John B. Alden (1879-1908)

This New York publisher was active between 1879 and 1908. John Berry Alden, the founder, earlier had started the American Book Exchange which had published several Tom Brown's in series form. The American Book Exchange went bankrupt in 1881. Throughout the 1880's and 1890's Alden published many classic reprints in series form at very cheap prices.

John B. Alden Publisher printed both Tom Brown books in wraps in 1885 as part of its Irving Library. These books have not been seen.

It published Tom Brown at Rugby in wraps and in cloth as part of its Novelist Library beginning in September, 1887. It was completed in five parts. All five parts were published in one paper back book in October, 1887. On the cover of part 1 Alden notes that his copy of Tom Brown at Rugby is better than the copies which were part of the Seaside Library or the Lovell Library and were cheaper than either one. Interestingly Part 1 stops in the middle of a sentence.

In 1889 Alden published another copy of School Days at Rugby in cloth. Its format is unknown.

Alden published School Days in its Aldine Series in 1891. Later this exact format was published by the International Book Company.

In about 1899 Alden published a series of reprints called "The World's Best Books". Both Tom Brown's were part of this series. These books are 12 mo. and have marbled edges and either half-Morocco or cloth sides. Neither book has been seen.

Unknown Series 1884

These pictures were kindly sent to me by Bradley Herzlich. This book is undoubtedly from the same unknown 1884 series shown above. The cover has been slightly modified.

Novelist Library, 1887

Novelist Library Part 1- Sept. 24, 1887 (It was #20 in the Novelist Library)

Novelist Library Parts 1-5, October 1887 (It was #20-25 in the Novelist Library)

Aldine Series 1891

Click images to enlarge.