[ModLib] Illustrated ML Green Mansions

Gordon Barrick Neavill neavill at wayne.edu
Fri Sep 7 14:32:11 EDT 2012

The spine of most copies of the Illustrated ML Green Mansions is covered in yellow cloth, but I have one copy in green cloth. Is this the first printing? Or did the ML's binder just run out of yellow cloth at some point -- this was during WWII and there were lots of shortages -- and had to use green cloth in some copies?

If you have a copy of the Illustrated Modern Library in a green cloth spine, I'd be grateful if you could check and see if there are any markings that might help date it (date of purchase, a dated inscription in a gift copy, etc.)

There were at least 3 printings (October 1944, May 1945, and May 1946), and possibly a another printing in 1945. All of my slipcased copies indicate on the verso of the title page, "A. S. Barnes & Co., Inc., are the publishers of the Illustrated Modern Library."  Paper rationing during the Second World War forced the ML to turn publication of the Illustrated ML over to Barnes for the duration of the war. Each publisher's paper quota was based on the amount of paper it used before the war; as a publisher of college textbooks, Barnes had more paper than it needed since most college-age males were serving in the armed forces.  Random House retained responsibility for all editorial aspects of the series and for distribution, and it told Barnes when to order new printings and how many copies to print.  The May 1946 printing was the first after the end of paper rationing.  It was published in an acetate jacket and indicates on the verso of the title page, "Random House is the publisher of the Illustrated Modern Library".



Gordon B. Neavill
Associate Professor
School of Library and Information Science
Wayne State University
106 Kresge Library
Detroit, MI 48202
313-577-0507; 313-577-7563 (fax)

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