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The collection of Conan Doyle’s maid

06 July 2012

At their country house sale on July 10 in Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex auctioneers Sworders will include 11 lots from the collection of Mary Jakeman, a lady’s maid to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and his wife at the turn of the 20th century.


On your marks for London 2012

17 September 2011

THERE is less than a year to go before the Olympic Games return to Britain for the third time and, rest assured, a number of themed auction sales are already in the pipeline.

Auction Reports


Holmes past and future...

10 August 2004

THE sale at $350,000 (£190,215) of Conan Doyle’s autograph manuscript of the Sherlock Holmes story, The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire, has already been noted in the Antiques Trade Gazette (No.1646) but the Christie’s New York sale of June 9 that brought that very high bid also included the pair of first edition copies of The Adventures... and Memorials of Sherlock Holmes (1892 and ’94) seen right.


Holmes and the Sussex Vampire

29 June 2004

AS a follow-up to last week’s report on the Conan Doyle collection sold at King Street in May, I bring belated news of The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire.


The Conan Doyle Collection

21 June 2004

THE background to the much-publicised and, to some, controversial sale of The Conan Doyle Collection at Christie’s on May 19 is carefully explained in the introduction to the sale catalogue (click here to view introduction in full), as is the manner in which the writer’s “missing” papers were variously dispersed and divided up, bought back, sold off in the 1970s, stored, argued over for 25 years and finally either consigned to the British Library or to auction.

The mysterious case of the lost archive…

23 March 2004

IT could have come straight out of one of the author’s own stories – a lost archive of unique material valued at two million pounds uncovered in the offices of a London law firm after being missing for decades.

Just Literature

14 May 2003

BEARING the simple, one-word title ‘Literature’, an April 8 sale held by Christie’s New York (19.5/10% buyer's premium) was mostly concerned with books of the 19th and 20th centuries. Earlier works were rather thin on the ground and the principle lot in this category, a 1632 second folio Shakespeare, with the ‘To the Reader’ leaf in facsimile and with some outer leaves washed and pressed before it was bound in crimson morocco gilt by Rivière, was left unsold on an estimate of $90,000-120,000.

Sumptuously presented…

27 March 2002

Luxury sets were a feature of the Pacific Book Auctions sale of February 7 and seen left are sample volumes of a 48-volume set of the works of Alexandre Dumas, one of 1000 ‘Editions de Medicis’ sets published in Boston c.1900 and here sumptuously bound in dark green morocco gilt with red inlays to the covers, which reached $13,000 (£9155).

The Sign of Four

09 April 2001

The contents and joints are loose and the upper hinge is nearly detached, but the maroon cloth gilt binding of this 1890 first issue of what was only Conan Doyle’s second Sherlock Holmes story, The Sign of Four, are pretty good and this copy sold at Dominic Winter for £3000 to Bromlea & Jonkers.