Norwalk, Connecticut: Easton Press, 1994. Full leather. This is an absolutely pristine, as-new set of the Easton Press edition of the Official Biography of Winston Churchill. Begun by Randolph Churchill and completed by Martin Gilbert, Churchill's Official Biography is an epic piece of scholarship about a singularly epic life. The eight massive main text volumes were originally published between 1966 and 1988. Together, these main text volumes comprise the narrative story of Churchill’s entire, long life.
Even grander than the British first editions is this superlative set of the Official Biography main text volumes produced by The Easton Press in 1994. Easton produced this set as twelve volumes (more manageably sized than the original eight, splitting each of the last four volumes into two volumes). The Easton Press edition claims 24 inches of shelf space, weighs 36 pounds, and fills nearly 8,700 pages. Moreover, it is the finest edition of the Official Biography to date. Each volume is bound in dark red leather, featuring hubbed spines, black title panels, and elaborate decoration with 22 kt. gold accents. The contents are printed on acid-neutral, archival paper, with all page edges gilt, moire fabric endsheets, sewn-in satin ribbon markers, and head and foot bands. The set is profusely illustrated throughout. This particular set is truly as new. Eleven of the twelve volumes are still sealed in the original publisher's shrinkwrap. Volume I, removed from the shrinkwrap, is nonetheless flawless, virtually untouched and clearly unread. Once the volumes are unsealed, found within each will be the original Easton Press bookplate, as yet with no name upon it and unaffixed (as is the case with Volume I). Unsurprisingly, none of the bindings shows any discernible blemish or sign of use. Please note that we will invoice for actual postage costs for this large, heavy set.
The Official Biography was begun by Winston’s son, Randolph Churchill (1911-1968), and completed by Sir Martin Gilbert (1936-2015). In 1962, at the age of 25, Martin Gilbert joined Churchill's biography team, then led by Churchill's son Randolph. Of what became his life's work, Gilbert says: "I'd thought I'd last four or five months." Instead, when Randolph died in 1968 with only two of the eight volumes completed, Gilbert took over, committing the substantial portion of his scholarship and life's work to documenting, comprehending, and communicating what Gilbert called the "remarkable and versatile life" of Winston Churchill.
Reference: Zoller A301a-h. Item #006128