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Churchill Book Collector

The World Crisis 1911-1918

The World Crisis 1911-1918, complete in four volumes

Winston S. Churchill This is a lovely, improbably bright jacketed set of the elusive Odhams four-volume edition of Churchill's monumental history of The First World War. A quarter of a century before the Second World War endowed him with lasting fame, Winston Churchill played a uniquely critical, controversial, and varied role in the "War to end all wars". Then, being Churchill, he wrote about it. The World Crisis was originally published in six volumes between 1923 and 1931, with the first four volumes spanning the war years 1911-1918 and the final two volumes covering the postwar years 1918-1928 (The Aftermath) and the Eastern theatre (The Eastern Front). In 1939, Odhams Press Limited issued a two-volume edition of the first four (1911-1918) volumes, including Churchill's revisions and new material from the 1931 abridgement. A decade later, after the Second World War, in 1949 Odhams reset the (revised and unabridged) text of the 1939 edition into 4 thinner volumes. Both the bindings and dust jackets of this elusive four volume edition proved exceptionally fragile, the pink and pale yellow jackets virtually always sunned, the red bindings frequently faded or mildewed or both. Here is a rarity, a full, four-volume set featuring very good plus or better, extraordinarily bright dust jackets and near fine volumes. The pink and pale yellow jackets are not only clean and complete, but appear entirely unfaded, with no color shift to the notoriously perishable pink dye of the spines. We note only light wear to hinges and extremities and a few closed tears, the longest a 1.5 inch (3.8 cm) tear to the Vol. III upper front face. The dust jackets are now protected beneath removable, clear, archival covers. The red cloth bindings beneath are beautifully bright and clean, with sharp corners, vivid gilt, and only trivial shelf wear to extremities. The contents are crisp and clean with no previous ownership marks. The books feel unread. The sole flaw is spotting, primarily confined to the otherwise clean page edges. Churchill was in a special position to write the history of the First World War, which nearly cost him both his political career and his corporeal life and in which he played such a critical, controversial, and varied role. First Lord of the Admiralty from 1911 until 1915, after the Dardanelles disaster, Churchill was scapegoated and forced to resign. He spent political exile as a lieutenant colonel leading a battalion in the trenches. Before war's end, Churchill was exonerated and rejoined the Government, foreshadowing the political isolation and restoration he would experience nearly two decades later leading up to the Second World War. Despite Churchill's political recovery, the stigma of the Dardanelles lingered. Hence Churchill had more than just literary and financial compulsion to write his history. Churchill titled his history The World Crisis, and publication of the six volumes spanned the better part of a decade. Frederick Woods wrote: "The volumes contain some of Churchill's finest writing, weaving the many threads together with majestic ease, describing the massive battles in terms which fitly combine relish of the literary challenge with an awareness of the sombre tragedy of the events." Churchill may have meant for his history of the First World War to clear his name, but his history, like so much of his writing, has enduring worth and purpose. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A69.15, Woods/ICS A31(j), Langworth p.123.
The River War

The River War, An Historical Account of the Reconquest of the Soudan

Winston S. Churchill The River War is Churchill's second published book, the largest and lengthiest work of his early, perilous, and distinguished career as a soldier and war correspondent. This first edition, third and final printing of The River War is not only the scarcest issue of the first edition, but also the last unabridged issue to this day. All three printings of the first edition (2,646 copies total) are virtually identical, issued respectively in November 1899, February 1900, and June 1900. Only 151 third printing copies were bound. This particular set is good plus, unrestored in the distinctive original publisher’s bindings. The illustrated navy cloth is scuffed with wear to hinges and extremities. Nonetheless, shelf presentation is quite respectable, the color and gilt uniform in appearance, both between the covers and spines and between the two volumes. Both bindings remain unusually firm for the edition. We collated both volumes with care, confirming the presence of all 57 illustrations, associated tissue guards, and all 34 maps and plans. The original black endpapers are likewise intact, with no sign of the typical cracking at the gutters. We also confirm presence of the publisher’s 32-page catalogue at the end of Volume I. The contents show moderate intermittent spotting, heaviest at the Vol. I half title. The sole previous ownership mark is the same ink stamp of "K. G. Hobbs" on the recto of the blank leaf preceding the Vol. II half title and on the Vol. I half title recto. Published in two massive volumes in 1899, the first edition of this book is compelling in every respect. First, of course, is the inherent merit of the work itself. The text is arresting, insightful, powerfully descriptive, and of enduring relevance. Mohammed Ahmed was a messianic Islamic leader in central and northern Sudan in the final decades of the 19th century. In 1883 the Mahdists overwhelmed the Egyptian army of British commander William Hicks, and Great Britain ordered the withdrawal of all Egyptian troops and officials from the Sudan. In 1885, General Gordon famously lost his life in a doomed defense of the capitol, Khartoum, where he had been sent to lead evacuation of Egyptian forces. Though the Mahdi died in 1895, his theocracy continued until 1898, when General Kitchener reoccupied the Sudan. With Kitchener was a very young Winston Churchill, who participated in the decisive defeat of the Mahdist forces at the Battle of Omdurman in September 1898. In this book about the British campaign in the Sudan, Churchill - a young officer in a colonial British army - is unusually sympathetic to the Mahdist forces and critical of Imperial cynicism and cruelty. This work offers the candid perspective of the future great man of the 20th century from the distinctly 19th century battlefields where Churchill learned to write and earned his early fame. We see a chief architect of the Second World War involved in what has been called the last "genuine" cavalry charge of the British army. The first edition is not only a compelling piece of writing, but also beautiful and bibliographically important. The large, lavish, weighty volumes are strikingly decorated with gilt representations of the Mahdi’s tomb on the spines and a gunboat on the front covers. Each volume is printed on heavy paper with a profusion of illustrations, maps, and plans. They are also increasingly scarce, particularly in the publisher’s original bindings, which often separated under the significant weight of the text blocks. This is one of the few Churchill books for which there was no concurrent U.S. first edition. Bibliographic reference; Cohen A2.1.d, Woods/ICS A2(a.3), Langworth p.29.
A History of the English-Speaking Peoples

A History of the English-Speaking Peoples

Winston S. Churchill This is a notably bright and clean British first edition, first printing set of Churchill's sweeping history and last great work. It is increasingly unusual for us to offer sets this clean. This first edition is regarded as one of the most beautiful productions of Churchill's works, with tall red volumes and striking, illustrated dust jackets. Churchill seems to have taken an active and detailed interest in the aesthetics of the publication. He told his doctor: "it is not necessary to break the back of the book to keep it open. I made them take away a quarter of an inch from the outer margins of the two pages and then add the half-inch so gained to the inner margin." He was clearly satisfied with the result, remarking with pardonable exuberance "It opens like an angel's wings." (Gilbert, Volume VIII, p.1184) Unfortunately, as beautiful as the first editions are, they proved somewhat fragile. The dust jackets commonly suffer significant fading, wear, soiling, and spotting, and the books typically bear spotting and fading of the red-stained top edges. This is a better than near fine set in near fine dust jackets. The red cloth bindings are strikingly square, clean, bright, and tight. We note only a tiny corner bump to the lower Volume IV front cover. The contents border on immaculate. We find no spotting, previous ownership marks, or discernible age-toning. The white fore and bottom edges are clean. The red topstain remains dark apart from mild toning near the headbands – the only thing that prevents our grading the books as "fine". The illustrated dust jackets are complete, unclipped with no loss, tears, or appreciable wear. Moreover, this set has striking shelf presence, with all of the vivid hues hardly dimmed at all on the uncommonly bright jacket spines. A few of the jackets show some trivial soiling to the faces – Volume I to the upper rear face, Volume III to the upper front hinge, Volume IV to the upper front face. All four dust jackets are protected beneath removable, clear, archival covers. Churchill's four-volume epic, A History of the English-Speaking Peoples, was published between 1956 and 1958.The work traces a great historical arc from Roman Britain through the end of the Nineteenth Century, ending with the death of Queen Victoria. Perhaps not coincidentally, this is the very year that saw Churchill conclude his first North American lecture tour, take his first seat in Parliament, and begin to make history himself. The work itself was two decades in the making.The Churchillian conceptions that underpinned it were lifelong. The cultural commonality and vitality of English-speaking peoples animated Churchill throughout his life, from his Victorian youth in an ascendant British Empire to his twilight in the midst of the American century. Churchill began A History of the English-Speaking Peoples in the 1930s, completing a draft of "about half a million words" which was set aside when Churchill returned to the Admiralty and to war in September 1939.The work was fittingly interrupted by an unprecedented alliance among the English-speaking peoples during the Second World War - an alliance Churchill personally did much to cultivate, cement, and sustain.The interruption continued as Churchill bent his literary efforts to his six-volume history, The Second World War, and then his remaining political energies to his second and final premiership from 1951-1955. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A267.1(I-IV).a, Woods/ICS A138(aa), Langworth p.315.
The Great War The Home Library binding

The Great War The Home Library binding, complete in four volumes

Winston S. Churchill This is the first illustrated edition of Churchill's history of the First World War, a full, four-volume set of the striking "Home Library" issue. Churchill originally published his history between 1923 and 1931 in six volumes titled "The World Crisis." Churchill was in a special position to write this history, having served both in the Cabinet and on the Front. Churchill was First Lord of the Admiralty from 1911 until 1915, but after the failure in the Dardanelles and the slaughter at Gallipoli, he was scapegoated by his peers, betrayed by his Prime Minister, and hounded by the Conservatives. Churchill would go from the Cabinet to the Front, serving as a lieutenant colonel leading a battalion in the trenches. Before the war's end, Churchill was exonerated and rejoined the Government, foreshadowing the political isolation and restoration he would experience nearly two decades later leading up to the Second World War. Despite Churchill's political recovery, the stigma of the Dardanelles would linger. Churchill began his history of the First World War compelled, in part, to clear his name and reputation. But the six-volume epic he produced far exceeded its original purpose. This first illustrated edition was published in 26 magazine format parts in 1933 and 1934. "Magazine format" does not do justice to the publication, which is profusely illustrated on very durable, heavy paper. The publisher subsequently offered two different 3-volume binding options. A final publisher offering in 1935 was this four-volume set produced jointly with The Home Library Book Company. This last binding option is the most elaborate and striking. It features silver, gilt, and blind stamped decoration on marbled red boards with beveled edges, marbled endpapers, and gilt top edges. This binding commands attention on the shelf. This is a very good set. The bindings are square and sound with modest wear to extremities and a few tiny, incidental blemishes. Shelf appearance is excellent, with beautifully bright spines. The contents are clean with no spotting and no previous ownership marks. The gilt top edges remain bright with only just a little scuffing. Please note that this large heavy set may require additional postage. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A69.9.d, Woods/ICS A31(dc), Langworth p.11
The River War

The River War, An Historical Account of the Reconquest of the Soudan

Winston S. Churchill The River War is Churchill's second published book, the largest and lengthiest work of his early, perilous, and distinguished career as a soldier and war correspondent. This first edition, third and final printing of The River War is not only the scarcest issue of the first edition, but also the last unabridged issue to this day. All three printings of the first edition (2,646 copies total) are virtually identical, issued respectively in November 1899, February 1900, and June 1900. Only 151 third printing copies were bound. This particular set is worn but complete in the distinctive original publisher’s bindings, suited either to shelve as it is or to a fine rebinding. The illustrated navy cloth is significantly scuffed with shelf wear and minor bumps to extremities, the gilt dulled, and a repair to the spine cloth between the "VOL. I" and the Mahdi’s tomb. Despite these detractions, shelf appearance is presentable, with the cloth color and gilt uniform in appearance between the covers and spines and between the two volumes. Both bindings show typical damage associated with the massive weight of the text blocks. The Volume II binding is still attached and unrepaired, though with splits at both endpapers exposing the mull and the final free endpaper loose. The Volume I front gutter has been reinforced with fabric tape at both the pastedown gutter and the following half-title gutter. The rear pastedown gutter is fully separated, the binding loose from the text block. This is reparable at the discretion of the next owner. The contents distinguish this set. We collated both volumes with care, confirming the presence of all 57 illustrations, associated tissue guards, and all 34 maps and plans. The original black endpapers are likewise present, as is the publisher’s 32-page catalogue at the end of Volume I. We find no previous ownership marks in the set. Spotting is comparatively modest, significant only on the blank frontispiece versos and primarily confined to prelims, with only light, intermittent intrusions in the main text. Published in two massive volumes in 1899, the first edition of this book is compelling in every respect. First, of course, is the inherent merit of the work itself. The text is arresting, insightful, powerfully descriptive, and of enduring relevance. Mohammed Ahmed was a messianic Islamic leader in central and northern Sudan in the final decades of the 19th century. In 1883 the Mahdists overwhelmed the British-commanded Egyptian army and Britain ordered withdrawal. In 1885, General Gordon famously lost his life in a doomed defense of the capitol, Khartoum, where he had been sent to lead evacuation. Though the Mahdi died in 1895, his theocracy continued until 1898, when General Kitchener reoccupied the Sudan. With Kitchener was a very young Winston Churchill, who participated in the decisive defeat of the Mahdist forces at the Battle of Omdurman in September 1898. In this book about the British campaign in the Sudan, Churchill - a young officer in a colonial British army - is unusually sympathetic to the Mahdist forces and critical of Imperial cynicism and cruelty. This work offers the candid perspective of the future great man of the 20th century from the distinctly 19th century battlefields where Churchill learned to write and earned his early fame. The first edition is not only a compelling piece of writing, but also beautiful and bibliographically important. The lavish, weighty volumes are strikingly decorated with gilt representations of the Mahdi’s tomb on the spines and a gunboat on the front covers. The contents are printed on heavy paper with a profusion of illustrations, maps, and plans. They are also increasingly scarce, particularly in the publisher’s original bindings. This is one of the few Churchill books for which there was no concurrent U.S. first edition. Bibliographic reference; Cohen A2.1.d, Woods/ICS A2(a.3), Langworth p.29.
A compelling association copy of Marianne Moore’s Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning book

A compelling association copy of Marianne Moore’s Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning book, Collected Poems, charmingly inscribed by Moore on 29 January 1952 at the National Book Awards ceremony to fellow award recipient James Jones, author of From Here to Eternity

Marianne Moore This first American impression of acclaimed American poet Marianne Moore’s Collected Poems is a remarkable association copy, inscribed on 29 January at the ceremony for the 1952 National Book Awards to fellow award recipient James Jones, author of the iconic Pearl Harbor novel From Here to Eternity. Moore humorously inscribed the front free end paper in eight lines in black ink: "For James Jones | Whom to have met is a major consolation | to Marianne Moore for | intense and unanticipated and | inappropriate unjustified | publicity: | January 29, 1952". The inscription has a charming, work-in-progress feel, the "m to have met" appended to "Who" and the words "and inappropriate unjustified" crossed out. This copy is in very good condition in a like jacket and conforms to all dust jacket, binding, and textual first American impression issue points identified by Abbott (A10.b1, pp.38-39). Publication was 17 December 1951, six weeks before this copy was inscribed. The blue-gray cloth binding is square, clean, and tight with sharp corners and bright spine gilt. We note only a hint of shelf wear along the bottom edge and some wrinkling to spine ends. The contents are clean and bright apart from some transfer browning to the endpapers and spotting confined to the endpapers, first and final leaves, and page edges. The sole previous ownership mark is the author’s inscription. The pink dust jacket is unclipped and complete with toning to the folds, spine, and upper edge. In addition to toning, the lower spine shows a little moisture staining, but there is no corresponding staining to the volume. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, clear archival cover. Accompanying the volume is a monochrome photocopy of a photo of honorees Marianne Moore, James Jones, and Rachel Carson seated together at the National Book Awards dinner at which Moore inscribed this volume to Jones. One of the luminaries of American Modernist poetry, Marianne Moore (1887-1972) was described by T. S. Eliot as "one of those few who have done the language some service in my lifetime." Moore began writing poetry while she studied at Bryn Mawr College in biology and histology. In 1918 she and her mother moved to New York City where her former classmate and fellow poet H.D. (Hilda Doolittle) introduced her to the members of the Greenwich Village avant-garde community. By 1921 Moore was working at the New York Public Library and published her first collection simply titled Poems. The following decades saw prodigious output from Moore as she continued to publish both her own poetry and the work of others as editor of the literary magazine Dial. Her work is noted for its humor, rich visual descriptions, and innovations in form and style. Collected Poems was published in 1951, bringing her work, already treasured among the intelligentsia, before a wider public. The collection received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry as well as the third National Book Award for Poetry. At the ceremony for the latter award, Moore inscribed the volume we here offer. The New York Times’s report on the three 1952 National Book Award recipients noted the disparity in their respective sales, with Jones’s From Here to Eternity with over 250,000 sales, Rachel Carson’s The Sea Around Us selling 180,000, and Moore’s collection selling fewer than 5,000. Displaying the same self-deprecating humor on display in her inscription to Jones, Moore responded: "I’m surprised it sold one." The award was given to Moore in recognition of her lifelong contributions with the judges calling her "one of the few true inventors of poetry of our time." Atypical for a poet, she gained a sort of celebrity status in her late life. Her unusual daily uniform, a cape and tricorn hat, coupled with her long and respected output, lent the elderly poet a mythic status among her peers and made her a figure of curiosity to the public. Following her death in 1972 The New York Times honored her with a full-page obituary.
Death on the Nile

Death on the Nile

Agatha Christie This is a first printing of the first American edition of one of Hercule Poirot’s most famous cases, Death on the Nile. This example is very good minus in a good plus dust jacket. The original illustrated, orange-bronze-colored cloth binding remains tight, featuring illustrations of waves, a pyramid, and a sphinx. There is some wear to the extremities, slight wrinkling to the spine, and some fading to the dark blue topstain. The contents are clean, bright, and free of markings with some transfer browning to the endpapers. The unclipped dust jacket retains its original "$2.00" front flap price. The jacket colors remain vibrant with only some minor toning to the spine. Nonetheless, the jacket shows wear, particularly to the extremities and flap folds, as well as some loss to the head of the spine affecting "AG" in the author’s printed name. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, clear, archival cover. Dame Agatha Christie (1890-1976) is the best-selling novelist of all time, most well known for her works of mystery featuring detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple. Born to a wealthy family in Devon, Agatha Christie spent her happy childhood within the pages of books, having taught herself to read at an early age. Following her father’s death she was sent to a finishing school in Paris. Upon her return to England in 1910 she found her mother ill so they set off to the warmer climate of Cairo for her recovery. This first experience in Egypt was a formative one for the future writer; archaeology, Egyptology, and the Middle East would serve as settings for many of her most famous works, this one prominent among them. Though Christie was writing through the 1910s and had a number of short stories published under pseudonyms, it would be a decade before her first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, was published. This novel was also the debut of Christie’s most famous character, the fastidious and logical Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot, who would be featured in 33 novels, more than 50 short stories, and one play. By the time Death on the Nile was published in 1937 Christie was a celebrated author and the release of a new Poirot mystery was a highly anticipated event. In Death on the Nile a peaceful Nile River cruise is interrupted by murder. Luckily the passengers include Poirot who logically winds up all of the clues for the reader in the novel’s final chapter. In 1978 the book was adapted into a feature film with a cast including Bette Davis, Peter Ustinov, Maggie Smith, and Angela Lansbury, and it will be adapted again in an upcoming film directed by Kenneth Branagh, scheduled for release in 2020. Agatha Christie was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1956 in honor of her contribution to British literature. Today Christie’s titles have sold over two billion copies, placing her behind only Shakespeare and the Bible in sales. Her play The Mousetrap has the longest continual initial run of any play, having been performed continuously in London’s West End since its opening in 1952.
Churchill Lecture: An Address by Gerald R. Ford at the English-Speaking Union

Churchill Lecture: An Address by Gerald R. Ford at the English-Speaking Union, London, England, November 30, 1983, the signed limited first edition, copy #85 of 100

President Gerald R. Ford This is a pristine, as-new copy of the strikingly beautiful signed and numbered limited first edition of President Gerald R. Ford's November 30, 1983 address to the English-Speaking Union in London. One of 100 copies issued thus, this is copy #85, signed by President Ford on the half title, hand-numbered on the limitation page, bound with a vellum spine and mahogany patterned paper boards, and issued in a gilt-stamped linen clamshell case. This limited edition should not to be confused with the less elaborate and more common issue of 250 copies bound in linen and decorative paper. The English-Speaking Union (ESU) is an international educational charity founded in 1918. Winston Churchill was Chairman of the ESU from 1921 to 1925 and The Churchill Lecture is the most prestigious event in the annual ESU programme. The Churchill medal of honour is awarded every year at the annual Churchill Lecture, where the awardee delivers the address. On November 30, 1983 President Gerald R. Ford delivered the annual address on "the problems, perils, challenges and opportunities confronting the English-speaking peoples of today." Ford's substantial lecture is reflective, intelligent, witty, and repeatedly references Churchill. To convey to a new generation the rectitude and prudence of vigorous and, when necessary, armed international engagement, Ford discloses his own pre-WWII isolationist perspective. Ford recalls listening to Churchill's famous ".we shall never surrender" Dunkirk evacuation speech in June 1940 while driving his "old Model A home to Michigan from Yale Law School" as "an eminently draftable young American" and feeling that "Churchill was still talking the language of World War I." By 1942, Ford would enlist in the U.S. Navy, serving with distinction in the Pacific theatre, earning an Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one silver star and four bronze stars, a Philippine Liberation Ribbon with two bronze stars, an American Campaign Medal, and a World War II Victory Medal. Ford also recalls being a second term Congressman present during Churchill's third and final address to the United States Congress on January 17, 1952. History has been kinder to Churchill than to Ford. Churchill was called upon to lead his nation in the face of tyranny and oppression. To Ford fell the comparatively thankless and less ennobling task of protecting his nation from its own political and economic excesses. Gerald R. "Gerry" Ford Jr. (1913-2006) was the 38th President of the United States. A gifted athlete, Ford turned down professional football career opportunities in favor of Yale University and a law degree. Following his distinguished service in the Second World War Ford swiftly found his footing in civilian life; he was both married and elected to Congress by the end of 1948. He would be re-elected to his Grand Rapids, Michigan seat 12 times. His ascendance to the Presidency took a tumultuous and dizzying trajectory unique in the annals of American politics. Ford was House Minority Leader in October 1973 when the resignation of scandal-plagued Vice President Spiro Agnew led to Ford's appointment to take his place. Less than a year later, on August 9, 1974, Ford became President when Nixon himself resigned in disgrace. Ford's pardon of both Nixon and Vietnam draft dodgers, economic malaise, an energy crisis, the ignominious end of the Vietnam War, and the internal and external challenges of the Republican Party all contributed to Ford's defeat by Carter in 1976. Though the pardon cost Ford dearly, the judgment of history appears to be slowly taking a more sympathetic view of the necessity, which less and less weighs against Ford's lifelong reputation for integrity. Signed, numbered, and finely bound first edition.
It's Up to the Women

It’s Up to the Women

Eleanor Roosevelt This is a first edition, first printing of Eleanor Roosevelt’s first book, It’s Up to the Women. Eleanor published this book in 1933, concurrent with the first inauguration of her husband, Franklin D. Roosevelt, in part as a declaration of her intended transformative approach to the role of First Lady. This example is very good in a good plus dust jacket. The light teal cloth binding printed in dark teal and black is clean, square, and tight with sharp corners and only some slight rubbing at the top of the decorative teal stripe on the front cover. The contents are remarkably clean and free of spotting or markings, as are the deckled fore and bottom edges. An almost imperceptible hint of spotting is confined to the otherwise clean top edge. The dust jacket is unclipped, retaining its original "$1.25" price with bright front and rear panels, although though the blue of the title and center stripe on the spine has faded. Minor loss is limited to the spine ends, corners, and the top edge of the rear face. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, clear archival cover. Called "First Lady of the World" by President Truman for her humanitarian work, Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962) was the first US Representative to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, a prolific writer (including dozens of books, hundreds of articles and editorials, and a daily newspaper column from 1936-1962), and the longest-serving first lady of the United States. When her husband, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, was running for president in the fall of 1932 as the likely election winner, Eleanor had already independently made for herself a name in Democratic politics as a spokesperson for the newly enfranchised woman voter, labor advocate in the midst of the Great Depression, a vocal promoter of civil rights, and the head of the Women’s Division of the Democratic National Committee since 1928. She feared her impending role as First Lady, a heretofore purely social and apolitical role, would necessitate a quieting of her convictions and force her to step down from her political positions; she even told friends that she would divorce FDR should he win rather than lose her independence. After FDR’s unprecedented victory securing 42 of 48 states, Eleanor made the decision to transform her new position rather than yield to it. In January she announced that she would write and publish a book before the March inauguration. The result was It’s Up to the Women which was, as The Hartford Courant called it, "a book of general counsel and advice on pretty well everything, from dish-washing to high diplomacy." Topics ranged from recipes for "hot stuffed eggs" to advice for women in negotiating salaries equal to their male counterparts to council for women seeking public office. Critically, Eleanor tied her husband’s promise of a New Deal to the civic engagement of the American woman. She wrote, "If women are really going to awake to their civic duties then we may indeed be seeing the realization of a really new deal for the people." (p.201)
New Hampshire: A Poem with Notes and Grace Notes Signed and dated by Frost in Amherst in the year of publication

New Hampshire: A Poem with Notes and Grace Notes Signed and dated by Frost in Amherst in the year of publication

Robert Frost, with four woodcut illustrations by J. J. Lankes This is the first edition, first printing of the book that won Robert Frost his first Pulitzer Prize. Frost signed and dated this copy in black in two lines on the front free endpaper: "Robert Frost | Amherst December 1923". This U.S. first edition was published in October 1923. It is a lovely production, bound in quarter dark green linen cloth over dark green paper-covered boards, with a gold paper label on the front cover illustrated and printed in black, and gilt print and decoration on the spine. The contents are printed on untrimmed white wove paper with gilt top edge, illustrated with four woodcuts by J. J. Lankes (1884-1960), and bound with mottled tan endpapers and yellow and green head and foot bands. This signed first edition is in good plus condition. The lovely but fragile publisher’s binding is square and tight, though worn through at the corners, with minor overall scuffing and soiling, and some fraying at the spine ends. The contents show no spotting. Moderate age-toning is most evident to the page edges. On the front free endpaper, below the author’s inscription, is a gift inscription in blue ink reading "Jack to Dad Xmas 1923." We may reasonably speculate that the son secured this inscribed copy for his father. The only other previous ownership artifacts are two clippings. Tipped onto the frontispiece verso is The Atlantic’s original 1923 review of New Hampshire by M. A. DeWolfe Howe. A newspaper clipping, tipped onto the page bearing the list of Frost’s previously published titles, must date to 1939, as it announces that Frost will hold the first Ralph Waldo Emerson fellowship in poetry at Harvard. Iconic American poet and four-time Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Lee Frost (1874-1963), the quintessential poetic voice of New England, was actually born in San Francisco and first published in England. When Frost was eleven, his newly widowed mother moved east to Salem, New Hampshire, to resume a teaching career. There Frost swiftly found his poetic voice, infused by New England scenes and sensibilities. Promising as both a student and writer, Frost nonetheless dropped out of both Dartmouth and Harvard, supporting himself and a young family by teaching and farming. Ironically, it was a 1912 move to England with his wife and children – "the place to be poor and to write poems" – that finally catalyzed his recognition as a noteworthy American poet. There, publication of A Boy’s Will (1913) and North of Boston (1914) led to critical recognition. Accolades met his return to America at the end of 1914 and by 1917 a move to Amherst "launched him on the twofold career he would lead for the rest of his life: teaching whatever "subjects" he pleased at a congenial college and "barding around," his term for "saying" poems in a conversational performance." (ANB) Amherst College was home to Frost for the better part of two decades over a span of more than three. He joined the faculty in 1917 and received an honorary M.A. from Amherst the following year. He left Amherst in 1920, but returned in 1923 – the year New Hampshire was published – for another two years. Frost would return yet again to Amherst College in 1926 and remain until 1938. Following Frost’s death in 1963, his public service was held at Amherst’s Johnson Chapel. In 1924, New Hampshire won Frost the Pulitzer Prize "For the best volume of verse published during the year by an American author". It was to be the first of his eventual four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry (1931, 1937, and 1943). In an honor accorded few poets, Frost would achieve significant fame and recognition in his lifetime. Frost spent the final decade and a half of his life as "the most highly esteemed American poet of the twentieth century" with a host of academic and civic honors to his credit. Two years before his death he became the first poet to read in the program of a U.S. Presidential inauguration (Kennedy, January 1961). Bibliographic reference: Crane A6
The White Album

The White Album, a pre-publication publisher’s Advance review copy with the original typed and printed review slip

Joan Didion This is a first edition, first printing, pre-publication publisher’s review copy of Joan Didion’s iconic essay collection, The White Album. This copy is near fine in a near fine dust jacket. Laid in is a card from Simon & Schuster. Typed in four lines are the title, author, price, and publication date of "JUNE 19 1979". The date on this "Advance copy" slip indicates pre-publication circulation, confirmed by the publisher’s printed stipulation "The Publishers would appreciate observance of the release date, and two copies of your review". The review slip is now protected within a removable, clear, archival sleeve. The quarter blue cloth over red paper-covered boards is clean, square, and tight with only a hint of light sunning to the extreme top edges. The contents are pristine - bright, clean, and free of spotting or markings. The unclipped dust jacket retains its original $9.95 price and is crisp and bright. The only flaw to the jacket noted is a .5 inch closed tear to the bottom of the front panel. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, clear, archival cover. Called the "poet of the Great Californian Emptiness" by Martin Amis, Joan Didion (1934- ) remains one of the foremost voices of the New Journalism style and a quintessential chronicler of California culture in the 1960s and 70s. Didion began her writing career after her graduation from UC Berkeley when an essay contest sponsored by Vogue won her a position as a research assistant at the magazine. Over the next seven years Didion rose through the Vogue offices to a position of associate feature editor. Homesickness for California prompted the writing of her first novel Run, River, set in her hometown of Sacramento, a story of a murder, marriage, and the history of the state. During the editing process Didion enlisted the help of her friend, the writer John Gregory Dunne. One year after her novel’s publication in 1963, the two writers were married and Didion returned to California. In Los Angeles Didion found herself in an ideal position to turn her observations to the seismic social and cultural upheavals of the 60s. The White Album collects twenty of Didion’s essays examining topics as diverse as the Getty Museum, biker gangs, the counter culture, the governor’s mansion, and her fascination with water in the arid landscape of Los Angeles. Following the famous opening line of the title essay, "We tell ourselves stories in order to live", Didion weaves together her encounters with the famous and infamous including Jim Morrison, Huey Newton, Nancy Reagan, and Manson family member Linda Kasabian with her personal narrative, her memories of life in California, her experiences as a journalist, and her breakdown and stay in a psychiatric facility in 1968. The book was published to immediate critical acclaim with The New York Times saying, "California belongs to Joan Didion." In 2012 Publisher’s Weekly selected the title essay as one of the Top 10 Essays since 1950, and in 2018 the essay was adapted for the stage.
New Hampshire: A Poem with Notes and Grace Notes A copy with compelling bookseller provenance

New Hampshire: A Poem with Notes and Grace Notes A copy with compelling bookseller provenance

Robert Frost, with four woodcut illustrations by J. J. Lankes This is the first trade edition, first printing of the book that won Robert Frost his first Pulitzer Prize. In addition to being notably clean, this copy has lovely provenance. The first edition is a lovely production, bound in quarter dark green linen cloth over dark green paper-covered boards, with a gold paper label on the front cover illustrated and printed in black, and gilt print and decoration on the spine. The contents are printed on untrimmed white wove paper with gilt top edge, illustrated with four woodcuts by J. J. Lankes (1884-1960), and bound with mottled tan endpapers and yellow and green head and foot bands. Condition of this copy is very good, particularly noteworthy for shelf presentation and atypically clean contents. The lovely but fragile publisher’s binding is square and tight, with no fading or appreciable soiling, beautifully bright gilt spine print, and handsome shelf presentation. We note light scuffing to the paper-covered boards, and trivial shelf wear to extremities, including the cloth at the spine ends, and bumps at the lower front cover corner and the center bottom edge of the rear cover. The contents are excellent, notably bright and clean with no spotting and no appreciable age-toning. The sole previous ownership mark is the lovely, illustrated circular sticker of the legendary bookshop The Sunwise Turn. Founded and operated by Mary Mowbray-Clarke and Madge Jenison, Sunwise Turn was located in midtown Manhattan from 1916 until it closed in 1927."One of the first bookstores in the U.S. to be owned by women, Sunwise Turn sponsored lectures by Robert Frost, Theodore Dreiser, and Amy Lowell among others.It was the first "gallery" to exhibit the work of the painter Charles Burchfield among other new artists of the time, which perhaps influenced the artistic tastes of their young intern named Peggy Guggenheim." (New York Bound Books website) Iconic American Robert Lee Frost (1874-1963), the quintessential poetic voice of New England, was actually born in San Francisco and first published in England. When Frost was eleven, his newly widowed mother moved east to Salem, New Hampshire, to resume a teaching career. There Frost swiftly found his poetic voice, infused by New England scenes and sensibilities. Promising as both a student and writer, Frost nonetheless dropped out of both Dartmouth and Harvard, supporting himself and a young family by teaching and farming. A 1912 move to England with his wife and children – "the place to be poor and to write poems" – finally catalyzed his recognition as a noteworthy American poet. There A Boy’s Will was published in 1913. A convocation of critical recognition, introduction to other writers, and creative energy supported the English publication of Frost’s second book, North of Boston, in 1914, after which "Frost’s reputation as a leading poet had been firmly established in England, and Henry Holt of New York had agreed to publish his books in America." Accolades met his return to America at the end of 1914 and by 1917 a move to Amherst "launched him on the twofold career he would lead for the rest of his life: teaching whatever "subjects" he pleased at a congenial college and "barding around," his term for "saying" poems in a conversational performance." (ANB) New Hampshire was published in October 1923 and, in 1924, won Frost the Pulitzer Prize "For the best volume of verse published during the year by an American author". It was to be the first of his eventual four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry (1931, 1937, and 1943). In an honor accorded few poets, Frost would achieve significant fame and recognition in his lifetime. Frost spent the final decade and a half of his life as "the most highly esteemed American poet of the twentieth century" with a host of academic and civic honors to his credit. Two years before his death he became the first poet to read in the program of a U.S. Presidential inauguration (Kennedy, January 1961). Bibliographic reference: Crane A6
Bolts of Melody: New Poems of Emily Dickinson

Bolts of Melody: New Poems of Emily Dickinson, the annotated copy of Pulitzer Prize winner Odell Shepard

Emily Dickinson This first edition is rendered noteworthy by its history, having been originally owned, signed, and intriguingly annotated by Pulitzer Prize winner Odell Shepard. The volume is very good in a very good minus jacket. The unclipped jacket retains its original $3.00 price as well as the rich blue and burgundy front panel and spine colors. Modest wear to the jacket is most pronounced at extremities, with small losses at the spine ends and flap folds. The dust jacket is protected under a removable, clear archival cover. The green cloth binding is square, tight, and clean with bright spine gilt and light shelf wear. Spotting is limited to a hint on the upper edge and the endpapers, the latter showing transfer browning corresponding to the dust jacket flaps. The contents are bright and clean and testify to wartime provenance with a copyright page statement of "conformity with Government regulations for saving paper." The sole previous owner name is that of "Odell Shepard" inked on the front pastedown and dated "1945". Throughout the volume Shepard annotated Dickinson’s poems in pencil. Some comments are mere associations - "suggests George Meredith in thought", "Desdemona", "Suggests Frost and Robinson", etc. But there is also rhapsodic praise of Dickinson’s poetry - "This, as Emily herself said, ‘takes the top of one’s head off.’ Astonishing force, compressed" next to poem 540. And "Oh, what a poem! Feminine Blake. For once, technically perfect, but, as often, it goes beyond perfection." next to poem 429. Shepard marked his approval of many poems with check marks, lining, and circling. Though one of America’s most recognized and most prolific poets, Emily Dickinson (1850-1886) had fewer than a dozen of the more than 1,800 poems she wrote published within her lifetime. Dickinson bade her sister to burn her correspondence following her death but left no instructions for the numerous notebooks and scraps of paper upon which she wrote and worked her poetry. The ensuing drama of publication lasted more than a century. Consequently this volume, published 60 years after the poet’s death could still boast "new" poems. This volume’s original owner, Odell Shepard (1884-1967) was an American poet, politician, and academic. In 1938 he won the Pulitzer Prize in Biography for Pedler’s Progress, his work on the life of Bronson Alcott, an American transcendentalist and father of one of Dickinson’s most noted peers. He owned this book while he was Professor of English at Trinity College, where he was mentor to poet Abbie Huston Evans. Shepard edited the works of Henry David Thoreau, Louisa May Alcott, and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in addition to writing his own poetry. The editors of this volume merit mention for their interesting role in Dickinson’s life and publishing. Mabel Loomis Todd (1856-1932) had an affair with Emily Dickinson’s elder brother William Austin Dickinson when both of them were married. She never met the poet but did play piano for her, with Emily Dickinson remaining out of view on the stairs to listen and then sending a poem in to Mabel to thank her. Todd is known to have edited and adapted Dickinson’s poems during the publications she oversaw, including removal of references and dedications to Dickinson’s sister-in-law Susan, wife to Todd’s lover. Todd put out three series of Dickinson’s poems between 1890 and 1896 (the first two in collaboration with Thomas Wentworth Higginson) and Todd’s lectures helped bring Dickinson’s poetry and personality to light for American audiences. She also printed later editions of letters and poetry with her daughter, Millicent Todd Bingham, up until Mabel’s death. Millicent was the first woman to receive a doctorate in geology and geography from Harvard. Julie Dobrow’s new biography of the two editors, After Emily: Two Remarkable Women and the Legacy of America’s Greatest Poet shows that while neither woman ever met Dickinson, they substantially shaped and illuminated the poet’s legacy.
Persian Pictures

Persian Pictures

Gertrude Bell, Preface by Sir E. Denison Ross This first American edition of Gertrude Bell’s Persian Pictures was bound from the sheets printed in England for the second British edition - the first published under the author’s name. In 1892 Gertrude Bell, a twenty-four-year old Oxford graduate, traveled to Persia with her Aunt to visit her uncle, Sir Frank Lascelles, a newly appointed Minister in Teheran. The result of her travels was Safar Nameh, Persian Pictures: A Book of Travel, a slim volume published anonymously in 1894 to little response. In the following decades Bell achieved political influence as well as notoriety as a travel writer, prompting renewed interest in her scarce early works. The preface of this posthumously published volume written by Sir E. Denison Ross notes "the only copy known to me is that from which the present edition is being made." This first American edition was published simultaneously with the second British edition, both printed on heavy, laid paper sheets, the American edition featuring machine deckled fore edges. This copy is very good in a like dust jacket. A suggestion of ex-library status is limited to small remnants of what might have been labels on the rear pastedown and lower dust jacket spine. The quarter tan cloth and raspberry paper-covered binding is square and tight with sharp corners and only hints of shelf wear and sunning to extremities. The contents are clean, with no previous ownership marks. Minimal age-toning affects only the page edges, with light spotting to the top edge. The unclipped dust jacket retains the "$3.00" front flap price and shows only minor loss at the corners and spine ends and skinned paper and a small hole at the lower spine where a label was apparently removed. The jacket spine is lightly toned and the jacket protected beneath a removable, clear archival cover. Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell, CBE (1868-1926) was the intriguing and influential adventurer, scholar, writer, and diplomat who, like her contemporary T. E. "Lawrence of Arabia" did much to frame and shape the Middle East during and after the First World War. Raised amid industrialist family wealth, Bell lost her mother at age three, increasing a "sense of independence and self-reliance" perhaps already inherent to the "physically restless and intellectually gifted" child.By her mid-twenties – during the trip that prompted her to write this book - the unmarried Bell discovered intellectual and emotional fascination with the Middle East. "Outstanding literary and linguistic skills" coupled with "determination, bravery, physical strength, and endurance" invigorated contributions to travel literature, translation, archaeology, and architecture, eventually evolving into engagement in the region’s socio-political currents.By the First World War, Bell became "a voluntary agent of Britain’s interests in the Middle East" and assumed her defining role – as "a woman trying to break one of the most challenging barriers of her time: the physical conquest of the desert and the decoding of the moral and ethical code of its inhabitants."(ODNB) Bell’s linguistic and tribal knowledge made her indispensable to the Arab Bureau (the Cairo intelligence office of the British government during the First World War), contributing articles to the Arabian Report and the famous Arab Bulletin. After the First World War, Bell remained an influential figure, helping persuade Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill to maintain a British presence in Iraq, helping secure the throne for the King of Iraq, and facilitating the Anglo-Iraqi treaty. One of her last accomplishments was to gather funds for a national museum in Baghdad, which was inaugurated in 1923 and installed in a permanent building in 1926, the year she died. Like the contemporary figure to whom she is often compared, Lawrence of Arabia, Bell was disappointed in some of her hopes for the region and died comparatively young. Bell was played by actress Nicole Kidman in the 2015 film Queen of the Desert.
Persian Pictures

Persian Pictures

Gertrude Bell, Preface by Sir E. Denison Ross This first American edition of Gertrude Bell’s Persian Pictures was bound from the sheets printed in England for the second British edition - the first published under the author’s name. In 1892 Gertrude Bell, a twenty-four-year old Oxford graduate, traveled to Persia with her Aunt to visit her uncle, Sir Frank Lascelles, a newly appointed Minister in Teheran. The result of her travels was Safar Nameh, Persian Pictures: A Book of Travel, a slim volume published anonymously in 1894 to little response. In the following decades Bell achieved political influence as well as notoriety as a travel writer, prompting renewed interest in her scarce early works. The preface of this posthumously published volume written by Sir E. Denison Ross, notes "the only copy known to me is that from which the present edition is being made." This first American edition was published simultaneously with the second British edition, both printed on heavy, laid paper sheets, the American edition featuring machine deckled fore edges. This copy is very good minus in a good plus dust jacket. The quarter tan cloth and raspberry paper-covered binding is square and tight with some toning and light shelf wear to extremities, most pronounced at the corners. The contents are clean and free of previous ownership markings and spotting, though modestly age-toned. A partial, cosmetic split at the front pastedown gutter does not affect binding integrity. The scarce, illustrated dust jacket is clean with bright front and rear panels and moderate spine toning. Some closed tears are unobtrusive under the removable, clear archival cover. Loss is limited to a neatly price-clipped upper front flap and shallow chips along the extremities, most pronounced at the head and foot of the spine. Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell, CBE (1868-1926) was the intriguing and influential adventurer, scholar, writer, and diplomat who, like her contemporary T. E. "Lawrence of Arabia" did much to frame and shape the Middle East during and after the First World War. Raised amid industrialist family wealth, Bell lost her mother at age three, increasing a "sense of independence and self-reliance" perhaps already inherent to the "physically restless and intellectually gifted" child.By her mid-twenties – during the trip that prompted her to write this book - the unmarried Bell discovered intellectual and emotional fascination with the Middle East. "Outstanding literary and linguistic skills" coupled with "determination, bravery, physical strength, and endurance" invigorated contributions to travel literature, translation, archaeology, and architecture, eventually evolving into engagement in the region’s socio-political currents.By the First World War, Bell became "a voluntary agent of Britain’s interests in the Middle East" and assumed her defining role – as "a woman trying to break one of the most challenging barriers of her time: the physical conquest of the desert and the decoding of the moral and ethical code of its inhabitants."(ODNB) Bell’s linguistic and tribal knowledge made her indispensable to the Arab Bureau - the Cairo intelligence office of the British government during the First World War, contributing articles to the Arabian Report and the famous Arab Bulletin. After the First World War, Bell remained an influential figure, helping persuade Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill to maintain a British presence in Iraq, helping secure the throne for the King of Iraq, and facilitating the Anglo-Iraqi treaty. One of her last accomplishments was to gather funds for a national museum in Baghdad, which was inaugurated in 1923 and installed in a permanent building in 1926, the year she died. Like the contemporary figure to whom she is often compared, Lawrence of Arabia, Bell was disappointed in some of her hopes for the region and died comparatively young. Bell was played by actress Nicole Kidman in the 2015 film Queen of the Desert.
Red Rising

Red Rising, the publisher’s pre-publication Advance Reader’s Edition

Pierce Brown This is a pre-publication Advance Reader’s Edition of the author’s acclaimed debut novel. Condition is better than very good plus, the wraps binding square, clean, bright, and tight with only trivial wear to extremities and no spine creasing, the contents clean and unmarked except for some incidental soiling to the page edges. The binding’s black wraps are printed and illustrated in white and red. Del Rey’s circular "ADVANCE READER’S EDITION" device appears on both the lower front cover and spine, stipulating "NOT FOR SALE" and "ON SALE 2.18.14". While the front cover art emulates that of the eventual first edition dust jacket, the rear cover is filled with details about the author’s "National Marketing Campaign" and states "These are uncorrected proofs. Please do not quote for publication until you check your copy against the finished book." Within, the first page, preceding the half-title, is a lengthy facsimile letter signed by Del Rey Senior Vice President Scott Shannon introducing the book: "Some science fiction and fantasy stories have the power to entrance and move every reader who encounters them We felt that power when reading Pierce Brown’s Red Rising, which is why it is our priority title for the span. Red Rising is the story of a society in a desolate near-future, riven by class conflict and shaken by tremors of impending revolution. But more than that it’s the story of Darrow – a secret revolutionary " In a genre as deeply and repeatedly imagined as science fiction, it can be hard to find something new. Indeed, one can catalogue all-too familiar elements in Red Rising - stifling social hierarchies enabled by near-future technology and enforced eugenics, Greco-Roman neo-classicism, interplanetary conflict, subversive heroes, socially improbable alliances and affections, brutal conditioning of youth to cultivate superior ability, depraved genius, liberating rebellion. However, seldom are these elements so compellingly assembled. The world conceived and introduced by Brown in Red Rising now populates four sequels, the story continuing to develop with the same propelling narrative force and engaging complexity introduced in this, the first book. Pre-publication Advance Reader's Edition.
Selected Poems Signed and dated by Frost on 10 October 1926

Selected Poems Signed and dated by Frost on 10 October 1926

Robert Frost This is the March 1926 second printing of the first edition of the first compilation volume of Frost’s poems. This copy is not only jacketed, but signed and dated by Frost, who inked the upper front free endpaper recto in three lines: "Robert Frost | Pittsfield Mass | October 10 1026". The only other mark we find in the book, on the same page as Frost’s signature, is the ink-stamped name "Jeanette C. Dickie". Selected Poems was first published in March 1923. The copyright page of this second printing of the first edition specifies "March, 1926", preceded only by "Copyright, 1923". This second printing of course precedes the second, revised edition of Selected Poems, published in November 1928. This volume was a lovely production, bound in a quarter dark green linen cloth with both print and a publisher’s device in gilt over green paper-covered boards impressed with a pebbled pattern and decorated with a recurring gilt wreath design. The contents are bound with cream endpapers and feature the top edge stained green and untrimmed fore and bottom edges. The dust jacket is printed on medium green paper, printed in dark green with a decorative ruled border and publisher’s device on the front face. Condition of this signed and dated copy is good plus in a fair dust jacket. The lovely but fragile binding remains square and tight, though worn through at the corners, with minor overall scuffing and soiling, and some fraying at the spine ends. The contents are clean with spotting and age-toning evident only at the untrimmed fore and bottom edges. The correct, second printing dust jacket is substantially complete, though significantly worn, with modest loss to the spine ends and corners, wrinkling and lesser wear to the edges, and a full split running the length of the front hinge. Consonant with the 1926 second printing date, the dust jacket front flap advertises publication of New Hampshire billed as "Awarded the 1923 Pulitzer Poetry Prize". The first edition of Selected Poems was published on 15 March 1923. "Frost was originally against the idea of a volume of selected poems; he wanted his new books of poetry to have priority, and he believed reviewers would see such a collection only as a plea for attention. In contrast, reviews primarily praised Selected Poems and found the volume important as the first selection of his published work." (The Robert Frost Encyclopedia, p.320) Eight months later, in October 1923, Frost published New Hampshire, which won him his first Pulitzer Prize for poetry. All but one of the poems in Selected Poems are selected from A Boy’s Will (1913), North of Boston (1914), and Mountain Interval (1916). The poem "The Runaway" is the only exception, having been previously published only in the Amherst Monthly. "The Runaway" was published subsequently in New Hampshire. Iconic American poet Robert Lee Frost (1874-1963), the quintessential poetic voice of New England, was actually born in San Francisco and first published in England. Ironically, it was a 1912 move to England with his wife and children – "the place to be poor and to write poems" – that finally catalyzed his recognition as a noteworthy American poet. There, publication of A Boy’s Will (1913) and North of Boston (1914) led to critical recognition. Accolades met his return to America at the end of 1914 and a 1917 move to Amherst "launched him on the twofold career he would lead for the rest of his life: teaching whatever "subjects" he pleased at a congenial college and "barding around," his term for "saying" poems in a conversational performance." (ANB) Frost eventually claimed four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry (1924, 1931, 1937, and 1943) and spent the final decade and a half of his life as "the most highly esteemed American poet of the twentieth century" with a host of academic and civic honors to his credit. Two years before his death he became the first poet to read in the program of a U.S. Presidential inauguration (Kennedy, January 1961).
Persian Pictures

Persian Pictures

Gertrude Bell with an Introduction by Vita Sackville-West This is a strikingly well-preserved and jacketed third edition of Gertrude Bell’s Persian Pictures, the first edition to feature an Introduction by the English poet, novelist, and Bloomsbury group member, and personal friend of the author, Vita Sackville-West. In 1892 Gertrude Bell, a twenty-four-year old Oxford graduate, traveled to Persia with her Aunt to visit her uncle, Sir Frank Lascelles, a newly appointed Minister in Teheran. The result of her travels was Safar Nameh, Persian Pictures: A Book of Travel, a slim volume published anonymously in 1894 to little response. In the following decades Bell achieved political influence as well as notoriety as a travel writer, prompting renewed interest in her scarce early works. A posthumous, second edition of Persian Pictures was published in 1928. This third edition, the first volume in Jonathan Cape’s "The New Library" series, features the first appearance of an introduction by Vita Sackville-West (1892-1962), with whom Bell shared both a friendship and a fascination with the Middle East. Vita and Gertrude first met in Constantinople before the First World War thereafter maintaining a friendship and correspondence. In their last meeting, just months before Bell’s death, Sackville-West visited Bell in Baghdad and was gifted a Saluki dog named Zurcha by her host. This beautiful copy of the third edition is fine in a near fine dust jacket. The bright green cloth binding, illustrated and printed in blue, is square, tight, and clean with sharp corners. The contents are pristine, clean, bright, and free of markings or spotting. The illustrated dust jacket is complete and unclipped with only minor wear to extremities and very light spine toning. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, clear archival cover. Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell, CBE (1868-1926) was the intriguing and influential adventurer, scholar, writer, and diplomat who, like her contemporary T. E. "Lawrence of Arabia" did much to frame and shape the Middle East during and after the First World War. Raised amid industrialist family wealth, Bell lost her mother at age three, increasing a "sense of independence and self-reliance" perhaps already inherent to the "physically restless and intellectually gifted" child.By her mid-twenties – during the trip that prompted her to write this book - the unmarried Bell discovered intellectual and emotional fascination with the Middle East. "Outstanding literary and linguistic skills" coupled with "determination, bravery, physical strength, and endurance" invigorated contributions to travel literature, translation, archaeology, and architecture, eventually evolving into engagement in the region’s socio-political currents.By the First World War, Bell became "a voluntary agent of Britain’s interests in the Middle East" and assumed her defining role – as "a woman trying to break one of the most challenging barriers of her time: the physical conquest of the desert and the decoding of the moral and ethical code of its inhabitants."(ODNB) Bell’s linguistic and tribal knowledge made her indispensable to the Arab Bureau - the Cairo intelligence office of the British government during the First World War, contributing articles to the Arabian Report and the famous Arab Bulletin. After the First World War, Bell remained an influential figure, helping persuade Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill to maintain a British presence in Iraq, helping secure the throne for the King of Iraq, and facilitating the Anglo-Iraqi treaty. One of her last accomplishments was to gather funds for a national museum in Baghdad, which was inaugurated in 1923 and installed in a permanent building in 1926, the year she died. Like the contemporary figure to whom she is often compared, Lawrence of Arabia, Bell was disappointed in some of her hopes for the region and died comparatively young. Bell was played by actress Nicole Kidman in the 2015 film Queen of the Desert.
The Golden Reign

The Golden Reign, The Story of My Friendship with Lawrence of Arabia, with a New Introduction By Malcolm Brown, Newly Illustrated By Vintage Photographs

Clare Sydney Smith with a New Introduction By Malcolm Brown This is The Fleece Press’ handsome, limited edition of Clare Sydney Smith’s The Golden Reign: the story of my friendship with "Lawrence of Arabia". This volume is in pristine, as-new condition. This is a fine example of the quality of The Fleece Press’ production, featuring a blue cloth binding with a blind stamp of Lawrence’s initials ("T.E.S." for T.E. Shaw), coordinating head and foot bands, and a paper spine label. The contents, printed on heavy coated paper, are generously illustrated throughout by photographs, many of which are here published for the first time. This copy is one of 500 printed. Thomas Edward Lawrence (1888-1935) found fame as instigator, organizer, hero, and tragic figure of the Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War, which he began as an eccentric junior intelligence officer and ended as "Lawrence of Arabia." This time defined Lawrence with indelible experience and celebrity, which he spent the rest of his famously short life struggling to reconcile and reject, to recount and repress. First published in 1940, The Golden Reign provides a personal perspective on Lawrence’s enigmatic character through the revealing lens of friendship. In a state of nervous exhaustion following the First World War, his work on the post-war settlement, and writing and re-writing Seven Pillars of Wisdom, in 1922, Lawrence enlisted in the ranks of the R.A.F. under the name of John Hume Ross. In January 1923 his identity became public and he was discharged from the R.A.F., but allowed to re-enlist two and a half years later, this time using the surname "Shaw", under which he had meanwhile served in the Tank Corps. He remained an Aircraftman for much of the rest of his life. The friendship about which the author writes in The Golden Reign was the product of Lawrence’s life as "Aircraftman Shaw". The author, Clare Sydney Smith, was the wife of Lawrence’s Commanding Officer at Mountbatten. R.A.F. station Mountbatten, a peninsula in Plymouth Sound, Devon, was "one of the most enjoyable of Lawrence’s postings." (Wilson, Lawrence, p.850). There is no doubt that Clare’s friendship and their trips along the coastline in Lawrence’s speedboat, the Biscuit, formed a considerable portion of Lawrence’s rare happiness at this time. One of Lawrence’s dear friends in the last years of his life, Clare wrote, "our accepting him, not as a personage but as a human being, made direct contact possible and laid the foundation for a friendship based on simple love and understanding, which he himself called "The Golden Reign".
Churchill and Roosevelt

Churchill and Roosevelt, The Complete Correspondence

Winston S. Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt, edited with commentary by Warren F. Kimball Few relationships between world leaders proved as important and world-defining as the relationship between Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. On 11 September 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt had already been President of the United States for six and a half years. By contrast, Winston S. Churchill had only been re-appointed as Britain’s First Lord of the Admiralty a week prior, after the outbreak of the Second World War. While Roosevelt had been leading his own nation, Churchill had spent most of the 1930s out of power and out of favor, warning against the growing Nazi threat and often at odds with both his Party leadership and prevailing public sentiment. But on 11 September, President Franklin Roosevelt initiated what would become a world-defining relationship and correspondence. FDR wrote, "My dear Churchill, It is because you and I occupied similar positions in the [First] World War that I want you to know how glad I am that you are back again in the Admiralty I shall at all times welcome it if you will keep me in touch personally with anything you want me to know about." (ed. Kimball, Complete Correspondence Vol.I, p.24) Churchill responded with the amusingly transparent code name "Naval Person" which he changed to "Former Naval Person" when he became prime minister in May 1940. This weighty, three-volume set first issued in 1984 publishes their complete correspondence from October 1933 to April 1945, the month FDR died. The correspondence is edited with commentary by Warren F. Kimball. This is the first printing of the desirable hardcover edition. All printings of the hardcover edition totaled only 3,466 sets sold and have long been out of print. This is a quality production with illustrated dust jackets, sturdy red cloth bindings, black endpapers, head and foot bands, and contents printed on acid-free paper. This set features very good volumes in very good or better dust jackets. The red cloth bindings are square and tight with only incidental shelf wear. The contents of all three volumes are crisp and clean with no previous ownership marks. The sole defect that prevents our grading this set as "near fine" or better is a some staining to the top edges, with just few spots of the same on the otherwise clean fore edges. The dust jackets are clean with only trivial wear to extremities and complete apart from a tiny chip at the top edge of the Volume III front face. These jackets are highly prone to spine sunning. In this case we note only a barely discernible color shift between the jacket spines and faces. The dust jackets are protected with removable, archival quality clear covers. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A287.1.
My African Journey

My African Journey, the Canadian first edition

Winston S. Churchill Here is a rare prize. This first and only Canadian issue of My African Journey is among the scarcest English language first editions of Churchill's book-length works. We have seen only a precious few on the market over many years. My African Journey is Churchill's travelogue on Britain's possessions in East Africa, written while he was serving as Undersecretary of State for the Colonies. This book is notable, among other things, for being the only one of his many books to contain photographs apparently taken by the author. In the summer of 1907 Churchill left England for five months, making his way after working stops in southern Europe to Africa for "a tour of the east African domains." In early November, Churchill would kill a rhinoceros, the basis of the striking illustration on the front cover of the British first edition of his eventual book. By now a seasoned and financially shrewd author, Churchill arranged to profit doubly from the trip, first by serializing articles in Strand Magazine and then by publishing a book based substantially upon them. In November 1908 Hodder and Stoughton published My African Journey as a book, which was a substantial 10,000 words longer than the serialized articles. Both the Canadian and British first editions are striking, with a vivid red binding and a pictorial front cover bearing a woodcut illustration of Churchill with his bagged white rhinoceros depicted in blue, grey, and black. This Canadian edition is distinguished by the publisher "BRIGGS" on the lower spine, in lieu of the British edition's "Hodder & Stoughton". This Canadian edition also bears a unique title page. As with the British edition, the red cloth spine of this Canadian proved exceptionally vulnerable to sunning and the 61 photographs were tipped in rather than bound, so copies should be carefully checked to ensure the presence of all illustrations and maps. This Canadian edition is not only extravagantly rare, but also in quite respectable condition, approaching very good overall. The original, unrestored red cloth binding is square and tight. Spine presentation is better than decent for the edition, modestly sunned and scuffed with minor fraying to the spine ends, but with the red color still distinct and the gilt spine print clearly legible despite some dulling. The illustrated front cover remains bright and clean with a single, trivial scratch spanning "FRICAN" in the title and minor wear to the corners. The plain rear cover likewise is unmarred save for a light horizontal scratch and minor wear to the corners. The contents are surprisingly bright, crisp, and clean for the edition, with no spotting. The sole previous ownership mark we find is the curiously inked words "Mother Dear." on the front free endpaper recto. All maps and illustrations are present, as is the protective tissue guard at the frontispiece. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A27.7, Woods/ICS A12(ac), Langworth p.85.
Lord Randolph Churchill

Lord Randolph Churchill

Winston S. Churchill This is the first U.S. edition, only printing, of Winston Churchill’s 1906 biography of his father, Lord Randolph Churchill. This U.S. edition is visually similar but aesthetically superior to its British counterpart, having gilt top page edges and a lightly scored cloth binding. This set is in good overall condition, sound and with respectable shelf presence, though with minor flaws that lead us to be conservative in both grading condition and pricing. The original scored red cloth bindings remain bright and sound with unfaded spine color and strong gilt. We note modest wear to corners and spine ends with some fraying to lower corners and spine heels, minor soiling and staining to the Volume II covers and the lower Volume I spine, and a 6.5 inch (16.5 cm) light scratch extending down from the upper right of the Volume II spine. The notably bright and clean contents are slightly shaken but still firmly attached to the bindings. The top edge gilt remains quite bright and the untrimmed fore and bottom edges unusually clean. We find no spotting and the sole previous ownership mark is an inked name on the Volume II front free endpaper recto. The only detraction from the contents is that the Letter from Queen Victoria at p.154 of Volume II is missing. Winston Churchill’s biography of his father focuses on Lord Randolph's career in Parliament after 1880. Winston Churchill's father, Lord Randolph, died in January 1895 at age 45 following the spectacular collapse of both his health and political career. His son Winston was 20 years old. When he first contemplated writing his father's biography Winston Churchill was an itinerant soldier and war correspondent who had yet to write his first book. The son still dwelt very much in his father's shadow, both emotionally and in terms of the political career to which he already aspired. By the time the work was published in 1906, the young Winston Churchill already had half a dozen books to his credit and half a decade in Parliament. By 1906 Churchill had already left his father's political party, prevailed in the same political battle that had terminated his father's career, and was just two years from his first Cabinet post. That Churchill would be selected as biographer by Lord Randolph's executors was not a foregone conclusion. Churchill first entertained the idea soon after his father's death, but it was not until late in 1902 that he was appointed. Churchill then spent two and a half years researching and writing. We can assume that it was not only a major literary effort, but an emotional one as well. Of the work, Churchill wrote to Lord Rosebery on 11 September 1902 "It is all most interesting to me - and melancholy too" (R. Churchill, Companion Volume II, Part 1, p.438). Churchill was criticized by some reviewers for overplaying his father's accomplishments. Nonetheless, the work was well received both as a frank portrayal of Randolph's extremes and as a showcase for the son's literary talent. Please note that this large, heavy set may require additional postage depending upon destination and preferred delivery method. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A17.2, Woods/ICS A8(ab), Langworth p.71
My Early Life: A Roving Commission

My Early Life: A Roving Commission, wartime reprint with interesting provenance

Winston S. Churchill This is Churchill's extremely popular autobiography, covering the years from his birth in 1874 to his first few years in Parliament. First published in 1930, this is a 1943 wartime reprint (from first edition plates) by Macmillan, London. This copy is made more compelling by provenance. Per an elaborate printed grey plate affixed to the front pastedown, it was a gift from British industrialist Alexander Duckham to a customer in 1943. The presentation plate reads: "Written when he certainly had no conception of becoming 'Pater Patrice' I feel that Mr. Churchill’s autobiography up to 1901 will be an appropriate and acceptable token of goodwill to our customers on our 44th birthday anniversary, November 1943." The plate is facsimile signed "Alexander Duckham". Alexander Duckham and Company was a blender of oils, founded in 1899, the second largest of the independent UK blenders after Castrol. By the mid 1930s it was sold in over thirty countries, mainly in Europe and British overseas territories. In 1969 Duckhams was acquired by BP after a prolonged takeover battle. Regarding this particular edition, Macmillan acquired the rights to several Churchill books after Thornton Butterworth went under in 1940. During the war years, these desirable reprints were published by Macmillan, bound in dark blue cloth and wrapped in attractive tan dust jackets. Thus this edition, reprinted from the first edition plates. This third Macmillan printing of 1943 is very good in a good dust jacket. The blue cloth binding is square, tight, and clean with bright spine gilt, minor wear to corners and spine ends and a slight vertical spine dimple. The contents are bright, clean, and crisp. Trivial spotting appears confined to endpapers and page edges. Previous ownership marks apart from the bookplate include occasional underlining in erasable red pencil on 20 pages spanning pages 167-343 and, on the rear pastedown, the sticker of "The Churchilliana Co. Chartwell West" of Sacramento, California. The sticker testifies that this copy belonged to Dalton Newfield (1918-1982), an American WWII veteran who returned from wartime Europe with both an English bride and an abiding respect for Churchill. He was not only the world’s first Churchill-specialist bookseller, but also the senior editor of the International Churchill Society’s journal, Finest Hour. The dust jacket is a bit soiled with wear to extremities, modestly toned spine, and price-clipped, with brown tape reinforcement on the verso. The dust jacket is protected in a removable, archival quality clear cover. One can hardly ask for more adventurous content than found in the pages of My Early Life. These were momentous and formative years for Churchill, including his time as a war correspondent and cavalry officer in theatres as varied as Cuba, northwest India, and sub-Saharan and southern Africa. This time contained a wide range of experiences in Churchill’s life. Not only was he developing as an author, publishing his first books, and making his first lecture tour of North America, but this was also the time of his capture and daring escape during the Boer War, which made him a celebrity and helped launch his political career. Churchill would take his seat in Parliament only weeks after the end of Queen Victoria's reign. My Early Life remains one of the most popular and widely read of all Churchill's books. And for good reason, as the work certainly ranks among the most charming and accessible of his many books. An original 1930 review likened it to a "beaker of Champagne." That effervescent charm endures; a more recent writer called it "a racy, humorous, self-deprecating classic of autobiography." To be sure, Churchill takes some liberties with facts and perhaps unduly lightens or over-simplifies certain events, but this is eminently forgivable and in keeping with the wit, pace, and engaging style that characterizes the book. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A91.6.c, Woods/ICS A37(d.3), Langworth p.139.
Great Contemporaries

Great Contemporaries

Winston S. Churchill This is a jacketed British first edition, fourth printing. Great Contemporaries is Churchill's much-praised collection of insightful essays about 21 leading personalities of the day - including the likes of Lawrence, Shaw, and, most famously, Hitler. This fourth printing was issued just a month after the first printing and is nearly identical in appearance. Both the binding and dust jacket exterior are identical, differing only in the content of the dust jacket front flap and the notation of previous printings on the copyright page of the book itself. Condition approaches near fine in a very good dust jacket. The blue cloth binding is square, clean, tight, and immaculately bright as only a jacketed copy can be, with sharp corners and vivid gilt print on the covers and spine. The contents are bright with no spotting, retaining strong blue topstain and unusually clean fore and bottom edges, affected by only a few tiny stains and mild age toning. The sole previous ownership marks are an illustrated previous owner bookplate affixed to the front free endpaper and various 2013 dates discreetly inked at the end of a number of the essays, ostensibly indicating when they were read by a former owner. While an annoying bit of gratuitous graffiti, these marks do not substantially detract from an exceptionally clean and well-preserved volume. The dust jacket remains respectably bright, clean, and nearly complete, unclipped with only trivial loss to the spine ends and corners. The front faces are bright and clean, the spine modestly toned with a .75 x .5 inch (1.9 x 1.3 cm) stain just below the title. The dust jacket is protected beneath a removable, clear, archival cover. The character sketches herein offer remarkable portraits of both their subjects and the author. Churchill's piece about Hitler can be a shock to the modern ear, as it underscores his ability to write a balanced appraisal of his subject while expressing his earnest desire to avoid the war that he would fight with such ferocious resolve only a few years later. There is a reason this book is still in print today. It was written with what has been called "penetrating evaluation, humor, and understanding." Churchill's balanced and nuanced perspectives are a good model for many of today's more polemic writers. And naturally, in the course of sketching the character of his contemporaries Churchill necessarily reveals some of his own character and perspective. Churchill's portrait of T.E. Lawrence, published here just a few years before the Second World War, might well have been written about the author rather than by him: "The impression of the personality of Lawrence remains living and vivid upon the minds of his friends, and the sense of his loss is in no way dimmed among his countrymen. All feel the poorer that he has gone from us. In these days dangers and difficulties gather upon Britain and her Empire, and we are also conscious of a lack of outstanding figures with which to overcome them. Here was a man in whom there existed not only an immense capacity for service, but that touch of genius which everyone recognizes and no one can define." (Great Contemporaries, p.164) While some of the subjects of Churchill's sketches have receded into history, many remain well-known and all remain compellingly drawn. This is as engaging a read today as it was in 1937. Bibliographic Reference: Cohen A105.1.e, Woods/ICS A43(a.4), Langworth p.178.
My African Journey

My African Journey

Winston S. Churchill This is the U.S. first edition, more humble in appearance than its British counterpart, but also far more scarce. My African Journey is Churchill's travelogue on Britain's possessions in East Africa, written while he was serving as Undersecretary of State for the Colonies. This book is notable, among other things, for being the only one of his many books to contain photographs ostensibly taken by the author. In the summer of 1907 Churchill left England for five months, making his way after working stops in southern Europe to Africa for "a tour of the east African domains." In early November, Churchill would kill a rhinoceros, the basis of the striking illustration on the front cover of the British first edition of his eventual book. By now a seasoned and financially shrewd author, Churchill arranged to profit doubly from the trip, first by serializing articles in The Strand Magazine and then by publishing a book based substantially upon them. In November 1908 Hodder and Stoughton published My African Journey as a book, which was a substantial 10,000 words longer than the serialized articles. This is the first U.S. edition, only printing, second state. The first U.S. edition is far scarcer than the British first edition, with only 1400 copies sold (encompassing all three states), in contrast to more than 8000 copies of the more frequently seen British edition. The U.S. first edition was made from British first edition sheets bound in a plain coarse dark red cloth with the same gilt titles on the spine as used on the British. The three states of these U.S. first editions differ only in the title pages. The first state lists "Hodder and Stoughton" at the foot of the title page and the location as "London". The second state still lists also lists "Hodder & Stoughton" but with an ampersand instead of "and" and adding "New York and" to "London". The third state substitutes "George H. Doran Company" for Hodder and Stoughton and lists only "New York". The binding was comparatively plain and aesthetically uninspired compared to that of the British first edition. The cloth proved highly susceptible to fading and mottling of the color; nearly all remaining copies show spine sunning. Moreover, a substantial portion of copies we encounter are ex-library with attendant markings and scars. This second state copy is in very good overall condition. While it is ex-library, it wears the status lightly, denoted only by a quite faint "916" on the lower spine and "Public Library | Chester, N.H." ink-stamped on the recto of the blank sheet preceding the half-title. The only other marking is a tiny sticker of a Manchester bookstore affixed to the lower verso of the final free endpaper. The binding is square and tight with sharp corners. There is modest shelf wear and modest wear to the spine ends. The spine is a bit sunned, but the gilt remains legible. The covers retain bright color, the typical mottling quite light, with a tiny .375 inch (.95 cm) circular stain to the upper left front cover. The contents are also better than most copies we see. All photographic plates and maps are present and intact. We note modest age-toning but no spotting. A cosmetic split at the p.64-65 gutter does not affect either the mull beneath or binding integrity. Bibliographic reference: Cohen A27.5, Woods/ICS A12(ab), Langworth p.83