New York: Harper & Row, . Hardcover. 8vo. Quarter black cloth with gilt spine lettering and brown paper over boards, pictorial price-clipped dust jacket. xiv, 240pp. Line drawings. Near fine/near fine. Item #47575
Handsome and tight early (not first) printing of this gathering of "New Yorker" letters -- with a twist: From the library of Adlai E. Stevenson III (1930-2021), U.S. Senator from Illinois, and before him of his father, Illinois governor and twice Democratic presidential candidate Adlai E. Stevenson II (1900-65). Governor Stevenson clearly read this copy, for he has pencilled neat small checkmarks on about one dozen pages where he is referenced, and on the front flyleaf he pencils "Page" and lists eight of those pages; lastly he pencils a cryptic number on rear jacket flap. The first of these is the well-known opening of White's February 6, 1956 essay "Bedfellows" on page 37, which begins: "I am lying here in my private sick bay on the east side of town between Second and Third avenues, watching starlings from the vantage point of bed. Three Democrats are in bed with me: Harry Truman (in a stale copy of the Times), Adlai Stevenson (in Harper's), and Dean Acheson (in a book called A Democrat Looks at His Party)." Not a first edition, but unique -- Stevenson clearly enjoyed these many references to him and the favorable light in which White held him.