Edited and Compiled from their Diaries and Papers. [In Two Volumes.] Garden City NY: Doubleday, Page & Company, 1923. Original black cloth with Irish Guards star in gilt and printed spine label, with dust jackets.
First American Edition of this exhaustive narrative of the experience of the Irish Guards during the Great War. Kipling had good reason to focus such attention on the Irish Guards: these volumes constitute, in effect, his memorial to his only son, John -- a second lieutenant of the Irish Guards who was missing in action after the Battle of Loos in September 1915 (see pp 11-14 & 219 & 223 in Vol II). John's body was never found, so it is unknown whether he died in action or as a German prisoner of war. The loss of John intensified Kipling's already considerable hatred of the Germans.
"The royalties went to a soldiers' widows' charity. John Buchan, reviewing this edition..., wrote 'No other book can ever be written exactly like this, and it seems likely to endure as the fullest document of the war-life of a British regiment..." [Richards].
These are fine copies in nearly fine dust jackets (a few small chips at corners, two panels with faintly-striped discoloration); in our experience the American edition is considerably scarcer than the month-earlier English one, and this is in fact the only American set in dust jackets we have seen -- now twice. Richards A341; Stewart 504; Livingston 483. Provenance: endpaper signatures of F. Hedley Jobbins (Columbia 1895). Item #14809