Edwin Markham c1900s HANDWRITTEN SMALL ARCHIVE OF AUTOGRAPH ITEMS AND BOOKPLATE OF FAMED WRITER/AUTHOR/POET EDWIN MARKHAM
Staten Island, New York 1905 Manuscript Very Good Autograph
Wonderful, original pair of Edwin Markham autographs, one dated 1905 the other 1925. Also included is a personal bookplate from the library of Edwin Markham. Signatures about 2x3, bookplate is 5x7, all are in very good condition. The success of "The Man with the Hoe," which was reprinted literally thousands of times in dozens of languages before Markham's death, paved the way for Markham's advancement and also became the title work of his first book of poetry, The Man with the Hoe and Other Poems (1899). On the strength of his first book, Markham received a request to write a poem commemorating Abraham Lincoln's birthday in 1900. He first read "Lincoln, the Man of the People" in New York before the celebration, and once again the newspapers picked it up and spread it across the nation. The poem was again well received, both in print and when Markham read it at the birthday ceremonies; he read it publicly again in 1922 at the dedication of the Lincoln Memorial. "Lincoln" did much to further strengthen Markham's growing reputation; Jack London compared Markham's poem favorably with Whitman’s "O Captain, My Captain" and suggested that in the future, Markham's would be the poetic name most closely associated with the fallen leader's legacy. In 1901 Markham published his second volume, Lincoln and Other Poems. After that first burst of creative output, Markham's productivity slowed dramatically. His third volume of poetry, The Shoes of Happiness, did not appear until 1915; his fourth, The Gates of Paradise, appeared in 1920, and his final book, New Poems: Eighty Songs at Eighty, was published in 1932. Between publications, Markham lectured and wrote in other genres, including essays and nonfiction prose. He also gave much of his time to organizations such as the Poetry Society of America, which he established in 1910. Throughout Markham's later life, many readers viewed him as an important voice in American poetry, a position signified by honors such as his election in 1908 to the National Institute of Arts and Letters. Despite his numerous accolades, however, none of his later books achieved the success of the first two. Markham remained an important public figure, traveling across the nation and receiving warm praise nearly everywhere he went. At his home on Staten Island, his birthday was a local school holiday, and children marked the event by covering his lawn with flowers. The crowning glory came on Markham’s eightieth birthday, when a number of prominent citizens, including President Herbert Hoover, honored his accomplishments at a party in Carnegie Hall and named him one of the most important artists of his age. In 1936 Markham suffered a debilitating stroke from which he never fully recovered; he died at his home on Staten Island, New York.