1907 'Tom' an Autobiography With Revised Negro Melodies
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An Important Work, Author's Presentation Copy, Illustrated, Publishers' Original Binding, Signed, Very Scarce
Signed by the author to the front endpaper, 'To Miss Wight with the best thanks of Thomas Rutling Weston S Mare 2.9.1907. 'Copyright' is written to the title page.
A second inscription to the same page 'Jessamine E Williams 1945'.
In the publisher's original cloth binding.
Illustrated, with a portrait frontispiece of Rutling, and a photograph of the Fisk University Choir which is detached but present. With forty pages of sheet music.
Rutling was a former slave who became an original member of the Fisk Jubilee Singers, a choral group that toured throughout the United States and Europe. H e was a tenor. He joined the choir in 1871 and spent seven years touring in the United States, United Kingdom and Europe.
This autobiography was published in Bradford and Devon, and was written during his time as a vocal teacher in Britain. Rutling was an important figure in the arts, specifically due to his representation as a Black man. He was a pioneer campaigner against racism and has inspired generations of people in Britain. This work is an important piece of Black history, depicting the life of a fascinating creative.
In the publisher's original cloth binding. Externally, very smart. Light rubbing to the extremities and to the head and tail of spine. Mark to the front board. Front hinge has failed after the frontispiece. Internally, binding is loosening in places due to the binding type. Plate of the Fisk University Choir is detached but present. Chips to the edges of this plate. Pages are bright, with just the occasional light spots.
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