First American Edition as Published in Five VolumesVictor Hugo. Les Misérables. Translated from the Original French by Chas. E Wilbour. New York: Carleton, Publisher, 1862.
First American edition and first edition in English. Complete in five octavo volumes: Fantine (171 pages plus four-page publisher's advertisement), Cosette (164 pages plus four-page publisher's advertisement), Marius (150 pages plus two-page publisher's advertisement), Saint Denis (184 pages), and Jean Valjean (165 pages plus two-page publisher's advertisement).
Publisher's matching brown embossed cloth with gilt spine titles. Moderate wear to the spine ends, edges and corners of all volumes. Light rubbing to boards. Minimal scattered foxing, mostly to text edges. Marius unevenly faded on the boards with a sunned spine. Very good condition.
Charles E. Wilbour was hired by the Carleton Publishing Company to translate Hugo's grand masterpiece, and he did so very quickly, allowing the first American edition to be published within months of its French release. The intense advertising campaign waged by Carleton resulted in massive sales for Les Misérables, solidifying Hugo's epic in second place (behind only Uncle Tom's Cabin) in pre-Civil War American book sales.
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