Signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the deluxe limited edition Democratic Book of 1936, from the personal collection of Adolphus Busch III.
Folio, a-z, aa-oo, 2-384pp, [2pp ads]. Full brown morocco, title and personalization in gilt on front cover. Top edge gilt, maroon silk endpapers. Solid text block, light wear to corners and spine. Dampstain along bottom edge of text block, most noticeable on endpapers and flyleaves, with ripple throughout text. Internally bright and legible, with occasional toning to full-page plates. Signed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt on the limitation page, numbered 1701 of 2500 copies. From the personal library of Adolphus Busch III, with his name stamped in gilt on front cover.
This copy was previously owned by Adolphus Busch III, president and CEO of the American brewing company Anheuser-Busch from 1934 to 1946. During the Prohibition era, Anheuser-Busch maintained operations by producing yeast, malt extract, ice cream, and more. Upon President Roosevelt’s approval of the Volstead Act on March 22, 1933, Anheuser-Busch was once again permitted to make and sell 3.2% beer. Busch III celebrated the occasion by gifting his father the infamous six-horse Clydesdale hitch. The horses delivered a ceremonial “first” case of Budweiser to Roosevelt at the White House in April, 1933. Today, Anheuser-Busch is the largest brewing company in the United States, with multiple brands including Budweiser, Busch, Michelob, Bud Light, and Natural Light.
The Democratic Book 1936 was published by the Democratic National Committee to raise funds for the party. It was sold for $250, which marked the first time a sitting President had actively helped raise funds for a political party. It created a minor scandal at the time, with Republicans attempting to exploit it to their political advantage during the 1936 election. (Halter T-119) According to Halter, it was likely printed in 1937 and mailed to supporters who contributed to the democratic party.