The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Edited from His Manuscript, with notes and an Introduction by John Bigelow.

Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott, 1868. 1st edition. Contemporary brown cloth. Illustrated with a frontispiece. 409 pp. 8vo. Very good. 

Very rare and important piece of American history, in an edition that was the first to be taken directly from Franklin’s own manuscript. Gilt titling and details to the spine. Frayed crown with a small tear, and occasional wear to the boards. Name and 2 booksellers’ stamps on the front endpapers. Offset from the frontispiece appears on the tissue-guard, and slightly on the title-page. Very nice copy, with a crisp, unmarked text block.

W. T. Franklin’s text was the standard version of the Autobiography for half a century, until John Bigelow purchased the original manuscript in France and in 1868 published the most reliable text that had yet appeared, including the first English publication of Part Four.

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