Scarce three volume set of the Letters of John Hay and Extracts From Diary, published in 1908 by his widow. Includes a presentation card from his wife, Clara S. Hay, to their close friend Bishop William Croswell Doane.
Octavo, [three volumes], xxii, 393pp; , 368pp; , 350pp. Blue buckram cloth, paper title affixed to spine. Wear to cloth. Partially uncut edges. Clean text throughout. Housed in custom cloth clamshell case, title in gilt on spine over red morocco label. Previously owned by New York Times columnist William Safire, with his bookplate affixed in Volume I. Presentation letter from Mrs. Clara S. Hay to the Bishop Doane of Albany, dated 1909, with details about the books’ content and offering thanks for his friendship. (Howes, H-335) (Blanck, 7803). Approximately 200 copies of this work were produced for the private use of Mrs. Hay.
I am sorry to say that they are not as complete as I would wish as Mr. Hay had destroyed all the family letters written during his stay at the White House. – Clara S. Hay in the letter to Bishop William Croswell Doane, affixed to front endpaper of this copy. John Hay would serve as the private secretary to President Lincoln until 1865. Along with John Nicolay, Hay would author a 10-Volume biography of President Lincoln called Abraham Lincoln: A History. During the McKinley Administration, Hay returned to government as the United States ambassador to the United Kingdom, and later the twelfth Secretary of State of the United States. He died in 1905, before this book was published by his wife.