Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1865. Original pinkish-brown wrappers.
First Edition of this wartime story that had first appeared in the Atlantic Monthly in 1863, and would later be collected in Hale's book IF, YES, AND PERHAPS (1868). "Written to inspire patriotism during the Civil War, it was suggested by the remark of [Ohio's Clement] Vallandigham that he did not wish to live in a country that tolerated Lincoln's administration" [OCAL]. The tale is an account of a fictional Philip Nolan, who, on trial with Aaron Burr for conspiracy, calls out "Damn the United States. I wish I may never hear of the United States again" -- and who is accordingly granted his wish, condemned to spend the rest of his life at sea, passed from ship to ship, denied any news of his country. The sentence achieves its intent, as Nolan ultimately realizes the immense worth of his country, and misses it terribly. The goal of the book was to urge people in the North, especially in "western" states like Ohio, to support the Northern cause in preserving the nation.~This copy is of the first state, without the publisher's tipped-in notice. It is in near-fine condition (marginal corner of the first few leaves chipped away, a few minor smudges). A "Johnson High Spot" and a "Peter Parley to Penrod" selection. Housed in a morocco-backed clamshell case. Provenance: engraved "American Authors" bookplate of the noted collector Frank Maier, whose library was dispersed at auction in November 1909. Item #13781