A Marsh Island. [First Edition, first printing of First Gay American Novel]
A Marsh Island. [First Edition, first printing of First Gay American Novel]

A Marsh Island. [First Edition, first printing of First Gay American Novel]

First Gay American Novel


A Marsh Island has been recently brought forth and proposed as the first gay American novel by Don James McLaughlin, Assistant Professor of 19th-Century American Literature at the University of Tulsa. “In A Marsh Island, the main character, a painter from New York City, spends extended time with a rural family while he recuperates from an injury. Dr. McLaughlin noted the multitude of elements which would have signaled to the late 19th-century reader that the young man is gay, starting with his incompatibility with rural living (“queer metronormativity”).” (Library Company of Philadelphia)  Per BAL 10885, meeting all points, and one of 2,500 copies printed by the publishers.

Of note, the book’s attractive unsigned binding was designed by Sarah Wyman Whitman, the foremost binding designer in Boston.


Description: A Marsh Island. [First Edition, first printing of First Gay American Novel]

Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1885. First edition, first printing. [ii], 292 pp. + [1 (blank)] 12 pp. (ads). Small 8vo. Bound in two olive and dark green cloth with black and gilt lettering designed by Sarah Wyman Whitman (1842–1904). Trifle binding soil and light wear; a very good or better copy.

[3727679]

Wright 1978.


Price: $750.00