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Bids for Oldest US Book Could Reach $30 Million

  • VOA News

This 2013 photo provided by Old South Church in Boston shows one of two 1640 copies of the Bay Psalm Book belonging to the church, in Boston.

This 2013 photo provided by Old South Church in Boston shows one of two 1640 copies of the Bay Psalm Book belonging to the church, in Boston.

What may be the most valuable book in the world is on public display in New York City.

Known as the Bay Psalm Book, the 400-page volume of Bible verses was printed in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1640, and is considered the first book published in what is now the United States. The book was produced by and for a group of Puritans - English Protestants who were among the first European settlers in America.

Sotheby's auction house estimates the bid price for the Bay Psalm Book will range between $15 million and $30 million when it is sold in November. The book is on display at the auction house until Sunday.

The book being sold is in good condition - better than most of the 10 other copies known to exist, out of the original printing of 1,600.

This copy is one of two owned by the Old South Church in Boston, which will use the money from the sale to finance renovations of its historic building.
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