THE WRITINGS OF HENRY DAVID THOREAU [WORKS] with a leaf of manuscript
Boston: Houghton Mifflin and Company, 1906. Manuscript Edition. Hardcover. Large octavo (6" x 8-3/4"), 20 volumes, the first volume in publisher's 3/4 green morocco leather with gilt-lettered and decorated spine, the remaining 19 volumes in 3/4 green morocco leather with different gilt-lettered and decorated spines. Each volume illustrated with a frontispiece in two states, one hand-colored, as well as additional gravures after photographs by Herbert Gleason. The first volume is copy #119 of 600 numbered sets SIGNED by the publisher; the remaining 19 volumes are from set 561. The first volume with an inlaid leaf of Thoreau's original holograph manuscript written on both sides of the sheet. The two-page manuscript fragment, detached and laid in loosely, comprises 55 lines, from Chapter 2 of CAPE COD, "Stage-coach Views" (first published in June of 1855 in PUTNAM'S MONTHLY, Vol. V, No. xxx, pages 637–640), in altered form with extensive pencil annotations and corrections. In part: "For the first half of the Cape large blocks of stone are found, here and there, mixed with the sand, but for the last thirty miles 'it is rare to meet with boulders or even gravel.' Hitchcock conjectures that the ocean has in course of time eaten out Boston Harbor and other bays in the mainland, and that the minute fragments have been deposited by currents at a distance from the shore, and formed this sand bank which we call Cape Cod. That is Hitchcock's account of it. For the most part above the sand, if the surface is subjected to chemical or even in some places to agricultural tests, there is found to be a thin layer of soil gradually diminishing from Barnstable to Truro, where it ceases; but there are many holes and rents in this weather-beaten garment not likely to be stitched in time, which reveal the naked flesh of the Cape, and its extremity is completely bare." Thoreau manuscript material is increasingly scarce and more expensive to obtain, nearly always found as it is here, bound into the Manuscript Edition. Manuscript leaf detached and laid in loosely. Spines of 19 volumes evenly sunned to a light tan; very minor wear. Near Fine. Item #021317
BAL 20145: This edition marks the first printing of Thoreau's entire Journal.