New York: The Authors Club, 1921.
Hardcover. A collection of 129 Manuscripts for *The Second Book of the Authors Club Liber Scriptorum*, along with the galley proofs and copy #2 of the edition of 251 Signed and numbered copies. The manuscripts, each with various corrections and additions, represent all but one of the published contributions in the book, and are accompanied by one unpublished manuscript intended for the books but removed by the editor shortly before going to press. About half of the manuscripts are Signed by their author, among them are four from authors whose signatures failed to appear in the published book. The manuscripts and galleys are housed in a contemporary oversized quarter leather clamshell box with gilt spine label.
The Authors Club of New York was organized in 1882 for noted authors and persons. The group published *Liber Scriptorum, The First Book of the Authors Club* in 1891 to raise money for a permanent location for the club. This second volume was conceived to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the first volume but publication was delayed due to World War I. It was finally published in 1921 with contributions from Irving Bacheller, George Washington Cable, George Wharton Edwards, John Erskine, Franklin Henry Giddings, George Bird Grinnell, Rossiter Johnson, John Uri Lloyd, Brander Matthews, George Barr McCutcheon, Albert Payson Terhune, Carl Van Doren, and Henry van Dyke. As noted in the table of contents and errata slip, not all of the authors were able to sign this volume: eight died before the printing had finished, so facsimile signatures were used for Joseph Alexander Altsheler, Julius Chambers, William Henry McElroy, Charles Augustus Stoddard, Stephen Henry Thayer, Calvin Thomas, James Terry White, and William Young; two had gone blind (James Thompson Bixby and Richard Rodgers Bowker), and could no longer sign their name consistently; one contributor was off traveling (Frank Crane); and one was ill (William Ordway Partridge).
This copy of *Liber Scriptorum, The Second Book of the Authors Club* is exceptional because it is accompanied by all but one of the manuscripts from the contributing authors, along with the majority of the galley proofs. The Henry van Dyke manuscript is missing but included is Francis Whiting Halsey’s manuscript, “Mulberry and a Book,” which is included in the manuscript table of contents but not included in the published book, likely due to the author's death in late 1919. The typed and autographed manuscripts range from small octavos to folios and are in various conditions, averaging very good. Many of them have some light to moderate tanning, tears or chipping. Nearly all the manuscripts (including the title page, table of contents and preface) contain corrections and additions, as well as notes to the printer and are held together with paperclips or pins with some minor oxidation. Many of the manuscripts are also Signed by their contributors, most notably Bixby, Bowker, White, and Young, who did not ultimately sign the published book. In addition to these manuscripts, the galley proofs of all but 13 of the contributions are included as well. They vary greatly in size, with many cut down from long galleys, probably for easier editing and storage. Nearly all are stamped, “The Plimpton Press, Duplicate Proofs,” with some scattered chips and tears, along with editing marks and notes for the printer, overall near fine. A truly one-of-a-kind aggregation. A detailed list is available upon request.