“The ‘Wilde’ Æsthetes of 1882”
Log of the Twelfth Annual Cruise of the Second Presbyterian Fishing Club of Philadelphia, July 1st to 15th, inclusive, on the Schooner “Samuel Applegit”.
Philadelphia: Russell & Creamer, 1882.
First edition. With fine partly colored caricature folding map of Chesapeake and Delaware Bays and environs; numerous illustrations in text. 96 pp. 1 vols. 8vo. “The ‘Wilde’ Æsthetes of 1882”. Publisher's blue cloth gilt with publisher's printed paper wrappers bound in. Rubbed, minor staining to boards, upper wrapper chipped at upper corner, with small loss, possibly to presentation “Mrs Jas. H. Al[len]. Book label (offsetting to front free end paper). Very good Wetzel p. 199; Bruns W83; Library of John M. Schiff, Sotheby’s, 11 Dec. 1990, lot 132 (this copy); not in Heller. Provenance: Mortimer L. Schiff, with his bookplate. Item #314013
One of the rarest of this series of privately printed volumes produced by this Philadelphia sporting club, and an unusual demonstration of the popularity of Oscar Wilde during his American tour of 1882. The verso of the title page includes a list of the 22 members of the cruise, “The ‘Wilde’ Æsthetes of 1882”, with the title in a floral heading, giving them all first names of flowers and Wildean associations, including:
Sunflower SMITH, Oscar’s first love, too poetical (?).
Mignonette MOUSLEY, Oscar’s twin brother, too fat for a Porpoise.
Rhododendron RAUCH, Oscar’s great-aunt, too much ‘poke.’
Woodbine WEHN, Oscar’s little sister, too awfully nice.
Petunia PACKARD, Oscar’s maid, too much of a masher.
With the ticket of J.L. Smith, 27 S. Sixth St., Philadelphia, Please Acknowledge Receipt, on front wrapper. “Sunflower” Smith, who heads the crew list, was a Philadelphia map publisher
Clifford P. “Arbutus” Allen is described as the loggist; and Herbert S. “Petunia” Packard as the artist. Allen (b. 1841) was the regular scribe for the club’s annual fishing cruises.
Price: $2,500.00 Free International Delivery