(Click on bold book numbers in red to see larger image.)
The February 2021 Book Auction contains a wealth of interesting books for Mennonite and Amish history buffs. There are five copies of John Ruth’s epic, The Earth is the Lord’s available (lot #122, 197, 266, 273, 299). German-language Martyrs Mirrors include two 1849 editions published by Shem Zook in Mifflin County (#133, 308) and the 1814 Lancaster edition published by Joseph Ehrenfried (#307). Lancaster was an important center of book publishing in the early 19th century and this sale reflects that with many volumes including the impressive two-volume German/English dictionary published by William Hamilton in 1812 (#348).
Special items include a 1751 Ausbund published in Germantown which belonged to Michael Nissli (#349); two 1785 Germantown Ausbunds (#311, 385); another undated, early 18th -century Ausbund (#386); a 1777 Germantown edition of Das Kleine Davidische Psalterspiel owned by Jacob Bauman (#350); an 1819 German Bible published in Lancaster with family records of Christian Light (1792-1842) and Catherine Carmany (b.1793) (#305); and an 1830 Lancaster Apokryphische Neue Testament owned by Jacob Kinig and Barbara Hertzler (#351). This New Testament has the simple brass ornamentation on the covers which was often present on valued books belonging to Mennonite and Amish families.
Important Mennonite works include a copy of Jacob Stauffer’s 1855 Eine Chronik, order, Geschicht-Büchlein von der sogenannten Mennonisten Gemeinde (#98) as well as a copy of Amos Hoover’s English translation of the work (#249). The 1822 Basel edition of the Dutch Mennonite Tieleman T. van Sittert’s Christliches Glaubensbekenntnuss is available (#374).
Family histories on the sale include The Wenger Book (#74, 188); an 1896 Hess genealogy (#337); “the Zimmerman Book” (#369), and books on the Hershey, Landis, and Brubacher families. A large collection of Mennonite Family History magazines is included (#22).
There are many early hymnals and songbooks including multiple editions of Die kleine geistliche Harfe der Kinder Zions and the Unpartheyisches Gesang-Buch. Also present is an 1837 Eine kleine Lieder-Sammlung (#353) which was the first hymnal of the Reformed Mennonites.
There are numerous books on Russian Mennonite history, including The Great Trek of the Russian Mennonites to Central Asia, 1880-1884 (#261), and Minority Report: Mennonite Identities in Imperial Russia and Soviet Ukraine Reconsidered, 1789 1945 (#109). Other sought-after books include The Innovators, a history of the New Holland Company (#347); and I Lift My Lamp by Anna Balmer Myers, a historical novel about the early settlement of Lancaster County (#334).