In 1903 there was published by Dodd, Mead and Company a work entitled: The Bay Psalm Book being a facsimile Reprint of the First Edition, Printed by Stephen Daye, At Cambridge, in New England in 1640. With an Introduction by Wilberforce Eames.
In the introduction Dr. Eames prints a "record" of the ten copies that were known at that time. Subsequently, however, another copy, in original calf, owned by Dr. A. S. W. Rosenbach, and part of his famed private library in Philadelphia, has come to light, making eleven in all.
The following is a selection from the statements made by Dr. Eames regarding the general condition of the recorded copies; the second copy is the present copy, which is now being offered for sale. Since number 11, the copy in the collection of Dr. Rosenbach, was discovered after the publication of Dr. Eames' work, it is not included in it.
(1) JOHN CARTER BROWN LIBRARY, PROVIDENCE, R.I.: Perfect, but with a small portion of the blank margin of the title-page and the lower blank margin of the leaf of errata cut out; in the original old calf binding, re-backed. Size of leaf, six inches and seven-eighths by four inches and one-half. It was first owned by Richard Mather, one of the translators, whose autograph signature is in several places on the fly leaves and covers. From the Mather family it passed to the Rev. Thomas Prince, the bookplate of whose "New England Library" is pasted on the back of the title. By Prince it was bequeathed to the Old South Church, in his will dated October 2, 1758, "and from that time till 1860, the book remained in the custody of the deacons and pastors of that church. In that year it was given by the church, through the proper agents, to the late Nathaniel Bradstreet Shurtleff, M.D." On Dr. Shurtleff's death his library was offered for sale at auction by Leonard & Co., Boston, November 30 to December 2, 1875, but the Psalm Book was withdrawn because the deacons of the Old South Church obtained an injunction to prevent its sale. After a hearing before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, the injunction was dissolved and the book adjudged to belong to Dr. Shurtleff's estate.
(2) MRS ALIXE GWYNNE VANDERBILD, NEW YORK: Perfect. It is one of the five copies bequeathed by Thomas Prince in 1758 to the Old South Church, from whose collection it passed by exchange, between the years 1850 and 1860, to Mr. Edward A. Crowninshield, as related above. In the catalogue of Mr Crowninshield's library, announced to be sold at auction by Leonard & Co., Boston in November 1859, the book is described as "in the original old vellum binding". The whole library, however, was withdrawn and sold at private sale for $10,000 to Mr Henry Stevens who took it to London, where the Psalm Book was offered to the British Museum for £150. Its purchase not being approved, the book was withdrawn by Mr. Stevens, and after being rebound by F. Bedford in "dark brown crushed levant morocco" was sold in 1868 to Mr. George Brinley of Hartford for 150 guineas. At the Brinley sale in March 1879, it was bought for the late Mr Cornelius Vanderbilt for $1,200. The statements in the Memorial History of Boston, vol. I (1880) and in the Catalogue of the John Carter Brown Library, part 2 (1882) that this copy was destroyed in a warehouse fire in New York, not long after its purchase by Mr Vanderbilt, are both incorrect. Airs Vanderbilt writes that the book now belongs to her, and that it has never been injured in any fire. See Catalogue of the Valuable Private Library of the late Edward A. Crowninshield (1859) no. 878; Brinley Catalogue, part 1 (1878 sold 1879), no. 847; Stevens, Recollections of Mi-James Lenox (1886), pp. 61-63.
(3) MR ALFRED T. WHITE [A. VAX SINDERIN] BROOKLYN, N.Y.: In the original calf binding, with remnants of the brass clasps; lacking nineteen leaves, i.e., title, o2 and 03, and sheets W, X, Y, and L1; and showing marks of usage. Size of leaf, six inches and fifteen-sixteenths by four inches and three-sixteenths. This also was one of the five copies bequeathed by Mr Prince to the Old South Church in Boston, from the custody of which it was obtained about the year 1850, by Mr George Livermore of Cambridge, whose signature is on the inside of the front cover. In 1855 Mr Henry Stevens of London made a trade with Mr Livermore by which he received from him twelve leaves out of this volume (sheets W, X, and Y) to supply an imperfection in the copy which he sold afterwards to Mr Lenox.
(4) & (5) PRINCE COLLECTION, BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY: Both slightly imperfect, and both in modern binding. These are the two remaining copies of the five originally given by Thomas Prince to the Old South Church in Boston. In 1866 they were deposited with the rest of the collection in the Boston Public Library.
(6) HARVARD COLLEGE LIBRARY, CAMBRIDGE, MASS.: Imperfect, lacking the first six leaves and the last four leaves; re-bound in October, 1900. The book was given to Harvard College Library in October, 1764, by Middlecott Cooke of Boston, a graduate of the Class of 1723.
(7) AMERICAN ANTIQUARIAN SOCIETY, WORCHESTER, MASS.: Imperfect, lacking the title-page and the leaf of errata at the end; in the "original vellum binding". "The upper portion of next to last leaf is torn and a corner from the first page of the Preface". It was given to the American Antiquarian Society by Isaiah Thomas, whose book-plate is in the volume. On one of the fly leaves Mr Thomas has written the following note: "After advertising for another copy of this book, and making enquiry in many places in New England, &c, 1 was not able to obtain or even to hear of another. This copy is therefore invaluable, and must be preserved with the greatest care. It is in the original binding . . ."
(8) LENOX COLLECTION, NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY: slightly imperfect, the upper corner of leaf G being torn off, taking away portions of three lines on both sides; in modern binding. Size of leaf, seven inches and one-sixteenth by four inches and three-quarters. This copy turned up at the sale of the Fourth and concluding portion of the extensive and valuable collection of books, formed by the late Mr William Pickering, of Piccadilly, bookseller, at Sotheby IS Wilkinson's auction rooms, London, on Jan. 12, 1855, in a lot which was catalogued as follows: "432 Psalms. The Psalms of David, 1640—Another copy, 1639—The Psalms of David, translated by Bishop King, russia, gilt edges, 1654—The Psalms, by Barton, 1654—Another copy, 1682—The Whole Book of Psalms, with the Singing Notes, 1688—The Psalms of David, in Meeter, 1693 12mo, 8 vol.". The lot was bought by Mr Henry Stevens for £2 18s. On examining the book, Mr Stevens discovered that twelve leaves (sheets W, X, and Y) were lacking, having been left out by the original binder. These twelve leaves were finally obtained from Mr Livermore's copy, as related above, and after being mended and remargined, they were inserted in this copy; the book was rebound in red morocco by F. Bedford, and was then sold by Mr Stevens to Mr Lenox for £80.
(9) E. DWIGHT CHURCH, BROOKLYN, N.Y. [HENRY E. HUNTINGTON LIBRARY, SAN MARINO, CALIFORNIA: In the original old calf binding; lacking the first four and the last three leaves, which were supplied later in facsimile. Size of leaf, seven inches (nearly) by four inches and five-eighths. Accompanying the book is a manuscript note of which the following is an extract: "It belonged to the Shuttleworth family, & is now handed to my daughter Sophia S. Simpson, to be used at her own discretion, by her beloved mother. Sarah Shuttleworth, 1844". About the year 1872 it was bought by the late T. O. H. P. Burnham, of the "Antique Bookstore" in Boston, not knowing at the time exactly what it was. Years afterwards, on comparison by Mr R. C. Lichtenstein with the 1640 edition in the Public Library, it was found to be a genuine copy of that edition.
(10) BODLEIAN LIBRARY, OXFORD: The copy in the Bodleian is perfect. It formerly belonged to Bishop Tanner... . Unfortunately, when Tanner was removing his books from Norwich to Oxford, in December, 1731, by some accident in their transit (which was made by river) they fell into the water, and were submerged for twenty hours. The effects of this soaking are only too evident upon very many of them...
(11) DR A.S.W. ROSENBACH, PHILADELPHIA AND NEW YORK: Original calf binding. Lacks D1-11 but with original blanks.