CHESNUTT, Charles W.
The Colonel’s Dream.
First edition, first printing, first state of the binding with the author’s name misspelt as “Chestnutt”. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper “Presented to the Printers’ House with best wishes for its continued prosperity & even greater usefulness, by the author, Chas. W. Chesnutt, Cleveland , O., April 3, 1906”. Charles Chesnutt (1858–1932) was one of America’s first black professional writers, using his books to explore complex racial and social issues, particularly concepts such as miscegenation. This, his final novel, follows a former Confederate general who returns from the north as an enlightened businessman and philanthropist, and who attempts to restore his hometown’s economic base while fighting the immoral convict-lease system. Chesnutt inscribed this copy for The Printers’ Union Home, a retirement home for members of the printers’ trade union who were of any race.
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Octavo. Original red cloth, titles to spine and upper board gilt. Ink stamps and handwritten shelf numbers to front pastedown. Spine rolled, binding a little rubbed and worn at the corners and ends of spine, small spots of dampstain to boards, front hinge cracked, contents slightly toned. A very good copy.