New York: Hunt & Eaton, 1891. Second Edition. Hardcover. Duodecimo size, 66 pp., signed by the author in both English and Japanese, with "Tokio, Japan" beneath. Near Fine. Item #SB3104
The first autobiography by a Japanese woman immigrant to the United States. Tel Sono tells her story through a series of anecdotes beginning with some of her family background, including her father's illness, her failed arranged marriage, her education and career practicing law, the death of her father, and some stories that display her naive generosity (at times to a fault) to her employees and the needy. She travels to San Francisco in 1885, and shortly her arrival the Bank of Japan fails. The failure robs her of her fortune, resulting in her decision to take a job working for a large family as a maid. She works hard to learn English, and eventually takes a room at a Chinese mission where she lives in wretched conditions until a Christian lady takes her in. During this period she becomes devoted to prayer and worship and begins to spend time at the Japanese Mission. Sono bounces around to a few different homes, at one point attending school under the presumption that she's a teenager, when in fact she was 24. She lives/works at sixteen different homes, and finally raises the money in 1889 to be baptized and joins the Japanese Mission. She details some of the work she did at the Mission, which eventually lands her in the Women's Christian Temperance Union. Her work and studies for the Union take her to Chicago, and eventually to Brooklyn, from where she writes this amazing tale.___DESCRIPTION: Publisher's blue cloth stamped in black and gilt, light-brown endpapers, frontisportrait of the author; duodecimo size (7 3/8" by 5"), [1-5] 6-66 pp., second edition (first published in 1890), signed on the flyleaf in both English and Japanese, with "Tokio, Japan" beneath.___CONDITION: A very good copy, internally bright and complete, frontispiece plate is still bright, gilt is bright, minimal foxing, covers are clean with slight rubbing at the edges and corners, text block is straight; overall a very good copy indeed.___POSTAGE: International customers, please note that additional postage may apply as the standard does not always cover costs; please inquire for details.___Swan's Fine Books is pleased to be a member of the ABAA, ILAB and IOBA and we stand behind every book we sell. Please contact us with any questions you may have, we are here to help.