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Edward Gorey at Anchor: A Collection of 105 Doubleday Anchor Books with Cover Art and/or Typography by Gorey, 1953-1973

Gorey, Edward, et al. Three years after graduating from Harvard in 1950, Edward Gorey moved to New York to work in the art department of the newly founded Anchor Books division at Doubleday. The brainchild of two young editors, Jacob Epstein and Barbara Zimmerman, Anchor led a new wave of imprints offering high-quality but affordable paperback reprints of the classics, as well as literary fiction and serious non-fiction. Soon followed by New Directions, Meridian, Vintage, and others, Anchor intended their paperbacks to be kept and valued rather than destined for the junk pile. "Printed on quality paper and with sturdier bindings than mass-market books, they employed urbane visual languages characterized by conceptual, surreal, and abstract illustrations, complemented by spare modernist typography." Epstein and Zimmerman--friends of Gorey from college--knew him to be an inveterate reader capable of comprehending the essence of any text and capturing it on a book cover in his uniquely quirky visual language. "His style was so individual," writes Steven Heller, "that the covers themselves did not literally illustrate scenes as much as they evoked moods or set off sparks of recognition." Gorey worked at Anchor until 1960 (and did occasional freelance work for them afterward), during which approximately 200 Doubleday Anchor paperbacks were published. Gorey illustrated the covers for more than 50 of them, and did the typography for many more, designing spines, endpapers, title pages, and interiors to give the imprint an aesthetic uniformity. "Gorey's covers and jackets were not done anonymously or as mere throwaways, as many others were. Nor was this a strategic compromise until he found his true calling. Today, this body of work exemplifies his unique contribution to truly exceptional era of graphic design.". This collection includes 53 Doubleday Anchor books with covers designed by Gorey. We have been unable to locate a definitive list of his Anchor covers, but believe this to be a complete or near-complete collection. Additionally, the collection includes a representative sample of 52 Anchor books with covers by other artists, but typography by Gorey. The group of non-Gorey covers includes art/design by Leonard Baskin (19 books), Max Beerbohm, Eugene Berman, Antonio Frasconi, Seong Moy, Philippe Julian, Milton Glaser, George Giusti, Robin Jacques, John Rombola, and others. All books are mass market paperback size (7" x 4"). Some are first printings, some are later. Nearly all were first published between 1953 and 1960, but a few date from Gorey's later freelancing days. A few have internal markings, and one (the rarest title in the group) is lacking the back cover, but the vast majority are in very good condition. A complete list of titles is available upon request. Sources: All quotations in our description come from Steven Heller, Edward Gorey, His Book Cover Art and Design (Pomegranate, 2015), pp. 6-14. We also used the Loyola University Libraries Digitial Special Collections Exhibit "G is for Gorey - C is for Chicago: The Collection of Thomas Michalak" and the 2018 Literary Hub blog post "Edward Gorey's Illustrated Covers for Literary Classics" by Emily Temple in our research.
  • $1,850
  • $1,850
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San Francisco Municipal Reports for the Fiscal Year 1874-75

916 pp, indexed, with 6 folding maps, double-page frontispiece with photographic portraits of the city commissioners. Bound in full black leather with all edges gilt, stamped Jas. F. Chapman on front board. Chapman was a San Francisco merchant engaged in the shipping trade. Leather scuffed and chipped at spine ends; internals sound and clean. Maps in very good condition.This volume includes interesting detail on all aspects of civil life in San Francisco, including reports from the Board of Health, Coroner, Fire Department, Harbor Master, Industrial School, Park Commissioners, Sheriff, and Superintendent of Public Streets. But it is of particular importance for the extensive Appendix on the city's water supply, which runs to about 110 pages and includes all six maps. The section opens with a statement on "the importance of securing an abundant supply of pure fresh water for the use of the inhabitants of this city and county," notes that although options had previously been explored, but no action was ever taken, and asserts that "the city should acquire and own water-works, and such supplies of water as would meet the present and future wants for the next fifty years, not alone for all classes of our population, but for cleansing our sewers, watering streets, and for fire extinguishing purposes." This is followed by the text of the 1874 "Act to Authorize the City and County of San Francisco to Provide and Maintain Public Water Works.and to Condemn and Purchase Private Property for that Purpose. The maps, made from surveys conducted under the provisions of that act, are: General Map of the Surveys for the San Francisco Water Supply; City Water Supply Map of Blue Lakes Reservoirs; City Water Supply Map of Clear Lake; City Water Supply of Laguna de la Merced; City Water Supply Map of Calaveras Reservoir; and City Water Supply Map of Spring Valley Reservoir.
  • $450
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The Witches of New York

Q.K. Philander Doesticks [Mortimer Neal Thomson] 7.5" x 5.25", pp. [xvi], [17]-405 + 15 pp ads for publications of T.B. Petersen & Brothers, with frontispiece, yellow endpapers printed with additional ads. Bound in red cloth with blind-stamped decoration on both boards, gilt spine. BAL 20096 lists three printings, designated A-C, and notes that "the order of presentation is tentative." With the exception of the color of the cloth binding (BAL notes only brown), this copy matches printing C. Spine ends frayed, sticker shadow on lower spine, "withdrawn" stamps from the Francis Bacon Library on endpapers and one text page. No other library markings. Some foxing to title page and frontis, text otherwise clean, binding sound. About very good.Mortimer Neal Thomson (1831-1875) was an American journalist and humorist who regularly wrote under the pseudonym Q. K. Philander Doesticks. In an advertisement for a two-volume softcover edition, this book is described as "a faithful revelation and exposition of the doings of all the principle astrologists, sorceresses, prophets, clairvoyants, witches, planet readers, and other votaries of the black art in the City of New York." The narrative offers satirical account of the authors' experiences as an undercover journalist visiting the homes of various New York fortune-tellers who advertised their services in the newspapers. According Marie Carter's recent book Mortimer and the Witches (2024) "his investigative reporting aimed to stop unsuspecting young women from seeking the corrupt soothsaying advice of these so-called clairvoyants and to expose the absurd and woefully inaccurate predictions of these 'witches."
  • $350
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Kansas Real Estate Advocate, Vol. I, No. 12, June 1870

Rare single issue of this promotional newspaper, published in Lawrence, Kansas under the editorship of E.E. Lewis, a local land agent. 25" x 19", 4 pp, with map on the first page. Chipping and wear at edges and folds, with some small losses to the map along the fold. Good.The Kansas Real Estate Advocate was founded in 1869 as the Kansas Underwriter and Real Estate Advocate, but was renamed when E.E. Lewis became the sole owner.On February 27, 1870, this notice appeared the Daily Kansas Tribune: "We are in receipt of the March number of theKansas Real Estate Advocate,published by E.E. Lewis, real estate dealer, and successor to Schell, DaLee, & Lewis. These gentlemen have done much to settle up the vacant lands of Douglas County., and Mr. Lewis is a worthy successor of this live firm. Although the spring immigration has yet scarcely commenced, he is doing a thriving business. There is no doubt but a large amount of Eastern capital has been invested in our immediate vicinity through the influence of the agency represented by theAdvocate.We are glad to see that the business men of Lawrence have extended to it a generous patronage, and believe that they have consulted their best interests in doing so. Mr. Lewis has added over one hundred pieces of real estate to his already extensive list since the last issue of theAdvocate,and now offers unexcelled inducements to parties desiring to invest in Kansas lands." The June issue reprints articles from other Kansas papers describing the current scope of immigration to the state ("not less than one thousand a day"); the benefits of planting trees -- especially fruit trees -- for inducing settlement on the prairie; urban overcrowding; the attractions of Kansas lands generally ("beautiful, rich, cheap, and most desirable"); promotional text from Lewis, with separate sections aimed buyers, sellers, and investors; and copious local advertising and real estate listings for houses, farms, and unimproved acreage.We find no record for this newspaper or its predecessor in OCLC or at AAS or the Library of Congress. The Kansas Historical Society appears to hold (possibly only on microfilm) a single issue of the Kansas Real Estate Advocate and three issues of the Kansas Underwriter and Real Estate Advocate.