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    "When you have eliminated the impossible whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."

    Arthur Conan Doyle. The Sign of Four. London: Spencer Blackett, 1890. Doyle's second novel featuring Sherlock Holmes.
    First edition, first issue, with "Spencer Blackett/ Standard/ Library." in gilt at the foot of the spine, page "13" instead of "138" on the contents page for chapter eight, and the misprint on page 56 without the "i" in "wished". Octavo. 283 pages. Frontispiece by Charles Kerr. Red cloth binding with black ruled patterned frame and stamped with floral decorations on outer corners of both boards, gilt title and author on front cover and spine. Brown endpapers. Boards rubbed and stained, corners bumped; head and foot of spine bumped, small tears of cloth at head of spine, spine with vertical creases, rear joint split along head of spine; front hinge cracked, rear hinge open, text block lightly shaken, holograph pen name of "A.H. Barker" on blank page facing verso of front free endpaper, partially erased pencil number in inner margin of page 33, soiling to upper right corner of 53, not affecting text, stain to inner margins of pages 106 and 107 with bleedthrough to adjacent leaves, page 177 coming loose from binding, stain along inner margins of pages 272 and 273, small paper remnant and lift in lower margins of 280 and 281. Gutter split between "Contents." page and page 1. Seven other splits between pages corresponding to the beginning of new signatures (5, 9, 10, 12, 14, 17, and 18, respectively.) Pages with edge wear, few small chips, several corner bends, smudges and soiling mostly in margins, else a good copy.

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    Auction Dates
    April, 2015
    8th-9th Wednesday-Thursday
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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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