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NO SOURCE Jun 1 1885 William H Dorsey Scrapbook Collection 250 39 A Unique Book Collection Mr Adolph Sutro s books which will probably be made a free public library The San Francisco Alta says For several years past Adolph Sutro has been quietly buying up rare books and manuscripts at public and private sales through his agents and personally The purchases of course are made in Europe Mr Sutro s intention is to at some future time erect a suitable building and place the valuable library at the disposal of the public for the students of scholarly research The intention on the part of Mr Sutro would not have been made public for some time had not the first contingent of books been damaged while in transit to this country It will be remembered that the books were packed in boxes and shipped aboard the steamer Bordeaux for transportation to San Francisco When they arrived several cases were found to be wet with saltwater and many of the rare old books destroyed or badly damaged The collection has however been partially arranged for cataloguing and yesterday the representatives of the press were invited to inspect the temporary quarters No 107 Battery street That the library will be a most valuable addition not only to the city but to the whole nation needs but a single glance at its many treasures to be evident to the least skilled antiquarian There are now on the shelves about 65 000 volumes which is only the beginning of a proposed library of many hundreds of thousands of volumes The brief inspection allowed yesterday was scarcely more than sufficient to make manifest a few of the bibliographic treasures There are hundreds of volumes known as incunabula that is works printed previous to the year 1500 when the art of printing was in its infancy Bibles that date back to 1483 whit their elaborate illuminated initials There is also the whole Talmud complete in twelve volumes There is in the collection a photograph of the first letter written from California The letter is



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