of Some Bells that Rang an Old Year out and a New Year in. With Illustrations. Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1845. Original blue-grey cloth decorated in gilt.
First hardbound and fully-illustrated American edition -- preceded (by only three days) by E. Winchester's edition and by Harper's edition, both of which were issued in wrappers and with one or no illustrations. "The L&B edition is almost an exact copy of the original English edition", with the same front cover decoration and with the same plates (by John Leech, Richard Doyle and others). The illustrations, which in the English edition share pages with text, were for this edition "extended" to occupy entire pages: "the work of the illustrations is very well done but it is doubtful if the changes have improved them any" [quotes from Wilkins].
This copy is bound in blue cloth; others are in yellowish-white or pink (no priority). Curiously, the binder's name ("J.G. Russell Binder") appears in the lower margin of each cover's design.
Condition is very good -- better than that externally, as there is only minor soil and edge-wear. Unfortunately, for the text pages a very cheap paper was employed, such that today those leaves are heavily browned. (This does not apply to the plates, however, which are quite white and bright.) Smith pp 55-58 (his illustrations are of THIS copy); Podeschi (Yale) A88; Wilkins p. 37. Provenance: penciled signature of bibliographer Walter E. Smith on the front endpaper, where resides as well an inked 1851 gift inscription. Item #14292