Description

    "Roll, Jordan, Roll," First Edition Book by Doris Ulmann and Julia Peterkin (New York: Robert O. Ballou, 1933, the deluxe edition of 350 signed and numbered copies). "Some of the charm that made the life of the old South glamorous still lingers on a few plantations that have been so cut off from the outside world by rivers, wide swamps and lack of roads they are still undisturbed by the restless present. Wistfully holding to the past when they were part of a civilization never excelled in America, they keep their backs turned to the future and persistently ignore that strange thing called progress, which so often means change without betterment." Thus opens this landmark work with text by Pulitzer Prize winning author Julia Peterkin and 90 hand-pulled photogravures from photographs taken by Doris Ulmann. Roll, Jordan, Roll was critically acclaimed as one of the first books to portray African Americans as people rather than stereotypes. W. E. B. Du Bois stated, "Peterkin is a Southern white woman, but she has the eye and the ear to see beauty and know truth." This edition has stamped brown boards with linen spine and corners, 341 pages, large quarto in size, top edges gilt. Both Julia Peterkin and Doris Ulmann have signed in ink on the colophon. Book is in fine, tight condition. The matching brown board slipcase is present but has a bit of staining and chipping as is common. This particular copy has extremely desirable provenance as it is number ten (of 350) and was originally owned by the author herself. Included with this rare edition is a one-page autograph note signed by Julia Peterkin dated 1930 from her Lang Syne Plantation address in South Carolina, together with an additional photogravure, loose, signed by the photographer in pencil in the margin. A 1980 letter to a previous owner from a South Carolina bookseller documents that this book was purchased from William Peterkin, Julia's grandson. Another copy of this edition sold last year at a major New York auction firm for $57,600 and that was without the Peterkin association! A knowledgeable dealer who examined that copy and this present example found this one to be in more appealing condition overall.

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    Auction Dates
    June, 2005
    22nd-23rd Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
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    We had a wonderful time in New York during the October 2013 Historical Manuscripts auction that featured my mother’s papers collected during her tenure as Martin Luther King, Jr.’s secretary. In fact, the entire experience from beginning to end has been a pleasure.
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    Brandon, MS
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