Don Blanding letter purchase
- I just purchased a letter online which I'm very excited to receive.
For quite awhile I've been interested in the evolution of 'The
Virgin of Waikiki,' and this letter confirms various things about
the book that I couldn't have found out anywhere else. It also
illustrates that Don was very interested in and knowledgeable about
the value of his books on the secondary market!
BLANDING, Don (1894-1957).
Typed Letter Signed.
The poet laureate of Hawaii, an author and illustrator of popular
books on Florida and Hawaii. TLS, 1p, 8½" X 11", Carmel, CA, n.y.
[postal cancellation 1938 November 6]. Addressed to Owen Davies.
Near fine. Interesting letter ordering a copy of his own first book
of poetry ("Leaves from a Grass House," 1923) from this Chicago
bookseller. Blanding specifies "if.. in fairly good condition" for
good reason -- fore this title is bound in grasscloth and has
tassles! He notes that "from $12 to $18 are being paid out here for
first editions of Vagabond's House," his 1928 title. Finally, he
presents some worthwhile bibliographic data straight from the
horse's mouth: "several different formats of the Virgin of Waikiki
are presented as first editions. The only real first was an edition
of 100 copies, stiff cardboard covers covered with imitation tapa-
cloth, nicely printed, made as souvenirs of the evening when I
addressed the Wampus Club. Privately printed by A.B. McAllister..
The last I heard, $11 was paid for a copy." This confirms famed
bookseller Jake Zeitlin's belief that McAllister was the publisher.
Editions other than this 1926 printing are often mistaken for first
editions, such as the Henry M. Snyder New York trade edition. Usual
huge, bold signature. Original envelope, partly addressed by
Blanding, also present.