"The Most widely Read edition of Benjamin Franklin's memoirs": Rare First Edition of the Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin: Written By Himself and Continued by His Grandson and Others
Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin: Written By Himself and Continued by His Grandson and Others.
Item Number: 99346
Philadelphia: McCarty & Davis, 1834.
First edition thus of the most widely read edition of the collected personal, philosophical, and political memoirs of Benjamin Franklin. Octavo, bound in full contemporary calf with gilt titles and tooling to the spine, black morocco spine labels, marbled endpapers, all edges marbled, engraved vignette to the titles page and engraved frontispiece to volume II, twelve engraved folding plates including the chart of the Atlantic Ocean exhibiting the course of the Gulf Stream. From the library of American banker Russell Cornell Leffingwell with his bookplate to the pastedown of each volume. Leffingwell retired as the chairman of J.P. Morgan in 1923 and served as a trustee of the Carnegie Corporation from 1923 to 1959. In near fine condition. Desirable with noted provenance.
The most widely read of all American autobiographies, Franklin's Memoirs first appeared during his lifetime, and went through several revisions and augmentations including the present volume which was published forty-four years after his death and became the most widely read of every edition (Grolier American, 100). Franklin's grandson William Temple Franklin edited a three volume set of his grandfather's memoirs and writings in 1819; the basis for the present volume which contains his preface in addition to comprehensive chapters covering in detail every aspect of the great American polymath's life including the progress of his political and moral philosophies and his experimentation with electricity.