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Estimate: $ 5,000 - $ 7,500
ROOSEVELT, THEODORE. The Works of Theodore Roosevelt, Memorial Edition, extra-illustrated. 24 frontispiece plates. 24 volumes. 8vo, publisher's cloth, minimal wear; uncut, #924 of a limited edition of 1050, with 76 original letters and other items tipped in to blank leaves, plus 8 additional letters in a separate folder; a few volumes in worn original cardboard slipcovers; original owner's bookplates on front pastedowns. New York, 1924, with inserted letters dated 1875-1951
This set was owned and extra-illustrated by Stanley M. Isaacs (1882-1962), who had been active in Roosevelt's 1916 Progressive Party campaign and served as an elector; he later served as borough president of Manhattan and as a city councilman. He was the son of Myer S. Isaacs (1841-1904), a New York City judge who was active in Republican and Jewish organizations. The final three volumes are extra-illustrated with dozens of letters. Volume XXII (Roosevelt's autobiography) includes 7 original Roosevelt family items, while Volumes XXIII and XXIV are about Roosevelt rather than by him, and are illustrated with letters from a wide variety of correspondents. The letters do not always relate directly to the text, but are interesting in their own right as a correspondence archive of New York and national politics kept by two generations of prominent Roosevelt supporters. The first 21 volumes (Roosevelt's works proper) were each issued with an introduction by prominent Roosevelt associates such as Henry Cabot Lodge, Elihu Root, and Henry Stimson. Isaacs secured signatures of each of these preface writers, either by a Letter Signed mounted to the flyleaf, their signature on the final page of the introduction, or both. In addition, the set comes with a folder of 8 additional letters which have either come detached or were never mounted in the volumes. All told, the set includes 6 original Theodore Roosevelt letters, 2 of them signed by Roosevelt. At the front of Volume XXII is a 29 October 1915 from the ex-president to Stanley Isaacs dated from Oyster Bay, NY: "I greatly respected your father and valued his friendship; and I am genuinely pleased to have you wish your boy to know about me. If ever you and Mrs. Isaacs are in this neighborhood, do stop in to see me, and if it is about five o'clock take a cup of tea with me." The other Roosevelt Letter Signed is to Myer Isaacs on 6 October 1898, asking him to make arrangements with Congressman Benjamin Barker Odell. Other highlights include a series of 5 Jacob Riis letters to Myer Isaacs, 1897-1901; letters from numerous New York political figures such as Mark Hanna and Roscoe Conkling; and Letters Signed from presidents Chester Alan Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Rutherford B. Hayes, and Franklin D. Roosevelt--almost all of them addressed to the Isaacs family. This is not a typical autograph collector's extra-illustration project--it is a significant family archive.
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