Swann was founded in 1941 as an auction house specializing in Rare and Antiquarian Books and is now the largest specialist auctioneer of Works on Paper in the world. Swann conducts approximately 40 sales a year, with departments devoted to Books, Autographs, Maps & Atlases, Photographs & Photobooks, Prints & Drawings, Vintage Posters, African-American Fine Art and Illustration Art.
Swann Galleries is a third-generation family business. George S. Lowry—now chairman of the company—became President and Principal Auctioneer in 1970 upon the retirement of founder Benjamin Swann. Nicholas D. Lowry, the current President, joined Swann in 1995 as head of the Vintage Posters department. He was named Principal Auctioneer