Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Welcome to The Art of American Book Covers

This blog is about book covers. The posts will mainly be about the "Golden Age" of American publishing, the period from about 1875 to 1930 when stamped cloth bindings brought innovative art and design into the homes of the reading public.

In the sidebar you can read posts from other blogs that present more recent cover art, which is mostly paperback book cover or dust jacket design.

Not all books published in the 19th century had cloth covers. To start the blog, here's a hardcover book published by Houghton in 1881 on Mr. Bodley Abroad by Horace Scudder with printed paper wrapped boards:

The artist is not identified, and this was before the era of artists' monograms, which will be a later subject on this blog. The cover is shockingly prescient for its time and can be associated with art movements that occurred decades after the book was produced.


  1. Congratulations on the new blog. Looks great.

  2. 1881? Holy cow. I would have put that cover quite solidly in the 30s, if pressed. The design is very much of another era.

  3. Maybe it was in Marinetti's home when he was a kid ;>}

  4. Very pleased to have discovered your site (at its early stages too).

    Will from A Journey Round My Skull