1860’s). Tullidge showcased the deep cultural issues of the time with passages such as (page 366-367):

“Governor Shaffer arrived in Utah in the latter end of March, 1870. Casting about for some object on which to expand his belligerency, he made enquiry of a prominent schismatic as to the feasibility of successfully attacking polygamy. The answer was: ‘I married my wives in good faith. They married me in good faith. They have borne me children. We have lived together for years, believing it was the will of God. The same is true of the Mormon people generally. Before I will abandon my wives as concubines, and cast off my children as bastards, I will fight the United States Government down to my boots. What would you do, Governor, in the like case?’

‘By —, I would do the same!’ [the Governor replied.]”

Tullidge also wrote of significant historical events that came to fruition under Brigham Young’s leadership such as (page 362-363):

“The next important event in the history of Utah was the laying of the last rail of the Utah Central Railroad. The completion of the Union and Central Pacific lines was a national event, affecting greatly the destiny of Utah as well as that of the entire Pacific coast; but the completion of the Utah Central was the proper local sign of radical changes. …

It was January 10th, 1870; the weather was cold; a heavy fog hung over the city of the Great Salt Lake; but the multitude assembled, and by two o’clock P.M. there is said to have been gathered around the depot block not less than fifteen thousand people. … A large steel mallet had been prepared for the occasion, made at the blacksmith’s shop of the public works of the Church. The last ‘spike’ was forged of Utah iron, … The mallet was elegantly chased, bearing on the top an engraved bee-hive (the emblem of the State of Deseret), surrounded by the inscription ‘Holiness to the Lord,’ and underneath the bee-hive were the letters U.C.R.R.; a similar ornament consecrated the spike, both intending to symbolize that Utah, with the railroad, should still be the ‘Kingdom of God.’ … The honor of driving the last spike in the first railroad built by the Mormon people, was assigned to President Young.”

The Life of Brigham Young provides a dual perspective of an important time in Utah’s history from an author who loved the Mormon people yet disagreed with some of the policies of the prominent leaders he wrote about. This perspective adds value to the historical record of the two decades following the settling of the Salt Lake Valley by the early Mormon pioneers.

Questions that the Rare Books staff will continue to research include the number of copies printed and how many of those Brigham Young gave (with the front inscription) to others. We know of one other inscribed copy (given to Eliza R. Snow, wife of Brigham Young), which is in the Kenneth and Linda Brailsford manuscript collection (Accn 2935).

Contributed by Jon Bingham, Rare Books Curator

Rare Books Exhibition — Love Letters: A Gallery of Type


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Love Letters: A Gallery of Type

Love Letters celebrates type, typographers, and printers – from Johann Gutenberg (c.1398-1468), who developed printing with movable type, to Bruce Rogers (1870-1957), an American typographer and book designer. Type is designed to be both functional and evocative. Type has personality, flair, and style, inspired by time and place. It can age quickly or become classic. Good type grabs our attention. Great type keeps our attention.

On display are books and printed ephemera, dating from 1482 to the first decade of the 21st century, from the J. Willard Marriott’s rare book collections – examples of the development of typography and printing and why we love type.

July 22, 2016 — September 30, 2016
Marriott Library, Levels 1, 4, & 5

This exhibition is free and open to the public

Book of the week — The Next Word: Red Square


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Alan Loney (b. 1940)
Malvern East VIC, Australia: Electio Editions, 2012
PR9639.3 L6 N49 2012

From the artist’s statement: “This book derives from putting two small obsessions together and seeing what happens. The first is with the typographical wonder of Hendrik Werkman (1882-1945), and his remarkable periodical ‘The Next Call,’ printed from 1923 to 1926. Each issue was 8 pages long, in approximately 40 copies, and designed and printed entirely from the materials of his print shop in Groningen, Holland…

My second obsession is the imaginary exhibition outlined by Arthur C Danto in his now famous book The Transfiguration of the Commonplace (Harvard University Press, 1981) where he poses the thorny set of intellectual problems around the question of the wording one attaches to paintings. Simply, Danto’s exhibition was a series of red rectangles, all looking the same, but all painted by different artists, and each with a different title. This apparently simple proposition created for Danto one of the knottiest philosophical speculations in contemporary criticism.

My book is designed to honor both these men, the material printer who said, ‘I produce designs during the course of printing,’ and the intellectual who wrote, “I am speaking as a philosopher, construing the gesture as a philosophical act.’ The pages for the ‘exhibition’ appear on the rectos only. The texts on the versos are constructed solely from all the Dutch words that in their spelling are also English words in Werkman’s texts through out the nine issues of ‘The Next Call.’”

Designed, printed, and bound by Alan Loney. Letterpress printed with Dante and wood types in red, blue, yellow, and gold on vintage Barcham Green India Office or Ruscombe India Office paper using a copy of Lewis Allen’s Albion press.* Bound with Ruscombe paper over boards. Issued in slipcase. Edition of forty-five copies, numbered, five copies hors de commerce. University of Utah copy is number 36, signed by the author.

*Thanks to Bill Stewart, Vamp & Tramp, for his knowledge, friendship and inspiration.


Book of the week — Biblia sacra


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Geneuae: Apud Petrum Santandreanum, MDLXXXIII. 1583
BS75 1583

A reissue, with a different title page, of an edition of François Estienne, Geneva, 1567. The title page of the New Testament bears the imprint: Ex Officina Francisci Stephanii, 1567. This edition was printed by Pierre Saint-André (1555-1624).

François Estienne was the third son of Robert Estienne (1503-1559), a French printer, linguist and classical scholar. In his father’s footsteps, François left France for Geneva as a follower of the Protestant movement. He was active as a printer between 1562 and 1582 in partnership with François Perrin, an associate of John Calvin. François Estienne issued a number of editions of the Bible in Latin and French, as well as works by Calvin. Some scholars believe that François emigrated to Normandy in 1582, where he married Margaret Cave. They had several children, none of whom survived to adulthood.

Robert Estienne’s fourth edition (1551) of the Bible is notable for being the first Latin Bible to be printed with verse numeration. Estienne designed the divisions to help the reader compare the two Latin translations and the Greek translation found in this edition. The fourth edition became the basis for the Geneva Bible. Estienne’s son Henri wrote that his father numbered the divisions while traveling “inter equitandum” from Paris to Lyon. Questionable verse divisions were later ascribed to the jolting of a ride on horseback. Although it is unlikely that Estienne was working while riding, the divisions appear to be hasty and distracted, a situation we can well imagine if Estienne was working on this project while traveling.

Text in double columns, with references, variants and section letters in the margins. Illustrated with two engraved folding maps, one in the New Old Testament and one in the New Testament; two full-page engraved maps; woodcuts of the Tabernacle and other images in Exodus and Kings, with occasional figures elsewhere; decorative headbands, tail-pieces and initial letters. The title-page for the New Testament has the woodcut device of Franciscus Stephanus. University of Utah copy bound in contemporary pigskin over wooden boards, covers with roll-tooled decoration, featuring portraits of the Apostles; brass clasps and catches; old paper spine labels.



Book of the week — Night feet on earth


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“Where the hooves touch the ground.”

Ken Campbell
London, England: Ken Campbell, 1986
N7433.4 C36 N44 1987

Artist’s statement: “The recent visitation by Halley’s Comet, and its image upon the Bayeux Tapestry, brought forth a poem about comets and a divine child descending:; a rather pagan Christmas Carol. The poem is set in airily spaced woodletter capitals, and is alternately revealed either in white space or on a dark, starry backdrop. A comet appears. Its form is gained from the back leg and tail of a dark horse that moves about the printed firmament. The horse is sometimes dismembered, and sometimes whole. At a Christmas dinner in Oxford I found a party cracker on the table and opened it and found, along with the necessarily silly paper hat, a little plastic thing like an articulated hat rack. It was a horse that you could open and shut. I asked a lady to my right what it was that she did. After no little thought she replied, ‘My husband is a linguist.’ I thought, ‘I’m going to do a book about these bizarre conjunctions.’ Halley’s Comet, the horse, and this poem in my mind: that is the poem of the book. I cut out a zinc horse in its different attitudes, opened and shut, and moved it around a firmament of stars. The stars were holes drilled at regular grid intervals in a solid zinc plate that was to supply the blue black night sky. The text is given in very few words for each page. At the end of many pages I show the first word of the next page at the foot of the text to give rhythm and to echo the tradition of cueing the eye for what is to come overleaf. Set in capitals about an inch high, the poetry runs from one left had page to the following left hand page. On the right hand side is a big blue firmament of graded colour with yellow printed underneath to give a little light to the dark horizon. Sometimes the stars are white and sometimes yellow, to give a very mechanical but velvety rendition of the sky in regularly spaced stars. Over this disports a horse in black a metaphor for the comet; a metaphor for the divine child descending. In the first half of the book the first half of the poem is shown on the white, left hand page while the second half of poem is pursued in the dark right. After a central spread where the parts of the horse are wildly rodeo-ed around the firmament, the process is reversed and the first half of the poem is pursued in the dark, left hand page, while the second half of the poem is revealed in the now white, right hand pages. On the slipcase and the closing page the horse’s tail has been distorted to give a fiery tail of a comet. This book is where the hooves touch the ground.” Letterpress printed in four colors from woodletter and handcut zinc blocks. Issued in slipcase. Edition of fifty copies.




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“…that sacred blessing of Liberty, without which man is a beast, and government a curse”


“No free government was ever founded or ever preserved its liberty without uniting the characters of the citizen and soldier in those destined for the defence of the state…such are a well-regulated militia…who take up arms to preserve their purposes, as individuals, and their rights as freemen.”

Josiah Quincy (1744-1775)
Boston, N.E., Printed for and sold by Edes and Gill, 1774
First edition

Attorney Josiah Quincy, a Boston native, wrote a series of anonymous articles for the Boston Gazette in which he opposed the Stamp Act and other British colonial policies. His evenhandedness, however, in his approach to the troubles between the American colonies and England, served him and the colonial stance well. He, along with John Adams, defended the British soldiers in their trial after the Boston Massacre. That act aside, in Observations, Quincy urged “patriots and heroes” to “form a compact for opposition…For, under God, we are determined that wheresoever, whensoever, and howsoever we shall be called to make our exit, we will die free men.” In the same year as this publication, Quincy went to England to argue the colonial cause. He died of tuberculosis on the way home in sight of land.


“Our own people, being unwilling to enlist, and the attempts to procure armies of Russians, Indians, and Canadians having miscarried; the utmost force we can employ, including foreigners…This is the force that is to conquer…determined men fighting on their own ground, within sight of their houses and families, and for that sacred blessing of Liberty, without which man is a beast, and government a curse. All history proves, that in such a situation, a handful is a match for millions.”

Richard Price (1723-1791)
London printed 1776; Philadelphia, Re-printed and sold by J. Dunlap, 1776?

Richard Price, radical in his religious and political views, was well-known in Great Britain as a writer on economic and political issues. A close friend of William Pitt, David Hume, and Benjamin Franklin, he became one of Britain’s most vocal supporters of American independence. Several thousand copies of Observations were sold within a few days. The pamphlet both extolled the rights of the American colonists and excoriated the British crown. Harshly criticized by John Wesley, Edmund Burke, and others, the controversy quickly made Price a celebrity. Price argued that governments held their power in trust from the people and were not instruments of divine authority. The monarchy of England, he said, was only legitimate because it ruled by consent of the people under England’s Bill of Rights. The revolutionaries in the American colonies were merely asserting the same principle. His pamphlet played no small part in encouraging the colonists to declare independence. In 1778 he was invited by Congress to go to America and assist in the financial administration of the states. He refused the offer, unwilling to quit his own country.

Looking forward to Book Arts Program workshop, “All Shook Up: Text & Image in Flag Books”


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Text & Image in Flag Books
Karen Hanmer, instructor

July 7
Thursday, 9:00–5:00
Book Arts Studio, J. Willard Marriott Library, Level 4
Application for this workshop is closed.

The foundation of Hedi Kyle’s deceptively small and simple book flag book structure is an accordion folded spine. Flaps attached to both sides of each of the spine’s mountain folds allow the artist to fragment and layer a number of complementary or contrasting images and narratives. When the flag book spine is pulled fully open, the fragmented images on the flaps come together to create a large, panoramic image. Participants experiment with complementary and contrasting text and images and discuss the effects of different spine and page dimensions, direction of motion, and which images are most successful. Students learn a tidy, non-adhesive method of covering boards and use a jig to facilitate quicker, more precise assembly. While this is not a computer class, digital printing and setting up Photoshop templates for pages, covers and spines is demonstrated.
– – – – –
Karen Hanmer’s artists’ books are physical manifestations of personal essays intertwining history, culture, politics, science and technology. She utilizes both traditional and contemporary book structures, and the work is often playful in content or format. Hanmer exhibits widely, and her work is included in collections ranging from Tate Britain and the Library of Congress to UCLA and Graceland. Solo exhibition venues include Florida Atlantic University, University of the West of England Bristol, and the Center for Book Arts (NYC). Curated exhibition venues include the Anchorage Museum of History and Art, Brooklyn Museum, Harvard University’s Fogg Museum of Art, the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft; and traveling exhibitions sponsored by the Guild of Book Workers (US), Designer Bookbinders (UK) the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists’ Guild, and Les Amis de la Reliure d’Art du Canada.

Rare Books is proud to support the Book Arts Program with its collections.

N7433.4-H357-L48-2004-front N7433.4-H357-L48-2004-back

Letter Home
Karen Hanmer
Glenview, IL: K. Hanmer, 2004
N7433.4 H357 L48 2004

Hedi Kyle flag book structure. One side of each flag has text, the other side of each flag has a color image which is part of a family photograph. The family photograph becomes whole when the accordion folds are stretched and the pages fall open. Text is from a letter written from Italy in 1954 by a military wife to her relatives. Upper and lower boards are covered in reproduction of a photograph of an American woman [the artist’s mother] on a balcony overlooking Florence, Italy. Issued in an artist-made phase box of green map folder stock with fabric hook-and-loop fasteners.

Book of the week — Janus Press, Greed


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Vermont: Janus Press, 2013
N7433.4 V37 G74 2013

Printed on eight leaves connected laterally and folded accordion style to form a continuous strip which is affixed to the cover. Four of the leaves are illustrated with Claire Van Vliet’s black and white lithographs of distorted faces: a propagandist, a lobbyist, a banker and Joe Public. The four folded leaves feature text in various types and color. Handset and letterpress printed by Eystein Hanche-Olsen at SKHS in Oslo on Zerkall Butten paper. Bound and slipcased in Gold Elephant Hide paper. Edition of one hundred and fifty copies, according to the colophon. An accompanying note indicated an edition of one hundred and twenty copies. University of Utah copy is inscribed “for the Marriott Library, Claire Van Vliet.”

Rare Books goes to Argentina!


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“Rare Books helped me develop a different perspective on literary analysis.” – Lyuba Basin (Class of 2015 and graduate student in Comparative Literature/Cultural Studies, The University of Utah)

Lyuba Basin, former Rare Books Curator, writes from Argentina, where she is spending eight months on a Fulbright Scholarship.

“Today marks 12 weeks in Argentina. When I look back at it now, it seems like nothing. Yet, I can clearly remember the daily struggle of trying to adapt to this new culture, to adjust my ears and tongue to this new language, and to push aside the loneliness that often attached itself to my mind when I felt so far away from home. Despite the struggles and the cultural differences, I have relished my position as a teaching assistant at the Universidad Nacional de La Pampa. Unlike the large campus back home, UNLPam is a small and simple building located in the very center of the small and simple city. Standing only five stories tall, it blends in with the other shops and apartments located around the plaza; but what makes it distinct is the colorful murals that decorate the entrance and the classrooms inside. On top of that, the students and teachers, with their weekly strikes, create a sense of theatrics, a performance we call La Lucha, the fight.


I have come to realize that this fight, while manifesting in a variety of ways, is universal. The fight to grow up, to succeed, to get ahead, to make ends meet. I see the same look of desperation in the eyes of my students that I had just one year ago. It is the same look of fear as they sit and wonder “What I am going to do with my life?” I look back in silence, because I’m afraid to tell them that after graduation, you probably still won’t know. I look back with the same question in my mind. However, of all the things I don’t know, I do know this: there will always be a constant in my life, regardless of where I travel or how far.

My love of literature.

As an English language teaching assistant at UNLPam I have transformed into a self-proclaimed literary expert. Of course, expertise is relative when you are one of two native English speakers in a university of thousands. Nonetheless, I am proud of the insight I have been able to provide and glad to see my bookworm tendencies finally come to fruition. I have been lucky enough to teach my students short stories by some great classics, such as Faulkner, Hemingway and Wolfe.

But what makes the experience all the more fulfilling is being able to introduce new, contemporary literature into the classroom, with works by Lydia Davis and Jonathan Safran Foer, demonstrating to the students the diverse ways we can use and play with language.

As my lesson plans evolved I realized that the students did not have the same exposure to literature as I was fortunate to have back home. With only three small bookstores, two libraries, and no access to online orders, contact with literature outside of Latin America is quite difficult.


In order to expand my students’ horizons I had to think creatively. Luckily, I still had an amazing team back home to help me out. The Rare Books Department at the J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah, was where I learned how to truly appreciate literature, and now I hope to share that with my students, and hopefully with the University of La Pampa as a whole.

In my most recent lecture, I decided to focus on my time as a Rare Books employee and remembered the presentations Luise Poulton gives on the ‘Materiality of the Book’. So I reached out and desperately asked Luise for help. I wanted to introduce the topic of Artists’ Books and explain why materiality could be as important to consider in the process of creative writing as characterization or setting. Using my own book arts project as an example and Luise’s notes from the Rare Books Classroom whiteboard, I was able to illustrate the magical thing that occurs when text becomes material. I was ecstatic to find the students wide-eyed with amazement, none of them having seen or even heard of such things before. Students excitedly came to me after class to discuss ideas, and even the professor encouraged them to develop their own creative interpretations for the short story assignment ahead.


Working in Rare Books taught me that there is not just one way to tell a story; that creativity does not have to be stifled by what we learn in tedious textbooks. I was able to share what I have learned and bring it all the way to Argentina, changing the perspectives of fifteen students and one professor. While it seems like a small number now, I know that the experience I have passed down will continue to flow, from student to student, year to year, until the Universidad Nacional de La Pampa has a Rare Books department of its own.”

Book of the week — Janus Press, Night Street


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“Nothing doing.”

Barbara Luck
West Burke, VT: Janus Press, 1993
N7433.4 L83 N5 1993

Ten poems concerning the dilemma of a young woman in the city faced with retaining her humanity without being victimized. On colored sheets of paper collaged on black silkscreened pages opposite highly colored offset lithographs by Lois Johnson. The binding is a non-adhesive concertina. Both the cover and the pages are shaped to resemble cityscapes and made of gold elephant hide paper. Slipcase is non-adhesive of blue moire plastic. Entire structure designed and executed by Claire Van Vliet. Edition of ninety copies signed by author and artist.