Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Library Bindings

 Library bindings are a specialty niche in the world of Oz collecting. The books were available from the 1940's to the 1960's in sturdy bindings intended to hold up to heavy use. The covers were usually brightly colored, simplified screenprints of the original cover labels. The spines generally featured the title, without the usual pictorial vignette. As expected, these books often show heavy wear from library use. However, the specialty binding was also available to general customers, so copies occasionally turn up that were never used in a library system.

I haven't expanded into this area, but I did recently pick up an example that came my way. This is a library binding of The Land of Oz, featuring the Roland Roycraft dust jacket design, printed in black and orange on turquoise cloth, from 1959. The Roycraft designs were only issued for a short period of time as dust jackets, not as paper labels mounted to the book covers - so it's fun to have a copy with the design imprinted on the actual book! This particular copy bears no evidence of library use, so it presumably was sold to a home user. It's also interesting to note that the cover has been completely redrawn for this use!

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