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Wikoff, Henry. The reminiscences of an idler. New York: Fords, Howard & Hulbert, 1880. 8vo (22.2 cm, 8.75"). xii, 596 pp. $15.00
First edition: "It occurred to me that I might manage to blend an outline of the public events of the past forty years and upwards with random portraits of prominent individuals on both sides of the Atlantic in such a manner as to interest the public. . . ."
Henry Wikoff (1811–84), an undercover reporter, notorious gossip, and former confidant of Mary Todd Lincoln, recounts his globetrotting (Philadelphia, Paris, Italy, St. Petersburg, and more) and his encounters with people of importance. President Lincoln, upon discovering Wikoff was a spy for a New York newspaper, personally escorted the controversial cosmopolitan out of the White House.
=> Includes an engraved frontispiece of Wikoff signed by English engraver Henry Bryan Hall.
Provenance: Ex-library with "Library of the German Society, Philadelphia" stamp on title-page.
Publisher's brown cloth stamped in darker brown and gilt; faint soiling to boards and spine, spine-ends rubbed. Ex–social club library with 19th-century round rubber-stamp of Philadelphia's German Society on title-page, calligraphic shelving number on front fly-leaf, small shelving labels on title-page recto and on spine head, no other markings. Ink transfer from stamp to frontispiece's tissue guard, show-through from shelving number to frontispiece, not actually interfering with the portrait. => Pleasing, sturdy copy. (38005) Please RESHELVE This.
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