Heath Robinson on Leather, Collected Edition
London: Connolly Bros. (Curriers) Ltd., n.d. Robinson, W. Heath. Stapled. Folio size, 48 pp. Near fine. Item #CNJWEM067
William Heath Robinson (1872-1944) was an exemplary book illustrator and cartoonist, "the only British illustrator to become a 'household name' " (Houfe), a contemporary of acclaimed illustrators Arthur Rackham and Edmund Dulac, best known for his cartoons portraying elaborate and whimsical machinary made to complete simple tasks. In fact, his fame was such that the term "Heath Robinson" was used in the United Kingdom to refer to such machinery, much as the term "Rube Goldberg" was used in the United States.
This somewhat uncommon booklet (as of this writing, we find two copies in OCLC, and a small number of copies online, none in the US) collects Robinson's illustrations in the field of leather - "The Training of Leather", "The Treatment of Leather", etc. Commissioned by Connolly Brothers, a leather-making firm established in 1878 (to repair shoes) by brothers John and Samuel; by the early 1900s the firm was considered the top in their field, to the extent that when "King Edward VII was crowned, he insisted his coronation coach be clad in Connolly leather" (n.b., quote from an article written by Terry Shea for the February 2013 issue of Hemmings Sport, as published on the web site of Hemmings).
Robinson did several pieces for Connolly Brothers, as there are several online and auction records for similar (but different) titles: "Connolly-Land", "Connolly Customers", "Connolly Chronicles" being a few. The illustrations are quintessential Robinson, with cows taking an active (although seemingly surprising) role in the several contraptions pictured; a humourous piece of Robinson's work for Connolly Brothers.
___DESCRIPTION: Stapled binding with heavy brown paper wraps textured to the appearance of leather, a Robinson vignette in dark brown on the front wrap, dark brown lettering on the front, firm's imprint on the back wrap, title page with a small Robinson illustration, each page filled with Robinson illustrations often accompanied by some text; folio size (12 1/8" by 9 5/8"), pagination:  2-48.
___CONDITION: Near fine overall, the wraps clean and with only minimal edgewear, the corners with slight creases, the stapled binding strong (although the front wrap is starting to loosen at the staples), the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; note that the booklet was distributed by a firm in New York ("Globe Leather Corporation") who stamped the front wrap and the final text page with their name and address, there is also a small stamp on the inside of the front wrap "Made in England.", the top front corner beginning to rub. Even with its few faults still a copy in nicer condition than commonly found.
___CITATION: Not listed in Beare.
___POSTAGE: International customers, please note that additional postage may apply as the standard does not always cover costs; please inquire for details.
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