The Secret Life of a Book

Lifein64SquareFeet.com - A Writer's Survival Blog

I was looking through the clearance shelves at Half Price Books and came across a worn, old book, which I bought for two dollars.  It was small and had a damaged spine.   The cover read, “The New Hudson Shakespeare” with the initials, “W.S.” embossed on the cover.

1-Cover

Carefully opening it, I flipped a few pages and saw this was The Tragedy of Hamlet.

2-Cover-pages

The book was clearly old, and the copyright was 1909 by Ginn and Company, an imprint of The Athenaeum Press in Boston U.S.A. 

3-copyright date

Some more queries in Bing and I learned Ginn and Company was a major textbook publishing house of the day.  They later became part of the Penguin Group.

The building they occupied in Cambridge, MA was huge – 380,000 square feet, and very ornate, topped by a statue of Athena.  The building still stands today and has multiple tenants, including the Le Cordon Bleu…

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