MINUTES OF THE COMMITTEE MEETING
held in Copenhagen on February 13th, 1973
by invitation of the Danish Association
Present: Mrs. Olschki-Witt
Messrs. Hans Bagger, Stanley Crowe, Glen Dawson, F. De Nobele, E. Crenholt-Pedersen, M. Hertzberger, F. Kocher-Benzing, Fl. Tulkens, R. Wormser
Apologies received from: Mr. G. Deny.
1. Amendment to the Rules in order to increase the number of ordinary Committee members to four:
This amendment will be presented in Tokyo and concerns Article 22 of our Rules. The new text proposed reads as follows:
"The Committee consists of seven members, President, Vice-President, Treasurer and four ordinary members. The role of the ordinary members is to give support to the President and the Vice-President in the management of the League".
2. Nominations and propositions of the Committee. (The following countries are not represented on the Committee: Austria, Brazil, Canada, Finland, Japan, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland). The Committee is considering nominating either a member of the Dutch Association or a member of the Japanese Association (See point 11 further on).
3. Treasurer's Report.
According to the Treasurer's report the available assets amount to $ 18.669,17 on December 31st, 1972 compared with $ 18.031,94 on December 31st, 1971. On the other hand, the sum of 5.194,41 French francs is due to the President for various secretarial expenses, and postage up to February 1st, 1973. However the French Association's subscription for 1973 amounting to 2.750,00 Francs and Mr. De Nobele's advertisement in Newsletter No 23 for 375,00 francs must be deducted from this amount, so that the President is owed a net amount of 2.069,41 francs.
The Treasurer also presented a draft budget for 1973.
The President gave a report on the interview he had had with the Societe Fides, Union Fiduciaire de Geneve. The result of this conversation was that these consultants did not understand why we are included in the Trade Register of Geneva. It does not seem necessary for us to be registered in Switzerland (Possible amendment to the Rules).
In our present situation, the tax on basic capital registered is unavoidable, but we could avoid paying income tax if our income were spread out, that is over three years for the Triennial Bibliographical Prize and over two years for Congress expenses; the profits made on the sale of the Directory could be spread over five years, etc. In short,we should find a bookkeeping method which would balance receipts and expenditure and show no profit at all. Therefore, we must let the Societe Fides know in what form we are registered and send them the documents which we possess on this subject, which were drawn up by Maltre Hotz in Neuchatel.
We must be certain that it is internationally legal not to be registered. A very detailed account of our situation will be sent to the Societe Fides.
4. Bibliographical Prize.
A meeting of the members of the Jury presided by Mr. Georges A. Deny is planned during the second half of June. The laureate will be nominated during this meeting and the prize winner will be announced at the congress in Tokyo.
5. On the initiative of Mr. Come, General Secretary of the Rassemblement des Groupements Professionels du Marche d' Art Belge, a Round Table of the European Art Trade would be held in Brussels on February 24th and 25th, 1973. The object of this meeting which will include antique dealers, traders in objets d'art , valuers, representatives from contemporary art galleries, auctioneers and organisers of public sales, sellers of old and new books, and art craftsmen, is to examine problems of common interest and in particular the following points which are on the agenda:
1. Free circulation of works of art
2. Standardization of the V.A.T.
3. Droit de suite
4. Thefts of works of art and the illegal trade which follows
5. Art nouveau and art deco considered as antiques
6. Should works produced by art craftsmen be considered as original works.
Although several associations decided not to attend or be represented at this meeting, the Committee considered that it would be useful to send a representative to this Round Table to gather information in order to discuss those problems which interest our profession should the occasion arise.
N.B. Only representatives of Common Market countries are invited to this meeting. A representative of the European Economic Community authorities will attend the discussions.
6. Groupement Belge d'Expertises
The President read a letter which he had received from an association entitled the First Belgium International Art Dealers Protectors and the correspondence which followed. We do not consider this association at all genuine.
The President presented the first copy of the 1972-1973 Directory which was not yet bound. As the final invoice had already been received from the printer with details of attendant expenses and additional charges for corrections and further handling (additions and cancellations) largely due to badly prepared copy, it was decided that the directory would be sold to the associations for $ 6,60 per copy on ordinary paper and $ 8,25 per copy on thin paper.
(N .B. Price established according to the rate of the dollar on February 13th 1973; therefore could possibly be changed).
The suggested selling price to people or institutions outside the League is US$ 10,00 for ordinary copies and US$ 12,00 for copies on thin paper (these prices would be changed in the case of a change in the value of the dollar).
The Committee has received orders for 1,587 copies against 1,750 printed on ordinary paper and 520 copies against 550 copies on thin paper. As the invoice is payable in Swiss francs, the Committee decided to increase the price in dollars because of the devaluation of this currency.
For the same reason, that is because of slight mistrust with regard to the dollar and because of the fact that our printer has established his invoice in Swiss Francs, in our letter of January 12th, 1972, we announced the following tariff to the presidents:
Advertisements 1 page 295 Swiss francs
1/2 page 166 SF
1/4 page 95 SF
Insertion of a folding map in the Directory 467 SF
Those associations who sent in a copy which later needed to be changed due to their own error, will be asked to share in the cost of the additional expenses incurred by their bad copy.
The printing expenses will hardly be covered by the sale of copies, but on the other hand, the advertisements will enable the League to defray its usual expenses: secretarial, hiring of rooms, congress, bibliographical prize, etc.
8. Newsletter No 23.
The corrected proof of this newsletter has been sent to the printer and it will be sent to the associations at the same time as the Directory.
A total absence of publicity in this newsletter is deplored. The President pointed out that unless repeated requests for advertisements are made no one does anything. It would therefore be useful to appoint a member of the Committee to be responsible for collecting advertisements for the newsletters, and in particular from reprint publishers.
9. A letter from the Japanese association was read in which they asked various questions to which the Committee replied; these replies would be forwarded to Mr. Mitsuo Nitta, responsible for the organisation of the Congress in Tokyo. A draft agenda for this meeting was drawn up. It will be completed at a later date.
Various initiatives have been taken by associations or private people for the organisation of charter trips to Tokyo (See Newsletter No 23). The Committee is not taking part in any travel organisation but only in that of the congress itself. Following an inquiry made during 1972, the organisers of the Congress in Tokyo are allowed to invite observers
belonging to countries which do not have professional associations of antiquarian booksellers, or in which the book trade is in the hands of the state (socialist countries). Their presence at the General Assembly will be limited to reports and discussions on the antiquarian book trade in their country.
10. Observers in Tokyo - this question has been discussed with Point 9 above.
10bis. The President read a letter dated July 2nd , 1966 on the League's headed letter paper signed by two illegible names. This letter mentions books bought in 1948 by the League which belonged to the library of Mr. X.. " This is a forged letter, of which we are trying to find the author and his purpose.
11. The President said that he would be pleased to preside the Congress in Tokyo, but that afterwards he would resign from the presidency, which office he has held for 5 years, plus the years he spent as Vice-President and ordinary member of the Committee, as he considers that he has rendered sufficient services to the League. He would like to hand over to a new President.
In anticipation of this resignation, we must nominate a replacement for president, and if this post is occupied by Dr. Kocher-Benzing whom the Committee will nominate for this office, the post of Vice-President will become vacant. Mr. Stanley Crowe will be nominated by the Committee.
There will therefore be two posts of ordinary members of the Committee to be filled:
1. a fourth member, according to the new rules
2. the post of ordinary member to replace Mr. Stanley Crowe if he becomes Vice-President.
Of course all the associations will be asked to send in their nominations. However, the Committee will probably put forward the name of Mr. De Graaf (Netherlands) and either a member of the Japanese association, or a member of the French association. Perhaps it would be seemly to nominate a Japanese in Tokyo and wait until 1974 to ask the SLAM to nominate a representative from France to replace Mrs. Olschki-Witt who cannot be re-elected as an ordinary member.
The meeting was closed at 5 o'clock p.m. and Mrs. Olschki-Witt was thanked being such a perfect translator.
MINUTES OF THE COMMITTEE MEETING
Tokyo: Saturday September 22nd, 1973
Present: F. De Nobele, President
Dr. F. Kocher-Benzing
Georges A. Deny
Apologies were received from Mrs. Olschki-Witt, Hans Bagger, Dudley Massey and Richard Wormser.
The meeting was opened at 2.00 p.m. and the agenda of the General Assembly was discussed point by point.
Items 1 and 2 were matters for the General Assembly.
Item 3: The President, Mr. De Nobele, presented the report on the Committee's work since the Presidents' meeting in Vienna, September 1972. (For full text see Minutes of the General Assembly).
Item 4 Finance: The President gave his interpretation of the role of the treasurer. This was considered as internal and confidential, and the text will not be published but circulated only to the committee members.
a) The Treasurer, Mr. Glen Dawson, presented his report which was based on the budget agreed in Copenhagen. He did not feel responsible for expenses other than those listed in this budget. In this respect he asked for direction. He presented a statement of the assets as at June 29th, 1973, together with the balance as at December 31st, 1972, and including the various amounts transferred to Dutch accounts this year. (See papers attached to the Minutes of the General Assembly).
Mr. Dawson then delineated three different budgets for the year 1974. In the discussion Mr. De Nobele expressed the opinion that a three-year budget is necessary; some of the League's activities occur over a period of two or three years.
Also discussed was a report of the President concerning the work done by Fides, Lausanne on the tax situation of the League.
b) Concerning Mr. Dawson's 3 budget proposals, the Committee decided to adopt plan A, which means that all associations will pay the same as in 1973, but in the currency of their own country.
c) Mr. De Nobele reported on the publication of the new directory, and the financial situation, which finally showed a gross surplus of about $ 8,000.-
4. As regards the question of observers at our congresses as requested by the Japanese association, the President stated that from questions asked there seemed to be a majority opinion for treating this in a liberal way. Referring to the participation of certain individuals, not members of the League, under the name of Edouard Loewy, Paris, the President stated that this way of proceeding was inadmissible.
5. Mr. Deny announced that the winner of the 4th Triennial Prize for Bibliography was Mr. Claus Nissen for his work "Die zoologisehe Buchillustration", volume I.
6. The proposal by the Belgian association could not be accepted as it did not correspond with article 8 of the Usages and Customs. The Committee will, however, ask the Presidents of all associations to clarify this point to their members.
7a. Mr. De Nobele reported on the discussions held at the E.E.C. Round Table Conference last spring, including book- and art thefts. He stated that the official authorities were willing to help, but that we would have to bring forward our own proposals. The British motion will be discussed both during the Presidents' Meeting and during the General Assembly.
7b. See item 8.
8. The Committee agrees that it is desirable to publish a calendar of forthcoming book fairs as soon as possible, and requests the new Committee to do so.
9. In addition to his report under item 7, Mr. De Nobele expressed the opinion that it would be necessary for the League to be represented at the Round-Table Conferences in Brussels. He sought in particular full information regarding any obstruction detrimental to the free circulation of books both inside and outside the E.E.C. The President stated that the date for the next Round-Table Conference is on January 19th and 20th in Brussels.
10. The probable dates of forthcoming Presidents' Meetings and Congresses were announced. (Sec Minutes of the General Assembly).
11. Mr. De Nobele reported on four matters: 1) Registered mail in the U.S .A.; 2) Mailing at the risk of the receiver; 3) Confidential list ; 4) Reprints. (See Minutes of the General Assembly).
On these matters the Committee agreed with the President.
12. This item, an amendment of the Rules (nomination of a fourth member of the Committee), had already been decided at the Committee Meeting in Copenhagen.
13. This item, elections, was not discussed, as it is a matter for the General Assembly only.
The Meeting was closed at 4.40 p.m.
BRIEF MINUTES OF THE PRESIDENT'S MEETING
Tokyo: Sunday September 23rd, 1973
The meeting was opened by the President, Mr. De Nobele, at 9.30 p.m.
Apologies were received from the Austrian, Brazilian and Danish associations; no reply had been received from Canada.
Countries represented: Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States.
Proxies were held for Austria, Brazil and Denmark.
Mr. De Nobele reported briefly on the agenda prepared for the General Assembly, with particular reference to the discussions at the Committee meeting the previous day.
Item 4B: The Presidents of the British and Dutch associations announced an increase of their subscriptions for 1974.
Item 5: Mr. Deny proposed an increase of the Triennial Prize up to $ 1.000.-, which was not adopted.
Item 7,1): The President of the British Association gave a summary of the problem of book thefts and the action taken to combat this in his country. He agreed to give this report to the General Assembly. It was agreed that the Committee should cooperate with the British Association in this matter.
Item 10: The President of the Dutch Association announced that preparations were in hand for the Congress in Amsterdam in 1975, with the dates of the Congress and Book Fair.
The other points were left to the General Assembly without discussion.
The meeting was closed at 10.35 a.m.
MINUTES OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Tokyo: Sunday September 23rd, 1973
The first session of the General Assembly of the 22nd Congress of the I.L.A.B. was declared open at 2.30 p.m.
The President welcomed the delegates and hoped that the Congress would be successful and thanked the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of Japan for the programme which they had prepared for the delegates, a programme which could only confirm this success.
The Assembly observed a minute's silence in memory of those who had lately passed away, colleagues and members of their family.
The President: "Your Presidents have expressed the wish to conclude the agenda in two sessions. Therefore we shall do our best to speed up matters, but of course we shall give you the possibility to take part in the discussions. Some of the latter could be abridged thanks to the preliminary meetings of the national presidents".
1. Appointment of scrutineers.
Messrs. Morten and Witt Jr. are appointed as such.
Apologies for absence from Mrs. Olschki-Witt (her son participates) and from Messrs. Bagger, Gronholt Pedersen, Massey and Wormser.
It was announced that Mr. Schafer held the powers of attorney for Austria; the Japanese association those for Brazil; and Dr. Kocher-Benzing those for Denmark. Delegates of Norway and of Sweden are respectively Messrs. Ringstrom and Lowendahl. According to a letter dated August 23rd from Mr. Nitta, there is no news from Canada.
The absolute majority would be made up by 18 votes.
2. Approbation of the Minutes of the Presidents' Meeting in Vienna, published in Newsletter Nr. 23.
These minutes were adopted unanimously without discussion.
3. Report of the Committee for the term 1972-1973.
This Report is presented by the President:
"When I was nominated President of the League in 1968 in London, I did not make myself any illusion: This federation is heavy to handle and each association reflects the individualism of every bookseller, be it a modest or an important one.
As preceding ones, the term 1972-1973 is marked by the absence of important events. The Committee is composed of vestal virgins who do not entertain a fire but a simple watching-flame only. Still this has permitted the League to continue its existence, and hence a series of manifestations which are not altogether negligible, like the Book Fairs, exhibitions, the publication of Newsletters (some say these are too expensive and are of no use), the attribution of the Bibliographical Prize, and of a new directory. The latter, by the publicity it contains, will bring us a certain amount of dollars, dollars which have luckily been transformed into Swiss francs, because - due to some miraculous presentiment - our tariffs have been established in Swiss currency well before the world monetary crisis.
The Committee has held the meetings called for by the rules. The new Committee that you are going to elect in the course of this General Assembly will decide on the opportunity to continue the publication of Newsletters. Let us remember though that article 21 of the rules compels us to publish minutes of our assemblies.
Concerning the Directory, we have, with the help of our secretary, done what we could do. It is inconceivable that booksellers, theoretically instructed in the art of printing, could present copy which looks more like a mop than anything else, with erasures, illegible scribbling over which the printer is bound to stumble, not to mention omissions and rectifications on the proofs which could easily have been avoided. Maybe we ourselves are also responsible for some mistakes ...
To give you an idea, even if the sales of the Directory do not entirely cover the printing costs (but we still have copies for sale and we have just received new orders for another 45 copies), the publication should bring us an ultimate profit of some $ 8.000.- net, the original small deficit being well covered.
For the remainder of our finances, we have tried to save where we could, and our treasurer will inform you about it later.
It is my pleasure to thank our friend Max Elte for his diligent help whilst playing the semi-official role of assistant-treasurer, a function you did not want to create officially in Copenhagen. He has gathered our funds in the Netherlands and has opened I.L.A.B. accounts in guilders and in Swiss francs.
On the active side of the League we must add the present Congress. I remember that, when we were invited to hold a congress in New York in 1955, the first one far from old Europe, sceptics were doubtful about its success. But it has become one, in a double sense, for it showed the way to the United States to other colleagues as well, who have since regularly crossed the Atlantic.
Today we see a new accomplishment by an impressive number of booksellers from Europe, America and Oceania. Who could have expected, 25 years ago, that the League would bring us here? For this we are indebted to a partner of stature: Our warmest thanks to the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of Japan.
The League lives and will live for a long time to come, because it has not only created business relations, but also international friendships. It is not only the love of books which unite us, but also a fraternal and human friendship.
And that is why I shout: "Three cheers for the League! "
4. Finances: Treasurer's Report.
- See pages 40-43 of this Newsletter.
5. Fourth triennial Bibliography Prize.
Mr. Georges A. Deny, permanent secretary, announced that the jury of the Fourth triennial Bibliography Prize established by the LL.A.B. had decided to attribute this prize to Dr. Claus Nissen for his work 'Die zoologische Buchillustration', Volume I: Bibliographic. Stuttgart, Hiersemann, 1969.
6. Proposition of the Syndicat beige de la Librairie Ancienne.
"Contravening article 8 of our Compendium of Usages and Customs, many antiquarian booksellers allow a discount of 10% on the marked prices of their catalogues and lists to any customer. This stratagem being the origin of abuses, susceptible of bringing discredit on the whole antiquarian book trade, the S.B.L.A.M. suggests the strict obligation to observe article 8, the 10% discount being allowed absolutely only to antiquarian booksellers".
The President emphasizes that article 8 of the Compendium of Usages and Customs reads:
"All booksellers should, in a spirit of friendliness and except in special cases, grant to their colleagues, members of the LL.A.B., a discount of at least 10% on the price marked". It is evident that this article does not forbid to grant the same favour to a private customer, and that we have no peremptory power whatsoever to prevent such practice. Certain 'good customers' benefit by this measure in their relations with colleagues, and vice versa. Moreover in certain countries it is a custom. Italy for instance: There is no non-bookselling Italian who does not ask for a discount.
The President expresses the opinion that the proposition of the Syndicat belge is to be considered as the expression of a wish.
7. A.B.A. Motions.
1) "That security measures to combat the growing problem of thefts be discussed. This problem is twofold:
a) Thefts from libraries (See A.B.A. report ),
b) Thefts from bookshops, book fairs, auction rooms, etc."
Before giving the floor to Mr. Grant, the President remembers that the Round Table Conference of art dealers (Brussels, February 1973) has dealt with this question and has requested functionaries of the European Economic Community to help us to combat this abuse. The latter have declared that they are helpless, that they would only be too glad to be of assistance, but that they are waiting for concrete suggestions to be made by us.
The first measure to recommend:
In case of thefts, a list of stolen books should be sent to each association, which in its turn should have the obligation to forward these lists to their members as soon as possible. The same would apply for lists which are sometimes sent out by private persons and by libraries.
Mr. lan Grant, President of the A.B.A., then explains the British proposition in detail, making four pertinent suggestions:
1. An inventory of stolen books. Monthly supplements in the form of newsletters;
2. A telephone chain after the British model;
3. An inventory kept by every antiquarian bookseller of cash purchase;
4. A better international communication.
The President thanked Mr. Grant.
2) "That the dates of all book fairs, international and otherwise be lodged with the LL.A.B. and the various national presidents."
The President suggested that associations organizing book fairs, exhibitions, etc. inform the secretariat of the I.L.A.B. and the national associations about planned dates, supplying at the same time information about possibilities to participate, and about themes. During his presidency he has ascertained that only a part of these information was addressed to him. The Newsletters are too few in number to be always of use, and qualified information is preferable. If the League transmits it for the second time, so much the better.
8. Calendar of forthcoming fairs and exhibitions.
This item of the agenda corresponds with the British proposition item 7 sub 2).
The President asked every national president or delegate to supply dates of announced fairs and exhibitions. A calendar for 1974 and following years will be distributed as soon as possible by the care of the Committee.
9. Round Table Conference, Brussels (February 24th and 25th, 1973).
The President explains the goals of the 'Table Ronde du Marché d 'Art Européen' and mentioned that the Committee had decided to send a delegate of the LL.A.B. to take part.
The Round Table Conference has adopted seven resolutions on the following themes: 1. Free circulation of works of art - 2. Uniformisation of V.A.T. ~ 3. 'Droit de suite' - 4. Theft of works of art and illegal commerce - 5. Art Nouveau and decorative art ~ 6. The artist and the original work of art - 7. Temporary imports.
10. President's Meeting in 1974 - Congress in 1975 and Further Meetings.
Mr. Arturo Pregliasco, President of the Associazione Librai Antiquari d'ltalia, confirmed his proposition during the Presidents' Meeting in Vienna in September 1972, and invites the Committee and the national presidents to come to Italy in autumn 1974.
Mr. Bob de Graaf, President of the Nederlandsche Vereeniging van Antiquaren, confirms the invitation by his association for the Congress of 1975. This Congress will be held in Amsterdam from September 15th until September 19th, and will be followed by an International Book Fair from September 22nd until September 25th, 1975. Mr. de Graaf read the programme organized for this Congress and expressed the wish to see a great number of delegates in Amsterdam (Applause).
Mr. Valentin Koerner, President of the Verband Deutschcr Antiquare, confirmed the invitation he has sent to the Committee to organize a Congress in Germany in 1977.
The Syndicat de la Librarie Ancienne et du Commerce de l'Estarnpe en Suisse has expressed the wish to organize a Congress in Switzerland in 1979.
11. Sundry Matters.
a. Registered bookpost in the U.5.A.
At the request of Mr. Wormser an inquiry has been opened with the postal administrations of the various countries. Mr. Wormser has established that registered parcels coming from foreign countries and addressed to the United States are taken from the special mail-bags reserved for registered mail upon arrival in an American harbour to be joined with the ordinary mail to their ultimate destination. This inquiry has supplied the following result: Every country is free to organize the distribution of mail in its own way. The guarantee in case of loss of parcels is with the sender if the shipment is registered or with declared value. But in case of loss the value of books always surpasses the reimbursed guarantee on a registered shipment. Mr. Wormser is notably afraid that shipment by ordinary way considerably augments the risks of loss or of theft.
The President mentions two solutions:
Either shipment with declared value, which is not always possible and then, who uses this way of shipment?
Or personal transport insurance taken out by the sender or the addressee. In case of insurance by the addressee, it is important that this arrangement is well specified before the shipment takes place.
In case of insurance by the sender, there is no problem: This question is settled by article 9 of our Usages and Customs, which brings us to item b):
b. Shipment at the risk of the addressee.
The S.L.A.M. declares on the one hand to conform with the Usages and Customs of the I.L.A.B., but on the other hand it emphasizes in its conditions of sale that merchandise travels at the risk of the addressee. Here we have a flagrant contradiction, and we can only advice the S.L.A.M. to abandon this obsolete formula, in view of the possibilities to take worldwide insurance for all shipments.
The President puts the question once more: "Have you ever seen a customer paying for a book which he has not received, and in such a case, are you prepared to start an international lawsuit to obtain payment of your invoice?"
c. Confidential list.
The secretariat of the League has received very little information on this subject; three records concerning bad payers have been received. These have been sent to the national associations.
The list which we possess is voluminous and will soon be over fifteen years old. As a result of changes within the administrations of the various associations, some data are confused or lost. In any case this list is obsolete.
The President proposes to organize a new list, in which the information received since 1970 is maintained and to which is added the information each association possesses but which it has neglected to communicate to us.
To reconstitute an entirely new list means a lot of work. The President is certain that Mrs. Lotte, who is accustomed to these lists, is willing to make a new one, but we have to pay her, of course, for she will be inactive now. The President stresses that he is making this proposal with some reserve, and only in order not to overburden our new president.
The President specifies that his point of view on this matter is already well known:
Be it early or late, booksellers like us will occupy themselves with reprints, because we realize both the interest, the value and the rarity of certain books out of print for a long time, and for which there is a demand. The new bookshop, the general bookseller ignores all this.
A number of colleagues have become interested in this new line of bookselling, but they are still very few in number, hence the necessity for reprint publishers to address themselves directly to prospective customers and particularly to public libraries.
The latter form of direct mailing takes place under disastrous conditions for us booksellers. Discounts and facilities of payment are proposed, whereas we from our side are benefiting only from miserable discounts, generally 20%. It is in this way that Johnson Reprint Corporation invites subscriptions for a work with a price-tag of $ 5 ,520. - and grants a discount of 10% for each copy ordered. In reply to a letter which I have at your disposal, they reply: "May I note that the Codex Atlanticus at a pre-publication price of $ 5,520.plus dealer's discount is quite a bargain".
It is evident that we must thus follow a certain policy. I for one suggest that when publishers solicit our co-operation, we on our side, fix the conditions under which we are ready to take up the sale of their works and the announcement of the same in our catalogues, notably:
- No discount inferior to 25%;
- No sales or direct mailing to customers with discounts or facilities of credit;
- The possibility to receive books on a sale- or return basis;
- A supplementary discount from a certain turnover onwards, plus 5% extra discount for each title announced in our catalogues.
12. Amendment to the Rules (Nomination of a fourth member of the Committee).
The Committee proposes to amend article 22 of our Rules: "The Committee consists of seven members: President, Vice-President, Treasurer and four members. The members have as their task to assist the President and the Vice-President in the administration of the League".
- Adopted unanimously without discussion (18 votes).
13. Resignation of the President and Election.
a. Resignation: The President takes the floor:
"Human nature is such that on the long run one gets enough even of the more annoying things, and notably of the presidency of the League. After having faithfully assisted at all general assemblies, after having formed part of the Committee during I don't even remember any more how many years, and after having fulfilled the presidency during five years, it is high time for a certain retirement. I am saying 'certain' because I can do no other than follow attentively the destiny of our League, the birth of which I have seen, and which - thank God - contrary to what somebody once said, I have not killed: Your multitudinous presence here is proof thereof.
It is not sound when it always is the same one who presides over the destinies of an association like ours, tempted as he could be to make it his personal hobby, or that, at least, could be imputed to him. Shortening, thus, my term of office by one year I offer you my resignation. It is time to renovate the team.
Short of falling into an excessive sentimentality, I should nevertheless like to express all the satisfaction which I have experienced in working during many years and in perfect harmony and cordiality with you all: Colleagues, Presidents, Committee members, Presidents of honour. One single exception can only confirm this solidarity.
For the second time I shall take my place among the presidents of honour, whom certain people abhor and whom I myself have baptized pesterers.
Your Committee presents to your vote a team of people of good will. They do not seek honours, but are all ready to work for the good of our beautiful profession. Give them your confidence". (Prolonged applause).
b. Election: The president proposes to pass on to a secret vote and requests the dean of the Assembly, Mr. William Fletcher, to preside over this vote which will be controlled by the two scrutineers. Are elected afterwards:
Dr. Frieder Kocher-Bcnzing, President (18 votes);
Mr. Stanley Crowe, Vice-President (18 votes);
Mr. Bob de Graaf, committee member in replacement of the preceding (18 votes) ;
Mr. Mitsuo Nitta, fourth committee member (17 votes, 1 abstention).
The new President thanked the retiring President. Reciprocal expression of thanks and congratulations for the newly nominated. Applause.
The meeting closed at 5.10 p.m.
MINUTES OF THE COMMITTEE MEETING
Tokyo: Tuesday September 25th, 1973
Present: Messrs. Georges A. Deny, Fernand De Nobele, Fl. Tulkens (Presidents of honour), Dr. Frieder Kocher-Benzing (President), Stanley Crowe (VicePresident), Glen Dawson (Treasurer), Mitsuo Nitta and Bob de Graaf (Committee members).
The meeting was opened by the President at 3.30 p.m. He thanked the retiring President, Mr. De Nobele, for all his efforts on behalf of the League, and welcomed the two new Committee members, Messrs. Nitta and De Graaf. He expressed the hope that the new Committee will cooperate well.
The Agenda of the General Assembly - treated in one session on September 23rd - was then taken up and discussed point by point.
Treasury: The President raised the problem of yearly budgets. The Treasurer had proposed a budget for 1974 of $ 5.050.00, but what happens if this budget is exceeded? Mr. Dawson proposed that he should inform the other Committee members by a letter in case his budget is in danger of being surpassed considerably. Mr. Crowe stressed that in such an eventual case the whole Committee bears responsibility.
As to the different accounts of the League, Mr. Dawson made the following proposals which were adopted unanimously:
The two Dutch ('Valkenburg') accounts to be managed by the Secretary and the President; the U.S. account by the Treasurer and the President. In view of the unstable situation of world currencies, which might demand quick decisions, the President, the Treasurer and the Secretary are authorisedto decide between the three of them what action is to be taken. The savings account at Valkenburg draws an interest, and for the time being, this account is to be reserved, either for financial emergencies, or for the publication of a new directory or so. The same applies to the Swiss Francs account. The Dutch Guilders account at Valkenburg could be liquidated gradually by paying out of same the expenses of the Secretary, the costs of the Newsletter, etc. The U.S. Dollar account is the working account of the Treasurer.
Mr. Deny asked to what account the national Associations should pay their subscriptions for 1974. Mr. Dawson promised to indicate this clearly on the outgoing invoices.
Mr. De Nobele is opposed to having substantial League accounts in US dollars. He also is of the opinion that the A.B.A.A. profits by the fact that subscriptions are established in dollars. Due to the subsequent dollar devaluations the A.B.A.A. is now in fact paying considerably less; other countries considerably more.
Mr. Dawson will ask A.B.A.A.'s President, Miss Rostenberg, whether she is willing to propose an increase of the American subscription.
Secretary: Mr. De Graaf will act as such, although this function is not specified in the rules of the League. He will perform the usual secretarial tasks, including making the minutes, and he will edit the Newsletter. In cooperation with the Treasurer and the President he will also handle the Valkenburg accounts which he may, eventually, move to another bank of his choice.
Newsletter: Newsletter 24 will be published as early as possible in 1974 (February?). Mr. Nitta offered to raise $ 200.- worth of advertisements among his Japanese colleagues; Mr. Dawson is prepared to guarantee the same amount for the United States. The Secretary will write to all National Presidents urging them to raise a certain amount in advertisements, in order to make the Newsletter, if at all possible, self supporting. Mr. De Nobele pointed out that members of the League are allowed a 25% reduction off the tariffs non-members are paying for advertisements in the Newsletter.
The question was raised whether it is necessary to publish all minutes (English and French versions of same) in full. This is a very expensive affair, and it is rather doubtful whether many members actually read these. The President proposed that excerpts should be made (which he would be willing to compile) for the Newsletter, and that a complete draft of the minutes should be sent to Committee members and to the National Presidents. This proposition was adopted.
Triennial Prize: Mr. Deny reported that preparation for the Fifth Award of the Bibliographical Prize will commence shortly. New stationery is needed for the Prize as well. Mr. Deny and the President would make arrangements respecting this year's award of the Prize to Mr. Claus Nissen.
Book Thefts: The President proposed and Mr. Dawson seconded that the British proposals at this General Assembly should be worked out by a Sub Committee consisting of Mr. Crowe and members of the A.B.A. The matter should be brought up during the forthcoming Round Table Conference (Brussels, February 1974).
In this regard Mr. De Nobele raised the question of the presence at Congresses of people not belonging to our profession, and the abuses this may give rise to. Everybody present agreed with his suggestion that attendance at Congresses should be limited to antiquarian booksellers and their near relatives.
Calendar of Forthcoming Fairs: This should be distributed as soon as possible to the National Presidents and to the different trade-periodicals. The Secretary will see to this. The Calendar should also be published in the next Newsletter.
Confidential List: The President will prepare a Memorandum on this subject which he will forward to all National Presidents. He will report to the Committee at its next meeting. Mr. Crowe suggested that the manner in which information is circulated requires consideration. This was left to the President's discretion.
Sundry Matters: Mr. Nitta, speaking in the light of recent experience, pointed out that it is most important that both the Committee of the League and the National Presidents should be kept informed of the names and addresses of the current officers of the various Associations.
Mr. De Graaf wishes to know whether it would be possible to make use of professional simultaneous translations during General Assemblies. Both Mr. Deny and Mr. Nitta pointed out that the costs of same are prohibitive.
Mr. De Graaf further urged the Committee to try and find other ways in order to make the General Assemblies more attractive to participating members. There is agreement that new ways must be found.
Place and Date of next Committee Meeting: Stuttgart, Wednesday January 30,1974,4.00 p.m.
MINUTES OF THE COMMITTEE MEETING
Stuttgart: January 30th, 1974
The Meeting was opened at 4.00 p.m., and the Agenda was discussed point by point.
Dr. Frieder Kocher-Benzing, President
Mr. Stanlcy Crowe, Vice-President
Mr. Glen Dawson, Treasurer
Mr. Fl. Tulkens, President of Honour
Mrs. Fiammetta Olschki-Witt , Messrs. Hans Bagger, Mitsuo Nitta, and Bob de Graaf, Committee Members.
Apologies were received from:
Messrs. Georges A. Deny, Einar Grenholr Pederscn, Menno Hertzberger, Dudley Massey, Fernand De Nobele, and Richard Wormser.
1. Approval of the Minutes of all Meetings in Tokyo.
These Minutes were approved.
2. President's and Secretary's Report.
The President and the Secretary presented their reports, which were related to routine matters.
3. Methods for quicker completion of the Minutes.
It was resolved that in future the Minutes of the League would be presented as recording subjects discussed and the action taken. They will be distributed in either English or French, depending on the request of the individual associations, unless an association requests both versions.
4. Newsletter: Report of General Secretary, based on the decisions made in Tokyo.
The future form and style of the Newsletter was discussed. The General Secretary reported on production-costs, distribution, and style of content. It was agreed that an endeavour would be made to present the Newsletter in a more attractive and readable form.
5. Sales Management of Dictionary, Glass Membership Sign and Directory.
It was agreed that efforts would be made to encourage sales of both the Dictionary and Directory, and increase the use of the I.L.A.B. glass plaque.
6a. Treasurer's Report for 1973.
The Treasurer presented his report. (see hereafter)
6b. Travelling expenses.
The payment of travelling expenses to the Officers and Committee Members was discussed. It was agreed, as proposed by the Treasurer, that since the League was not in a position to pay full travelling expenses. as according to rule 29, a nominal payment should be made. The Committee was of the opinion that in principle this present financial arrangement was not democratic and should be reviewed in the near future.
7. Translation matters and -costs.
It was agreed unanimously that Mr. E. Franco should be invited to act as translator at the President's Mceting in Italy.
8. Bibliographical Prize.
The President remarked that the administrative costs of the Bibliographical Prize seemed disproportionate in relation to the actual amount of the Prize.
9. Round-Table Conference at Brussels.
The President reported that he had represented the League at the Round Table Conference of the E.E.C. in Brussels. It was agreed that Mr. L. Moorthamcrs, President of the Belgian Association, be asked to represent the League at future meetings of the Round-Table of the E.E.C.
10. Preparation of a new Directory.
The issue of a new edition of the Directory was discussed, and it was envisaged that this might appear in 1977. The cooperation of the national associations would be sought.
11. Book Thefts.
As agreed in Tokyo, the Vice-President reported that he had represented the League at the meeting of the A.B.A. Security Committee. He outlined the procedures they had ·adopted and stated that the A.B.A. Security Committee sought cooperation from other national associations in the dissemination and exchange of information. They proposed the setting up of a central source for information and the keeping of a register of stolen books. They
would be willing to discuss matters of security with everyone interested.
12. Confidential List.
The possible issue of the List was discussed in principle.
13. Printing of the Revised Rules.
It was agreed that this should be discussed at the Presidents’ Meeting in Italy.
14. Election of a new Committee Member, replacing Mrs. Olschki-Witt, in Autumn 1974.
The President reported that he was pleased to announce that the S.L.A.M. had nominated Mr. G. Petitot as candidate. Other national associations, not represented on the League Committee had, as is normal, the prerogative to submit candidates if they wish.
15. Next Meetings and Congresses and their Programmes.
It was confirmed that the President's Meeting would be held in Italy, preferably in the week commencing September 23rd, 1974.
16. Sundry Matters.
There being no further business, the meeting closed at 11.00 p.m. with a vote of thanks to the President.
SECURITY AND STOLEN BOOKS
As agreed in Tokyo, and requested by the President of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of Great Britain, the League committee considered the urgent problem of Security and Book Thieves at their meeting in Stuttgart. The Committee was informed that the A.B.A. have found it advantageous to establish a system based on the prompt reporting of losses, a telephone chain among booksellers to quickly pass information, liaison with the police and the keeping of a Register of stolen books and manuscripts.
Since, however, books stolen in one country are quickly moved to another for disposal, it was proposed to enlist the co-operation of as many national associations as possible. It has been suggested that it would be most useful to appoint a representative in each country who would be responsible. It is proposed that a central source for information should be brought into being and a Register set up, and that all possible measures to increase security should be explored.
THIS IS A MATTER OF CONSIDERABLE IMPORTANCE AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE. ASKS EACH NATIONAL PRESIDENT TO WRITE TO HIM AND INFORM HIM IF HIS ASSOCIATION IS WILLING TO CO-OPERATE. [Stanley Crowe, Vice-President].