Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Works Of Edgar Allan Poe, 1905


I was working on this three-volume-set of a first edition, The Works Of Edgar Allan Poe, published by Thomas Nelson & Sons (1905), yesterday when I realized it was Poe's 205th birthday the day before, after reading a news article about his unidentified mysterious follower, nicknamed the "Poe Toaster". Apparently, he, the "Poe Toaster" who bears a cane and wears a cloak, had been showing up at Poe's grave on his birthday at midnight since the centennial anniversary of Poe’s death of 1949. He leaves a half drunk bottle of Martell cognac and three roses arranged the exact same way each time, then would disappear into the night. To this day, no one knows who he is. But it seems that he hasn't been seen since the Poe's 200th birthday in 2009. Hummm, maybe, the original "Poe Toaster" who's said to have died in the 90's intended to continue this tradition until Poe's 200th birthday, so the person who was passes this ritual after his death stopped it as instructed? Well, it's a mystery for sure.

Anyway, the client of these volumes asked for brand new facsimile bindings as the original soft leather cases were in horrible, deteriorating shape. My work was to make simple French joint new leather bindings for these tiny books. And the floral ornament on the spine wasn't too complicated to imitate. So, I've been having rather stress free few days, while Master's been working on an extra large folio book with tons of paper mending for the last four days. hohoho. It must really suck to be him. ha! <--evil

The client also brought another three-volume-set of different titles and publisher to restore in the same way, so for the sake of it, I'm posting a picture of that as well, though they are Emerson and Kipling by T. Y. Crowell & co.

11 comments:

  1. I'm a scholar of 19th Century American literature, and an amateur bookbinder, so this is so cool to read! Have you ever restored any Walt Whitman books?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, of course. ;-) 3~4 "Leaves of Grass", - One of them was a second or third edition, and two/three of them were the Doubleday editions.

      Delete
  2. How much are these worth? I have a set that is still in great shape. I still have the box but it's really rough and falling apart. The only flaw with these books is that someone wrote their name and "xmas 1918" in each book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This first edition The Works Of Edgar Allan Poe by Thomas Nelson & Sons seems to be going for somewhere between $90~$170, depending on the condition of the volumes. If your copy has some sentimental values to you and your family, do take good care of it. ;-) But if you really want to know the market value of your copy, you can check it on the internet. (type the exact title, publisher and the publishing date)

      Delete
  3. The spine of mine look different though :/

    ReplyDelete
  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  5. How much would you charge for binding a set of Poe's works exactly like the one you posted about last year? My set is in similar conditions--brittle covers, but pages are in pretty decent condition. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think it was somewhere around $150 per volume. I'm sorry for responding to you so slow.

      Delete
  6. Sorry to revive an old thread. I have a two volume set of Thomas Nelson 1905 "The Works of Edgar Allen Poe." Are you aware of different versions of this set. Mine in black with gold lettering and no art on the binding. Having stumble across yours I am now very confused.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sorry to revive an old thread. I have a two volume set of Thomas Nelson 1905 "The Works of Edgar Allen Poe." Are you aware of different versions of this set. Mine in black with gold lettering and no art on the binding. Having stumble across yours I am now very confused.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. humm,not that I recall right off, but I can tell you these books come in different designs often.

      Delete