A Yankee in Canada, with Anti-Slavery and Reform Papers.

Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1866. First edition. Original green cloth, stamped in gilt, and blind, extremities slightly rubbed, extreme corner of front endpaper chipped, but a very good bright copy, in the "A" binding described by BAL, which is more ornate than the other two bindings. A rare Thoreau family copy, inscribed on the front free endpaper, “Charles Lowell / with the love / of S. E. Thoreau”. Charles Lowell of Bangor, Maine, was a cousin by marriage of Henry & Sophia. Aunt Nancy Thoreau married Caleb Callender Billings in 1810. Their first child, Mary Ann Thoreau Billings (1810-1888), married Charles Lowell (1807-1895), a Bangor merchant, in 1834. Following the wishes of her older brother, Sophia Elizabeth Thoreau edited a number of his papers both with him (as he lay dying) and after his death. That she was the sole editor of the collection of papers in Yankee has been established by recent scholarship. (See Kathy Fedorko, “‘Henry's Brilliant Sister’: The Pivotal Role of Sophia Thoreau in Her Brother's Posthumous Publications,” The New England Quarterly, June 2016, Vol. 89, No. 2, pp. 222-256). Item #32853

"Thoreau agreed to educator Elizabeth Peabody’s request to publish the lecture he had written on his refusal to pay the poll tax in her new periodical, Aesthetic Papers, where it appeared in 1849 under the title “Resistance to Civil Government.” However, the periodical was a failure, and Thoreau’s essay went virtually unnoticed. It was not until long after the essay’s posthumous republication in 1866 under the title “Civil Disobedience” that it was acclaimed as a classic manifesto, advocating a citizen’s responsibility to follow his or her conscience when it differs from the laws of the state....“Civil Disobedience,” through its impact on Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., the anti-Nazi movement in Europe in the 1940s, and anti–Vietnam War protesters in the 1970s, has had a wider political influence than any other American literary document. In Walden Thoreau wrote, “How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book.” Walden and “Civil Disobedience” have been just such works", American National Biography. This work contains, besides the the travel narrative which is the title work, the first book publication of Thoreau's two most famous essays "Civil Disobedience", and "Life Without Principle", all of his major political writings, and one work, "Prayers" which is actually by Ralph Waldo Emerson. From the library of William E. Stockhausen, sold at Sotheby Parke Bernet, 14 December 1974. BAL 20117; Borst A7.1.a.

Price: $17,500.00

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