White, Elwyn Brooks. Stuart Little. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1945. First edition. Illustrated by Garth Williams. Rebound in 1/4 green leather and tan cloth with a color illustration of Stuart Little inlaid on the front, gilt tooling, titles, and raised bands to the spine. Original end papers. Presented with a new archival tan cloth slipcase with an inlay of the original front panel.
Presented is a first edition of the beloved children’s book Stuart Little by Elwyn Brooks White and illustrated by Garth Williams. The book was published in New York by Harper & Brothers in 1945. This is a first edition, first printing with the codes “10-5” and “I-U” on the copyright page. The book has been beautifully rebound in quarter Moroccan green leather and tan cloth binding, with a fanciful illustration of Stuart Little on the front, gilt titles, tooling, and raised bands to the spine, and a new tan cloth slipcase with an inlay of the original front panel.
This classic children's book tells the story of Stuart Little, a shy, philosophical little mouse with a big heart and a taste for adventure. "The story had been brewing with White for years as a disconnected series of bedtime tales for his nieces and nephews by the time it came to [ his publisher] Harper. There, shepherded by the distinguished editor Ursula Nordstrom and felicitously illustrated by Garth Williams, the book was eventually published… to high acclaim”(Silvey, 677). In less than three months from publication, 100,000 copies were sold, and over the next thirty years its distribution grew to 2.5 million copies in English and many more in translation (American National Biography).
E. B. White (1899-1985) earned his B.A. at Cornell University. He was on staff at the New Yorker, wrote for Harper’s Magazine, and published works of poetry and prose before trying his hand at writing for children. White’s elegance, simplicity, and dry wit balance both his poetry and prose. “His literary style was as pure as any in our language. It was singular, colloquial, clear, unforced, thoroughly American and utterly beautiful” (William Shawn).
His poetry includes The Fox of Peapack, and Other Poems (1938), The Second Tree from the Corner (1954), and Poems and Sketches of E.B. White (1981). He penned several books for children, publishing Stuart Little in 1945, Charlotte’s Web in 1952, and The Trumpet of the Swan in 1970. His prose for adult readers includes One Man’s Meat (1944), Here Is New York (1949), Letters of E.B. White (1976), and Essays of E.B. White (1977). White was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1973. His honors include the National Medal for Literature, a special Pulitzer award, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal.
Garth Williams (1912- 1996) was the renowned illustrator of almost one hundred books for children, including the beloved Stuart Little and Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White, Bedtime for Frances by Russell Hoban, and the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. He was born in 1912 in New York City, but raised in England. He founded an art school near London and served with the British Red Cross Civilian Defense during World War II. Williams worked as a portrait sculptor, art director, and magazine artist before doing his first book Stuart Little, thus beginning a long and lustrous career illustrating and developing characters for some of the best known children's books.
Very good condition. Rebound in 1/4 green leather and tan cloth with a color illustration of Stuart Little inlaid on the front, gilt tooling, titles, and raised bands to the spine. Original end papers saved and intact. The inside is very clean, a very occasional tiny smudge, otherwise no marks of any kind. Illustrated throughout. With "FIRST EDITION", "10-5" , and "I-U" stated on the copyright page. Presented with a new archival tan cloth slipcase with an inlay of the original front panel. Book Dimensions (with slipcase): 8 3/4" H x 6" W x 1" D.