This is the starting point for a series of posts about how to find out information about any particular copy and any particular edition and printing of an old book. As a book collector, these have been topics of great interest to me, so I thought that it might be useful to share and document some of my approaches, methods and findings. I call this series “Price and Provenance” as it is often quite difficult to find out how much an older book initially cost and also who has owned it previously. Both are issues of some interest to a serious book collector. I am taking different editions of the novels of Jane Austen as my starting point for this series of posts, partly as it reflects one of my main collecting interests, and partly as I have quite a few interesting editions to discus.
Let’s start with the situation of new books. It is obviously so much easier to document the price, nature and provenance of a new book. You go to your local bookshop, or if you must, look at online vendors. Whichever way you choose, you browse around the available stock, choose your book, pay your money and take your purchase home so it can join the family of your previous purchases.
Virtually all new books today carry excellent documentation of what they are. Externally, books generally will have a removable price sticker that humans can read and also often a machine readable price bar-code. For most of the 20th century, the price was recorded on the front inner, lower corner of the dust jacket, often below a diagonal line which invited the discerning gift giver to remove the price with a pair of scissors. Dust jackets that have been mutilated in this way are generally referred to as “price-clipped”.
Books will have a title page, which will tell you the book title, author and publisher, generally in that order as you read down the page. It used to be that, through most the past 500 years, the date of publication appeared at the foot of the title page. Today, more often than not, the title page will not have the date of publication printed at the bottom. You will now have to turn the page to find it.
Now for some nomenclature which I will try to introduce gradually through these posts. We call the front of a leaf in a book or right hand page as we view an opened book the “recto” and the rear of that page, normally appearing on the left hand side of an opened book, the “verso.” So, if you look on the other side, the verso, of the title page of a new modern book, you will see a whole lot of detail which gives you a full description of the book. There will be a dated copyright statement, the date of publication, and the full name and address of the publisher, often with addresses of that publisher in multiple countries. Books published in the USA will have a statement about registration with the Library of Congress. In the UK, the equivalent is a statement about a CIP catalogue number registered with the British Library, and in Australia, where I live, there will be an equivalent statement with regard to the National Library of Australia. Towards the bottom of the page the details and address of the printer are usually given.
The details of the edition of the book also generally appear on the verso of the title page. Some times the statement will be simply “First Edition” ; other times it might say “Third impression” or it might read something like “First published in 1963, reprinted 1964 (twice), 1965, 1966”. More recently, this has been codified into a line of numbers. It generally looks like this:
1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2
or this: 1 3 5 7 9 8 6 4 2
But is may also look like this: 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
All of these tell you that the book is the first impression (printing) of the first edition. If however the line of numbers should look like this:
9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2
you are dealing with the second impression of the first edition, and you will find with each new impression, a further digit is removed. For some blockbusters, the publishers just print a number by itself to indicate the impression.
International Standard Book Number (ISBN)
In modern books, you will also find the ISBN number. ISBN stands for International Standard Book Number. These started in 1965 as a nine-digit Standard Book Number which in 1967 became the International Standard Book Number. The format was officially established as an international standard in 1970 when a ten-digit ISBN was adopted; the earlier nine-digit numbers were updated by the addition of a leading zero. New books displayed the ten-digit ISBN, as a printed number or as a bar-code from 1970 until 2007 when the ISBN standard was redefined as a 13 digit number. While most countries adopted the ten-digit ISBN in 1970, the UK persisted with the nine-digit format until 1974. Most book readers will be familiar with the appearance of the 13 digit ISBN bar-code format shown below:
Without going into the full complexities of the ISBN system, the principle is that each book should be uniquely identified, just as a URL uniquely identifies a Web page. The structure of the ISBN is built from several elements: a three-digit prefix, currently 978 or 979 known as the EAN (European Article Number), the language and or country of publication, publisher and book details. The final single digit is a technical check-sum. The elements are separated by blank spaces or by hyphens. Different formats of books (hardback, paperback, e-book) each get their own individual ISBN.
Identification and provenance of older books
For any book published before 1970, there is no ISBN, so as collectors, we have traditionally concentrated on the identification of the precise edition, printing or binding of any given book, either from inspection of the book itself, or by recourse to catalogues and bibliographies. Much less effort has been expended on understanding provenance, with the exception of the identification and collection of desirable “Association” copies of books. By Association copy, we mean a book which has been previously owned or inscribed by someone of importance, either to the book itself, or its subject matter or sometimes just by the personal fame of the associated person.
In her recent excellent book “The Lost Novels of Jane Austen”, (Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2019, ISBN 978-1-4214-3159-8) Professor Janine Barchas explores the topic of the provenance of hitherto unregarded, cheaper editions of the novels of Jane Austen as valuable evidence in the understanding of how the popularity of this major author was spread by the publication of editions that were accessible to the broad general reading public. Many of the books that she examined had escaped inclusion in the standard bibliographies.
Professor Barchas also uses the information of prior ownership, in combination with family history research techniques, to rediscover some of the countless unrecognised readers of Jane Austen from the past. This approach has been a facet of my book collecting practice for the past decade or so. In a series of follow-up posts, I will share some of the findings of my exploration of provenance and the previous history of the books in my collection. My first examples, like Janine Barchas’ work, will involve Jane Austen. Here are three copies of Mansfield Park which I will be exploring first.
I am often asked by non-book collecting friends what makes a book collectible and how can you tell if a book is valuable. Here are some thoughts on these matters.
Firstly, for a book to be collectible, there needs to be someone out there in the world who desires to own it! That may seem obvious, but really is the sine qua non of any collecting. Similarly, one may ask what is a particular book worth, and one rather obvious answer is “Whatever someone in the marketplace for books is prepared to pay for it!” For instance, a book dealer may have a rare volume displayed in his or her shop with a price tag of say $500 on it, but if the book has been unsold in the shop at that price for 5 years, then who is to say that it is worth the price on the tag?
If we dig a little deeper into these issues, the four major determinants of “worth”, which may not be the same thing as “value” or “price” are form, content, rarity and condition. Lets consider these four issues in turn.
By form, I mean the physical presentation of the book. Is it a hardback or paperback? Is it a first edition or a reprint? Is it printed or published by a desirable firm? Is it in an attractive or elegant binding? Is it illustrated? Is it signed by anyone special, such as the author, illustrator or a significant previous owner? Does it have an interesting, well designed or famous bookplate? Some of these issues is worthy of some consideration.
Hardback or Paperback
Generally speaking, hardback, or more properly, ‘cased’ books are more collectible than paperbacks. There are many reasons for this. Most books are first published in a fully bound and cased format, at a relatively higher price, before they are then reprinted as a less expensive paperback in card covers, often with the gatherings of the pages glued to a back-strip, in what is misleadingly called ‘perfect bound’. Most paperbacks that one sees are perfect bound. In recent years, in an attempt to contain costs, large format first edition ‘trade paperbacks’ have been published at the same time as an equivalent fully cased hardback first edition. Here in Australia, for instance, in the 21st century, most first edition novels are only available as trade paperbacks, when in the UK and USA they are often published as both hardbacks and trade paperbacks. Often it is then only the trade paperback that is exported from the UK to Australia for retail sale. Cased books for the last almost 200 years have been bound within board covers that are covered with a substance that can be labelled or decorated. The coverings were traditionally types of animal skins, leathers of various types, or vellum. In the early 19th century, book cloth was popularised as a cheaper and durable alternative to animal products.
Since the later part of the 19th century, cased books have also been covered by paper wrappers called a dust wrapper or dust jacket. These were initially disposable, plain paper covers to protect the printed pages before they were cased by a book binder, or to protect them on the journey between the publisher and the retail bookseller. As the years went by, the dust jackets were seen as a useful, if perhaps ephemeral part of the book, which could also be decorated and so be useful in the marketing of books. For the collector of Modern First Editions (however defined), the dust jacket is a highly desirable if not essential component of the book for it to be deemed complete and collectible. Some paperbacks are highly prized and collectible, particularly certain books which were only published in paperback format, or books from certain paperback publishers, such as Penguin, Albatross, Tauchnitz and Pan.
Everyone knows that first editions are very collectible and are often highly desired. But if you give this a little thought, it does require some explanation. One thing that you can be sure of is that every book that has ever been published has existed as a first edition. Indeed, the vast majority of books, once published in their first edition, have probably failed to sell sufficiently well, and so have never been reprinted or re-issued! So why the importance of first editions? Collectors will generally say that the first edition is the first appearance of the book and as the initial form of the book that the world ever sees, it has a particular power and importance beyond the raw text. They will also say that the first edition also represents the author’s freshest and new ideas and inventions. However, the first appearance of a book, which is strictly the first state of the first impression of the first edition ( I will explore these terms more in a following blog) in the original publisher’s binding and dust jacket will often contain errors (known in the book collecting world as points) that are most commonly introduced by the printer, but sometimes by the editor or the binder. Thus the earliest form of the book may not represent the author’s true intentions, and it may be later states that correctly reflect the text as presented in the author’s manuscript.
Generally, the original publisher’s binding of a book is the most desired form. However, from the earliest times, it has been quite common for books to be given different bindings after their purchase, that are often more ornate and attractive than the publisher’s binding. Sometimes, particular book buyers or collectors had a preferred or personalised form of binding that they always applied to their books. Some private, public and school libraries also adopted this practice. From early Victorian times, it was quite common to replace the publisher’s cloth binding with a half or quarter bound casing that used different leathers and boards, often with marbled end papers. On occasions, the publishers themselves produce a limited number of copies of a book that are bound in higher quality, more expensive bindings.
In mid to late Victorian times, many publishers adopted more highly decorated cloth styles, with the use of impressed or embossed gilt designs or coloured cloth decorations, sometimes on beveled or more elaborately incised boards. All of these superior Victorian cloth bindings are very collectible in their own right. In addition the cheap ‘yellowback’ bindings of crime and sensational novels of the late Victorian and Edwardian age are also now highly collected.
From the early years of the twentieth century, books were mostly bound in cloth which had become very plain and undecorated, particularly after World War One. As the cloth became plainer, so the dust jackets gradually became more highly decorated. In the Art Deco period, from the early-1920s until the end of the thirties, an expectation of elegantly decorated dust jackets began to become the norm for high quality books. For some crime fiction and thrillers, some of the dust jacket decorations became quite lurid and sensational. There are collectors out there for all of these. A few authors even designed their own dust jackets, Evelyn Waugh with ‘Vile Bodies‘ and Ian Fleming with ‘Moonraker‘ are two famous examples, and Len Deighton designed a few decorated Penguin covers in the 1960s.
Names or signatures in books can add to their desirability. However, it does matter whose name and signature it is. ” To little Freddy from Auntie Nell, Xmas 1984, XXX “, scrawled across the title page of any book with purple broad tip Texta pen will almost certain detract from the books desirability.
However, a copy of the James Bond book ‘Dr No‘, neatly signed “Ian Fleming” on the end-paper would be desirable. If it were inscribed “Peter, here is my latest book; your brother Ian” it would probably be more desirable. If it were to be signed “to Sean Connery from Ian Fleming, loved your performance”, it would be very highly desirable. I’m sure that you get the idea. Certainly a plain signature, probably written en masse for a bookstore appearance, is probably less desirable that a dedication to an unknown person, and certainly less desirable than a dedication to a famous person or a person who has some significant relationship to the book. Ownership signatures from famous, previous owners of the book, neatly written on an end-paper are also highly desirable. In this regard, a copy of Hitler’s “Mein Kampf”, with Sir Winston Churchill’s ownership signature would be desired by all collectors of war books or Churchilliana.
Bookplates are the often decorative labels pasted onto the end-papers of books to assert ownership. Many people had personalised bookplates designed for them and the presence of a discreet and tasteful book plate does not generally lessen the desirability of a book; if the bookplate is particularly well designed, or sufficiently grotesque and unusual, or if it belonged to a famous or significant person, then it probably adds to the desirability of the book.
Content is a fairly
straight forward matter to consider in book collecting. By content, I
mean the text and the illustrations (if any).
If the book is a classic or prize winning or ground-breaking work, then it will be intrinsically more desirable. For most authors, there are one or a few stand-out titles which are the most collected. For George Orwell for instance, I think that everyone would identify “Animal Farm” and “1984” as his most desirable books. On the other hand, almost anything by Charles Dickens, Jane Austen or the Brontes would be very desirable. The nature of the text is also important. Most collectors prefer the detective fiction of Dorothy Sayers to her religious works; similarly, the Narnia books and the three space fiction novels of CS Lewis are more collected than his academic or religious books. Most collectors would rather have Rider Haggard’s “King Solomon’s Mines” or “She”, rather than his scarce first book, “Cetewayo and his White Neighbours”, or his later books on farming. Charles Darwin’s “On The Origin of Species” probably is a unique book in its profound impact on human ideas and life. Any copy of this text has some interest to collectors, from the first edition of 1859 down to the many modern reprints that have appeared since.
Illustrated books also have a content collectibility over and above the written text. Many books have been published in un-illustrated first editions, which, after the book’s success as text has been established, are re-issued in lavishly illustrated and finely bound editions that many collectors crave. For collectors of English books, the golden age of book illustration is generally held to be the period 1875 to 1914. I personally have collected editions of the Alice books of Lewis Carroll illustrated by many illustrators over the last hundred years or so. Although the original illustrations in the first editions of 1865 and 1871 were famously and iconically created by Sir John Tenniel, many famous illustrators have produced wonderful illustrations since then. In a future blog, I will discuss these books and illustrations.
Rarity is determined by a number of factors. Age is certainly one, and although old books are not necessarily highly collectible, there is no doubt that age will have an effect on survival of any book, and so will affect rarity. The size of an edition is also a key factor. The first edition of the first book by an unknown author is usually published in very small numbers, as the publishers want to limit their risk of losses. If the book is successful, then the publisher can print more copies and issue new editions, according to the book’s popularity. Nowadays, if a film is made of the book, new editions are published to take advantage of the marketing of the film. An interesting recent example of the first book phenomenon is offered by the Harry Potter books of J K Rowling. The first book in the series, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s stone” (1997), as the first book by an unknown author, was published in a standard small first UK hardback edition of 500 copies in laminated boards, along with a paperback edition of a few thousand books. 300 of the 500 hardbacks were sold to the English School Library system, where they will have been read to destruction, leaving only 200 copies for book collectors. These now attract massive prices, around $50,000, in specialist book auctions. Copies signed by Rowling will cost even more. The second book “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” (1998) and third book “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” (1999) were both published in UK hardback first editions of about 10,000 copies each. These are also highly collected and quite expensive, generally costing around $1000 , depending on condition and issue, rising to $7500 if they are signed by the author. By the fourth book “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire“, (2000), the Harry Potter phenomenon had well and truly taken off. The first UK hardback edition numbered one million books! Although these are still collectible, they are easy to find, and not very expensive. The same is true for the last three books, published in massive first editions and therefore relatively common and easy to find. Interestingly, the first UK hardback edition of the first James bond book “Casino Royale” (1953) is also very rare and highly desirable, due to a small edition being printed (about 4500 books), of which half went to the UK Public Library Service and were read to destruction… a similar story to the first Harry Potter book.
In a parallel story, the first edition of Charles Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species“, was published by John Murray on 24th November 1859 in a first edition of only 1250 copies of which 1170 copies were available for sale. 500 of these were purchased by Mudie’s Library and all of the rest were pre-sold before publication, mainly due to the intense interest in the subject at the time. Many ended up in institutional libraries, so that the number of copies in private hands, which are those that tend to become available to the rare book trade, was very limited. A first edition can still sometimes be offered for sale in 2015, but it will cost around $250,000. A copy famously sold for around this price on the 150th anniversary of its publication in 2009.
Condition is the final factor that I will consider here. Book collectors want the best possible condition of any book that they want to collect. The book should ideally be complete, in the original binding and dust jacket, with no marks, tears, scribblings, sticky tape scars, water or light damage, library detritus or stains. It should ideally look like a brand new copy of the book on the day of issue, before it has been read. This Ideal is not always attainable, and so the more scarce and desirable a book is, the more collectors will compromise on condition. Small stains and small repaired tears and creases in the dust jacket are often acceptable. All illustrations must be present in an illustrated book, but looseness of tipped-in illustrations can be acceptable and can be easily repaired. The title page must be present and all of the text must be present, but some people will accept the loss or disfigurement of the free front end paper (the blank page often found at the front of a book, before the title page). Looseness or defects in the binding, usually found in the “gutters”, the region where the pages are attached to the boards, are grudgingly acceptable to most, and the absence of tissue guards, the protective tissues for illustrations, particularly frontispieces are common and also generally acceptable. Foxing, the appearance of brown stains due to a mould within the paper is common and also acceptable if not too severe. (A well known comical book on book collecting, illustrated by Ronald Searle, is famously titled “Slightly Foxed, but Still Desirable”, echoing the description often given in book dealer’s catalogues.) Not surprisingly, the older a book is, the more damaged and worse for wear it is likely to be. Most collectors will accept this and take a pragmatic view of this issue. Thus I expect a much higher standard for my Terry Pratchett first editions, all of which were published after 1983, than my Charles Dickens first editions, all of which were published between 1834 and 1870.
This is my attempt to create a web presence about Old and Rare Books and Book Collecting. It is an entirely personal viewpoint and represents my own views and tastes, and so will reflect my own collection and collecting interests. I will try to link to useful resources and devise original posts that may be of interest to some book collectors out there.
My collecting tastes are very catholic but are generally in the area of English and children’s literature from the 19th and 20th centuries. Wow, (I hear you say), that’s a huge scope. Yes it is, but I narrow it by collecting authors who I enjoy and like, books that I admire for their form as well as their content, and some particular areas of English writing, including some travel writing by favourite authors, and detective and crime fiction by authors who use this genre to explore particular times, places and cultures.
I am also an avid collector of Penguins, now going for 85 years. I will try to gather together here some useful information, ideas and sources for Penguin collectors.
This is the first of a series of blogs looking at the history of the popular adventure books for boys that began to appear in the UK around 1840. Before this date, juvenile literature was educational, religious and improving, with the element of excitement and adventure conspicuously lacking. In the 1830s and 1840s this began to change, largely due to the influence of the almost exactly contemporary writers, James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851) in the USA and Captain Frederick Marryat (1792-1848) in the UK.
As usual, I will be taking a book collecting approach, and will attempt to document the books written and published by the major authors within this genre. I will cover the period 1840 to 1940 and will mainly consider British authors and British editions. All of the books that I will show as examples will be chosen from my personal collection.
For those who would like to read more detailed material on this topic, I can recommend the excellent The Collector’s Book of Boy’s Stories by Eric Quayle (London: Studio Vista, 1973). Eric Quayle (1921-2001) was a lifelong book collector, who wrote four large, well-illustrated books on different aspects of his book collecting interests. Although Quayle’s four books were published nearly 50 years ago, they are still highly regarded and he remains the acknowledged expert reference source on books for boys. The four descriptive books by Quayle are shown in Figure 2 below. In addition to these four books, Eric Quayle also published a life and a separate bibliography of R.M. Ballantyne.
The main authors that I will cover in this series of blogs are:
Robert Michael Ballantyne
William Henry Giles Kingston
Thomas Mayne Reid
George Alfred Henty
Frederick Sadlier Brereton
Percy Francis Westerman
I will be activating links to each author as I complete the relevant material. I am also preparing bibliographic lists of books for each author. To start this process, the list of books written by F.S. Brereton can be found here. In addition I plan to expand these blogs by considering some of the adventure books of Henry Rider Haggard and Robert Louis Stevenson. I will also cover a few examples from other authors who I think are deserving of note, such as D.H. Parry and G. Manville Fenn, but will not be discussing W.E. Johns, as I have never been either an admirer or a collector of Biggles (or Worrals for that matter.)
I hope you will enjoy this series of blog articles.
Routledge One Shilling Gift Books for Boys and Girls
In my Price and Provenance series, I have referred to several undated editions of books published by Routledge and Sons, including several by Jane Austen. In this post, I am looking at the final blooming of The Ruby Series of books for juveniles.
In the 1890s, The Ruby Series re-emerged in a typical and cheaper late 19th century binding. An example is shown below as Figure 2 a. It is interesting to note that the 1892 Augusta Evans Wilson Series used the same binding (Figure 2b).
The decline of a family business.
At the very end of the 19th century, George Routledge and Sons underwent a great upheaval. The founder, George Routledge, had died in 1888, having already handed the business over to his two oldest sons, Robert and Edmond Routledge. However, both of the brothers died unexpectedly in 1899, leaving the firm leaderless. The third son of George Routledge’s first marriage, William Routledge, had died in 1885, three years before his father.
There was a fourth son, George Bell Routledge (1864-1934), who was the son of George Routledge and his second wife and was therefore the half-brother of Robert and Edmond Routledge. He had never been involved in the family publishing business. Instead, he had become a “gentleman” living off private income, and by 1898 he had moved from London to Cumberland, where he lived out his life in rural isolation for the next 35 years.
Robert and Edmond Routledge each had four sons working in the family firm in 1891, with Robert’s four sons described as publishers, and Edmond’s four somewhat younger sons described as publisher’s clerks. By 1901, not one of these eight third generation Routledges was still working in publishing. It is said that the deaths of Edmond and Robert Routledge in 1899 led to the near collapse of Routledge into bankrupcy. The New York office of Routledge was closed, and an arrangement for co-publishing with the New York firm of E P Dutton was agreed. George Routledge and Sons Limited was re-stuctured by an outside consortium in 1902, which appointed William Swan Sonnenschein as the managing director. George Routledge and Sons Limited continued to issue cheap reprints for another decade, until it was further revived by its merger with Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co in 1912. Certainly the quality of Routledge’s books had declined by the first decade of the 20th century.
The Ruby Series in the 20th Century
A cheaper Ruby Series was relaunched around the time of the 1902 restructuring of George Routledge and Sons Limited. A new uniform cloth binding was designed, and at least 53 titles were available for one shilling in 1904. In figure 3, you can see four of my Routledge Ruby Series books from the early 20th century.
Although these bindings may look identical at first glance, closer inspection reveals some small differences, other than the base colours. The title text at the top of the board is in white letters with black shadowing for the three left hand books, while the Leila or The Island on the right hand side book is in plain black letters. The spines, which are shown in Figure 4 below, have three with the title in gilt, but the Mansfield Park title is in plain black. Also, the two Jane Austen books have the author’s name on the spine, where the other two books have no author identified on the spine.
The title pages of the four books are shown in Figure 5 below. They also show a range of differences in appearance and expression of the address of the publisher. None of the title pages is dated.
All four of the books give the publisher as London| George Routledge and Sons Limited, which confirms that they all date from after 1890. Three of them have the Routledge colophon, which dates as 1903 or later. The Emma and Leila or The Island both express the publisher’s address as “Broadway House , Ludgate Hill”, whereas Mansfield Park has “Carter Lane, Ludgate Hill” as the address and The Basket of Flowers has “Broadway, Ludgate Hill”. None of the four books gives an address for a New York office. There are no inscribed dates in the books from previous owners, but the Leila or The Island has, bound in following the text, 32 pages of publisher’s advertisements for Routledge’s Juvenile Catalogue that are clearly dated 1904, and which also have E P Dutton and Co identified as the New York publishing partner. The title page for the advertisements is shown below as figure 6.
From all of the above information I would suggest that the best estimate of dates would be certainly 1904 for the Leila or The Island, probably 1904 for Emma, and a slightly later date of 1907 or 1908 for Mansfield Park, due to the use of “Carter Lane” in the address line. Examination of the first text pages of the four books is also instructive. They are shown in Figure 7 below.
Three of the four books have the standard chapter heading decorations seen in other Routledge books that had been reprinted from stereotype plates made in the 1880s that will be familiar to readers of some my other Price and Provenance posts. These three books also have standard illuminated first letters for each chapter, and an ornament to mark each chapter end.
The Basket of Flowers is different. It is a much higher quality production than the other three books, with better printing on higher quality paper and has many illustrations, both as full page illustrations and as vignettes. An example of this is shown below as figure 8.
The form of the address, “Broadway, Ludgate Hill”, the absence of the Routledge colophon and the higher quality of the paper and printing all lead me to place the publication date of The Basket of Flowers to 1900-1902.
The other useful information in the publisher’s advertisement block in Leila or The Island is a very full listing of the titles available in The Ruby Series in 1904. These two pages are shown below as figure 9.
It is interesting to compare this list with an earlier advertisement from 1892 (Figure 10), which was on the front paste-down of the Inez shown in Figure 2b above. The list has 43 titles, most of which are also on the 1904 list shown in Figure 9 above.
June 1st Update…
Today, I received in the mail a copy of Ben Hur by Lew Wallace, number 53 (and last) on the list of the Ruby Series shown in Figure 9 above. The purple binding and the title page are shown below as Figure 11.
The book title on the top board, which really is purple in colour, is in shadowed white text, like three of the four examples shown in Figure 3 above. The titles on the spine are in gilt and include the author’s name. The paper quality is rather poor, and the pages are quite heavily darkened throughout the book. There are four pages of advertisements for “George Routledge and Sons’ List of Novels” bound into the back of the book.
The title page is dated, and is given as 1902, with the publisher’s address as “Broadway, Ludgate Hill.” These observations help to confirm in my mind the earlier date range of 1900-1902 that I ascribed to The Basket of Flowers above. The higher quality of The Basket of Flowers leads me to favour 1900 or even 1898, rather than 1902.
I plan to continue to examine these types of series of cheap reprints published by Routledge through the period of the late 19th and early 20th century. These include a large number of series other than The Ruby Series, such as The Wilson Series, (see Price and Provenance 7), The Pansy Series, The Bessie Books, The Mildred Books, The Elsie Books, The Flag and Anchor Series and The Broadway Booklets, as well as the Every Boy’s Library, which runs to more than 70 volumes. Plenty more books to find!
Pride and Prejudice 3rd edition and the Crimean War
This posting is about my copy of the third edition of Pride and Prejudice and a link between its first owner and me, through the unlikely route of the Crimean War.
The First and Second Editions of Pride and Prejudice
The first three editions of Pride and Prejudice were all published by T. Egerton of Whitehall in London, who had also previously published Jane Austen’s first novel, Sense and Sensibility. Although Pride and Prejudice was published after Sense and Sensibility, it is generally agreed that the first draft of the novel, known to have been called First Impressions, was written before Sense and Sensibility. Jane’s sister, Cassandra Austen, reported that First Impressions was written between October 1796 and August 1797 at Steventon. Jane’s father, the Rev. George Austen, is known to have written to the London publisher Cadell about the manuscript on 1st November 1797, only to receive a rapid rejection of it sight unseen. We also know from letters that the family enjoyed readings of First Impressions in 1799. Before the publication of Sense and Sensibility, we know that Jane Austen returned to her “rejected” manuscript for major revisions around 1809-1810, changing the title as another author, Margaret Holford, had already published a novel called First Impressions in 1800. We know that the title Pride and Prejudice comes from the repeated use of the phrase on page 303 of Volume V of Fanny Burney’s Cecilia, a book that we know that Jane Austen possessed. After the successful publication of Sense and Sensibility in 1811, Jane Austen famously “lopt and cropt” the manuscript of Pride and Prejudice in 1812, before selling the copyright to Egerton for 110 pounds.
The first edition of Pride and Prejudice was published in late January 1813 in three volumes in an edition of 1000 copies. Where the first edition of Sense and Sensibility was famously written “By a Lady”, Pride and Prejudice carried the by-line “By the Author of Sense and Sensibility.” Pride and Prejudice is first recorded in a newspaper advertisement published on 28th January 1813, where the novel was advertised as on sale for 18 shillings. Although positive reviews were published in February, March and April of that same year, its reputation was largely spread by word of mouth and there was much conjecture about the identity, and even the gender, of the author.
The first edition of Pride and Prejudice sold out in a few months, and the second editions of both Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility were published by Egerton in late 1813. They were both in the original three volume format of the first editions, and although Jane Austen had made some slight changes to the second edition of Sense and Sensibility, it is believed that she had no opportunity to make any alterations to the second edition of Pride and Prejudice, and was not shown a proof. There are a few minor textural differences between the first and second editions of Pride and Prejudice that are generally explained as the correction of printer’s errors from the first edition, as well as the introduction of some new printer’s errors into the second. There is no definitive information on how many copies of the second edition were printed and sold, but the number is believed to be 1000 copies. David Gilson recorded in his bibliography that about 50 copies of the first edition and 25 copies of the second edition were known to have survived into the late 20th century.
The Third Edition of Pride and Prejudice
The third edition of Pride and Prejudice was the final edition of Jane Austen that was published by Egerton, following the first two editions of Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice and the first edition of Mansfield Park in 1814. Indeed, it was in part the refusal of Egerton to publish a second edition of Mansfield Park that led to Henry Austen, Jane’s brother and de facto literary agent, to approach John Murray about the publication of the first edition of Emma and a second edition of Mansfield Park in 1816.
The third edition of Pride and Prejudice was published in 1817 as a two volume edition for 12 shillings. The precise date of publication is not known, and is of particular interest as Jane Austen died on July 18th 1817. Gilson reported knowledge of a copy with an inscription dated September 6th 1817, but more recently, a dealer has reported seeing a copy with an inscription from July 1817. There is no evidence that Jane Austen or any other member of the family had any input into the making of the third edition. The number of copies printed is not known, but is unlikely to be more than 1000. Gilson reported the existence of around 25 copies, including two in their original light blue binding.
To construct a two-volume version of Pride and Prejudice from the earlier three-volume versions required a renumbering of the chapters, as the chapter numbering was restarted for each volume. The first and second editions of Pride and Prejudice were made up as follows: Volume 1: Chapters 1-23; Volume 2: Chapters 1-19; Volume 3: Chapters 1-19, making 61 chapters in total. The third edition was constructed by making Volume 1 contain 33 chapters, that is all of Volume 1 from the first edition together with chapters 1-10 from Volume 2 of the first edition. Volume 2 of the third edition was made up of chapters 11-19 from Volume 2 of the first edition together with all 19 chapters from the original Volume 3. Unfortunately, Egerton misnumbered the chapters in Volume 2 of the third edition, numbering them 1-11 and 13-29, so that there appear to be 62 chapters rather than 61.
The structure of the third edition is important, as almost all of the reprints of Pride and Prejudice for the following 100 years use the text of the Egerton third edition as their source. There was no major review of the text until the Oxford edition edited by Robert Chapman was published in 1923. Fortunately, no other publishers repeated the chapter numbering mistake made by Egerton.
My copy of the third edition of Pride and Prejudice.
Figure 1 below shows my copy of the third edition of Pride and Prejudice. The books are in a rather worn half binding of brown marbled boards and brown soft leather on the spine and corners. The binding looks as if it could be contemporary, since the style is consistent with a binding of the first quarter of the 19th century. It is certainly not the original binding, which should be in light blue paper-covered boards.
The title pages of the two volumes are shown in Figure 2 below. They are typical of the style of title pages of their time, giving the standard information of title, author, volume number, publisher details and date with no decoration other than the small horizontal lines.
The “byline” is “by the author of Sense and Sensibility &c”, with the “&c” relating to Mansfield Park and Emma, which had been published in 1814 and 1816. Like the first and second editions of Pride and Prejudice, the publisher’s details are given as London: Printed for T. Egerton| Military Library, Whitehall. This is slightly misleading, as Egerton’s offices were actually in St. Martin’s Lane, but I think that the combination of “Military” and “Whitehall” is deliberately used in an attempt to make the publisher sound more prestigious. You can see from the images that the pages show some foxing, the brown discolouration caused by the interaction of mould with acidic paper. Indeed the paper quality is not particularly good, which is one of the issues that Henry Austen had with Egerton’s editions of his sister’s works. Both volumes were printed by C. Roworth of Bell-Yard, Temple-Bar. Roworth had printed Volume 1 of both the first and second editions of Pride and Prejudice, but not volumes two or three of those editions. The Roworth printing is generally regarded as superior to the printing of the other two volumes by G. Sidney. The next figure is of the first page of chapter 1 of volume 1, with the famous opening sentence. You can see from this scan that the thinness of the paper is allowing a faint image of the printing on the verso to be visible.
The word edition means that the type was reset anew for each edition, and this is clear by comparing the third edition with the two earlier ones, as the font size, line length and text block size are different from the first two editions. There are no illustrations in any of the Egerton editions of Jane Austen’s novels.
Provenance of my third edition of Pride and Prejudice
There are two very helpful items of evidence to identify the original owner of the book. There is a hand written inscription on the ffep of volume 2, and an armorial bookplate on the front paste-downs. Images of these are shown in Figure 4.
The inscription is ” Elizabeth Maria Philipps, Williamston” and the armorial bookplate is labelled “Pentre” with the motto “Solem Ferre Possum.” A little research soon revealed that Pentre was a place not a family name, and the coat of arms was of the Saunders-Davies family of Pentre in South Wales. On 31st July 1826, Elizabeth Maria Philipps, only daughter of Captain Owen Philipps of Williamstown, Pembrokeshire married David Arthur Saunders-Davies, of Pentre, Manordeifi near Boncath in Pembrokeshire, Wales.
The signature is clearly of Elizabeth Maria Philipps prior to her marriage, as she is using her maiden name and the name of the residence of her father. The 3rd edition was published in a single issue by Egerton in the middle of 1817, to our best knowledge. Miss Philipps, as she was before her marriage, must have obtained her copy some time between mid-1817 and mid-1826. Her birth date is unknown, nor is there any baptismal record for her, but from her age on her death certificate, she must have been born in 1805 or 1806, making her 19 or 20 years old at her marriage. It seems to me to be most likely that she obtained the book in her early teenage years, shortly after the book was published. The signature certainly looks quite firmly written and mature. The Pentre bookplate would have been applied following her marriage, when she took up residence as the lady of the house, her mother-in-law, Susannah Saunders, having died in 1823. The house passed into the ownership of her husband three years later, when his father Dr. David Davies died in 1829.
The mansion Pentre is shown below in a modern photograph. This is essentially the house as it was rebuilt and restored in the early 19th century. There had been several houses on the site for many centuries, and the estate had belonged to the Saunders family since the late 17th century. Dr David Davies had married the heiress of the Saunders estates, Susannah Saunders (1755-1823), who was the last survivor of the three daughters of Erasmus Saunders, on the understanding that their children would adopt the name Saunders-Davies. The house stayed in the Saunders-Davies family for five more generations of inheritance through the eldest son, until the 1950s.
I have no information on how my Pride and Prejudice left Pentre. Group Captain D A P Saunders-Davies, the last Saunders-Davies owner of Pentre, gave up the house around the early 1950s, and one imagines that there might have been a sale of the contents around that time, which would have included books. I bought the book in 2015 from a dealer in the East Midlands of England, who had acquired it from an English collector.
The Crimean War connection
Elizabeth Maria Philipps and David Arthur Saunders-Davies had five children, two daughters and three sons, born between 1829 and 1837. Elizabeth died on 19th July 1851 at Pentre. Her youngest daughter seems to have died during infancy, but her four eldest children survived her. The middle child was Owen Gwyn Saunders-Davies, who had been born early in 1834. After attending Eton, he joined the army and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 38th Regiment of Foot. The Crimean War between Britain, the Ottoman Empire and France on the one side and Russia on the other started in October 1853. One of the bloodiest battles was the assault on the Great Redan stronghold, during the siege of Sevastopol, on 18th June 1855. 2nd Lieutenant Owen Gwyn Saunders-Davies died during that assault. He was only 21 years old. His mother Elizabeth had not lived long enough to have to cope with that loss to the family.
There is an engraved portrait of 2nd Lieutenant Owen Gwyn Saunders-Davies in the National Portrait Gallery in London, which is taken from a drawing by Thomas Brigstocke, a Welsh artist and a relative of the Saunders-Davies family. The portrait shows the young officer in uniform.
This early death has always resonated with me, as my great grandfather, William Butcher (1825-1877), had been a Sergeant in the 68th Regiment of Foot and had served in the Crimean War. He had fought at the first two great battles of the war, Alma and Balaclava, and was shot in the abdomen during the battle of Inkerman on 5th November 1854. He must have been tough, since he survived and continued his army career, including action in India following the mutiny in 1857, until his discharge from the army in 1865. He married and started a family shortly after leaving the army, so if he had not survived his wound at Inkerman, I would not be here! Like many of the veterans of the Battle of Alma, he named his first born daughter Alma. The picture below shows a group of men from the 68th Regiment of Foot during the Crimean campaign. I doubt that my great-grandfather is in the picture, but it is still an image that I value.
Members of the Saunders-Davies family are still alive and I have been in correspondence with Elizabeth Maria Philipps’ five-times great-grand-daughter, who has given me information on the family, for which I am very grateful. I was pleased to send her a scan of her five-time great grandmother’s signature, and share with her the thought that her ancestor may have been an early fan of Jane Austen.
In this post I am exploring the provenance of the Groombridge Illustrated edition of Mansfield Park that I discussed in my last post, Price and Provenance 10. The book cover is shown below, with its engraved title page and frontispiece (Figure 1.)
My copy of this rare book has a hand-written dedication on the verso of the free front end paper. It is shown in Figure 2 below. It reads To | Lillie Bazley |With Emily’s love | July 1st 1876.
As a starting point, I searched on Ancestry.com for a Lillie Bazley whose birthday was 1st July, and who had been born between 1840 and 1860 in England. This search found a preexisting tree which contained an Elizabeth Mary (Lillie) Bazley born on 1st July 1857 in Eccles in Lancashire. Presumably Lillie had been a family nickname. On closer examination of that preexisting family tree, I was interested to see that Elizabeth Mary (Lillie) Bazley had married a military hero, General Sir Edward Pemberton Leach, V.C., K.C.B., K.C.V.O. Lillie Bazley was a member of a fairly distinguished family in her own right, as her father, Sir Thomas Sebastian Bazley, 2nd Baronet, was part of the minor nobility. I spent a few hours researching this family, and I have summarised my findings below. I have taken advantage of the fact that when a book is associated with a notable family, there is generally no shortage of available information about them.
The origins of the Bazley family
Elizabeth Mary (Lillie) Bazley, whom I shall call Lillie for short, was born on 1st July 1857 in Eccles, Lancashire to Thomas Sebastian Bazley (1829-1919) and Elizabeth Gardner (1828- 1890). At the time of her birth, her father had not yet inherited the baronetcy, so he was not yet Sir Thomas. His father, Sir Thomas Bazley, M.P. (1797-1885), Lillie’s grandfather, had been created the 1st Baronet Bazley of Hatherop in Gloucestershire, in 1869, on the advice of the Prime Minister William Gladstone, mainly for his services to the cotton industry. Sir Thomas had been born at Gilnow, near Bolton in Lancashire, the son of a sucessful cotton mill owner, another Thomas Bazley (1744-1845). In 1826 Sir Thomas had formed a partnership with another Lancastrian industrialist, Robert Gardner (1781-1866). Between them they took over a number of cotton mills in Lancashire, and developed the Barrow Bridge mill in Halliwell, which became famous as a model mill, and was the largest producer of fine cotton and lace in the world. On 1st November 1855, Robert Gardner’s daughter, Elizabeth, married Thomas Sebastian Bazley, the only son of Sir Thomas the 1st Baronet. Their first child was Lillie Bazley, the owner of my Mansfield Park.
Sir Thomas Bazley, who was named the 1st Baronet of Hatherop, after an estate that the family had purchased in Gloucestershire in 1867, had become sufficiently well known by 1875 that he was the subject of a Vanity Fair caricature by “Ape”, Carlo Pelligrini. The caricature is shown below in Figure 3, next to the more ordinary photograph of his erstwhile partner Robert Gardner. These two men are the grandfathers of Lillie Bazley.
Lillie Bazley was the first-born child of Thomas Sebastian Bazley and Elizabeth Gardner. She eventually had five other siblings:
Annie Caroline Bazley, born in 1862
Gardner Sebastian Bazley, born in 1863
Frances Annette Ellen Bazley, born in 1866
Jessie Marion Atkinson Bazley, born in 1868
Lucy Maud Mary Bazley, born in 1869
I have found this picture of the family, which is said to be from about 1900. I do not know exactly who the four ladies are. If the picture is from around 1900, my guess would be that the picture shows Sir Thomas Sebastian Bazley and his four daughters. Alternatively it could show Sir Thomas Sebastian and Lady Bazley with their three unmarried younger daughters. For this to be true, the picture must have been taken no later than 1890, when Lady Bazley died. I suspect that Lillie would not then have been in such a family picture, as she had married in 1883, the only one of the four sisters to marry before the death of Lady Bazley. The style of dress, the informality of the outdoor setting and the quality of the photograph suggest an Edwardian photograph rather than a late Victorian one. This makes me confident that one of these four ladies will be Lillie Bazley.
The Bazley Baronetcy
When Sir Thomas Bazley, the 1st Baronet, died in 1885, the title passed to his only son who then became Sir Thomas Sebastian Bazley, the 2nd Baronet Bazley of Hatherop. Sadly, Lillie’s brother, Gardner Sebastian Bazley, died in 1911, eight years before his father, the 2nd Baronet, so it was his son who eventually became Sir Thomas Stafford Bazley, the 3rd Baronet of Hatherop, in 1919 at the age of 12. The title is currently held by Sir Thomas Stafford Bazley’s eldest son, Sir Thomas John Sebastian Bazley, who became the 4th Baronet in 1997. Figure 5 below shows Lillie’s brother Gardner Sebastian Bazley as a young man, and his son Thomas Stafford Bazley as a boy.
The family seat, Hatherop Castle, had been purchased by the Bazley family in 1867.After the Second World War it was first leased and then sold, along with its surrounding estates, as the family wanted to see the property survive intact. It currently operates as a private school, and is shown below. Lillie Bazley is known to have lived here during several periods of her life.
Edward Pemberton Leach (1847-1913)
On 31st January 1883 Lillie Bazley married the then Lieutenant-Colonel Edward Pemberton Leach, VC, at Hatherop. Edward Pemberton Leach was born in Londonderry, Northern Ireland on 2nd April 1847. After finishing his education at Highgate School in London and the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich, , he was commissioned into the Royal Engineers in 1866, the same regiment as his father, Sir George Archibald Leach (1820-1913). He was sent out to India in 1868, and in 1879, as a 31 year old captain in the Royal Engineers attached to the Bengal Sappers and Miners of the British Indian Army, he fought in the Second Afghan War, in which on 17th March 1879 he won a Victoria Cross. This event earned him a return to England to recuperate from his wounds and to receive his Victoria Cross from Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle on 9th December 1879. He returned to active service in India, and gained rapid promotion, so that less than four years later, when he returned to England to marry he was already a Lieutenant-Colonel. He later saw active service in Egypt and Sudan, before returning to senior commands in the UK. Other promotions followed and he was knighted in 1909 by King Edward VII. Lillie Bazley had now become Lady Leach.
Sir George Archibald Leach had a career in the public service after the army, and so was in the public eye, becoming the subject of a Vanity Fair caricature by FTD in 1896. Figure 6 below shows the caricature, and a photograph of his son Edward Pemberton Leach, V.C. around the time of his marriage.
Bazley-Leach marriage and beyond.
Lillie Bazley and Edward Pemberton Leach had three children. They were:
Lilian Vera Pemberton Leach born on 15 November 1883 at Hatherop Castle
Gordon Pemberton Leach, born on 2nd Aug 1885 at Hatherop Castle
Elsie Pemberton Leach, born in 30th June 1888 at Plymouth, Devon.
After their marriage in January 1883, Edward Leach served overseas on several occasions before his final return to the UK in 1887. The family lived in Plymouth until the mid 1890s, when Edward was promoted to Major-General and then appointed to a senior command in Northern Ireland, where the family lived in Antrim from about 1898 to 1905. Their son, Gordon Pemberton Leach, was at boarding school from around 1900 and joined the army in 1905. The rest of the family moved to Scotland later in 1905 when Edward was appointed to be the General Officer Commanding for the Scottish Command, remaining in that post until 1909. Lillie and Edward then returned to London where they lived until Edward’s retirement.
Edward Leach eventually retired from the army in 1912 as General Sir Edward Pemberton Leach, V.C., K.C.B., K.C.V.O. Sadly, he died on 27th April 1913 at Caddenabbia on Lake Como in Italy, where he and Lillie had decided to live following his retirement. He died just six weeks before his father, Sir George Archibald Leach, in June 1913. After her husband’s death, Lillie returned to England and was living at 29 Palace Gate, London W8.
Her son, Gordon Pemberton Leach, had risen to the rank of Captain in the Royal Field Artillery by the start of World War One. He was killed in action on 19th August 1915 at Hellas in Gallipoli, and is buried there at the Pink Farm military cemetery. Neither of Lillie’s daughters married, and the youngest, Elsie, lived with her mother, until Lillie Bazley, as Lady Elizabeth Leach, died in Bournemouth in Hampshire on 9th January 1940.
After her mother’s death, Elsie Leach became quite a famous ornithologist in her later years. She eventually died in Kensington in 1968. Lilian Vera Leach lived in mostly London,where she too died in Kensington in 1973. None of the three children of Elizabeth Mary (Lillie) Bazley married or had children.
Who gave Mansfield Park to Lillie Bazley?
The inscription shown in Figure 2 reads To | Lillie Bazley |With Emily’s love | July 1st 1876. We know that the Groombridge Mansfield Park was published in October 1875, so who was the Emily who gave the book to Lillie for her 19th birthday?
I will never be able to prove this, but I do have a possible theory. I think that the answer can be found on the census document for the Bazley family from April 1871, where the 13 year old Lillie Bazley is reported to be living with her family in the Alexander Hotel in Knightsbridge, London. Among their servants is a 24 year old Under-Nurse called Emily Westmacott from Leckhampton, Gloucestershire. Her job would have been to look after the children. In the April 1881 census, the Bazley family is living back at Hatherop Castle in Gloucestershire, but Emily Westmacott is no longer with the family. In fact, there are no nurses listed among the servants, as the children are all older now. There is instead a “Resident Governess” and a “Young Ladies Maid”.
On 7th October 1975, Emily Westmacott had married Charles Cornock at St. Luke’s Church, Cheltenham in Gloucestershire, and by April 1881, she and Charles were living in Leckhampton in Gloucestershire with their three young children. One can presume that in the 1870s, the Bazley family would have moved back and forth between London and Hatherop, following the social customs of the day. In July 1st 1876, Emily would probably have already have been living in Leckhampton, which is within 15 km of Hatherop. She could have bought Mansfield Park in nearby Cheltenham, where there were several bookshops in the 1870s, and sent the book from Leckhampton to Hatherop by post or by coach. We don’t know how long Emily worked for the Bazley family, but the informal tone of the inscription suggests to me the sort of close relationship that a dedicated nursemaid may well have developed with one of the children in her care.
I have no information on when or how the Groombridge Mansfield Park left the possession of the Bazley-Leach family. Lillie may have passed the book on to one of her two daughters, or to one of her surviving siblings or their families. There are no other ownership marks or inscriptions to give me any clues. I bought the book quite recently from an English book dealer who specialises in old and unusual editions of Jane Austen.
Mansfield Park by Jane Austen was first published in 1814 by T. Egerton as a three volume novel. A second edition, also in three volumes, was published in 1816 by John Murray. Neither of these two editions had any illustrations. The next edition to be published was a single volume edition published in 1833 by Richard Bentley. It had an engraved frontispiece and an engraved title page with a vignette illustration. Figure 1 shows images of these two pages.
Technically, the Bentley edition is the first edition of Mansfield Park to have any illustrations, but in most collector’s opinions this would not count as an illustrated edition, as there are no illustrations either embedded or interleaved in the text. Several other editions of Mansfield Park were published following the Bentley edition, particularly editions by Simms and M’Intyre (1846), Routledge (1857), Derby and Jackson (1857), Ticknor and Fields (1863) and Tauchnitz (1867). None of these were illustrated, even with a frontispiece.
The first illustrated edition of Mansfield Park was an undated edition published by Groombridge and Sons, 5 Paternoster Row, London. It is generally accepted that this edition was published in October 1875. The book contains 7 full-page engraved illustrations of drawings by A. F. Lydon. Not only is this the first edition of Mansfield Park with a set of illustrations, it is the first edition of any Jane Austen novel to be published in English with a set of illustrations. It is only preceded by some French translations of Austen published in the 1820s in three volumes with an engraved frontispiece in each volume. The top board and both title pages of my copy of the Groombridge Mansfield Park are shown in Figure 2 below.
The binding is a standard one used by Groombridge and Sons for some of their published fiction. They published several of the works of Grace Aguilar, often in this style of binding. The last page of the text block of my Groombridge edition of Mansfield Park is numbered 440, and bears the name of the printer, “B Fawcett, Engraver and Printer, Driffield.” The page height is 18.7 cm. These three characteristics all support the idea that this edition was printed de novo, rather than being a reprint of an earlier known edition, as no other known edition of Mansfield Park fits this description. David Gilson gives this book the designation E43 in his ABibliography of Jane Austen, where he reports a publication date of October 1875, derived from the English Catalogue of Books. WorldCat also gives the date 1975, which comes from the deposit copy held by the British Library, the only copy listed on WorldCat. This is a very rare book, which means that few people have seen the illustrations. I will show all seven on them in the following sections.
A F Lydon, the illustrator and B Fawcett, the printer
The seven illustrations were all engraved by the firm of Benjamin Fawcett (1808-1893), a fine printer and engraver, from original drawings by Alexander Francis Lydon (1836-1917), an Anglo-Irish watercolourist and engraver. The pictures are all signed “A F Lydon” as the artist, but they also have small and indistinct second signatures or marks, which will be by the individual engravers. This indicates that Lydon probably did not execute the engravings himself, even though he was an accomplished engraver. This is underlined by the statement on the printed title page “Illustrated from Drawings by A.F.Lydon”. Indeed, much of the firm’s work was engraved by Benjamin Fawcett himself. Lydon was in fact an employee of Benjamin Fawcett (1808-1893), and had served his appenticeship as an engraver with Fawcett. This was mutually convenient as Driffield, a town in East Yorkshire, was both Lydon’s family home and the site of Fawcett’s business. There is a modern pub in Driffield today called “The Benjamin Fawcett”.
Lydon and Fawcett worked together over many years to produce mainly illustrations of wildlife, landscapes or architectural subjects. Lydon excelled in fine watercolour paintings of birds and plants, and also of grand houses in landscaped parks. Fawcett’s expertise was highly skilled colour printing from woodblocks. Much of their work was published by Groombridge and Sons, including the magnificently illustrated six volume series of A Natural History of British Birds by Reverend Francis Orpen Morris. I show two fine examples of typical work by Lydon and Fawcett below in Figures 3 and 4.
The Lydon illustrations for Mansfield Park
The illustrations for the Groombridge edition of Mansfield Park are all black and white printings of finely executed engravings on woodblocks of line drawings by Lydon. Several of them show off the artist’s skill in landscapes. This starts with the frontispiece, shown below in Figure 5.
This shows the heroine, Fanny Price, looking back towards the riding party of Edmund Bertram and Miss Crawford in front of the house at Mansfield Park. The incident is from chapter 7. Lydon’s expertise in the depiction of landscape is very much to the fore in this design.
The second illustration (Figure 6, left) shows an incident from chapter 9, where Fanny, Edmund and Miss Crawford have rested on a seat during a walk in the woods. Edmund and Miss Crawford then walk on together to the end of the wood, leaving Fanny still on the seat to watch them disappear together down the path.
The illustration shown on the right of Figure 6 depicts Edmund explaining to Fanny his concerns about the propriety of the amateur dramatics that the house party is engaged in.
In the next illustration (Figure 7), which is from chapter 25, we return to Lydon’s love of landscape as he depicts Henry Crawford’s story of stumbling across the village of Thornton Lacey, his promised living, while walking his lame horse back to Mansfield Park.
In the next illustration (Figure 8 left), taken from chapter 35, we see Edmund and Fanny walking together arm in arm as Edmund tries to find out what feelings she might have for Henry Crawford. In Figure 8 (right), we have moved on to chapter 41, where Henry Crawford is talking about his future prospects to Fanny Price at Portsmouth docks, rather wishing that Fanny’s younger sister, Susan, was not present.
The final illustration, shown in Figure 9 below, comes from an event in chapter 46, when Fanny, accompanied by her excited sister Susan and a nervous Edmund Bertram, returns to Mansfield Park by carriage from Portsmouth. This picture shows off Lydon’s facility in drawing country houses and landscaped grounds.
These seven drawings give an interesting view of an Austen novel through the eyes of a landscape and wildlife artist. Although the clothes depicted are decidedly from the 1860s and 1870s rather than Regency period, the drawings offer an interesting contrast to the classic illustrations of Austen by Charles and Henry Brock, Hugh Thomson and Chris Hammond, all whom tended to concentrate on fine line drawings of interiors, with accurate depictions of costume, manners and decor of paramount importance. It should be said that Thomson was also a fine illustrator of landscape and particularly well regarded for his depictions of horses.
This is the only novel of Jane Austen known to be illustrated by A. F. Lydon.
A few comments on the publisher, Groombridge and Sons
Richard Groombridge started as a publisher in 1833, when he operated out of his home, 6 Panyer Alley, using the imprint of Richard Groombridge or R. Groombridge. Four of his sons served as his apprentices and joined the firm to work as publishers and booksellers. In 1845, when his two eldest sons were 28 and 25 years old respectively, the imprint of the firm was changed to “Groombridge and Sons”, usually followed by “5, Paternoster Row” on the title page. Following Richard Groombridge’s death in 1855 the firm was run jointly by the two oldest sons. Sadly, the three oldest sons all died between 1860 and 1868, leaving the youngest, Charles Groombridge, as the last surviving son of the founder. He seems to have lost interest in publishing sometime during the 1860s, and by the 1870s, the firm was run by three grandsons of Richard Groombridge until it ceased to trade sometime around 1900.
R. Groombridge and Groombridge and Sons were best known as publishers of books on religion, agriculture and natural history, although they did also reprint several of the novels of Grace Aguilar (1816-1847), a popular writer on themes of Jewish history and religion. The Groombridges worked closely with Benjamin Fawcett, publishing many of his finely illustrated books between 1844 and 1890.
It is not known why Groombridge and Sons decided to publish an illustrated edition of Mansfield Park in 1875. It is even possible that the genesis of the book came from the printer, Benjamin Fawcett or the illustrator A F Lydon. We shall probably never know. For more details about the Groombridge family of publishers, read my Groombridge, Publishers page.
In the next post, Price and Provenance 11, I will explore the provenance of my copy of Groombridge and Son’s Mansfield Park.
In this post, I am exploring the source and provenance of an early edition of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility that I acquired a few years ago. It was published in London by W. Tweedie at 337, Strand and does not appear to be listed in any Austen bibliography. There is also no copy found on Worldcat.org. It is an interesting little book, 130 x 90 mm (5 3/8″ x 3 1/2″), whose engraved title page and frontispiece are shown below.
A brief publishing history of Sense and Sensibility
Sense and Sensibility was first published in London in 1811 in 3 volumes by T. Egerton. A second Egerton edition in 3 volumes followed in 1813, and the third English edition did not appear until a single volume edition was published by Richard Bentley as Volume XXIII (23) of his Standard Novels series in December 1832, dated 1833. He also reprinted Sense and Sensibility as Volume 1 of a 5 volume set called The Novels of Jane Austen published in October 1833. The first American edition of Sense and Sensibility was also published in 1833 by Lea and Carey in Philadephia. This was published as a two volume edition, with a novel pagination pattern.
Bentley continued to publish reprints of Sense and Sensibility in 1837, 1846, 1853 and 1854. All of these Bentley editions used the same stereotype plates as the 1833 edition, so the text blocks are all identical. The text in these single volume editions is divided into a three volume format, mimicking the first and second editions published by Egerton.
Richard Bentley had purchased the copyright of Sense and Sensibility from the Austen family in 1832. The first edition of Sense and Sensibility to be published by another British publisher after the expiry of the copyright in 1839 was an 1844 edition published in 2 volumes in London by H.G. Clarke. This first English two volume edition followed the same chapter arrangement as the Lea and Carey first American edition of 1833. David Gilson in A Bibliography of Jane Austen , 2nd edition 1997, designates the Lea and Carey edition as Gilson B6 and the Clarke edition as Gilson E2. Gilson gives a full bibliographic description for B6 but not for E2. The Lea and Carey edition, B6, was constructed as a first volume of 30 chapters in 195 pages and a second volume of 20 chapters in 185 pages. The Clarke edition, E2, was constructed as a first volume of 30 chapters in 239 pages and a second volume of 20 chapters in 224 pages. It was described as also having an exotically engraved title page in colour as well as a regular title page in letterpress. Neither B6 nor E2 was described as having a frontispiece.
The Tweedie edition of Sense and Sensibility
My copy of the Tweedie edition of Sense and Sensibility is bound in what appears to be its original blind-stamped red cloth binding with a rather faded gilt title and decoration on the spine, which has been re-backed. The title reads “Sense and | Sensibility |________ | Austen” with an ornamental urn below as decoration. All three edges of the pages have been gilded. The binding, which still has what seem to be the original pale yellow end-papers is shown below.
The engraved title page is followed by a printed title page that bears the date MDCCCLIII (1853) and repeats that this book is two volumes in one. Following page 239, the final page of chapter 30, we find a half title page that reads “Sense and Sensibility | Volume II”, which is immediately followed by a title page for volume II, which is dated MDCCCLII (1852). The text block numbering then starts again with “6” on the second page, which follows an unnumbered first page of chapter 1 , and ends with an unnumbered page 224, the last page of chapter 20 of volume II. THE END is printed half way down this page. Pictures of these two title pages are shown in Figure 3 below.
From the page counts given above, it is clear that the arrangement of the chapters and the page counts of the two volumes published by Tweedie exactly matches the chapter arrangement and the page count of the Gilson E2 H G Clarke edition of 1844. The Clarke edition is described as a 32mo, which implies that it is a small volume, and Gilson confirms this with his page height measurement of 12.8 cm for E2. The page height for the Tweedie volume is slightly larger at 13.0 cm. In the next figure, I compare one of the title pages from the Tweedie edition with the title page from the Clarke edition of 1844.
Clearly the two pages differ in several respects in their layout and in the use of Roman or Arabic numerals to express the date. However, I find it interesting to note the similarity of the line following “Jane Austen” in both books. They both refer to her as “Authoress of “Pride and Prejudice” etc,” with Clarke adding an extra “etc.” This is unusual, as it is most common to find Jane Austen referred to as “Author” rather than “Authoress” on mid-19th century title pages. For example, the Lea and Carey 1st American edition of 1833 referred to above has the following line printed under the author’s name, which is expressed as Miss Austen: “Author of “Pride and Prejudice,” “Emma,” etc etc”.
It is clear to me that the Tweedie Sense and Sensibility is derived from the Clarke Sense and Sensibility. One would need to compare the texts directly in order to confirm this absolutely. There are two copies of the Clarke edition of 1844 currently on offer on Abe books, but at A$2,500, I am not inclined to buy either of them in order to complete the confirmation!
A brief account of HG Clarke and Co.
Henry Green Clarke (1816-1894) entered the London publishing scene in 1843, and only advertised in the official London book trade publication “The Publishers’ Circular and Booksellers’ Record” in issues which appeared in 1844 and 1845. He published a series of books, which he marketed as Clarke’s Cabinet Series at 32mo size, which he offered for sale at two shillings for a single volume and three shillings and sixpence or four shillings for 2 volume sets. They seemed to be aimed at a female clientele. Sense and Sensibility was advertised in May 1844 as no. 21 in the Cabinet Series, and was priced at 3/6. Clarke also published a two volume edition of Pride and Prejudice later in 1844 as number 34 of his Cabinet Series. Presumably this accounts for the mention of Pride and Prejudice on his title page shown in Figure 4 above. H.G. Clarke and Co went spectacularly bankrupt early in 1846 and its remaining assets were sold off in 1848. Undeterred, Henry Clarke re-entered the “book” trade in 1849 as a seller of books, maps and prints at a shop in the Strand which he ran successfully until about 1875.
In a reference to the Clarke Cabinet Series, David Gilson noted that Michael Sadlier had stated that “several of the titles in this series were reissued in 1849 and 1850 by George Slater bound in red or green morocco cloth with gold decoration and titling on the spine.” In addition, I have only found one reference to a Tweedie Sense and Sensibility. That was in Gilson’s list of corrections and additions on page xxxvi of the introduction to the second edition of his bibliography. Gilson states ” I recorded no editions first published in 1853, but an American collector has a two volume edition of SS published by W. Tweedie, London, 1853 (the second volume being in fact dated 1852).” That clearly sounds like a two volume edition of my book, which is two volumes in one. Perhaps George Slater acquired some stereotype plates from the bankruptcy sale of the assets of H.G. Clarke and Co in 1848, and the plates for Sense and Sensibility were eventually were passed on to W. Tweedie. There are no recorded editions of Jane Austen published by George Slater.
The next issue to address is who was W. Tweedie of the Strand?
William Tweedie (1821-1874)
William Tweedie was born on 9th July 1821 in Haddington, East Lothian in Scotland, a small town about 25 km east of Edinburgh. It currently has a population around 10,000, but in the Middle Ages was the fourth largest city in Scotland! I could find out nothing about William Tweedie’s parents or upbringing. The next record of him is his marriage in Edinburgh on 19th May 1848 to Mary Tapper (1816-1883) who was born and raised in Teigngrace, a small village west of Newton Abbot in Devon. How she came to be in Edinburgh and how they met is a mystery. Mary had been baptised in the Church of England, but William Tweedie was a Quaker.
William and Mary Tweedie had six children between 1849 and 1861, for whom I can find birth registrations, but no baptismal records, suggesting they were born and raised as Quakers. Interestingly, all four sons of this marriage were all married in Church of England ceremonies, suggesting that they did not embrace Quakerism. Both daughters of William and Mary Tweedie remained spinsters and became school teachers, working together to run a series of private schools.
William and Mary Tweedie arrived in London around 1850, along with their first son, William, who had been born in 1849 just outside York. York has traditionally been a strong centre for Quakerism, encouraged by the presence of Joseph Rowntree of chocolate fame, and by the early foundation of Quaker hospitals and Quaker schools. In the 1851 census William Tweedie is described as a bookseller, and his family are living at 18 Upper Wellington Street, Covent Garden, right in the heart of the book trade of mid-19th century London. To illustrate this, here is a short extract from a blog by Mary L Shannon:
“On Wellington Street, you could find the offices of some of the most well-known and influential newspapers, miscellanies, and serials of the mid-Victorian period. In the 1840s and ‘50s it was home to more than twenty newspapers or periodicals, and thirteen booksellers or publishers. The Punch office was at 13 Wellington Street South until January 1844. When Reynolds arrived at number 7 around 1846, number 14 was the office of the Athenaeum. This highly respected literary journal was published by John Francis, who helped to prop up the Daily News after Dickens had abandoned his ill-advised job as its editor. Until 1849, number 14 also contained the offices of the Railway Chronicle. This was edited by John Scott Russell, who had been railway editor for Dickens at the Daily News. A two-minute stroll away, at number 5 Wellington Street South was the office of the Examiner, edited by Dickens’s close friend and literary advisor John Forster. At 17 Upper Wellington Street lived briefly one of the most famous contributors to Household Words, G.A. Sala, while Henry Mayhew published the serial version of London Labour and the London Poor from an office in 16 Upper Wellington Street.”
The first recorded publication by William Tweedie on WorldCat.org is from 1853. Like all of his 66 books listed on WorldCat, it was issued from the address on my book, 337 Strand, London. He was mainly a publisher of books on abstinence from alcohol, together with religious-based advice for women. He also republished several American anti-slavery titles. He is mostly remembered now for creating and publishing the ABC Railway Guides, which he also started in 1853. These were a real rival to Bradshaw’s Guides, which have now regained fame due to Michael Portillo’s series of TV programs on railways. The ABC Railway Guides were still being published well into the 1930s and were the inspiration for Agatha Christie’s The ABC Murders (1936).
William Tweedie died on 27th October 1874 at his home, 4 Campden Hill Road, Kensington, a fairly up-market area of London. The W. Tweedie publishing business ceased trading in 1875, largely, I imagine, because none of his six children entered the book or publishing trade. I have been able to find a Carte de Visite of William Tweedie dated 1873. It is shown here below. I have to say he looks a bit older than 52!
How William Tweedie came to publish an edition of Sense and Sensitivity remains a mystery. It is so atypical of his normal type of publications. It is also strange that the two title pages bear the dates 1852 and 1853. There is no record of any Tweedie publication in 1852 on WorldCat or in The Publishers’ Circular and Booksellers’ Record for 1852. The one puzzle I can offer a solution for is the origin of the frontispiece shown above in Figure 1. I have rotated and expanded the picture to display it again below. It depicts the visit of Mrs Dashwood and her daughters to Sir John Middleton.
In the bottom left corner of the image, “W. Monkhouse, Lith York” is printed. William Monkhouse (1814-1896) was a successful lithographer who worked in York from at least 1841 until the mid 1880s. At the peak of his career he employed ten people to work with him. He was quite well known for a series of fine lithographs of York Minster. Since William Monkhouse and William Tweedie were both in York around 1849-1850, I assume that they may have met during that period. I do not think that William Monkhouse was a Quaker, as he was married in a Church of England ceremony and was not buried in either of the two Quaker cemeteries in York. Perhaps William Tweedie commissioned the frontispiece from his lithographer friend in York. The quality of the work is not outstanding, and it is not clear who was responsible for the original drawing. Monkhouse was known to have collaborated with several artists and photographers during his long career. It is certainly better than the very stiff image of Willoughby and Elinor on the engraved title page (Figure 1.) I have not seen either of these images published anywhere else.
A possible provenance…
My Tweedie Sense and Sensibility does have an inscription on the free front end-paper. It reads “Anne Carter, from her affectionate Aunt Martha, 1860.” It is shown in Figure 7 below.
Anne Carter is a fairly common mid-19th century name, but on searching for an Anne Carter who was both living in the UK in 1860 and who had an Aunt Martha, I rather surprisingly could only find one, and that after some difficulty! The family has a rather compelling and complex story, so I will only summarise it here.
Anne Farr was born on 30th January 1825 in Chelsea, as the only daughter of Thomas Farr and Mary Ann Farr nee Dewin. On the 1851 census, Anne Farr is reported to be a school mistress living in Stanwell Moor, a small village in Middlesex, which in the 1850s would have been entirely rural, but today is the closest village to Heathrow airport, 250 metres beyond the western boundary fence, directly below the flight-path!
Anne presumably met her husband Robert Carter in Stanwell Moor, as he was a long time resident there, having been born in Stanwell Moor in late 1812 and baptised in the parish church at nearby Stanwell on 29 November 1812. Robert Carter was variously described as a publican and a victualler. I am pleased to say that the pub in Stanwell Moor, The Anchor, is still operating.
Anne Farr and Robert Carter were married at St Luke’s Church, Chelsea, which was Anne’s home parish, on 22nd December 1853. Over the next seven years, they had three sons, all of whom were born in Stanwell Moor: Robert John in 1854, Thomas Charles in 1856 and Richard in 1860. In the next census on 7th April 1861, Robert and Ann Carter are shown to be living in Stanwell Moor with their two oldest sons, Robert and Thomas, and a visitor, Martha Palmer. The 7 month-old Richard was staying with relatives William and Sarah Francis at nearby Cranford, which was then a 5km walk east from Stanwell Moor. Today the two villages are still separated by 5km, but the land is now taken up by the long axis of Heathrow airport, making the walk both hazardous and illegal.
Martha Palmer (1781-1872) was born Martha Gould, and had a sister, Miriam Gould (1776 -1844), who in 1808 had married John Carter (1783-1852) of Stanwell Moor. John and Miriam Carter were the parents of Robert Carter, husband of Anne Farr, and so the 1861 visitor to Robert and Anne, Martha Palmer, was their Aunt Martha. I find this compelling evidence that this must be the Aunt Martha who gave the Tweedie 1853 edition of Sense and Sensibility to Anne Carter in 1860.
Interestingly, Robert Carter had an older sister, Martha Carter (1809-1881), the first-born child of John and Miriam Carter, who had presumably been named after Miriam’s sister Martha Palmer nee Gould. Martha Carter married John Ebenezer Gillard in 1841 at St.Luke’s Church in Chelsea. This couple were to play an important role in the story of the Carter family.
Sadly, both Anne Carter nee Farr and Robert Carter died later in 1861, Anne in June and Robert in September, leaving their three sons, Robert John, Thomas Charles and Richard as orphans at ages of 6, 4 and 1 year old respectively. The boys’ own Aunt Martha, now Martha Gillard, took the two older boys into her family and raised them together with her two daughters, Martha Miriam Gillard, who had been clearly named for both Martha and Miriam Gould, and Sarah Emma Gillard.
Both Robert John Carter and Thomas Charles Carter grew up, married, and lived the rest of their lives in and around London. Robert John had no children, but Thomas Charles Carter, who followed in his father’s footsteps and became a publican in Camberwell, South London, had one son, Cecil Thomas Carter (1884-1861).
The youngest son, Richard Carter, had a less happy early life, spending several years in an Infant Orphan Asylum in Snaresbrook, North London. In 1881, he was living in a boarding house in Battersea, South London and working as a harness-maker. In the mid-1880s, he emigrated to Sydney Australia, where he married in 1890 and had four children before his death in 1902. Several of Richard Carter’s great-grandchildren are alive today in Australia.
So that completes the story of this little book and its previous owner. I don’t know what happened to the book after the death of Anne Carter. I bought it from a dealer in the far north of Scotland, so, ironically, it had returned to the birthplace of its publisher, William Tweedie, before making its way to me in Australia.
In this post, I will investigate the origin and prior ownership of my copy of the Miles and Miles edition of Macaria, by Augusta Jane Evans Lewis, that was probably published sometime between 1899 and 1902. The story of the author and her books and of the probable source of the publication appears in the previous posts, Price and Provenance 6 and its sequel Price and Provenance 7. My copy of the book is shown in figure 1 below.
As I mentioned previously, there is no printed date of publication in Macaria, nor is there a bundle of publisher’s advertisements bound into the book to assist with the establishment of a date. However, there is one other piece of useful evidence, a prize presentation sticker on the free front end paper (ffep). The front end papers and the prize label are shown in Figure 2 below.
The label clearly states that the book was awarded to George Goodburn by the Primitive Methodist Sunday School, Penrith for attendance and good conduct. Frustratingly, the date at the bottom of the prize label has not been filled in, nor have the marks achieved. We are left with the printed “190 “, with the final, crucial digit missing. We also have the two names printed on the bottom of the label: “REV. J. GRAHAM, Minister” with “Mr. JNO GRAHAM”, Superintendent printed beneath. Is the information on this label enough to provide us with any help with the date, and can we identify George Goodburn? Here is a larger picture of the label (Figure 3.)
Where is the Penrith Primitive Methodist Sunday School?
There are two obvious main choices for the location of Penrith; Penrith, a small market town in Cumberland, now Cumbria, in England, or Penrith in New South Wales, Australia, now an outer western suburb of Sydney, in the approaches to the Blue Mountains.There are two other less likely candidates; Penrith , nowadays usually spelled Penrydd, a small village in Pembrokeshire, Wales, and Penrith, a small community in Washington State, USA.
It quickly became clear that there had been Primitive Methodist Churches or Chapels in both Penrith, Cumberland and Penrith, NSW but that there were no records of one in the two other Penrith candidates. After further investigation, it became apparent that the Primitive Methodist Church I should concentrate on was the one in Cumberland. There will be much corroborating evidence for this later. In fact, there is a surviving town plan of Penrith, Cumberland from 1872 showing the location of the Primitive Methodist Chapel, and the building , although disused, is still standing today. It is located at the corner formed by Sandgate, Benson’s Row and Fell Lane. It was known locally as the Sandgate Chapel or the Sandgate Head Chapel. The importance of the name “Sandgate” will become apparent later. The map and the building are shown below.
The Sandgate Head Chapel was originally built by the Wesleyan church in 1815 to serve as their main chapel in Penrith. The Wesleyan movement eventually built a new chapel in Wordworth Street, (the poet William Wordsworth’s mother was from Penrith,) and when they moved into Wordsworth Street in 1873, the Sandgate Head Chapel was transferred to the Primitive Methodist movement. After the Primitive Methodist movement rejoined the “mainstream” Westleyan Church in 1932, the Sandgate Head Chapel continued to operate until 1967, since which time it has been empty. There have been plans to convert the building to housing, and in recent Google “Street View” pictures, the building seems to have been renovated.
It is interesting that two out of the three Miles and Miles books that I own have prize certificates from the Primitive Methodist Sunday School movement in them. Perhaps Miles and Miles had an arrangement with the Primitive Methodist movement for the supply of such prize books, although a sample of three is a very small number. You can find some information about the Primitive Methodist movement in Price and Provenance 4.
Rev. J Graham, Minister
The Rev. J Graham referred to on the prize label was Rev. John Graham (1865-1930), who was born in Blyth, Northumberland in 1866. In the 1891 UK census, he was recorded as a single, 25 year old Primitive Methodist Minister living in Goole in Yorkshire. In the 1901 census, he was described as a 35 year old married Methodist Minister living at 51 Wentworth Street, Penrith. This is about 100 metres north of the Wesleyan chapel on the corner of Wentworth Street and Drover Street and 200 metres from the Sandgate Head Primitive Methodist Chapel. He was married to 34 year old Sarah Annie Graham nee Payton from Bagworth in Leicestershire.
At the time of the 1911 census, Rev. John Graham was visiting a family at Allendale in his native Northumberland, and is again described as a 45 year old married Primitive Methodist Minister. However his life had changed considerably since he lived in Penrith in 1901. In the last quarter of 1903, his son John Richard Alston Graham had been born in Penrith, but unfortunately his wife Sarah Annie died in that same quarter, presumably due to complications from the birth. Rev. John Graham was remarried a year later to Jane Eliza Johnson (1875-1952) in Scarborough, Yorkshire, sometime in the last quarter of 1904. According to the records of the Primitive Methodist Church, John Graham moved to be the minister at Allendale in 1904, to Scotter in Lincolnshire in 1907, where his second son Edward Hugh Graham was born in 1909, and to Whitehaven in Northumberland in 1910. In the 1911 census, while Rev John Graham was visiting friends in Allendale, his second wife is reported to have been living in Whitehaven with her son Edward Hugh and her step-son John Richard Alston.
From these records, it seems clear that Rev. John Graham had left Penrith permanently sometime in 1904. The church records also reveal that he moved from Bishop’s Auckland to Penrith in 1900, having been the minister at Goole in Yorkshire from 1890 to 1893. So his tenure as Primitive Methodist Minister at Penrith was limited to the period 1900 to late 1903/early 1904. I have found a photograph of Rev. John Graham published in the Methodist magazine in 1919 (Figure 5), when he was 51. He looks younger in the photograph, which was presumably taken earlier than 1919.
The prize label also mentions a Mr Jno Graham as Superintendent of the Sunday School. This must be another John Graham, and the UK census records for 1901 reveal that there were eight other John Grahams resident in Penrith that year. These varied from a one year old infant John Graham to a 74 year old agricultural labourer. The most likely candidate, in my view, is John Graham, a 42 year old tailor and proprietor, with his wife Elizabeth, of the Castle Temperance Hotel in Castlegate. This was within 250 metres of the Sandgate Head Chapel. Temperance is strongly aligned with Methodism.
It is interesting that this older John Graham was born in 1858 at Bedlington Colliery Village, Northumberland, about three km away from Blyth, where the Rev. John Graham had been born 10 years later in 1868. From this story, we can reasonably suggest that George Goodburn would have most probably received his prize book Macaria during the years of 1900 to 1903. so, who was George Goodburn?
Who was George Goodburn?
The answer to this question is quite simple, but the family history that my investigation revealed was complex and fascinating. I will try just to give the main highlights in this post. There has been no shortage of George Goodburns in Penrith, and they have been there since at least the middle of the 16th century. Now there seem to be none left in Penrith. Where did they come from and where did they go?
Overview of the Goodburn family line.
I have been able to establish the following family line, most of whom were George Goodburns. I am starting the list from the most ancient ancestors and working down to the latest and last member of the line. All were residents of Penrith. The dates for the earliest ones are somewhat vague, due to the meagreness and scarcity of records that have survived for more than 400 years. The list represents 12 consecutive generations of fathers and sons.
Alexander Goodburn (mid 16th cent)
Christopher Goodburn (late 16th cent)
Thomas Goodburn (1600- ?)
George Goodburn (1640-1717)
Henry Goodburn (1682-1757)
George Goodburn (1710-1789)
George Goodburn (1738-1790)
George Goodburn (1765-1826)
George Goodburn the Innkeeper (1805-1883)
George Goodburn the Chemist (1835-1862)
George Albert Goodburn the Solicitor’s Clerk (1859-1931)
George Albert Goodburn the Bank Cashier (1886-1966)
Every one of these, from Thomas Goodburn down to George Albert Goodburn the Solicitor’s Clerk, was born, raised, married and died in Penrith. The earliest ancester, Alexander, is only recorded in the baptismal record of his son Christopher in Penrith. I found some even earlier Goodburns living in Penrith in the first half of the 16th century, but I could not establish their relationship to the family line.
The very last name, George Albert Goodburn (1886-1966), was the recipient of Macaria from the Primitive Methodist Chapel. There are several enigmas that became apparent in the story of his immediate family. I will look at them in more detail in the next section. He is the end of the line, both for Goodburns in Penrith, but also in terms of his direct genetic linkage.
George Albert Goodburn the Bank Cashier (1886-1966)
George Albert Goodburn was born on 8th May 1886, in Penrith and at his baptism, presumably as a Methodist, on 2nd July 1886 was given exactly the same name as his father. His mother was Elizabeth Goodburn who had been born Elizabeth Nicholson in the second quarter of 1866 in the small hamlet of Greystoke, which is found 3km east of Penrith. George Albert Goodburn was his parents’ first born child, following their marriage in the second quarter of 1885. He was followed by a sister, Mary Isabel Goodburn, who was born on 6th May 1888 and a brother, Ernest William Goodburn, who was born on 11 April 1891. The family had lived since the marriage of George Albert Goodburn senior and Elizabeth Nicholson at 19 Sandgate Head in Penrith, and all three children were almost certainly born at home. Starting from the 1881 census document of 3rd April that year, George Albert Goodburn senior was always described as either a Solicitor’s Clerk or a Legal Clerk. He lived at 19 Sandgate Head for the rest of his life, and eventually died there on 16th July 1931, the last George Goodburn to die in Penrith.
Sadly for the family, Elizabeth Goodburn nee Nicholson died at 19 Sandgate Head in the first quarter of 1895 at the age of 28, leaving her widowed husband to raise three children of 8, 6 and 3 years of age. His solution is apparent in the census record of 31st March 1901, where the family shown at 19 Sandgate Head is George Albert Goodburn senior, now 42, with the three children aged 14, 12 and 9 and a “servant” called Margaret Louisa Goodburn aged 22. This was Margaret Louisa Warwick (1879-1969), who later married George Albert Goodburn senior in the third quarter of 1901 back in her home village in Westmoreland. She bore him one child, Reginald Warwick Goodburn (1911- 1982), and survived her husband by 38 years before she too died in 19 Sandgate Head on 28th April 1969. Reginald became a solicitor’s clerk, just as his father had, and lived most of his life at 19 Sandgate Head, where he died on 18th January 1982.
If you inspect the census report for 2nd April 1911 for 19 Sandgate Head, you will see that the occupants were George Albert Goodburn senior, Margaret Louisa Goodburn, now his second wife, and the youngest child of his first marriage, Ernest William Goodburn, recorded as a 19 year old grocer’s assistant. Margaret would have been heavily pregnant, as her son Reginald was born about ten days after the census date. There is no mention of the two older children, who have left home, indeed left the town and the country and are now in North America. Where they were and how they got there needs some background and explanation.
The Goodburn Exodus from Penrith.
The two oldest children of George Albert Goodburn senior, George Albert Goodburn Junior and Mary Isobel Goodburn were not the first members of the Goodburn family to leave Penrith and cross the Atlantic. There had been two earlier quite separate migrations that I will briefly outline.
First, let us go back to George Albert and Mary Isobel’s maternal family. Their mother, Elizabeth, had been born the last of the 5 children of William Nicholson (1835 – 1866) and Elizabeth Nicholson nee Coulthard (1839 – 1925). William Nicholson had died in 1866, a few months after his daughter’s birth. In 1867, her mother Elizabeth remarried John Taylor (1840-1916), a farmer whom she probably had known for many years, stemming from their shared childhood in the village of Lazonby, a few km north of Penrith.
John and Elizabeth Taylor had seven children together while living in and around Penrith between 1869 and 1877. They also had included the five children from Elizabeth and William Nicholson’s marriage as a part of their expanded family. According to the 1871 census, the family were all together on John Taylor’s farm at Penruddock, 6km west of Penrith. By 1881, the combined family was operating as two groups, with two of the older Nicholson boys running the farm at Penruddock, and three of the Taylor daughters staying with them, while John and Elizabeth were running the Black Bull Hotel in Castlegate, Penrith with the other Nicholson and Taylor children staying with them. The Black Bull is no longer operating as a hotel in Penrith, but the original building, now converted into shops, is still standing. You can see it below.
In 1885, John Taylor migrated by himself to the USA, and in June 1887, his wife Elizabeth followed him with the six Taylor children on the SS British King from Liverpool to Philadelphia. We don’t know why they chose to emigrate. The family settled in Sewickley in Pennsylvania, where they became American citizens, and the children married local Americans. Two of the Nicholson sons also emigrated to the same area of Pennsylvania. John Taylor died in Sewickley in 1916, followed by his wife Elizabeth in 1925. They are buried there together.
The other related group that moved from Penrith to North America was the family of George Albert Goodburn senior’s sister, Mary Alice Crawford nee Goodburn (1856-1948). Their father, George Goodburn the Chemist (1835- 1862) and mother, Margaret Farrington Goodburn nee Halliwell (1833-1868) both died when their two children were very young. The two orphans lived with their maternal grandmother Lydia Halliwell, and then, after her death, with their uncle Bartholomew Halliwell. Mary Alice Goodburn married Richard Crawford in 1878 and they had taken over the running of the Woolpack Inn from Mary Alice’s grandfather George Goodburn the Innkeeper (1805-1883). In 1881, George Albert Goodburn senior, who was lodging with his sister and brother-in-law at the Woolack Inn, was already working as a solicitor’s clerk. The Woolpack Inn is still operating in Penrith. It is located at the south end of Burrowgate, and can be seen below.
Again, for no obvious reason, Mary Alice and Richard Crawford with their three children all under 6 years of age emigrated from Penrith to Hamilton, Ontario in Canada in 1884, where they spent the rest of their lives. They had another eight children together, all born in Hamilton Ontario between 1885 and 1897.
So, by the first few years of the 20th century, George Albert Goodburn junior and Mary Isobel Goodburn had two groups of relatives who had become well-established in North America since about 1885. Their grandmother’s family was in Pennsylvania and their aunt’s family was in Hamilton, Ontario. The urge to join them was apparently irresistable.
The Third Wave of Goodburn Emigration
On 13th Nov 1907, brother and sister George Albert Goodburn junior, aged 21, and Mary Isobel Goodburn, aged 19, boarded the SS Friesland bound for North America. They disembarked in Philadelphia on 25th November 1907 and presumably stayed initially in Sewickley with their grandmother Elizabeth Taylor. In the 1910 US census, George Albert Goodburn is still boarding with his grandmother at 603 Broad Street, Sewickley, but his sister Mary Isobel is not with him. We next hear of her living in Hamilton, Ontario at 137 Maple Avenue. Sadly she was terminally ill with typhoid fever, and died there on 16th November 1911, with her brother George Albert at her side.
George Albert Goodburn seems to have stayed in Ontario until 1st December 1915, when he took a railway trip from Hamilton to Niagara Falls, New York, where he declared his intention to stay again with his grandmother in Sewickley, Pennsylvania. On 9th February 1917, he filed his application for US citizenship in Pennsylvania, and interestingly, he renounced his Methodism and was confirmed into the Anglican church on 30th March 1917 at St. Stephen’s church, Sewickley, Pennsylvania. At the next US census on 1st January 1920, he was still living with his grandmother at 603 Broad Street, working as a shipper for a furnace company.
Later in 1920, George Albert Goodburn moved to Medicine Lodge in Barber County, Kansas, where in that same year, he married Nellie Beatrice Wright (1889-1958). She had been born in England but had emigrated to the USA at six weeks of age. They lived together in Medicine Lodge until Nellie’s death on 27th September 1958. He was married to Minnie Pearl Johnson on 19th October 1959 in Medicine Lodge.
George held various jobs in the banking industry in Medicine Lodge, mainly with the First National Bank, before becoming the manager of a grain company. He lived at 98 West Kansas Avenue from 1935 until his death on 22nd December 1966. There were no children from either of George Albert Goodburn’s two marriages.
Not to be outdone by his two older siblings, the youngest brother, Ernest William Goodburn also traveled from Penrith to North America, but his movements were more complicated.
Ernest William Goodburn (1891-1986)
Ernest Goodburn first left Penrith in 1912, sailing from Liverpool and arriving at Halifax, Nova Scotia on 14 April 1912. This was the day before the sinking of the Titanic in nearby waters! Ernest stayed at 262 Wellington Street North in Hamilton, close to his Aunt Mary Alice Crawford’s family who lived at 8 Richmond Street South. As far as I can tell, his brother George Albert was still in Hamilton at that time. Ernest left Ontario on 24th August 1912, travelling by himself via Niagara Falls in New York state to stay with his grandmother Elizabeth Taylor in Sewickley, Pennsylvania.
Ernest returned to England and in 1916 joined the Cumberland-based 3rd Border Regiment, which saw service at home in England as a training battalion in the First World War. After the war, he left England again via Liverpool on 7th August 1919, arriving at Halifax, Nova Scotia on 17th August. He stayed again in Hamilton, Ontario, living at 11 Richmond Street, and the next year, on 19th June 1920 he married Ellen Mary Bennett (1891-1982) at Lincoln, Ontario, a town 40 km east of Hamilton. They lived in Hamilton until the end of 1927, when they moved in January 1928 with their young daughter Elizabeth to live in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where their son William was born in 1929. Ernest and his family moved to Hartford, Connecticut sometime after the death of their son William in Pittsburgh in 1951. Ernest and his wife both died in Hartford and are buried there together.
All three children from the first marriage of George Albert Goodburn, the solicitor’s clerk from Penrith had permanently emigrated to North America. One wonders whether family tensions caused by his delayed second marriage had led to the departure of his first three children. However, this can’t explain why the children’s aunt Mary Alice Crawford and grandmother Elizabeth Taylor also decided to leave Penrith to settle in North America in the mid 1880s.
Religious History of the Goodburns
The religious history of this family is also worth a comment. From one of the earliest records I can find, which is the baptism of Thomas Goodburn on 10th February 1600, almost all of the births, deaths and marriages of the Goodburn family line have been recorded at St Andrew’s parish church in Penrith. St Andrew’s was the oldest and leading Anglican church in Penrith, being founded no later than the 12th century. The last Goodburn family record I can find at St Andrew’s is the baptism on 14th January 1855 of Albert Goodburn (1855-1857), the short-lived first son of George Goodburn the Chemist. The next four family events in Penrith are all recorded on the civil registry, but not in the registers of St Andrew’s church. These are the baptism of Mary Alice Goodburn in 1856, the death and burial of Albert Goodburn in 1857, the birth of George Albert Goodburn senior in 1859 and the death of George Goodburn the Chemist in 1862. George Albert Goodburn junior clearly identified himself as a Methodist, attended the Primitive Methodist Sunday School and eventually converted from Methodism to Anglicanism in 1917. His brother Ernest recorded himself to be a Baptist in Pittsburgh in 1951.
It seems to me that the best explanation is that George Goodburn the Chemist converted to Methodism around 1855-1856, and that his children and grandchildren all followed suit. One really interesting element in the choice of the Sandgate Head Primitive Methodist Sunday School for George Albert Goodburn junior, and perhaps his siblings, is proximity. The family lived at 19 Sandgate Head, Penrith. It is a simple 5 room house that is still standing at the top of Sandgate, and is almost the closest house to the Sandgate Head Primitive Methodist church. It would literally be a 15 second walk from one building to the other.
In this recent picture taken from Google Street View, 19 Sandgate Head can be seen as the light lilac-tinted house on the right hand end of the terrace. These three houses seem to be the last survivors on this street from the 19th century. In the lower panel, the former Sandgate Head Methodist chapel can be seen on the right hand end of the picture, just a few steps beyond beyond the row of houses containing 19 Sandgate Head.
This exploration of the Goodburn family of Penrith and the Miles and Miles edition of Macaria has provided an insight into one set of family upheavals and migrations of a kind which was not uncommon in late 19th and early 20th century England. The information, both bibliographical and social, that I have uncovered in association with the book seems consistent with a publication date of 1899 – 1902.
George Albert Goodburn would have been around 15-17 years old when he was awarded the book as a prize. One wonders whether reading a book that glorified the Confederate Army in the American Civil War, at such an age, had any small part in George’s decision to emigrate to America.
I purchased the book from a second hand bookshop in Carlton, an inner suburb of Melbourne, Victoria in September 2007. How it made its way from Penrith, perhaps via Ontario, Pennsylvania or Kansas to Australia will I suspect, remain a mystery. There is however one possible explanation.
George Goodburn the Chemist had a younger brother, John Ambrose Goodburn (1838-1919), who lived in Penrith up until 1911. Sometime after 1911 he moved with his wife and two daughters to Salford near Manchester, where he died in June 1919. In December 1922, his widow Mary Ann and his two daughters boarded the SS Ballarat in Liverpool and emigrated to Sydney, Australia. Mary Ann Goodburn died in Sydney in 1930 and her too daughters, who never married, also died in Sydney, Mary Goodburn in 1946 and Theresa Goodburn in 1970.
It is possible that George Albert Goodburn gave his Macaria to his great uncle John Ambrose Goodburn or to one of his second cousins, Mary or Theresa Goodburn in Penrith, before his emigration to the USA with his sister in 1907. The two girls would have been 25 and 22 years old in 1907, close in age to George Albert Goodburn who was 21. They were living at 13 Meeting House Lane, just a few houses west of 19 Sandgate Head. The book could then have traveled to Sydney with the Goodburn family in 1922 and been lost from the family after the death of its last surviving Australian member Theresa in 1970. A nice plausible theory, but I have no direct proof whatsoever.
In the previous post, Price and Provenance 6, I discussed some of the Routledge Editions of Macaria as well as other titles by Augusta Jane Evans Wilson, and showed how the page count for Macaria was, at 380 pages, identical to the Miles and Miles edition, further supporting the notion that the Miles and Miles edition was printed from Routledge stereotype plates. I also noted that there were 7 copies of Routledge editions of Macaria on offer via Abe Books. One of those copies was offered by a local Victorian (Australia) online book dealer whom I have bought books from before. The asking price was modest and the description was slightly vague, but did include a mention of no date, 380 pages, chapter vignettes and the phrase “Cover faded and scuffed in places”, so, sight unseen, I ordered the book on April 9th 2020.
It arrived today, 16th April 2020, and here it is, in all its glory, in Figures 1 and 2. The condition of the cover was all that was promised.
Several things were immediately apparent. The design on the binding, while it is clearly different from the Miles and Miles binding, does show some similarities, with the title at the top of the top board in a rectangular cartouche, and an overall design that is floral in nature. The appearance of the text block, as exemplified by page one, shown in the left hand panel of figure 2, is identical to that of that of the Miles and Miles Macaria, including an identical decorative vignette at the top of the page and the number 7 at the bottom centre of the page. The words on the title page (Figure 1, right hand panel) are identical to the text of the Miles and Miles edition, except for the publisher’s name and address, but the layout of the text is slightly different. Neither of the title pages is dated. There is a wood engraving as the frontispiece for the Routledge edition, but no illustrations in the Miles and Miles edition. The frontispiece is signed “Geo. G” in the bottom left hand corner, but again, there is no date. The final pages of the text blocks are identical for the two books, down to the detail of the final ornamental floral vignette, except for the identification of the printer of the Routledge edition at the bottom of page 380. It reads “BILLING AND SONS, PRINTERS, GUILDFORD.” This exactly matches the printer identified in WorldCat for the later Routledge edition of Macaria.
To assist with visual comparisons, the binding, title pages and first and last text pages of the two editions are presented side by side in Figure 3, with the Routledge edition on the left and the Miles and Miles edition on the right.
All of these observations confirm that these two books have been created from the same stereotype plates. Overall, the Miles and Miles edition appears to have been a higher quality production than the Routledge edition, both in the printing and the quality of the binding and the paper, notwithstanding the poor condition of my copy of the Routledge edition.
The search on WorldCat reported in Price and Provenance 6 revealed a scarce Routledge edition (one copy known) published in 1892. It also listed many copies of my edition, clearly as a later reprint, appearing at some time after 1900. On the lower right of the top board, we see printed “The Augusta Evans Wilson Series”, suggesting that the book is part of a later set of collected reprints. From the wear on the printed pages, it may well have been printed from the common stereotype plates after they were used to print the Miles and Miles edition. I can put some tentative limits on the dates. From the appearance of the title page, particularly the form of the address and the lack of the Routledge colophon, the Routledge edition seems to have been printed between 1900 and 1902. This would provisionally date the Miles and Miles edition to perhaps 1898-1899.
A Helpful Signature
As part of my examination of the Routledge Macaria, I looked for any other clues to the date of publication. There is a block of four pages of publisher’s advertisements, but after examining the titles, they are all 19th century books. One of the listed books is dated as a 12th edition of September 1897, implying that this edition of Macaria was published in 1898 at the earliest.
On the top of the front paste-down, there is a faded hand-written name “B.V. Inglis Alvie”, but no date. It is shown in Figure 4. below.
My initial thought was who could this B. V. Inglis Alvie be, when I noticed the gap between Inglis and Alvie. A Google search for “Inglis Alvie” revealed that an Inglis family had lived in Alvie, a small town near Colac in the Western District of Victoria, Australia. Further research revealed that a Thomas Gordon Inglis of Alvie had been killed on August 3rd 1915, during the Gallipoli campaign of World War I. A search on Ancestry.com for Thomas Gordon Inglis of Alvie soon revealed his older sister Barbara Victoria Inglis (1887 – 1972), who lived her whole life in the Colac area, mostly at Alvie. She married a Leopold William Wallace in 1911. On both the 1909 and 1912 electoral rolls for Corangamite, the electorate which still covers Colac and Alvie, she is shown as living, firstly with her parents, and then with her husband, both times at Alvie.
The signature is helpful, even without a date, as after 1911 she was no longer Barbara Victoria Inglis, but had become Barbara Victoria Wallace, so she would no longer have written her name as Inglis. This clearly dates the book to no later than 1911, and is consistent with the notion that Macaria was published in the first few years of the 20th century. The Victorian book dealer from whom I bought the book is located at Skipton, in the Western District of Victoria, about 85km north of Alvie. It would be interesting to know if they obtained the book locally.
My Routledge edition of Macaria clearly looks like a fairly cheap production. The four pages of advertisements bound into the back of the book are described as “George Routledge’s Juvenile Catalogue”, and presents books at two different prices. First of all, there were Gift Books for 7s. 6d., described as “In large crown 8vo., profusely illustrated with plain and coloured plates, and tastefully bound in cloth gilt or gilt edges.” There were also three other categories of cheaper books described, each of them offered at five shillings:
Five Shilling Gift Books, described as “Large crown 8vo., with many illustrations, plain and coloured, and in attractive clothbindings.”
Pleasant Sunday Afternoon Books, described as “Well printed on good paper, page llustrations, elegantly bound in cloth gilt.”
Five Shilling Picture Books, described as “Printed in colours by Edmond Evans, and tastefully bound in picture-boarded covers designed by the artists.”
All of these books sound like much better productions than my Macaria, and I think that the Macaria would be more likely to have been priced at 2s. or 2s. 6d. The Five Shilling Picture Books that were advertised were the famous four “Pictures from the Graphic” volumes illustrated by Randolph Caldecott. These were all very attractive books, published by Routledge between 1886 and 1890. Interestingly, one of the titles listed under the Pleasant Sunday Afternoon Books is At The Mercy of Tiberius by Augusta Evans Wilson. It sounds like a better production than Macaria.
The final point worth considering is how did such a book get to a small settlement in the Western District of Victoria in the first few years of the 20th century? Some London publishers, such as Ward Lock, Cassell, Collins and William Inglis (ironically!), had offices in Melbourne, the centre of Australian publishing in Victorian and Edwardian times. Routledge did not have an Australian office at that time, so their books would have been ordered from London and imported by individual booksellers or possibly a wholesale supply house. It would mean at least a six month delay between publication in London and availability in Australia.
UPDATE 27 May 2020
I have since purchased another book from the same book dealer, a copy of Women of Israel by Grace Aguilar, published by Groombridge and Sons in 1876. My interest in this book is an attempt to learn more about Groombridge and Sons’ publishing of fiction, as they were mainly publishers of natural history, horticultural and agricultural works, with a few religious books thrown in for good measure. Groombridge was the publisher of my illustrated Mansfield Park featured in Price and Provenance 10. For more on Groombridge and Sons, see my page Groombridge, publishers.
The owner of the bookshop from which I purchased the Routledge Macaria and the Groombridge Women of Isreal has sent me the following information on how he obtained the two books. Many thanks to John Orton of Black Stump Books, Skipton, Victoria, Australia. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
“Apropos your purchase of Macaria and Women of Israel. For your records, you may be interested to know that we acquired both these and many other titles at an auction in Colac, about a decade ago. The auction was held at 39 Gravesend Street, Colac, the residence of the Bassett family. The last occupants of the house were Bromwyn and Valerie Bassett. They were elderly twin sisters, who were avid book collectors. After the death of the last of the twins the home and contents were put up for auction.”
Barbara Victoria Wallace nee Inglis was the previous owner of the Macaria. Her final address in Colac before she died was (ironically) 2 Inglis Court. If you look at the map of the southern part of Colac shown below in Figure 5, you can see that Barbara Victoria Wallace and the two Bassett sisters were very close neighbours, as their two houses are within about 50 metres of each other. In 1972, Valerie Bassett was living in East Hawthorn in Melbourne, but her sister, Irene Bronwen Bassett to give her full name, was living at 39 Gravesend Street with her widowed mother, Clare Irene Bassett nee Sitlington. Bronwen seems to have moved back from East Melbourne to Colac following her father’s death in 1970. She would have been on hand to buy books from the estate of Barbara Victoria Wallace following her death in Colac in 1972. This provides one possible explanation of the line of provenance of the Routledge Macaria.
The Bassetts are an interesting study in family history. I have spent a day exploring them online and have identifed many members of the family at large, including all 16 great-great-grandparents of the two sisters, who were not twins, but were in fact Irene Bronwen Bassett (1920-2013) and Valerie Farndale Bassett (1921-2013). They lived to be 93 and 92 years old respectively and died within three weeks of each other in December 2013.
It will be interesting to find out if there was any other relationship than proximity between the Bassett sisters and Barbara Victoria Wallace nee Inglis.
In the next post, I will consider the prior ownership and provenance of the Miles and Miles Macaria.
In this post, I am examining the identity, origin and provenance of my copy of Macaria, which was published by Miles and Miles and is shown in Figure 1 below.
Who was Augusta J Evans Wilson?
Augusta Jane Evans was born on 8th May 1835 in Columbus, Georgia in the USA, the eldest of eight children of Mathew R. Evans and Sarah Evans nee Howard. She was born into a wealthy and prominent family. There seems to be no record of her attending school, but she remarked later in her life that she had been a very early and prolific reader as a child. The family fortunes suffered when her father became bankrupt early in her childhood, forcing the family to move, first to Alabama and then, in 1845, to San Antonio, Texas, before returning to Mobile, Alabama in 1849. San Antonio was very much a military outpost in the 1840s following the US-Mexico war, and the romance of the military life inspired Augusta to write her first book, Inez, A Tale of the Alamo in 1850, when she was just 15. This set the tone of much of her writing in later life, when she became known as the sympathetic voice on behalf of the Confederate army during the American Civil War. Inez was published anonymously in 1855, and was followed by her second book, Beulah, which was published under her own name in 1859. The book was so successful that she was able to buy a house called Georgia Cottage with the proceeds.
It was in Georgia Cottage that she wrote her next two, and most famous books, Macaria, published in 1863 and St. Elmo in 1866. She followed this with Vashti, published in 1868, and then she married a retired Confederate Colonel, Lorenzo Wilson, who was more than 25 years older than she. All of her future books, and reprints of her earlier books appeared under the name Augusta J Evans Wilson.
Macaria was pure confederate propaganda, praising the sacrifices of Confederate women and glorifying the Confederate army. The Civil War caused difficulties with the publication of Macaria. It was first published in Richmond, Virginia, which was part of the Confederacy, but it was also published in New York, very much in Union territory, by the device of smuggling the manuscript from Alabama to New York via Havana in Cuba to beat the wartime blockade. Copies of Macaria were famously burned by some fervent Unionists.
Augusta Evans Wilson went on to publish several other book after her marriage, including Infelice in 1875 and At the Mercy of Tiberius in 1887, but none of her later books were as popular as Macaria and St. Elmo. A silent movie version of St. Elmo was made in 1914, but it has now been lost, except for a few promotional still images. Augusta Jane Evans Wilson died in Mobile, Alabama on 9th May 1909. She was reputed to be the first American woman to make more than $100,000 from her writing, a sum not surpassed until Edith Wharton became successful nearly 50 years later.
Three comments concerning the books of Augusta Evans Wilson
Firstly, an observation on Macaria. When I first bought the book, the title seemed familiar to me, but I could not quite work out why. Then I realised that it is mentioned in one of my all-time favourite books, Cold Comfort Farm, by Stella Gibbons. Cold Comfort Farm was published by Constable in London in 1932. It is a brilliant parody of a then popular style of rural novel, that glorified a down-beat, romantically earthy and doom-laden picture of life in English villages and farms that was typified by Gone to Earth, The House at Dormer Forest and Precious Bane by Mary Webb, all set in rural Shropshire. In Cold Comfort Farm, the heroine, Flora Poste is looking around the farmhouse and we hear that…
“Flora pounced on some books which lay on the broad window-sill: Macaria, or Altars of Sacrifice… She liked Victorian novels. They were the only kind of novel you could read while you were eating an apple.”
Altars of Sacrifice is indeed the subtitle of Macaria, and the neglected novel was clearly not completely forgotten, at least not by Stella Gibbons in 1932.
Secondly, I have referred earlier to in these blogs to the list of 100 books published by Lever Brothers that was recorded by Janine Barchas in The Lost Novels of Jane Austen. Several of the books on the list were also published by Miles and Miles, apparently using the same stereotype plates. Macaria was not on that list, but I noticed that five other books by Augusta Evans Wilson were on the Lever Brothers list: Beulah, St.Elmo, Vashti, Infelice and At the Mercy of Tiberius. If all of the Lever Brothers books were printed on stereotype plates obtained from Routledge, as both Janine Barchas and I suspect, then there ought to be a record of these titles published by Routledge, probably in the period 1883-1900.
Thirdly, on the title page of my Miles and Miles copy of Macaria, the author is credited with being the author of “Beulah,” “St. Elmo,” “Infelice,” etc. If Macaria was printed by Miles and Miles from stereotype plates from Routledge, then you would expect these three titles to have been published by Routledge as well. A larger copy of that title page is shown below in Figure 3., together with a picture of Augusta Jane Evans Wilson.
Taking both of the last two observations together, one would expect there to have been at least six books by Augusta Evans Wilson published by Routledge; the five titles listed by Lever Brothers and Macaria. So the next questions are, were the works of Augusta Evans Wilson published by Routledge, and if so, which titles?
Was Augusta Evans Wilson published by Routledge?
This question was approached by the same method outlined in Price and Provenance 5 for a similar investigation of my Miles and Miles edition of Captain Cook’s Voyages. I searched both WorldCat and AbeBooks.
On WorldCat I found 17 editions of books by Augusta J Evans Wilson or Augusta J Evans listed as published by Routledge. These 17 books were various copies of Inez (1892), Beulah (1891, nd), Macaria (1892), St.Elmo (1891, 1893), Vashti (1890,1891), Infelice (1891, nd) and At the Mercy of Tiberius (1893). The years of publication by Routledge are given in brackets; nd means no date indicated. Clearly all of the books of interest, plus the author’s first book, Inez, were published by Routledge between 1890 and 1893.
The 1892 Routledge edition of Macaria was only noted as a single copy held at The British Library. Interestingly, another copy of Macaria was listed as published by Routledge after 1900 and printed by Billings and Sons at Guildford. In contrast to the 1892 copy, there were 334 different libraries listed as having a copy of this edition. Both this later edition and the 1892 edition were listed as 380 pages, the same page count as my Miles and Miles edition of Macaria.
The AbeBooks search, performed on 10th April 2020, found only five books. These were Inez (1892), Macaria (2 copies nd), St. Elmo (1891), and Infelice (1891). One of the copies of Macaria gave a page count which was again 380 pages. There were no images of any of these books on the AbeBooks site.
These two searches have confirmed that Routledge published seven titles of books by Augusta J Evans Wilson between 1890 and 1893, including all the titles listed by Lever Brothers in 1897 and all of the titles listed on the title page of my Miles and Miles edition of Macaria. All of the Routledge editions of Macaria had the same 380 page count as the Miles and Miles edition.
I am left to conclude that all the evidence is consistent with the idea that the Miles and Miles edition of Macaria was printed from the Routledge stereotype plates, after the publication of the Routledge editions. I will need to see a copy of a Routledge edition of Macaria to see if the text block is identical with the Miles and Miles edition.