MAGAZINES

Here are some of our magazines, listed alphabetically, available for purchase:

American Art Review (Boston)

Vol. 2, No. 1 (November 1880) to Vol. 2, No. 12 (October 1881). Comprising twelve issues, the final volume of only two, bound by the publisher in two volumes of ornately tooled full leather. Folios. Bindings VG, with scuffing to edges and hinges. The front hinge to the second volume is sound, but starting. Contents near fine. Limited to 500 copies, this is #107, signed by Estes and Laurent, the publishers. $500

The American Art Review was the most ambitious art magazine published in America up to that time. The run includes more than 75 full-page plates of which 21 are original etchings by William Merritt Chase, Frederick S. Church (neither featured in Volume 1), Stephen Parrish, Thomas Moran, Peter Moran, and others. Another highlight is the half-dozen installments of editor Koehler’s “The Works of American Etchers.” The Review also featured a wide array of art news (American and European), reviews of exhibitions, club notes, and other information valuable to the art professional. A beautiful periodical that we have not offered in many years and have never seen in the deluxe large paper edition.

American Enterprise (New York)

Vol. 1, No. 1, Revised enlarged edition (August 1871) and No. 2 (January 1872), two issues, all published. Elephant folios (19″ x 14.5″). Near fine. Uncut. No. 1 was published by the American News Company and no. 2 by Lee and Shepard Publishing Company. $500

Ads for American businesses in the 1870s were timid affairs — modest in size, text-heavy, and often unillustrated. This curious serial was an effort to demonstrate to businessmen how impressive pictorial advertising could be. The great engraver W. J. Linton (1818-1897), who probably instigated the project, served as editor and engraver. Celebrated in his native England, he compromised his chances for a lucrative career by being too vocal about his radical politics. He emigrated to America in 1867 and set up his own press in Hamden, Connecticut. He did not ignore American politics (notably issuing an anti-Tweed tract in 1871) but was, during his American years, primarily a commercial engraver and author of books on wood engraving. American Enterprise is a showcase for his work, artistic, commercial, and political. Artists who contributed their talents included Darley, Bellew, Hennessey, and others, for full-page ads promoting Hearth and Home magazine, The Waltham Watch Co., Our Young Folks,. etc. The centerspread of the first issue is an impressive double spread engraving for a New York wine importer showing Bacchus of the old world greeting Bacchus of the new. The centerspread of the second issue is a grandiose depiction of Charles Dana and his New York Sun manning a chariot in the sky. American Enterprise was ahead of its time. It would be decades before American advertisers embraced Linton’s vision, but when they did, they ushered in the first great era of pictorial advertising. Yale, in its Linton collection, appears to have the only complete set. 

 

Three issues: The American Freedman (New York, April 1867) 16 pages. VG, light soiling; The National Freedman (New York, July 1866) 24 pages. Poor, soiling and erosion with loss to the front page; and The American Missionary: Missions and Schools Among the Freedmen and Abroad. (New York, February 1870) 24 pages. VG, with modest general wear. All octavos. $750

Following the end of the Civil War, thousands of good people in the north committed themselves to improving the condition of the recently freed slaves. Numerous organizations were rededicated or formed to provide uplift and relief. The American Freedman was the organ of the American Freedmans Union Commission, established by an act of Congress. The National Freedman was the monthly journal of the New York branch of the Freedmans Union Commission. The American Missionary was an expression of evangelical Christians’ desire to live the teachings of Jesus Christ, disseminate his word, and improve the lot of Blacks in the south. Each publication is full of reports from the field of people working throughout the former confederacy, mainly establishing schools and supporting Black churches. They also include reports of meetings, editorial comments, and occasionally appropriate reading matter for children. The American Missionary also contains two early mentions of the trials of the Chinese in California.

 

The Leading Magazine for The Flower Trade

American Florist (Chicago)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (August 15, 1885) to Vol. 4, No. 96 (August 1, 1889), comprising the first four years, complete in 96 semi-monthly issues. Quartos. Bound in black leather and cloth. Binding fair, solid, well rubbed. Contents VG+, toned. Title pages and indexes bound in. All advertising pages bound in. Two chromolithographs (called for?) of roses bound into the front of volume 1. $300

The American Florist, founded in 1885, was the first flower magazine exclusively designed for the trade. Each issue contained market prices of flowers, supplies, and all standard trade goods. It noticed catalogs and novelties and afforded the wholesale trade an opportunity to reach retailers across the country. It also promised to “pay careful attention to new designs, in bedding, in decorating, in cut flowers and in building — in short will be up with the times.” The magazine flourished for nearly fifty years, until succumbing to the Great Depression.

Theodore Dreiser, Eugene O’Neill, George Jean Nathan, James Branch Cabell, et. al.

The American Spectator (New York)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (November 1932) to Vol. 2, No. 18 (April 1934), the first eighteen issues. Broadsheets. VG, original quarter folds, chipping to the top edges of a few issues, but an otherwise nice set, preserved flat. $400

The American Spectator was the joint effort of literary stars Theodore Dreiser, Eugene O’Neill, George Jean Nathan, James Branch Cabell, and Ernest Boyd. It was intended to be a response to both the turgid state of mainstream American criticism and a counterbalance to the leftist dominance of the modernist movement. With all that, it was an entertaining, serious read, full of worthy contributions from the editors and their friends, such as Sherwood Anderson, Joseph Wood Krutch, and Jerome Weidman. Usually these issues if they are preserved folded up cannot be read without them falling apart. 

The American Sportsman (West Meriden, CT) Vol. 1, No. 1 (October 1871) to Vol. 3, No. 26 (March 28, 1874), comprising 50 issues in all, 24 monthly numbers and 26 weekly numbers. Folio. Binding VG-, rebacked, edge worn, but tight and sound. Content VG+, generally clean and fresh, though a bit fragile. $400

The American Sportsman was founded in 1871 by the shotgun manufacturers the Parker Brothers to fill a void in sporting periodicals. The two leaders, Spirit of the Times and Turf, Field, and Farm, emphasized horse racing over all other sporting pastimes. The American Sportsman intended to focus its attention on shooting, hoping to become the favorite journal among “the knights of the trigger.” As promised, each eight-page issue covered shooting matches, regional hunts, narratives of hunting expeditions, reports from hunting and shooting clubs around the country, letters from correspondents, and even a little hunting-themed poetry and fiction. At the start of its second year it embraced the sport of angling as well and expanded to sixteen pages to accommodate news of importance to the fishing community. Along the way, the journal’s prosperity attracted attention. At the beginning of its third year, the Parker Brothers sold the newspaper to a group of investors, incorporated as the American Sportsman Association, who converted the newspaper into a weekly. Its future looked bright. This volume encompasses the first three years of the American Sportsman from shakey start-up to established success. Scarce.

The Rod and the Gun (Late American Sportsman) (West Meriden, CT/New York) OS Vol. 6, No. 1 [NS Vol. 1, No. 1] (April 3, 1875) to OS Vol. 7, No. 26 [NS Vol. 2, No. 26] (March 25, 1876), comprising 52 weekly issues (along with four issues from April 1877 bound into the rear). Folio. Binding VG-, rebacked, edge worn, but tight and sound. Content VG+, generally clean and fresh, though a bit fragile. $300

When the American Sportsman Association took over the ownership of the American Sportsman in 1873, it promised its readers a bright future. Unfortunately, the new owners were over-optimistic. When they couldn’t meet their financial obligations to the Parker Brothers, Wilbur Parker returned as owner and editor. With the start of the sixth volume, he relaunched the newspaper as The Rod and the Gun in the hope that the new name would give greater clarity to the sporting communities it served.  Parker sold the newspaper once again in July of 1875, this time to a consortium of investors who incorporated as the Rod and Gun Association of New York City. Oddly enough the new owners believed the name change to the Rod and the Gun had confused old subscribers to The American Sportsman, so they expanded the name to “The Rod and the Gun (Late American Sportsman)”. Again, the newspaper appeared to prosper. It was full of news and features relevant to the hunter and fisherman. Yet, it proved that it was not immune to the vicissitudes of American magazine publishing; one year after the end of this volume, the newspaper was absorbed into Forest and Stream. The two names of the publication, however, did not die. Another American Sportsman was published from 1884 to 1890 and another Rod and Gun in Canada appeared in 1899 and prospered for sixty years. Scarce.

A California Gadfly’s Own Newspaper

Arthur McEwen’s Letter (San Francisco)

Vol. 1, No. 2 (February 24, 1894) to Vol. 3, No. 11 (June 15, 1895), comprising a total of 40 issues (out of 49 published; this set lacking V. 1, N. 1; V. 2, N. 1, 2, 14, 18, 19, 20, 25; Vol. 3, N. 1). Small folio. Generally VG, with mildew to some margins, some edge wear, toning to first issue, splitting to some of the spines, rust to some of the staples. $500

Arthur McEwen (1851-1907) was a Scotsman by way of Canada who settled in San Francisco in the early 1880s. Initially, he published a bright, short-lived weekly The San Franciscan (1884-85). Later, his caustic style caught the eye of William Randolph Hearst who invited him to write editorials for the San Francisco Examiner. Like fellow San Franciscan Ambrose Bierce, McEwen never backed down from a fight; in fact, he had a penchant for starting them. By 1894, McEwen had made more than his share of enemies in the city by the bay, some for good reason, some just because he didn’t like them. His explosions became too big for the Examiner. He started Arthur McEwen’s Letter in 1894, an eight-page quarto, to give full vent to them. In it’s pages he took on San Francisco politicians, especially the corrupt Board of Supervisors, California’s wealthy class, especially the rapacious captains of industry, other scribblers, including his old colleague on the San Franciscan, who had become owner and editor of the Wasp, and any other person who seemed to demand his critical eye. The Letter proved enormously entertaining to his fellow San Franciscans, prompting McEwen to publish it for 49 issues over a year and a half. One butt of his censure even launched a short-lived Arthur McEwen Answered (1894). The letter constitutes a fascinating chapter in Californian personal journalism. Even scattered runs are difficult to find. 

The Artist: A Monthly Lady’s Book (New York)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (September 1842) to Vol. 2, No. 10 (June 1843), comprising ten issues, a complete run. Octavo. Bound in period brown leather and marbled boards. Binding VG, with scuffing to leather and wear to edges and hinges. Contents VG, with foxing. One plate excised from the February 1843 issue. $750

Though the Artist, despite its name, was intended to compete with Godey’s and Peterson’s in the ladies fashion category, publisher Quarré announced in his opening message, “The engravings, drawings and paintings, with which ‘The Artist ’will be adorned, are executed by a process hitherto unknown, and by it we shall be enabled to represent Flowers, with their own brilliant tints; Landscapes with the joyous verdure of Spring, and Portraits of young and lovely women, in whose complexions will be blended the rose and lily. Avoiding the ordinary mode of clothing every subject in ‘customary suits of solemn black,’ our embellishments will present the gladsome hues of nature, the lively coloring of flowers, of birds, and of fashionable costumes.” Each issue carried three plates, one a colored fashion plate, one an embossed plate usually a colored floral, and one a colored landscape or black and white engraving. Some may have been hand-colored but many are produced in a method or methods we have never seen before or can label. 

The Boatswain’s Whistle (Boston)

No. 1 (November 9, 1864) to No. 10 (November 19, 1864), comprising ten daily issues, a complete run, bound in leather and marbled boards. Large Quarto. Binding near fine, professionally rebacked. Contents VG, fragile. $1,000

This peculiar genre of magazine literature, the Civil War Fair daily, reached its apex in 1864 when a half dozen titles were published throughout the northeast to benefit Union forces relief efforts. This daily, published in conjunction with the National Sailor’s Fair, was edited by Julia Ward Howe, with counsel from such notables as John Greenleaf Whittier, Oliver Wendell Holmes, and James Russell Lowell. Such an impressive editorial contingent could not help but produce a magazine with significant literary content. The Whistle contains original poetry and prose by Holmes, Whittier, Lydia Sigourney, Charles Godfrey Leland, and Richard H. Dana, Jr. The two most important contributors were Ralph Waldo Emerson, whose poem “Sea-Shore” appeared in the ninth issue, and Henry David Thoreau, whose short prose “Looming of the Sun” appeared in that issue as well. Emerson was responsible for both submissions as he was Thoreau’s literary executor (Thoreau had died two years earlier). The poem “Carpe Diem,” signed “H.T.”, which appeared in the seventh issue has also been attributed to Thoreau, but some Thoreau scholars disagree. Far more likely to be by Thoreau is the prose piece “History,” which appeared in the eighth issue. This essay, signed “H.T.”, is an impassioned plea for a view of history as it was lived by the common man, not by the ruler or by historic dates. This sentiment is quintessentially Thoreauvian. Adding weight to the argument of attribution is that the essay refers to the sweep of history as running “from 1492 to 1862.” This is a perfectly natural date to use if one were writing in 1862, the last year of Thoreau’s life, but why would a living writer use that date in 1864? Arguing that it was just a typo begs credulity. A scarce run. 

The ForeRunner (New York) 

Vol. 1, No. 1 (November 1909) to Vol. 5, No. 12 (December 1914), comprising 62 issues, bound in five volumes by the publisher. Quartos. Bindings fair, edge wear, restored with fresh endpapers, indications of removed markings on spines. Contents VG+ with stamping to the first title page and the bottom of the text-block of each volume. Wrappers and advertisements bound into volume 1. Index bound into volumes 2 through 5. Previously a part of the Amy Ransome Collection of Books on Women at the University of Southern California. $3,500

The ForeRunner (1909-1916) was written, edited, and published by Charlotte Perkins Gilman (“The Yellow Wallpaper”). She used it as a platform to voice her support for women’s emancipation and an anti-patriarchal world. In the magazine she published a wide variety of essays, articles, poems, and serialized novels, much of it consisting of manuscripts rejected by mainstream publishers. These volumes of The Forerunner contain in serialized form Gilman’s novels: What Diantha Did, The Crux, Moving the Mountain, Mag-Majorie, Won Over, and  Bengina Machiavelli; and her social critiques: Our Androcentric Culture, Our Brains and What Ails Them, Humanness, and Social Ethics. At its height, the magazine attained a circulation of just 1,600, well short of the 3,000 Gilman projected that she needed to sustain the publication.  While The ForeRunner was overlooked for much of the 20th Century, Gilman’s reputation as an important feminist writer has grown and with it interest in this important feminist magazine. 

The Publication of the Brook Farm Utopian Community

The Harbinger (Boston)

Vol. 1, No. 2 (June 21, 1845) through Vol. 4, No. 25 (May 25, 1847), comprising a total of 103 issues (lacking final issue of vol. 4), bound in two volumes of leather and marbled boards. Quartos. Bindings very good+, with light edge wear. Contents near fine. $3,600

Despite its vague editorial promise to “try all and hold fast to that which is good,” The Harbinger was, in the estimation of one historian, “one of the most read and readable of the American radical periodicals.” Mott called it, “vigorous, lively, and always high-minded.”

Its excellence was due almost entirely to its inspired editorial team: George Ripley, a former minister and excellent writer; Charles Dana, later the influential editor of The New York Sun; and John Sullivan Dwight, America’s first great musical critic and future editor of the seminal Dwight’s Journal of Music. Though The Harbinger was the literal successor to Arthur Brisbane’s Fourierist publication, The Phalanx, it was the spiritual successor to Emerson and Fuller’s late, great Dial, for, as one historian has noted, “it eschewed dogma and promoted radical inquiry of whatever stripe.” It was pro-socialist, anti-slavery, anti-war, and an advocate for woman’s suffrage. Aside from its heroic political stances, it published the best musical criticism in America, thanks to the fluent pen of John Sullivan Dwight. Contributors to the weekly included, in addition to the three editors, James Russell Lowell, John Greenleaf Whittier, George W. Curtis, Christopher Cranch, and many others. Though it achieved a circulation of more than 1,000, it was never a paying proposition, depending instead on the largess of wealthy men like Horace Greeley and Arthur Brisbane to stay afloat. In the fall of 1847, these men decided to move the journal to New York. There, with the November 6, 1847, issue, it was enlarged to a small folio and put into the hands of a new editor, who was instructed to tone down the magazine’s radicalism in a bid for wider popularity. The result was predictable: old subscribers fell away and new ones did not materialize. The Harbinger published its last issue February 10, 1849. A great piece of radical Americana. Scarce.

Journal of the Military Service Institution of the United States (New York)

Vol. 8, No. 32 (December 1887) to Vol. 14, No. 66 (November-December 1893), comprising the thirty-four quarterly and bi-monthly issues bound in ten volumes of brown leather and cloth. Octavos. Bindings VG, with edge wear. Contents near fine. $600

This set bears the name O. M. Carter, the original owner, on the bottom of each spine. This was Oberlin M. Carter, the celebrated and much-maligned US Army engineer who was court-martialed in one of the most famous trials in U.S. Army history. The Military Service Institution of the United States was a voluntary organization initiated by Generals W. T. Sherman and Philip Sheridan for the mutual improvement of officers of the Army. The Institution was founded in 1878, held its first meeting in 1879, and published the first issue of the Journal in 1880. The Journal’s editorial purpose was to disseminate the most advanced studies on the science and art of war and to promote solidarity among officers in far-flung posts. Each issue featured essays on the latest thinking, innovations, and inventions on the science and art of war, republication of important addresses, book reviews, correspondence, obituaries, and news of the Institution. The Journal was published for nearly forty years, but it, like the Institution itself, did not long survive its founders, folding, somewhat ironically, during World War I. Carter, appointed to West Point by President Grant, graduated first in the class of 1880, just before G. W. Goethals, of Panama Canal fame. In 1895 he was charged with improving the navigability of the harbor at Savannah Georgia. He changed the depth and course of the Savannah River to allow unprecedented import and export of goods. President McKinley then appointed him U.S. military attache to the Court of St. James.  In 1897, the army summoned him back to Savannah to face charges that he and two civilian conspirators had defrauded the federal government of millions of dollars by fixing the bidding process upon which the corps of engineers awarded contracts. Found guilty at the longest court-martial in the history of the army, Carter was sentenced to a fine of $5,000, loss of his rank, and imprisonment for five years at hard labor. Carter said in 1900, “I am entirely innocent, and I shall not rest until my innocence, proven at my military inquisition, is officially proclaimed. It was proven that not one dollar of public funds was ever misappropriated nor misapplied by me, and that the government was never defrauded through me in any manner whatever.” He spent the remainder of his life (he died in 1944) trying to clear his name, but in this he failed. Modern historians disagree about his case.

A Complete Run

The Manhattan (New York)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (January 1883) to Vol. 4, No. 3 (September 1884), comprising a total of twenty-one issues, twelve of which are bound in two volumes of black leather and cloth and nine of which are in original wrappers. Octavos. Bound issues: VG+ bindings with near fine contents. Title pages bound in. Index to volume 2 bound in. Wrappered issues: VG+ wrappers with near fine contents. Darkening to most spines. $400

The Manhattan was begun by the venerable New York printer John Orr as an umbrella literary organ for fraternal societies — the Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, the Knights of Honor, the Royal Arcanum, and others — and the first issue devoted two dozen pages to them. However, when the societies did not respond with the enthusiasm that Orr had hoped for their place in the contents shrunk and by the fifth issue was abandoned entirely. From then on The Manhattan was a general interest monthly in the mold of its fat and prosperous competitor, The Century. It published high quality period fiction and poetry and had a very respectable critical department. Highlights from these issues include “Artemus Ward in New Orleans,” “The Noble Red Man in Brazil,” travelogues of the St. Johns and Hackensack rivers, a serialized novel by Julian Hawthorne, an article by Cornelius Mathews chastising Charles Dickens as a shameless self-promoter, an article on Western Scenery illustrated by Thomas Moran, and more. The issues grew in size through the run and the magazine appeared to be prospering. But that was not the case. The competition was simply too great. The Manhattan ceased publishing with the September 1884 issue.

[Craig] The Mask (Florence, Italy)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (1908) to Vol. 6, No. 4 (April 1914), comprising 12 monthly issues and 20 quarterly issues, bound in three folio volumes and three quarto volumes in the publisher’s binding of cloth-covered spines and paper-covered boards. Bindings fair/VG, with wear and soiling, especially to the first volume, which has been rebacked in cloth with the original spine label laid down. Bookplate to front pastedown and embossing stamp to first title page of each volume. All covers and advertising pages bound in. $1,800

Theater historian Olga Taxidou has written: “No study of modern theater is complete without a thorough understanding of the enormous influence of visionary genius Edward Gordon Craig. Born in England in 1872, Craig went on to become famous world-wide as an actor, manager, director, playwright, designer, and most importantly an author and theorist, whose books were translated into German, Russian, Japanese, Dutch, Hungarian, and Danish.” The Mask, Craig’s most important sustained work (1908-29) was used by him to attack commercial theater and to articulate a modern theater rooted in aesthetics. At its most elemental, Craig advocated for a theater that combined innovative staging and lighting with acting to project a new form of art that would change the audience’s experience from one that was primarily audible to one that was more holistic. He chose the title of his magazine to evoke classic theater. But it was also intended as a wink to his readership because most of the articles were written by Craig using as many as sixty pseudonyms, which he did not admit to until 1962. This then makes the magazine a tour-de-force. While all of the volumes of The Mask are handsome productions, the first three volumes are the only ones in folio, making them especially appealing, with their wide margins, elegant typography, and sumptuous Italian paper. Of all the volumes, the pre-war years show Craig in his most active fertile period.

Monatshefte fur Lithographie und das Gesamte Graphische Kunstgewerbe (A Monthly Magazine for Lithography and Graphic Arts and Crafts) (Berlin)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (October 1902) to No. 6 (March 1903), comprising six monthly issues (without wrappers) and sixty full-page full-color lithographic plates, housed in the original rebacked portfolio. Large folio. Portfolio is VG, with light wear. Contents VG, with an occasional marginal chip or tear. Bookplate of Rodman Wanamaker. $1,500

Bruno Hessling, a prominent German publisher of books on architecture and the applied arts, established this magazine to report on developments in the art of lithography in the text and to present examples of the art’s best work in the plates. The magazine proved too costly to produce for the limited audience it attracted, so, after one year, Hessling merged it into another of his publications. Worldcat shows only Harvard with holdings in the US. A number of art museums have cataloged individual plates from the series. 

The New-England Magazine (Boston)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (July 1831) to Vol. 9, No. 6 (December 1835), a total of fifty-four issues, a complete run, bound by the publisher in nine volumes of cloth spines and buff boards with paper spine labels. Octavos. On close inspection, the sharp eyed can see that the cloth of volumes 8 and 9 do not exactly match that of the first seven volumes. Bindings are sound and tight, lightly worn at edges, mottled and scuffed, and two of the spines have closed tears to the cloth. The spine labels are new, expertly mimicking the style of the badly worn originals (which are retained underneath). Overall, the set is quite attractive with the look of authentic early Americana. Contents are near fine and untrimmed, except for the top edge, with the usual foxing. $1,600

The New-England Magazine was, in Mott’s estimation, “perhaps the most important general magazine published in New England before the birth of The Atlantic Monthly…” (Mott/I/599). It achieved that distinction by paying contributors $1 a page for their work. As a consequence, contributions poured in, some of them quite good. Longfellow was a contributor right from the start (July 1831). Holmes and Whittier soon followed. But the magazine did not prosper. When the editor, Edwin Buckingham, died in 1833, his father, Joseph Buckingham, also the publisher, continued the magazine for a year. Then he sold it to Samuel Howe and John Sargent. They edited the magazine for four months (November 1834-February 1835) and in turn sold it to Park Benjamin, just then beginning his long editorial career. Benjamin published ten more issues, before the magazine collapsed and was merged with the American Monthly Magazine of New York. These volumes contain twenty-three contributions by Longfellow (including his novel in parts, “The Schoolmaster”), twelve contributions by Whittier (including his two-part poem, “Mogg Megone”), and fifteen contributions by an unknown writer later revealed to be Nathaniel Hawthorne. Critics agree that many of these fifteen pieces represent Hawthorne at the height of his literary powers. These volumes contain the first appearances of “Young Goodman Brown” (April 1835), one of the greatest American short stories of the 19th century, “The Story Teller” (November and December 1834), “The Gray Champion” (January 1835), “Old News. Nos. I-III” (February, March, and May 1835), “Wakefield” (May 1835), “The Ambitious Guest” and “A Rill From the Town Pump” (June 1835) “The Old Maid in the Winding Sheet” (July 1835), “The Vision in the Fountain” (August 1835), “The Devil In Manuscript” (November 1835), and “Sketches From Memory” (November and December 1835). Also in these volumes are his “My Visit to Niagara” (February 1835) and “Graves and Goblins” (June 1835). We are pleased to be able to offer a complete run of this landmark magazine of American literature in publisher’s binding. Its scarcity is surpassed only by its importance.

The Old Guard (New York)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (January 1863) to Vol. 5, No. 12 (December 1867), comprising 57 issues (several are combined monthly issues), bound in five volumes. Octavos. Vols. 1 and 2 in the black cloth publisher’s binding, with wear to top and bottom of spine and tips. Vols. 3 through 5 in mismatching half-leather and marbled boards, with generalized rubbing all around. Contents VG, with the usual foxing. $1,250

The Old Guard was the only consistently anti-Lincoln Copperhead publication of the Civil War. It began erratic publication in 1862, but it was suppressed by the Federal Government during a general crackdown on the press in 1862. When those restrictions were eased at the end of the year, editor Chauncey Burr resumed publication in January of 1863. (The first two numbers of the 1863 volume are identified as Vol. 2, nos. 1 and 2. But then Burr decided to consider the January 1863 issue the true first issue of volume 1, so the March issue bears the Vol. 1, No. 3 designation, subsequent issues are numbered accordingly, and most of the editorial matter from the first (suppressed) volume is reprinted in the latter half of the 1863 volume.) These two Civil War volumes bristle with astounding, angry diatribes against the war effort in general, and abolitionism and Lincoln in particular. Mott tells us, “The Old Guard defended slavery and the right of secession, attacked President Lincoln violently in every number, and urged the cessation of the war. It was, it claimed ‘the only magazine published in the United States which is devoted to the fearless and uncompromising exposure of the monstrous crimes and frauds of the party in power.'” Each volume is illustrated with engravings of anti-Lincoln political leaders (eight in volume 1, ten in volume 2). We hear a good deal about the opposition Lincoln faced within the North during the Civil War, but that opposition was, in fact, poorly organized and largely inarticulate. The press, by and large, supported the Union effort, even while it argued over tactics. These volumes then constitute an extraordinary historical document, preserving a largely unrecorded point-of-view. Scarce and desirable.  

[Lindsay] The Village Magazine (Springfield, IL: 1925, fourth edition)

Small folio. VG, with general edge wear and loss to the corners. 128 pages, Profusely illustrated. $100

Vachel Lindsay (1879-1931) was one of the great personalities in American literature: charismatic, overpowering, at turns ebullient and severely depressed, a mystic, an illustrator, an authentic voice, and an unselfconscious showman. A son of the midwest, he grew up in Springfield, Illinois, and became his hometown’s unofficial poet laureate, singing its praises and boorishness whether his fellow townsfolk liked it or not (mostly not). After years of tramping, as he called it, and years of being unable to find a place for himself in the workaday world, he literally burst onto the American scene in 1913 with his paean to the founder of the Salvation Army “General William Booth Enters Into Heaven.” It was America’s first exposure to one of his chant poems (the most famous being “The Congo”, an amazing theatre piece now labeled racist and largely ignored) and no one chanted quite like Lindsay. His over-the-top renditions of his rhythmic cacaphonic chant poems stunned his audiences into silence, then mirth, then admiration. He was, in short, an original. All the powers that be in the poetry world — Harriet Monroe, William Butler Yeats, Ezra Pound, and many others — declared him so. But his time on top was brief. After the war, even while he continued to perform in front of packed houses, the cognoscenti came to regard him as a cheap vaudevillian, hardly a poet at all. In an increasingly common fit of despair in 1931 he drank some bleach and died, remembered in newspapers across the country but largely written off by the literary community. In 1910, when Lindsay was known to almost no one, he self-published a first edition of 700 copies of The Village Magazine, 75 pages of his poems and whimsical drawings. In 1920, he self-published a second, revised and enlarged, edition of 1,000 copies that like the first edition was not for sale but unlike the first edition was quickly exhausted. During his professional and personal decline in 1925, he published third and fourth editions of 800 copies each, both of which were primarily reprints of the second edition. The Village Magazine is about as idiosyncratic and original a statement as any 20th century American poet made for distribution.

An Important Antebellum Western Business Magazine

The Western Journal (St. Louis)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (January 1848) through Vol. 15, No. 4 (March 1856), a total of 88 issues out of 89 (the April 1856 issue is not bound in), bound in 12 volumes of modern blue cloth. Bindings as new, contents VG, with puncture stamp and ink stamp to title pages. Quite scarce. $1,200

The Western Journal of Agriculture, Manufactures, Mechanic Arts, Internal Improvement, Commerce, and General Literature was among the earliest of the magazines published in St. Louis and the first business magazine west of the Mississippi. It is difficult to overestimate the value of its contents.

The first volume alone includes profiles of the following St. Louis industries: iron, flour, beer and liquor, sugar, cotton, lead pipe and sheet lead, bellows, and ship and boat building. Other articles include “Progress of the American Cheese Industry,” “Hemp, Its history, Uses, and Consumption,” “Architecture, Painting, and Sculpture in St. Louis,” and “Geology of the Valley of the Mississippi,” (with a foldout drawing). Other volumes have profiles of western towns, a great deal on the railroads of the Mississippi valleys, including a large fold-out map of all of the railroad lines in the US in 1850, two lithographic portraits, and page after page of hard statistical data. Most of the volumes also include advertising pages from the magazine. We do not know if all of the advertising pages are included or if those bound in are just a sampling. Of the seven sets of this magazine in US libraries not one has the April 1856 issue bound in, which lends credence to the idea that though the issue was announced it was never published and this set, then, is in reality a complete run.

The Wheelman/ Outing and the Wheelman/ Outing (Boston)

Vol. 1, No. 1 (October 1882) to Vol. 10, No. 6 (September 1887), comprising the first sixty issues, the first five bound in the publisher’s brown bindings, the second five bound in maroon leather and marbled boards. Octavos. Bindings VG, edge wear and rubbing. Contents near fine. $1,200

In October 1882, in Boston, the bicycle manufacturer Col. Albert Pope launched The Wheelman. It was a handsome high-class octavo focused on the world of bicycling under the skilled editorship of S.S. McClure. It was McClure’s first important job in a legendary career that would culminate twenty years later in his muckraking editorship of McClure’s Magazine. McClure produced one impressive issue after another, but the market simply wasn’t there. At the end of 1883, Pope merged his magazine with Outing, an underfunded “Journal of Recreation,” that had been published in Albany by William Bailey Howland, an enterprising young Albany publisher, since May 1882. Pope offered McClure joint editorship with Howland of the new magazine to be called Outing and the Wheelman, but he declined and moved on to New York. The new magazine was issued from The Wheelman’s office in Boston by The Wheelman’s publisher and it adopted The Wheelman’s numbering and format, but it was in reality Outing in new dress because it followed the broader editorial policy of Howland’s magazine. In fact, after fifteen months with the cumbersome name of Outing and the Wheelman, it became simply Outing, the title it continued under with minor variations until its demise in 1923. The magazine’s early years are replete with articles on bicycling, of course, as well as tennis, rowing, canoeing, lacrosse, cricket, and more. It also devoted space to travel and exploration, recreation-oriented fiction and poetry, and news of sporting events. The Outing’s earliest years are fascinating and scarce. 

World’s Fair Puck (Chicago)

No. 1 (May 1, 1893) to No. 26 (October 30, 1893), comprising twenty six issues in all, a complete run, bound in the publisher’s decorated cloth binding. Quarto. The binding is sound, but the spine shows wear at head and heel and the corners are quite worn,. The contents are VG+, except  for wear to the edge of the first two covers, the second of which is taped into place and a number of very short tears at margins and some spotting. All doublespreads tipped in. $1,500

Puck, America’s leading humor magazine, built a special building on the midway at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition to display to the public the art of chromolithography. To do this, they published a special world’s fair Puck produced simultaneously with its New York progenitor, but not sharing any content. Puck’s chief cartoonist Joseph Keppler supervised the production of the World’s Fair Puck until it became too much for him (he died the following February). Other artists who worked on the WFP, both in Chicago and New York, were F. Opper, W.  A. Rogers, F. M. Hutchins, F. M Howarth, C. J. Taylor, etc. In our opinion, this is the most exciting of the thousands of publications issued in conjunction with the 1893 fair.