The True Believer

The first edition, second printing of The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements by Eric Hoffer, signed by Hollywood activist and star of Citizen Kane, Dorothy Comingore.

The first edition, second printing of The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements by Eric Hoffer, signed by Hollywood activist and star of Citizen Kane, Dorothy Comingore.

Octavo, xiii, 176pp. Gray cloth, title on spine in black. Date code “E-A” on copyright page, lacking first edition statement. Foxing to endpapers, light soiling to cloth covers. Paired with the publisher’s second state dust jacket, $2.50 on front flap, reviews on rear panel, bright illustrations, a near fine copy. Signed in pencil on the front free endpaper by Dorothy Comingore.

Dorothy Comingore (1913-1971) was the breakout star of Citizen Kane, the critically acclaimed film by Orson Welles. As her fame grew, so did the FBI’s attention to her suspected communist activities. In 1952 she declined to answer questions when called in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HCUA), resulting in her being blacklisted from Hollywood. She never worked in Hollywood again and struggled with alcoholism in her later years.

Cry, The Beloved Country

First edition, second printing of Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton. From the library of Dorothy Comingore, Hollywood actress and star of Citizen Kane, later blacklisted for her communist sympathies.

First edition, second printing of Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton. From the library of Dorothy Comingore, Hollywood actress and star of Citizen Kane, later blacklisted for her communist sympathies.

Octavo, ix, [1], 278pp. Light blue cloth, title stamped in black and red on spine. Lacking Scribner’s A on copyright page. Light dust remnant along top edge, solid binding, dampstaining to lower corners, with no impact to text block. In the publisher’s dust jacket, $3.00 on front flap, chipping at top of spine, vibrant colors. Signed by Dorothy Comingore on the front free endpaper. An attractive example of one of the best-known works of South African literature.

Dorothy Comingore (1913-1971) was the breakout star of Citizen Kane, the critically acclaimed film by Orson Welles. As her fame grew, so did the FBI’s attention to her suspected communist activities. In 1952 she declined to answer questions when called in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HCUA), resulting in her being blacklisted from Hollywood. She never worked in Hollywood again and struggled with alcoholism in her later years.

Lincoln Steffens Speaking

First edition of Lincoln Steffens Speaking, from the library of Hollywood actress and communist sympathizer, Dorothy Comingore.

First edition of Lincoln Steffens Speaking, from the library of Hollywood actress and communist sympathizer, Dorothy Comingore.

Octavo, xii, 315pp. Black cloth, title stamped in silver. Stated “first edition” on the copyright page. Light wear to cloth, rubbing to spine, toning to leaves. Solid text block. In the publisher’s dust jacket, $2.50 on front flap, chipping to edges, some loss along top edge of front panel, a good example. Signed on the front free endpaper by Dorothy Comingore.

Dorothy Comingore (1913-1971) was the breakout star of Citizen Kane, the critically acclaimed film by Orson Welles. As her fame grew, so did the FBI’s attention to her suspected communist activities. In 1952 she declined to answer questions when called in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HCUA), resulting in her being blacklisted from Hollywood. She never worked in Hollywood again and struggled with alcoholism in her later years.

Mr. Justice Brandeis

The first edition of Mr. Justice Brandeis, edited by Felix Frankfurter, with the publisher's scarce dust jacket.

The first edition of Mr. Justice Brandeis, edited by Felix Frankfurter, with the publisher’s scarce dust jacket.

Octavo, vi, [4], 232pp. Green cloth, title stamped in gilt on spine. No additional printings noted. Light spotting to cloth on rear cover. Ownership notation of E.E. Shaw on front free endpaper. In the publisher’s near fine dust jacket, light soiling from handling, rare in this condition.

Felix Frankfurter (1882-1965) was a prominent American jurist and Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary, he immigrated to the United States as a child and became a naturalized citizen. He played a pivotal role in shaping constitutional law and championed the idea of judicial restraint. Serving on the Supreme Court from 1939 to 1962, Frankfurter’s opinions often reflected his commitment to preserving the Court’s integrity and the separation of powers. His writings include: The Business of the Supreme Court: A Study in the Federal Judicial System (1927), Mr. Justice Holmes and the Supreme Court (1931) – Frankfurter’s tribute to his mentor, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., and Of Law and Men (1956).

The Cincinnati Directory – Contains Names, Profession and Occupation of the Inhabitants of the town, Alphabetically Arranged; with The Number Of The Buildings Occupied by Each. Also, An Account of Its Officers, Population, Institutions And Societies, Public Buildings, Manufactures.

First edition of The Cincinnati Directory, published in 1819. Twelvemo, [x]11-156. Original publishers leather binding, gilt bands on spine, title rubbed off, some cracking to spine. Missing map on front endpaper. Paper is toned. Includes almanac for 1820.

Felix Frankfurter Reminisces

First edition of Felix Frankfurter Reminisces: Recorded In Talks With Dr. Harlan B. Phillips and inscribed by Justice Frankfurter.

First edition of Felix Frankfurter Reminisces: Recorded In Talks With Dr. Harlan B. Phillips and inscribed by Justice Frankfurter.

Octavo, ix, 310pp. Blue cloth, title stamped in gilt on spine over red print. The first printing, with no additional printings noted on copyright page. Bookplate on front endpaper, internally clean. In the publishers first state dust jacket, price clipped, no additional printing noted on front flap, light sunning to spine, a near fine example.

Inscribed on the front free endpaper: “For Elizabeth Kenney, whose horizons are evidently wider even than the vast reaches of the Supreme Court, with the good wishes of Felix Frankfurter / June 2, 1960.” Elizabeth Kenney was the secretary to Associate Justice Potter Stewart.

Felix Frankfurter (1882-1965) was a prominent American jurist and Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary, he immigrated to the United States as a child and became a naturalized citizen. He played a pivotal role in shaping constitutional law and championed the idea of judicial restraint. Serving on the Supreme Court from 1939 to 1962, Frankfurter’s opinions often reflected his commitment to preserving the Court’s integrity and the separation of powers. His writings include: “The Business of the Supreme Court: A Study in the Federal Judicial System” (1927), “Mr. Justice Holmes and the Supreme Court” (1931) – Frankfurter’s tribute to his mentor, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., and “Of Law and Men” (1956).

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Presidential Limited Editions

The surest way to guarantee you’re getting an authentic signed copy of a presidential book is to seek out a limited edition printing. At first glance, you’ll come across material from Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and Richard Nixon, who were prolific signers during and after their presidency.

Its common to find a signed limited edition from President Nixon, number XX of 2500. But when you’ve been researching this field for many years, you’ll realize that unique limited edition items do exist. Here are some examples that got us excited when we came across them.

  • Mr. Citizen by President Harry Truman. This signed book can be found on the market in a limited edition of 1000 copies, but this edition here was held back for the author. Only 100 were printed for Mr. Truman.
  • That Shining Hour by Patricia Kennedy Lawford. This unassuming book was produced for members of the Kennedy Family and supporters shortly after the death of Robert Kennedy. Most are signed by a member of the Kennedy family but unsigned, they are still a unique presidential item.
  • Read My Lips: No New Taxes by Dan Ostrander. This book, which details the 1990 budget deal, was published in limited edition form by Butte College Press in 1990. There were 175 signed copies of the clothbound edition, signed by President Bush. An additional 26 copies, bound in leather, were produced as gifts for the publishers. This was a surprise after years of collecting George Bush limited editions.
  • Address of the President at the Opening of the Conference on the Japanese Peace Treaty by Harry Truman. This limited edition of 60 copies was bound by the Government Printing Office as Christmas Gifts for President Truman. These have occasionally surfaced on the market, but are rare, to say the least.
  • Inaugural Address of John F. Kennedy. Published as a gift for family and political allies, 100 copies of President Kennedy’s important inaugural addresses were printed and signed. One of the most unique limited editions available on the market.

 

 

The Cincinnati Directory

The first Cincinnati Directory, published in 1819, with the scarce "Plan of Cincinnati" map.

The first Cincinnati Directory, published in 1819, with the scarce “Plan of Cincinnati” map.

Twelvemo, [x], [11]-156pp, [3]. Period tree calf, title in gilt on spine, decorative gilt bands, both hinges starting. Printed by Morgan, Lodge & Company. Mount St. Joseph Library label on front free endpaper, no other indications of library usage. Boards heavily worn. Occasional toning and foxing throughout. Includes almanac for 1820 at preface, as expected. Complete with the “Plan of Cincinnati”, dated 1819, with two tape repairs, minimal toning, solid hinges, a bright example. (Thompson, 196) (Howes C409) (Sabin 13085) Housed in custom green cloth clamshell. A scarce work.

This first directory of Cincinnati details the local government, distilleries, canal systems, shipping project and prominent citizens. It was followed by a second edition in 1825, but only a small number were printed, making them exceptionally scarce.

Midway: The Battle that doomed Japan – The Japanese Navy’s Story

Octavo, xxiv, 266pp. Red cloth, title printed in yellow on spine and cover. Illustrated endpapers with maps of South Pacific naval operations. Stated “fourth printing” on copyright page. Publishers dust jacket, near fine, with $4.50 price on front flap, illustrated on both sides of dust jacket, small nicks along edges, light toning to spine, shelf wear along top edge of front panel. Inscribed on dedication page: “To Mr. + Mrs. Stanley Kresge. Courtesy of Sky Pilots of America.” Additional signature by Japanese flyer, Mitsuo Fuchida, on slip affixed to dedication page.

Comments: Mitsuo Fuchida was a notorious Japanese flying ace, who commanded the air attack against Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. After the war, he converted to Christianity and become a United States citizen.

The Vantage Point

First edition of The Vantage Point by President Lyndon B. Johnson, inscribed to Governor George Romney, just days before Johnson's death.

First edition of The Vantage Point by President Lyndon B. Johnson, inscribed to Governor George Romney, just days before Johnson’s death.

Octavo, x, [2], 636pp. Red cloth, title printed on spine over blue print. Stated “first edition” on copyright page. Remnants of tape on copyright page, title page and front endpaper. Two folded pages (204-5), possibly an error by the publisher. In publisher’s first state dust jacket, $15.00 on front flap, faint toning to spine. Some separation of glassine cover along top edge, which is common with this dust jacket. The book is inscribed: “For Governor George Romney, Whose concern for his fellowman excites me. With admiration & respect, Lyndon B. Johnson. LBJ Ranch. Jan. 9, 1973.” Also includes two paragraphs of notes by George Romney, detailing his meeting with Lyndon Johnson in 1973.

At this point in his career, former Governor George Romney was serving as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development for President Richard Nixon, but with Nixon winning a second term, Romney had decided to resign.

The following are the notes from Governor George Romney regarding his January 9th, 1973 meeting with President Johnson at the LBJ Ranch. Notes are written opposite the title page: “Flying from L.B.J. Ranch to Dallas. / President Johnson visited with me for three hours. He indicated the largest amount of legislation in history, passed by a single Pres. (passed by him) was as a result of crisis. He indicated that even though he had support of most groups, it took a crisis to get action. This included the open housing legislation passed following Martin Luther King’s assassination. Three weeks before he had refused the request of all Civil Rights leaders to issue an open housing executive order and told Clarence Mitchell it would take ten years to get such legislation. / Pres. Johnson said when I talked about basic reform being dependent on a crisis he almost interrupted to say ‘amen.’ The Concerned Citizen Movement I outlined he described as being as being [sic] ‘right on target.’ He gave me names and was willing to advise on the organizing leadership group. / In describing his problems as President he said his greatest problem was communication. That Nixon was better – deserved an A – compared to D for him – but that Nixon is now in trouble. / Of great interest was his account of almost withdrawing from re-nomination a day before the 1964 Convention and Lady Bird’s letter to him while in a Nat. Security Meeting. George Romney.” 

Full Text of George Romney inscription.

Eisenhower and Berlin, 1945

First edition of Eisenhower and Berlin, 1945: The Decision to Halt at the Elbe by Stephen Ambrose.

First edition of Eisenhower and Berlin, 1945: The Decision to Halt at the Elbe by Stephen Ambrose.

Small octavo, 119pp. Red cloth, title stamped in gilt on spine. Stated first edition with full number line on copyright page. From The Norton Essays in American History collection. In publisher’s near fine dust jacket, $4.00 on front flap, small chip at corner of spine, otherwise a fine example.

One of the earliest works by noted historian Stephen E. Ambrose. In 1964, Ambrose was hired by Johns Hopkins to organize and publish the papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower. While doing so, he wrote an article in critical response to The Last Battle by Cornelius Ryan, defending Eisenhower. This article was expanded in 1967 into this book, one of the earliest by the famed historian. He would go on to write the influential D-Day June 6, 1944: The Climatic Battle of World War II, Citizen Soldiers, Undaunted Courage and Band of Brothers.

The Cincinnati Union Terminal

Octavo, light brown calf, gilt title on cover. 100s of black and white illustration of Union Terminal. Rebound copy in leather local Cincinnati citizen. An attractive copy.
Comments: An interesting piece of Cincinnati history in an attractive presentation.

Khrushev: A Career

Khrushev: A Career by Edward Crankshaw, signed by the son of Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushev, Sergei Khrushev. Octavo, 31pp. Black cloth, title printed in green and gold on spine. In a near fine book club edition dust jacket. Signed on the front free endpaper by Sergei Khrushev and dated 4/28/94.

Comments: Sergei Khrushev is a retired Russian engineer and author. He became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1999. He authored Khrushchev on Khrushchev ? An Inside Account of the Man and His Era, by His Son, Sergei Khrushchev and numerous other books on his father.

Eisenhower and Berlin, 1945 – The Decision to Halt at the Elbe

First edition of Eisenhower and Berlin, 1945: The Decision to Halt at the Elbe by Stephen Ambrose. Illustrated paperback, 119pp. Illustrated boards, light wear along top edge. Stated first edition with full number line on copyright page. From the Norton Essays in American History collection.

Comments: One of the earliest works by noted historian Stephen E. Ambrose. He would go on to write the influential D-Day June 6, 1944: The Climatic Battle of World War II, Citizen Soldier, Undaunted Courage and Band of Brothers.

On Our Way

Publishers dummy copy of On Our Way by President Franklin Roosevelt. This is the only known copy that contains the scarce dust jacket.

Publisher’s dummy copy of On Our Way by Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Octavo, 11pp, [unpaginated blanks]. Blue cloth, title in gilt on spine, signature of author in gilt on front panel. Copyright page dated 1934, lacking publishers device found in first trade edition. Red top stain. Contains “Chapter VII” of the forthcoming book, with multiple pages of subscription blanks. In publishers “dummy copy” dust jacket, with $2.50 on front flap, light chipping at edges and toning to spine. Dust jacket differs from trade edition with blurb on front flap noting: “The most significant book of the year,” which was later changed to “This book by the President of the United States is required reading for every citizen.” This edition is not listed in Halter. The only known copy with the scarce dust jacket

Provenance: Originally sold by Swann Auctions in 1952 to Mr. Frederick B. Adams Jr, the director of the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York City and respected bibliophile. Includes sales receipt from The Rosenbach Company in 1952 and letter from Jacob Blanck to Mr. Fred Adams with commentary about first edition points.