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    A Rare, Pre-Publication Copy of Gone With the Wind Signed by Mitchell on an Inserted Leaf, and With Two Superb Typed Letters Signed by Her

    Margaret Mitchell. Gone With the Wind. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1936. First edition, first issue ("Published May, 1936" on the copyright page), a special pre-publication copy signed by Mitchell on an inserted leaf at front. Octavo. [vi], 1037, [3, blank] pages. Rebound in later full tan cloth, title stamped in black on front board, black and red gilt-stamped cloth labels on spine, new endpapers and blanks. Signed leaf is toned and soiled, has an ownership legend (mentioning ownership of the book by Mitchell's bookseller correspondent as discussed below) written in unknown hand in blue ball-point below Mitchell's signature, with tape residue markings (matching formerly tipped-in letters) on the signed leaf (both verso and recto), and the half-title, with some bleed-through on the verso. A good copy.

    [Together with]: Margaret Mitchell. Two Typed Letters Signed. Atlanta, Georgia, June 5, 1936 (a month after publication of Gone With the Wind), and February 19, 1940. The first letter is on her personal stationery. Approximately 7.75 x 7 inches. One octavo page. Addressed: "My dear Mr. Saltmarsh;". In this excellent letter, Mitchell states how much she enjoyed receiving his letter, stating her interest in hearing an opinion from a New Englander. She states: "I must upbraid you for your statement about "never annoying authors with such letters." I do not know about how other authors feel and, as this is my first book, I really do not know how a dyed-in-the-wool author should feel. I know I was so pleased and excited to know that some one like the book that I fairly capered! You see, it comes as a surprise to me that anyone should like it. I wrote it about ten years ago and I did not think very much of it. I thought so little of it that I never submitted it to any publisher. In fact it was so well hidden that when the Macmillan Company man was here and wanted to see it, the house had to be torn up to find it." She goes on to relate a brief anecdote of her visit to New Bedford and Nantucket.

    The second letter is also on her personal stationery, and is two quarto pages on two quarto leaves (only the first leaf has her name embossed on it). Approximately 10.75 x 7 inches. It is addressed: "Dear Mr. Saltmarsh:". In this letter she turns down an invitation to visit Mr. Saltmarsh in New England, and she discusses her receiving an honorary Master of Arts degree (from Smith College), and more importantly, she discusses the release of the film version of Gone With the Wind, stating: "Atlanta had a three-day celebration of the premiere of "Gone With the Wind." Everyone seemed to enjoy it very much and many people have gone to see the picture three and four times. It is finishing its tenth week here and closing in a few days. I hope to be able to see it again myself."

    Later in the letter, she writes: "I will never forget your pre-publication kindness about my book and it was a pleasure to hear from you again." The first letter has had the top edge trimmed away (unevenly), has several vertical creases, and has a newsclipping and a tape marking on verso. Both pages of the second letter have two vertical creases and have tape pieces in the upper corner of each page. Both generally good, with incredible content. An excellent collection.

    More Information:

    For more information about the pre-publication copies of this book, see Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind, a Bestseller's Odyssey from Atlanta to Hollywood, by Ellen F. Brown and John Wiley, Lanham: Taylor Trade Publishing, 2011, page 53.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2012
    4th-5th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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