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-First Canadian Softcover Edition


First Canadian Softcover Edition [1 of 10,000 copies]

By: Winston S. Churchill

Copp, Clark Company, Limited [Toronto]

Biblio: (Cohen A4.3.b) (Woods A4a)

8vo (510 pages, 3 folding maps, 5 other plans and maps & (426 pages, with frontis portrait of Ian Hamilton, 1 three-color folding map.)

Softcover [Pictorial wraps]

Item Number: 200389

Collector's Guide

London to Ladysmith was the first of two Boer War volumes derived from Winston Churchill’s newspaper dispatches as a war correspondent in South Africa. It features a thrilling account of his escape from the Boers, an escape that would help launch young Churchill’s political career. The First English edition was published elaborately in fawn-colored cloth stamped with a striking cover illustration of the infamous armored train that Churchill was defending when he was captured. The American edition is an unadorned, though still handsome, red cloth binding with gilt lettering.


This is a surprisingly well-preserved copy of the very rare and fragile First Softcover Canadian edition, which was bound from First American edition sheets (or printed from First American plates). The publisher’s imprint on the spine reads: “Montreal News Company Limited” but the actual publisher was The Copp, Clark Company, with the Montreal News acting as its sales agent for this book.

The wraps, originally a dark-puprplish-blue printed with black and red type, have both darkened and faded considerably and are creased and shelfworn but intact, with the well-worn spine still attached. An earlier owner has inscribed his name in ink across the front cover and on the half-title but the contents are otherwise fine and unfoxed, with all maps and plates present.

There are are not many of these extant and certainly not in this condition, here preserved in a purpose-built burgundy cloth solander with gilt spine type.