Our shops are open and we are processing online, telephone and email orders as normal

TAYLOR, Frederick Winslow.

The Principles of Scientific Management.

New York: Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1911 Stock Code: 134761
Reserve Ask us a question

A near-fine copy of the scarce privately printed issue

First edition, the scarce privately printed issue, of the first and most influential book on business and industrial management. "This special edition was printed in February 1911 for confidential circulation among the members of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers with the compliments of the author" (title page statement). The first trade edition followed the same year. In the Society's journal for 1911 (Vol. 83 So. 1) a "R. L. Rowley" is listed as having been elected a new member on 1 June 1911, and is likely the first or at least one of the earliest owners of this copy.

"F. W. Taylor, an engineer in the Bethlehem Steel Works in Philadelphia, was the originator of what he called 'scientific management', now known as 'time and motion study'. His system was based on what he estimated to be a fair day's work and the best means of ensuring such a standard of production. He was interested in any factor that hindered or helped in attaining this end, and besides studying factory conditions and methods in great detail he was responsible for fundamental changes in machinery and machine tools. The main lines of approach to increased efficiency were standardising processes and machines, time and motion study, and payment by results, all of which have been welcomed in the USSR, where 'Stakhanovism' is virtually 'Taylorism' renamed, and in Germany, where the Principles was translated and achieved a wide circulation (31,000 copies sold by 1922). The adoption of his methods there contributed notably to the speedy recovery of German production after the First World War. His methods were anathema to trade unionists almost everywhere else" (PMM).

Confused? Read our glossary


Octavo. Original dark green cloth, spine lettered in gilt, front board with single fillet border in blind.


Ownership signature of R. L. Rowley dated 27 March 1911 to front pastedown, his armorial bookplate to front free endpaper; subsequently from the library of esteemed collector Victor Niederhoffer. A near-fine copy, spine slanted and light rubbing to extremities, some offset from bookplate residue to front pastedown, contents evenly toned.


With the exception of framed items*, Peter Harrington offers free delivery on all UK orders of rare books, maps and prints placed through this website. Delivery to USA and the rest of the world is similarly free for orders over £200.

View Full Delivery Details



Established in 1969, Peter Harrington is one of the leading rare book firms in the world. It is a proud member of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association – along with ILAB, the PBFA and Lapada – and from shops in Mayfair and Chelsea, London, sells rare books, prints and ephemera to customers across the world.

Email: mail@peterharrington.co.uk

Tel: +44 (0)20 7591 0220

ABA Antiquarian Bookseller Association ILAB International League of Antiquarian Booksellers LAPADA The Association of Art and Anatique Dealers PBFA Provincial Booksellers Fairs Association

Our Guarantee Page

Ask us a question


Contact us with details of the book you are interested in or selling and we will contact you

Sell Old Books Help me find a book