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OLIVER TWIST 1878 by Charles Dickens with Illustrations by J Mahoney Gilt Titles Wonderful black & white engravings.
New York: John Wurtele Lovell No 24 Bond Street

Condition: The Fly Leaf, Title page & Tissue guarded Frontispiece are separated from the book. (See picture)
Some chipping @ top spine, some wear on the corner boards
Lovely Floral repeat patterned end papers showing some minor wear, but otherwise in good condition.

Some Colorful HISTORY : )

John Lovell, Brat Kid, Pirate, Thief; "The Most Hated Man in Publishing"

Although there is no publication date, this Lovely edition of Oliver Twist was Published by The John Wurtele Lovell New York, When the publishers resided at 24 Bond Street until 1878.
Wurtele later moved to 16 Astor Street & 14 Vesey Street in 1882; So it had to have been published in 1878 or eariler.

John W. Lovell was the son of one of Canada's best known printer/publishers.  Something of a child prodigy of printing, John was only age 21 when he became in charge of one of his father's publishing branches on the American side of the border. He was also a bit of a colorful character.
John Immediately (1873) ran foul of authorities in both nations when he tried to pay American workers with Canadian currency and bring in employees from Canada.
 He also ignored copyrights (!!!!) publishing American books for the Canadian market and Canadian books for the American market.
He pirated works of others,(!!!) including Dickens, Thacketry, Milton and others!
In a stroke of genius, he managed to qualify his paperbacks as 2nd class mailings, the same as newspapers.  
A liberal and a feminist; Lovell was also a promoter of Women's Suffrage rights and to promote this cause he established a subsidiary to publish books on women's issues, such as August Bebel's “Woman”,  Margaret Lee's “Divorce”,  and works by Lillie Devereaux Blake and Ursuala N Gestafeld
Lovell's continual pirating of the works of others and his forceful methods of trying to corner the market in books earned him the reputation as "The Most Hated Man in Publishing."
His bold attempt to control the market failed because four of the largest players refused to sell to him: Rand McNally, Laird & Lee, A.L. Burt, and Street & Smith.   He attempted three times (1895, 1897, and 1900) to take over these companies and failed each time.   Additionally, the scheme was simply too big.  Every time he added a new company, another would escape.  Each new re-organisation saw valued employees flee to more secure ground.
In 1891, the new International Copyright laws hurt his ability to pirate and steal.  Further hindered by the ‘Panic of 1893’, the scheme began to crumble.  Wall Street investors, in a secret meeting, booted Lovell out of the company.  John M. Forbes replaced him.  
Meanwhile, John Lovell had hatched another scheme to wealth.  He would corner the magazine market.  His most successful acquisition was Godey's Lady's Book.   However, Scribner's and Century flatly refused to him at any price, so he abandoned the scheme.
He died @ age 80 in 1932

OLIVER TWIST 1878 RESERVED Charles Dickens with Illustrations by J Mahoney Gilt Titles


  • Vintage item from the 1800s
  • Materials: book, paper, Cloth Boards, Gilding
  • Ships worldwide from New York, United States
  • Feedback: 2 reviews
  • Favorited by: 133 people