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The Paul R.Dupee Jr. '65 Collection on Fireworks Home Page

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The architecture and landscape gardening of the exposition. A pictorial survey of the most beautiful of the architectural compositions of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition with an introduction by Louis Christian Mullgardt ... ,
San Francisco: Paul Elder and Company, 1915.

This "pictorial survey," with descriptive titles written by Maud Wotring, Raymond and John Hamlin, contains photographs of the spectacular firework displays that were part of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition, held in San Francisco during September, 1915. (Not in Philip)

The boy's holiday book, for all seasons. Containing complete instructions for angling, swimming, conjuring, the making of fireworks, cricket, archery, gymnastics, and various games for boys ... ,
London: G. H. Davidson, [ca. 1850].

This second edition of a popular 19th-century collection of games and scientific experiments for boys adds to the resources of both the Smith Magic and the Dupee Fireworks Collections. Its two sections on conjuring contain instructions for 47 tricks, and the section on pyrotechnics is heavily illustrated. (Not in Philip)

Examen du liure des Recreations mathematiques, et de ses problemes en geometrie, mechanique, optique, & catoptrique. Ou sont aussi discutées & restablies plusieurs experiences physiques y proposées ... ,
Rouen: Iean Boulley, 1639.

Chris Philip devoted considerable space in the "introduction" to his Bibliography of firework books discussing a genre of books known as "mathematical recreations." With this edition, attributed to Claude Mydorge (1585-1647), there now are over a dozen 17th-century examples of this series scattered throughout various special collections. (Philip M210.5)

A new and comprehensive edition of the art of making and managing fireworks with safety and ease. Containing instructions for the following: artificial earthquakes, artificial thunder, blue flame, blue candle, balloons, various, crackers, fancy devices, fires, the various sorts, fountains, gerbes, various, lights, various, mines, mortars, marroons, roman candles, rockets of various kinds, rains, gold and silver, stars, various, serpents, various, sparks of all colours, tourbillons, wheels, Catharine wheels, various, wildfires, water fireworks of numerous kinds: with full information relative to the properties, as well as mixing and preparing gunpowder, saltpetre, charcoal, steel and iron filings ... ,
London: T. Hughes, [1824?].

This is one of a series of anonymous, small, and cheaply-printed firework manuals that were sold in London during the early 19th century. Only one other copy of this specific title (at the New York Public Library) was located by Philip. (Philip A170.4)

Pirothecnia entretenida, curiosa y agradable de fuegos recreativos, con varias invenciones y secretos, y algunas ideas generales, para que cada uno pueda formarse otras a su modo. Recogidas y ordenadas por un curioso ... ,
Madrid: En la imprenta de la viuda de Ibarra., 1799.

This rare Spanish guide to recreational fireworks, Entertaining pyrotechnics, curious and agreeable recreative fireworks with various inventions and secrets and some general rules by which anyone can make others of his own invention, was assembled and edited by an anonymous "inquisitive one." It is divided into two parts: the first deals with the chemistry of fire, and the second details methods of preparation for various bombs, firecrackers and rockets. Philip's bibliography locates only two other copies of this publication (British Library and New York Public Library). (Philip P090.1)

Recreations mathématiques. Composées de plusieurs problèmes, plaisans & facetieux, d'arithmetique, geometrie, astrologie, optique, perspectiue, mechanique, chymie, & d'autres rares & curieux secrets: plusieurs desquels n'ont iamais esté imprimez. Premiere et seconde partie. La troisieme partie contient vn recueil de plusieurs gentiles 7 recreatiues inuentions de feux d'artifice: la maniere de faire toutes sortes de fuzees, simples & composees ... ,
Rouen: Chez Charles Osmont, 1629.

This is a very early example of the "mathematical recreations" genre. For the most part it is a page-for-page reprint of Osmont's 1628 edition which also is in the Collection. (Philip E080.9)

Belidor, Bernard Forest de (1697?-1761)
Le bombardier françois ou, Nouvelle methode de jetter les bombes avec precision ... ,
Amsterdam: Aux depens de la Compagnie, 1734.

A first edition of The French Bombardier or, New method of firing bombs with precision (Paris, 1731) already was in the Collection (Philip B080.1). Belidor, professor of mathematics at the Royal Artillery School at La Ferté and, later, Director of the Arsenal, identifies himself on the title-page of this second edition as a Member of the Royal Academies of Science in England and Germany, and a Correspondent of the French Academy. The first part of this work is devoted primarily to firing tables for mortars, while the second contains an essay on gunpowder followed by treatises on "fireworks most widely used in warfare," and "the composition of fireworks for celebrations." (Philip B080.2)

Biringucci, Vannoccio (1480-1539)
La pirotechnie, ou Art du feu, contenant dix livres, ausquels est amplement traicté de toutes sortes & diversité de minieres, fusions & separations des metaux ... des distillations, des mines, & autres feuz artificiels ... ,
Paris: Claude Fremy, 1572.

This is the second edition in French of the first comprehensive treatise on the "pyrotechnic" arts, which first appeared in Italian in 1540. Virtually all of Biringnucci's descriptions are based on his first-hand knowledge gained during various employments as a mine and forge operator, director of the Sienese mint, cannon caster and fortification builder, director of construction at the Duomo, and head of the papal foundry and munition works. Book X contains a section on "Artificial combustible materials ... commonly called fireworks to be used in ... warfare and for festivities on holidays." (Philip B110.7)

Boorsch, Suzanne
Fireworks! Four centuries of pyrotechnics in prints and drawings ... ,
New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000. Gift of Samuel A. Streit

This is the catalogue for an exhibition held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, from June 6-September 17, 2000. (Not in Philip)

Braun, Ernst H. C. (17th Century)
Novissimum fundamentum & praxis artillerie, oder Nach itziger besten mannier neu vermehrter und gantz gründlicher Unterricht ... ,
Danzig: Johann Friedrich Gräfen, 1682.

This is the first edition of The newest theory and practice of artillery, written by an artillery captain in the service of the free city of Danzig. Its final section contains "a complete description of the entertainments and principal fireworks on land and water, and how these are to be made and shown before Kings and Princes." (Philip B200.1)

Brock & Company, C.T.
The History, description & price list of C. T. Brock & Co's "Crystal Palace" Fireworks Ltd. ... ,
London: C. T. Brock & Co, 1938.

This catalogue contains illlustrations of many firework displays that were available from the firm of C.T. Brock & Co. (Not in Philip)

Clitherow, Mary
Mary Clitherow, fire-worker and real engineer ... ,
London: [ca. 1820].

This early 19th-century handbill advertises firework displays that could be "engineered" by Mary Clitherow. She may have been the daughter, or possibly the wife/widow, of Benjamin Clitherow < a late-18-century pyrotechnist who, as noted by Brock, was responsible for firework displays at Marylebone, Cupers Gardens and Ranelagh. His factory in Fleet Street, Bethnal Green, was destroyed by an explosion in 1814. (Not in Philip)

Dotz, Warren, et al.
Firecrackers: the art and history ... ,
Berkeley, CA : Ten Speed Press, 2000. (Not in Philip)


Eschenbacher, August
Die Feuerwerkerei oder die Fabrikation der Feuerwerkskorper. Eine Darstellung der gesammten Pyrotechnik, enthaltend die vorzuglichsten Vorschriften zur Anfertigung sammtlicher Feuerwerksobjecte, als aller Arten von Leuchtfeuern, Sternen, Leuchtkugeln, Raketen, der Luft- und Wasserfeuerwerke, sowie einen Abriss der fur den Feuerwerker wichtigen Grundlehren der Chemie. Fur Pyrotechniker und Dilettanten leichtfasslich dargestellt ... ,
Wien, Pest, & Leipzig: A. Hartleben's Verlag, 1897.

This is a copy of the enlarged third edition of The making of fireworks, from the Hartleben's Chemisch-technische Bibliothek series. (Philip E070.3)

Frézier, Amédée François, 1682-1773
Traité des feux d'artifice pour le spectacle ... Nouvelle edition, toute changée, & considérablement augmentée ... ,
Paris: Nyon Fils, 1747.

Frézier, a military engineer by training, was probably one of the most influential writers on pyrotechnics in the mid-18th century. His Treatise of fireworks for celebration, first printed in 1706, concentrated on the planning and conduct of public pyrotechnic displays rather than on the manufacture of fireworks. This is one of three press-variant imprints for the new and augmented edition of the treatise which was published in 1747. It is a reprint of the Paris, 1747, edition issued by "Ch. Ant. Jombert", which was already in the Collection. The third variant, which is not in our Collection, bears the imprint of "Charles-Antoine Jombert." (Philip F110.5)

Gautier, Hubert (1660-1733)
Instruction pour les Gens de Guerre. Où l'on traite de l'artillerie, des proportions, et renforts, des portées, des assûts, & generalement tout ce que concerne les armes à feu ... ,
Paris: Jacques Cognard, 1692.


bound with

Trew, Abdias (1597-1669)
Ingenieur-Staub Welcher leichlich zuzurichten, und wie such zu tragen mit sonderbarem Vortheil und Behändigkeit ... ,
Nuremberg: Jeremiah Dümler, (ca. 1640-1660).

The artillery section in Gautier's military manual contains descriptions of recreational fireworks. (Not in Philip)

Genovini, Carlo L'art de composer des feux d'artifice, tant pour les grandes places que pour les sales de spectacle ... ,
Maestricht: Jacques Lekens, 1748.

In his History of Fireworks (London: Harrap, 1949), Alan St. Hill Brock notes that "An otherwise unrecorded pyrotechnist, Carlo Genovini, was, in 1762, exhibiting his skill with 'stars, moving suns, a guilloche and reprises of water' from a 'machine' representing the Temple of Liberty, at the Star and Garter Tavern and Gardens, situated on a site roughly corresponding to Eaton Square, Belgravia" (62). This copy has a Russian ownership inscription, "Biblioteki Mikhailov. Artil. Akademii i Uchilishcha", inside the front cover, and is the only work by Genovini listed in the OCLC database. (Not in Philip)

Kuklin, Susan
Fireworks : the science, the art, and the magic ... ,
New York : Hyperion Books for Children, 1996.

A study of the Grucci family of New York and of the modern fireworks industry. It was written for a juvenile audience. (Not in Philip)

Loden, A[dolph?].
Der Lustfeuerwerker, oder Grundliche Anweisung zur Lustfeuerwerkerei, als: Schwarmer, Raketen, Leuchtkugeln, bengalische Flammen, Frosche, Bienenkorb, Pfanenschwanz, Feuerrader, Kanonenschlage und viele andere Feuerwerkerkunste. Nebst einer Anweisung zur Erzeugung des neu erfundenen electrischen Lichtes ... ,
Quedlinburg und Leipzig: Ernst'schen Buchhandlung, 1860.

This is the third edition of The Fireworker, a handbook providing instructions for amateurs in the making of fireworks. Two later editions of this work, the fourth (1862) and sixth (1872), were already in the Collection. (Philip L100.4)

Majendie, V. D.
Reports on firework explosions: 1882-1895 ... ,
London: [1881-1885].


This is collection of reports on firework accidents presented to Parliament by Colonel Majendie, Chief Inspector of Explosives, and other members of the Home Office. Included is one on "The circumstances attending an explosion which occurred in Messrs. C. T. Brock & Co.'s firework factory at South Norwood, on the 24th May 1881." (Not in Philip)
Partington, James Riddick (1886-1965 )
A history of Greek fire and gunpowder ... foreword by Sir Frederick Morgan ; with a new introduction by Bert S. Hall ... ,
Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999.

This is a new edition of a classic and well documented study of Greek fire and other incendiary weapons. Partington also included a large amount of material on Chinese fireworks, gleaned from accounts written by early Jesuit missionaries. (Not in Philip)

Perrinet d'Orval, Jean-Charles, 1707-ca. 1780
Traité des feux d'artifice pour le spectacle et pour la guerre ... ,
Bern: Wagner & Müller,1750.

Perrinet d'Orval, an officer in the French army's Corp of Engineers, issued the first edition of his Essay on fireworks for celebrations and war in 1745, and this revised edition was issued five years later. Later revised editions were published anonymously, under the title Manuel de l'artificier (Neuchatel, 1755; Paris, 1757). (Philip P060.2)
Russell, Michael S.
The chemistry of fireworks ... ,
Cambridge, UK : Royal Society of Chemistry, 2000. (Not in Philip)


Salatino, Kevin
Incendiary art: the representation of fireworks in early modern Europe ... ,
Santa Monica, CA: The Getty Research Institute for the History of Art and the Humanities, 1997.

Catalog of an exhibition held at the Getty Research Institute for the History of Art and the Humanities, Los Angeles, Dec. 13, 1997-Mar. 1, 1998. (Not in Philip)

Schmidlap, Johann
Künstliche und rechtschaffene Feuerwerck zum schimpff, vormals im Druck nie aussgangen ... ,
Nuremberg: P. Kauffmann, 1608.

This is the seventh, and last, German edition of Artificial and honest fireworks for joy < a work which was first printed at Nuremberg in 1560. In one of his catalogues, Lathrop Harper described that text as being "the earliest published work devoted exclusively to fireworks as a form of entertainment. Earlier books have dealt with pyroterchnics ... but only from a military point of view." And Sotheran's Bibliotheca Chemico-Mathematica notes "this would appear to be the first German work on fireworks." Two copies of the 1564 edition (University of Wisconsin and Wellcome Institute, London) and only one of the 1591 edition (Huntington Library, San Marino, CA) are recorded in the OCLC database. (Philip S050.7)

Siemienowicz, Kazimierz (d. 1651)
Grand arte d'artillerie ... ,
Amsterdam: Jan Jansson, 1651.

The Lithuanian-born Siemienowicz, Lieutenant-General of Ordnance in service of the King of Poland, intended to write A Compleat Art of Artillery in two parts, but only the first part was finished before his death. This work deals with cannons, caliber, pyrotechnics, rockets, fire-balls and the construction of firework set-pieces. It contained the first description of multi-stage rockets, numerous "recipes" for firework displays, and was often plagiarized in other firework books for more than a century. The first edition, dedicated to Leopold Wilhelm, archduke of Austria, was published in Latin by Jan Jansson at Amsterdam in 1650. The following year this French translation, edited by Pierre Noizet and dedicated to William Frederick, count of Nassau, was issued by the same printer. A German version by Daniel Elrich, based upon the French edition, appeared at Frankfurt in 1676, and an English version, also based on the French edition, was composed by George Shelvocke, Jr., and published at London in 1729. All four of these editions are now in Special Collections. (Philip S130.2)

Smith, Godfrey, (18th century)
The Laboratory, or School of arts: in which are faithfully exhibited and fully explain'd, I. A variety of curious and valuable experiments in refining, calcining, melting, assaying, casting, allaying, and toughening of gold ... II. Choice secrets for jewellers in the management of gold; in enameling, and the preparation of enamel-colours, with the art of copying precious stones ... III. Several uncommon experiments for casting in silver, copper, brass, tin, steel, and other metals; likewise in wax, plaister of Paris, wood, horn, &c. ... IV. The art of making glass ... together with the method of preparing ... Delft-ware. V. A collection of very valuable secrets for the use of cutlers, pewterers, brasiers, joiners, turners, japanners, book-binders, distillers, lapidaries, limners, &c. VI. A dissertation on the nature and growth of saltpeter ... Translated from the German ... ,
London: John James, 1739.

This is a reissue, with cancel title-page, of the first edition which was published by John James at London in 1738. Even though Smith, who is identified in the preface as "a foreigner, that has had no great share of school, much less of university learning," included a section on the manufacture of saltpeter in this handbook for the "pyrotechnic" crafts, he made no specific mention of "fireworks" in this edition. (Philip S160.2)

The Laboratory, or School of arts ... Translated from the High-Dutch ... ,
London: J. Hodges, J. James and T. Cooper, 1740.

This second edition of The Laboratory is the first one to contain an appendix with "Proper lessons for the preparing and managing all sorts of rockets, crackers, fire wheels, fire globes, balls, stars, &c. in the executing of artificial and recreative fireworks." Five more editions, each one with a "fireworks appendix," were published in London before 1812. (Philip S160.3)
Thybourel, François (fl. 1620)
Recueil de plusiers machines militaires, et feux artificiels pour la guerre, & recreation ... De la diligence de Franc. Thybourel maistre chyrurgien, et de Jean Appier dit Hanzelet ... ,
Pont-a-Mousson: Charles Marchant, 1620.

This first edition of the Description of many military machines, and artificial fireworks for war and recreation

Törner, Johan Johannis (1712-1790)
Juvante altissimo Trino, et indulgente ampliss. senat. philos. Upsal. Dissertationem publicam, de pyrobolica festiva, praeside viro nobilissimo atq[ue] celeberrimo, Dn. Samuele Klingenstierna ... ad examen publicum modeste defert Johannes J. Törner, Ostro-Gothus. Ad d. 26 Maji anni MDCCXXXVIII, in auditorio Gustav. Majori. Horis ante meridiem solitis .. . ,
Uppsala: Apud viduam B. Joh. Hojer, [1738].

This dissertation, dealing with public fireworks festivals, was publicly defended by Johan Törner, a student of Dr. Samuel Klingstierna (1698-1765) at the University of Uppsala, Sweden. (Not in Philip)


Vergnaud, Armand Denis (1791-1885)
Manuel de l'artificier, ou l'art de faire toutes sortes de feux d'artifice a peu de frais, et d'apres les meilleurs procedures ... ,
Paris: Roret, 1826.

Vergnaud is identified on the title-page as a captain in the 2nd regiment of horse-drawn artillery, a former pupil at the École Polytechnique, and a member of the Royal Academy of Sciences at Paris. He wrote numerous elementary scientific and technical manuals dealing with chemical experiments, gunpowder, guilding and glazing, manufacture of paints, geometry and perspective in painting, industrial mechanics, brewing of beer, and popular astronomy for the "Manuels" and "Librairie Encyclopédique" series produced by Roret. This is the first edition of his Fireworker's manual devoted to the art of making all sorts of fireworks cheaply and safely. Its final 9 pages contain a a short but useful bibliography of 16th-19th-century "Ouvrages relatifs a la pyrotechnie, publiés par divers auteurs Français et étrangers." A revised edition, Nouvelle manuel de l'artificier, du poudrier et du salpêtrier ..., was issued by Roret in 1838 and reprinted in facsimile by Léonce-Paget at Paris in 1981, both of these also are in the Dupee Collection. (Philip V040.1)

Weingart, George Washington (1871-1948)
Pyrotechnics ... ,
[Hollywood, CA: Angriff Press?, between 1990 and 1994?]

Weingart, who is generally considered the father of modern American firework practice, issued his first major work, Dictionary of Pyrotechnics, in 1930. This is a contemporary reprint of the second, revised and enlarged, edition of his very popular manual on the manufacture of fireworks, Pyrotechnics, which was originally published in Brooklyn by the Chemical Publishing Company, sometime during 1947. (Not in Philip)

Wood, Robert (1908-)
Victorian delights ... ,
London: Evans Brothers, 1967.

This selection of posters and other broadsides originally issued by John Proctor of Hartpool, includes reprints of some 19th-century advertisments for firework displays. (Not in Philip)

Illustrations and Fireworks Display: C. T. Brock & Co. Crystal Palace Fireworks, Ltd. Album of 34 gouaches on black cartridge paper of fireworks set piece displays and rockets. Ca. 1900.



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