Title The Writings of Mark Twain, Autograph Edition (25 volumes)
Binding Full Leather
Book Condition Very Good+ - Near Fine
Jacket Condition No Dust Jacket
Edition First Edition, Thus
Publisher Hartford, Conn The American Publishing Company
Seller ID 034915
Complete in 25 volumes. Published from 1899 to 1907, with all but the last five volumes in the first year. Volumes XXIV and XXV were actually published by Harper, though maintaining The American Publishing Company imprint. Limited edition of 512 copies, with 500 being numbered, and 12 lettered copies reserved for the author. This set is letter "B." Volume I is signed "S. L. Clemens / (Mark Twain)," and is also signed at the end of the introductory critical essay by writer Brander Matthews. A Short manuscript letter signed is laid in on Hotel Earlington letterhead addressed to "Bliss" and assumed to be Frank Bliss of The American Publishing Company and the driving force behind the production of this first "Writings." In the letter, Clemens discusses his desire to "present a nice set to Mrs. Clemens brother, Gen. Langhorne." Volume III (A Tramp Abroad, Pt. I), includes an original manuscript leaf in the hand of Clemens and with some corrections, from this title. Volume X (The Gilded Age, Pt. I) is signed in pencil by co-author Chas. [Charles] Dudley Warner, on the limitation page, and includes three original manuscript leaves laid in; two in the hands of Clemens, and one in the hand of Warner. Signed by at least 17 illustrators, including Peter Newell; T. de Thulstrup; Frederick Dielman; E. West Clinedinst; E. H. Garrett; J. G. Brown; Karl Gerhardt; Charles Noel Flagg; E. W. Kemble; F. M. Senior; Frank T. Merrill; Dan Beard; Frank V. DuMond; F. D. Opper; J. Allen St. John; C. D. Weldon; and F. Luis Mora. Original deep burgundy Moroccan leather covers with the first 21 bound and tagged by Haddon & Co. Binders. Although XXII and XXIII are perfectly matched, they do not show the Haddon tag. Volumes XXIV and XXV, are near perfectly matched, though the texture of the leather is slightly pebbled. Raised spine bands divide spines into six compartments. Gilt ruled decoration and lettering, with more elaborate ruling outlining the inside edges of the covers. Top edges are gilded, and others remain un-cut. Most of contents remain un-opened, and that which has been, was done very skillfully. Marbled end leaves. Set title page emblem in each volume designed by Tiffany and Company, and engraved by W. H. W. Bicknel. Lacking plate that is called for adjacent to page 242, "The King," in Volume XVI (A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court), though there is no appearance that this was ever bound in. All other plates are collated and present. This set has been expertly and beautifully restored by Jack Papuchyan of Papuchyan Bindery (H & H Book Services) in Glendale, CA. Volumes I, II, IV, VIII, XI, and XIII have been rebacked, though retain original covers. There is a very slight granular effect to these spine covers. Scattered scuffs, rubs, and other light damage to covers have been repaired. All covers are completely original. All volumes are tight, and save for a couple of very light smudges on the front free end leaf of Volume I, the contents remain in Fine condition. Although the numbered sets are seen occasionally on the market, as of May, 2017, there are no lettered editions available, nor are any lettered editions seen in auction records reviewed for the past 100 years.