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Scribner's Monthly, Collected Vol. 1 (1871)
Containing issues #1 through 6
DESCRIPTION: Although it had been around in one form or another since 1842, it wasn't until 1870 that the legendary publisher Scribner's decided to get into the magazine game; inspired by the insane successes this format had already seen in the UK for decades, it wasn't until after the Civil War that most American publishers had the resources to start putting out their own monthly serial publications (and the nation in general the infrastructure needed to deliver these periodicals), and it's only from this date forward to around World War Two that is generally defined as the Golden Age of American magazines. And in fact the original "Scribner's Monthly" soon became a victim of its own success; just eleven years after its founding, it and a sister publication were sold to another company for a hefty profit, consolidated, and renamed the "Century Magazine," with part of the agreement being that Scribner's would wait another five years before starting up any more periodicals. (And in fact it took them eight years to get the new publication up and running, now named "Scribner's Magazine," the incarnation that ran for decades and that is what most of us think of when we think of Scribner's.) This is the ultra-rare bound hardback edition of the magazine's first six issues, from 1870 and '71, put together by the publisher itself as a way to ensure long-term sales of back issues, being sold today at a modest price because of some condition issues (but see below for more). A great way to cap off an existing collection of other volumes, or a fantastic standalone edition for any serious fan of Victoriana, owning this can literally be called owning a little slice of history, an indelible portrait of a nation in massive transition.
CONDITION: Text: Good (G). Although the volume is in decent shape for its nearly 150-year-old age, minus a few loose pages in the front, and will look and read just fine in the library of a casual collector, when it comes to a professional grading the book has some substantial flaws -- cracking and tears along all edges, a modern sticker that was placed on the spine at one point, and a binding that's in solid but delicate condition. Issued without a dust jacket. Former owner's information is written in pencil on the inside front cover, where a half-torn antique label from a bookstore in Kalamazoo, Michigan can also be seen. As confirmed by the McBride Guide for the Identification of First Editions, an agreement in date on the title page and copyright page marks this as a true first edition.