Saturday, July 11, 2009

In the Mail-Frank Armstrong Series Book with a Jacket

I thought when I get interesting book related items in the mail that I would mention them here to add a bit of variety to the daily blogs. Clever enough I will call the postings In the Mail.

Hurst and Company (1871-1919) was one of the main juvenile series publishers in the early 1900's. It published 23 series listed in Mattson plus numerous girls' series. In addition to the individual series, Hurst published quite a number of "publisher's series" for juveniles. Multi authored series such as their Young American Library, Hurst's Books for Boys, Hurst's Books for Girls, Henty, Alger, Optic, Trowbridge and more were printed from the early 1900's to the mid teens.

Hurst also many series that included classic fiction, poetry, essays etc. Names such as Padded Poets, Alligator Classics. Arlington Edition of Standard Classics, Red Line Edition of the Poets, etc. None of these publisher's series contained any first editions-just cheap reprints.

Presently Brad Chase is working on a bibliography of Hurst with an emphasis on Horatio Alger editions. Knowing Brad's work from other books he has written, it will be superb. When it is completed, I will note it here.

Concerning the juvenile series books- Of the boys' juvenile series published initially by Hurst I think three of them are significantly harder to complete in dust jacket than the rest. Those three are the Rex Kingdon Series, the Oakdale Series and the Frank Armstrong Series. All three were later reprinted by Burt, the books of which can be found relatively easily.

Thus, I was excited when I got one of the Frank Armstrong's I was missing in the mail yesterday. There were three formats of the 6 books. The books were slightly larger in the first two formats. 8 x 5.62 versus 7.62 x 5.25. Clearly the first two formats were deluxe. The first format was a greenish (see picture) whereas the second was blue grey . The first jacket matches the book cover with a plain line drawn picture. The second was a pictorial common to all 6 books. See picture. More about this series in the future.

Although the cover of my new book is not great, it does have a jacket in nice shape. Definitely making progress for completion of all the Hurst boys' juveniles in jacket.

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