The First Men in the Moon
H.G. Wells. Indianapolis: The Bowen-Merrill Company, 1901.
title page printed in black and red, original pictorial navy blue cloth, front panel stamped in gold and blind, spine panel stamped in gold.. Early owner’s name and date (“Xmas, 1908”) in ink on front free. endpaper, a truly fine copy with brilliant cover stamping in the. original first state pictorial dust jacket (printed in dark blue on. buff paper stock) with “Bowen / Merrill” imprint at base of spine. panel. The dust jacket has shallow chips from crown and tail of spine. panel (no lettering affected), some shelf wear at corner tips, and a. scrape to the surface of the front panel along the lower edge which. affects “ELL” of “WELLS” and extends up slightly into the lower blue. background of the illustration. Still an attractive example of a rare. jacket. Although book and jacket are mixed states, they have not been. married (there is faint ghosting from the flap copy of this jacket on. the fore-edges of the free endpapers); we surmise the book was. distributed with this jacket by the publisher who changed their name. from Bowen-Merrill to Bobbs-Merrill in January 1903, some 15 months. after the book was published in late September or early October 1901. (it was listed Publisher’s Weekly 5 October 1901). The size of the. edition is not known, but the book was apparently not a big success. and unsold sheets of the first printing were later sold to Grosset &. Dunlap. This is the second known copy of this edition in the original. jacket. (#9451). First edition, second state binding with “Bobbs / Merrill” at base of spine panel. Preceded the British edition by approximately one month. The two editions have minor textual differences. “… a gripping adventure story as well as a historic milestone in modern science fiction.” - Survey of Science Fiction Literature II, pp. 782-86. “The last and most complex [of Wells’s early scientific romances] is THE FIRST MEN IN THE MOON.