Limited edition of Moby Dick or The Whale by Herman Melville, illustrated by Rockwell Kent. The definitive illustrated edition of Melville’s great work from The Lakeside Press.
Quarto, [three volumes]. Publisher’s black cloth, beveled board edges, illustrations stamped in silver on spines and front covers. Top edge dyed black, others uncut. Lacking the acetate dust jackets. Housed in the publisher’s aluminum slipcase, shelf wear and scratches to panels. Complete with 280 illustrations by Rockwell Kent. From a limited edition of 1000 copies printed under the supervision of William A. Kittredge at R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company, The Lakeside Press, Chicago.
Part of the “Four American Books” campaign launched by R.R. Donnelley & Sons in 1926, this illustrated work by Rockwell Kent brought the story of Moby Dick into the mainstream. The “Four American Books” project, orchestrated by C.G. Littell and William A. Kittredge of R.R. Donnelley, was intended to demonstrate that the printing of illustrated books on modern commercial machinery was comparable to the fine presses of Europe. The project succeeded and orders for trade editions began coming from Random House, Harcourt Brace, and others. The other three works selected for the campaign were Tales by Edgar Allen Poe, Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana, Jr., and Walden by Henry David Thoreau. (University of Chicago Library, Printing for the Modern Age Exhibition, 2006)