Cover image for Of Making Many Books: A Hundred Years of Reading, Writing, and Publishing By Roger Burlingame

Of Making Many Books

A Hundred Years of Reading, Writing, and Publishing

Roger Burlingame

384 pages
6" × 9"
1 b&w illustration
1996

Penn State Series in the History of the Book

Of Making Many Books

A Hundred Years of Reading, Writing, and Publishing

Roger Burlingame

“From reviews of the 1946 edition:

If we had access to more data of this kind, our understanding of literary history would be better, our training of authors would be more responsible, and our notions of the way art is channeled to the public would be vastly improved. This is the story of Scribner's bookmaking . . . a story which Roger Burlingame, with access to a fascinating correspondence, has told so congenially and so fairly that I would wish the book in the hands of every beginning writer.”

 

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From its beginnings in 1846 in a brick chapel on Park Row to its heyday in the 1920s and 1930s at 597 Fifth Avenue, the publishing firm of Charles Scribner's Sons reflected many of the dominant movements in nineteenth- and twentieth-century American book publishing. Working with the correspondence and business papers of the house, Roger Burlingame prepared this centenary account of the firm in 1946. Filled with lively portrayals of writers and publishers, Of Making Many Books illuminates the professional careers of many Scribner authors: Henry James, Edith Wharton, Joseph Conrad, Robert Louis Stevenson, Harold Frederic, Henry Adams, Rudyard Kipling, George Santayana, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Wolfe, and others. Burlingame shows publishing from the editorial side as well—from the perspectives of W. C. Brownell, Maxwell Perkins, and John Hall Wheelock. Out of print for many years, this history of one of America's most venerable publishers is now reissued, with an introduction by Charles Scribner III, on the 150th anniversary of the founding of the house.
“From reviews of the 1946 edition:

If we had access to more data of this kind, our understanding of literary history would be better, our training of authors would be more responsible, and our notions of the way art is channeled to the public would be vastly improved. This is the story of Scribner's bookmaking . . . a story which Roger Burlingame, with access to a fascinating correspondence, has told so congenially and so fairly that I would wish the book in the hands of every beginning writer.”
“From reviews of the 1946 edition:

If we had access to more data of this kind, our understanding of literary history would be better, our training of authors would be more responsible, and our notions of the way art is channeled to the public would be vastly improved.”

Roger Burlingame (1889–1967) began his professional career as an editor at Scribner's, serving with the firm from 1914 until 1926. Later he became a prolific novelist and historian, publishing biographies of Benjamin Franklin, General Billy Mitchell, Eli Whitney, and Henry Ford, and a house history of McGraw-Hill, entitled Endless Frontiers (1959).

Charles Scribner III is the fifth Charles Scribner to work in the Scribner publishing house. There he oversees the publications of its classic authors, including those of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. He is the author of Rubens (1989) and Bernini (1991), both published by Abrams.