Monday, June 8, 2009

The Mershon Company- History and Dust Jackets

The Mershon Company was an active publishing house between 1897 and 1906. Mainly known as a reprint house of classics and juvenile literature, it also published a number of original
works such as the Bobbsey Twins and Rover Boys.

In 1893 the Cassell Publishing House was reorganized. Apparently its previous manager Oscar Dunham had absconded with $180,000 and financially Cassell was in a desperate situation. A new Cassell Publishing Company was organized in New York with William Mershon as president and manager. Prior to this Mershon had been in charge of his own bookbinding, electrotyping, and printing establishment. in Rahway , NJ.

In 1897 Mershon left Cassell to start his own publishing company. In 1905 the name of the firm was changed to Stitt. Apparently the new company run by William Stitt was not successful and the company returned to the Mershon imprint in 1906.

Apparently He was in business until October,1906 at which time his publishing business were sold to Chatterton- Peck. Charles Peck had been a long time employee of The Mershon Company.

For more details see John Dizer: Tom Swift. the Bobbsey Twins and Other Heroes of American Juvenile Literature. The Edward Mellen Press. 1997
Frequently ads from dealers and booksellers describe books as without dust jacket-as issued. The reality with most all books from the 1890's and later is that generally all of them had jackets and/or were boxed. Of course, no amount of explanation is enough. My thought is that if you do not know something about a book, then make no claim.

Here are two sample ads from a book sales service:

Captain Bailey Heir
Henty, G. A.
Mershon, 1900. Hard cover. Book Condition: Good. Good. No dust jacket as issued.

By England's Aid Or The Freeing Of The Netherlands 1585-1604
Henty, G.A.
Mershon Company. Hardback. No Dustjacket, probably as issued.

It amazes me that without knowledge and without doing the research that some dealers assume jacketless books are the norm- when quite the opposite is the case. This entry shows a couple of jacketed Mershon books from the first decade of the 20th century.


  1. I have a book of THE SONG OF HIAWATHA. It has no date or nothing to show when it was printed. I like this book very much. However, I am getting older, now I would like to know if this print is worth to keep.

  2. Today, I was given a darling little ancient padded book of Holmes Poems. It doesn't even have a copyright anywhere within it. I have a good scan of it but there doesn't seem to be a way to send it along. Is there anything you can tell me about it?

  3. I have 'Jane Eyre " Currer Bell aka Charlotte Bronte.. 2nd edition published 1847-1848, as far as i can tell number 19, published by The Mershon Company...can anyone tell me if it is a rare book... should i donate it to the library ? email.

    1. I also have a book that says it was published in 1854; however, the publisher, Mershon, did not exist then, so I had to assume (as with your book), that it is *not* a first edition.

  4. I have a very old book of Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
    Translated by Edward Fitzgerald
    The Mershon Company
    Rathway,N.J New York
    No copywrite date
    Handwriting on inside cover
    To Andrew Carl Steele or Otule xmas 1918
    When was it published?

  5. I have a copy of Robinson Crusoe published by Mershon Co but there is no date in the book. Front cover shows man with rifle kneeling in front of a tent while second man with rifle standing and pointing weapon towards woods.. It is inscribed "To Dorothy from Papa and Mamma, Christmas 1904". Is there any way to tell when book was published?

  6. I have a 12 volume set of William Shakesphear
    published by The Mershon Co. copyright 1885.
    Binding and pages in good shape a couple have pencil writting on a page. where could I sell them? And what are they worth? Thanks

  7. I have a copy of a book titled Reveries of a Bachelor by IK Marvel Published through The Mershon Company New York. It does not have a jacket and does not have a publishing date. The center of the cover has a torch and two buterfiles and the outer edge has 18 crests which look like wings with an hourglass shape in the middle. Can you provide some information on this book and is it very rare? Thank You. John

  8. I Have a copy of In Memoriam by Tennyson - no copyright but published by Mershon. The book is very small in fair condition = it has and oval stamp in the middle with other decoration around it and is maroon in color. looks like it was received by the buyer in 1898 and read in 1902. Would love to know if it is worth anything.

    1. I have approx 15 to 20 of these books. Fantastic condition. My great grandmother wrote in one of them that she gave it to my great grandfather in 1898. Are these valuable?

  9. I was given a 12 book set of The Works Of William Shakespeare. The copyright is 1885 published by The Mershon Company. They have been sitting in a box in my closet for 10 years. I would like to know if they are worth anything. Thank you. Jill

  10. I have a set of 13 books on Dickens. Published by the Mershon Company. I am trying to value them o find a good home for them

    1. I have the same set. There is no copyright date but someone had written "1897" and a note inside one of them. Were you able to find any other information?


  11. I have a copy of The Last of the Mohicans by Cooper, no dates just The Mershon Co publishers...I would like a date and maybe a worth...

  12. I have a green hardback book with roses (Children Of Wilton Chase)The Mershon Co, I don't know a lot about books but wanted to know if it was worth anything?

  13. Bought the book 'Ishmael' from a flea market for mere cents, because of the beautiful cover and come to find out it has no copyright date in it, but was published by the Mershon Company, which ceased to exist in 1906. I know it's that old, atleast. It appears to have been a library book at one time, as there are glue imprints where a library card slot would have been, inside the front cover. It's in extremely good shape for a book that's over a hundred years old! It is Red, with black lettering, and a beautiful black and grey reed motif on the front cover. I would love to know when it was published and why there's no publishing or copyright dates in it. Thanks so much.

  14. My son has a Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare" book published in New York by The Mershon Company Publishers. There is no date on the jacket and I have searched the internet and not found any other known Romeo & Juliet books published by this author. Is there any way to find out the value of this book

  15. Please send response to regarding the Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare book. This book is in very good condition and I need to know its value.

  16. I have a book title "Conversations on the Bible" by Enoch Pond and published by C A Nichols Company of Springfield, Mass in 1891. I have found copies of this book published in 1881, 1887 and 1888 but not 1891. Please email me at and advise me if anyone knows the value of this book

  17. I have a copy of "The Complete Poetical Works of Edgar Allan Poe, with memoir by J.H. Ingram," published by The Mershon Company. Nicely decorated hardcover, no dust jacket, no date (maybe a page missing?). Condition is fair: intact, slightly frayed spine. Does anyone know if the book has any value?

    1. The value is between 20 and 40 dollars depending on condition. I collect books on Poe and, if you still have it, I'd be interested in purchasing it from you.

    2. Hi there,

      I have a book like this as well. Same title and publishing company, and no date. It’s a bit worn but intact. Any idea how old this is?



  19. Section 1 - Choosing the Monochrome picture Control Section 2
    - Modifying the Monochrome Picture Control.
    Red lights can be tricky but can be made to look good if you're careful. But there are only a few that put out top quality cameras.

    Feel free to visit my page :: canon eos 6d

  20. The question is - which platform provides the best viewing experience.
    Loading time from screen to screen can vary and at times seems like it may take
    longer than usual but overall performance is great. However, Play - On does allow developers to make
    custom channels that you can load onto your server.

    Feel free to surf to my website; roku

  21. The device is certainly worth considering, even at the full retail price and with only a
    $200 discount on the contract, it might make sense to consider paying the full retail.
    1 is Samsungs replacement of the original galaxy tab 10.
    "Many eyes will likely be on them to determine if they'll pull the rabbit out with the hat," Enderle mentioned.

  22. In addition, as i - Phone and i - Pad is fast occupying the new market around the planet and Apple's affect will become a nice halo effect, Apple's system
    will be much more perfect than now. As expected, the models of consoles offered include the Xbox
    360, the Sony Playstation 3, and the Nintendo Wii.
    There are several notebook reviews which give you information
    about latest laptops launched in the market.

    Here is my web page :: mac book air

  23. To start with, see if it is possible to sell your car or
    cars. The Easy Clip Fan is a must and definitely
    an essential for incoming college freshmen.

    To save energy, the aim was for residents to program their schedules for regulating home temperatures, which proved to be complex
    and not popular in use.

    Feel free to visit my homepage - nest learning thermostat

  24. I read this post fully concerning the difference of
    hottest and previous technologies, it's amazing article.

    Feel free to surf to my homepage; USA real estate agent directory

  25. It is the best time to make a few plans for the long run
    and it is time to be happy. I've learn this submit and if I may just I wish to recommend you some fascinating things or tips. Maybe you could write subsequent articles referring to this article. I want to read more things approximately it!

    Also visit my web-site - self introduction essay

  26. Hi there all, here every one is sharing these kinds of knowledge,
    thus it's nice to read this web site, and I used to pay a quick visit this weblog all the time.

    Also visit my homepage ... film discussion questions for serpico

  27. Greetings! Very helpful advice within this article!
    It is the little changes that produce the largest changes.
    Many thanks for sharing!

    my web site - rubric for research paper

  28. Hi, all is going perfectly here and ofcourse every one is sharing information,
    that's truly excellent, keep up writing.

    Check out my page; local directory business

  29. Whats up very cool web site!! Man .. Excellent .. Superb .
    . I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds also? I'm glad to search out so many helpful info here within the put up, we'd like work out more techniques
    in this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

    Stop by my website :: online real estate directory

  30. I was curious if you ever considered changing the layout of your website?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.
    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with
    it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or two pictures.
    Maybe you could space it out better?

    My webpage - laptop repair Charlotte

  31. Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post!
    It is the little changes that will make the biggest
    changes. Many thanks for sharing!

    Also visit my blog post ... outline research paper

  32. Admiring the persistence you put into your website and in depth information
    you provide. It's awesome to come across a blog every once in a while that isn't the same
    unwanted rehashed information. Wonderful read! I've bookmarked your site and I'm adding your RSS
    feeds to my Google account.

    my homepage - interesting research paper topics

  33. Remarkable things here. I am very satisfied to see your post.

    Thank you a lot and I am taking a look forward
    to touch you. Will you kindly drop me a e-mail?

    Feel free to visit my page - cartoon t-shirts for girls

  34. Terrific article! That is the type of information that are supposed to be shared across the internet.

    Shame on Google for not positioning this publish upper!
    Come on over and visit my website . Thanks =)

    Stop by my website :: local business listing sites

  35. It is a GPS Smartphone and enabled with A-GPS with Google
    Maps allowing you to navigate through your city, or an unknown one,
    with ease. These are community cards and they are dealt
    to the center of the table. This is not only handy for presenting
    you with updates all in one place but it also merges with all
    of your contacts and calendars that are stored within these

    Feel free to surf to my site; galaxy s3

  36. Unquestionably believe that which you said.
    Your favorite justification seemed to be on the internet the easiest thing
    to be aware of. I say to you, I definitely get irked while people consider worries that they just do not know about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the
    whole thing without having side effect , people could take a
    signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

    my webpage :: film forum manhattan

  37. I have a book called The Emigrant Ship by W Clark Russell. It was published in 1893 by The Mershon Co. Copyright date is 1893. The book is in fairly good condition. Can anyone tell me anything about this book?

  38. I'm the great grandaughter of william mershon Ty all for sharing your stories enjoyed reading them. I have many many of the collections mentioned. Such a,joy others do to

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Hello! How lovely to be related to William Mershon! I'm a lifelong Poe collector and only just missed getting the Mershon Poems of Poe for my extensive collection which will one day be in a University or Public Library collection. If you have a copy of the Mershon Poe volume that you'd be willing to part with, please feel free to email me. Many Thanks, Paul Clemens

  39. I own The Works of William Shakespeare, Vol I - XII published in 1885 by Mershon Company, New York City, in 1885 so you date above must be incorrect. But I wish to sell this collection, in excellent condition. Michael Estwanik 9707287053

  40. I have a book published by Mershon, The Fables of Aesop, selected, told anew, and their history traced, by Joseph Jacobs. Can't find any comparable and wondering about what edition it is and the potential value.
    Thank you

  41. I have a copy of With Clive in India published by Mershon with no pub date. Green cloth over boards with Exact same cover as Bonnie Prince Charlie with its white cover. Inscription in front shows it as gift to someone and dated 1901. When was this published?