"The Library" Vernacular Manuscript Library Catalogue, Mabon "Smitty" Smith.
"The Library"
"The Library"
"The Library"
"The Library"

"The Library"

Enid, Oklahoma: 1992. Unbound. Date: Not after 1992. Large 4to (8.5" x 11" paper). Original photocophy ca. 1992 with ink annotation "Keep for ourselves." Two parts, both preserved in mylar L-sleeves (see below). Preserved in fine copper-colored cloth case. Very good. Item #2383

Highly curious vernacular manuscript library catalogue compiled by a meat-packer / jailer residing in Enid, Oklahoma. Almost without exception such lists have not survived or were never compiled in the first place. Indeed, this is the only one we have ever seen, or are likely to see again. ¶ Mabon "Smitty" Smith (1920-2002) was a jailer at the Garfield County Jail in Enid, Oklahoma. The present catalogue is the only record of his library. Our copy is the unique photocopy of Smitty's original manuscript (now lost) and bears some later ink annotations. It was about to be discarded until we intervened. ¶ The catalogue is actually composed of two distinct parts, the first compiled by Smitty, the second unidentified. Part 1 consists of 29 pages in which Smitty enumerates, with varying degrees of success, approximately 349 books contained in 10 (?) boxes. Part 2 consists of 7 pages (one is dated "2-27-92") written by a more accomplished compiler, who lists ca. 90 books contained in 2 bookcases. Smitty wrote exclusively in capital letters and made a number of spelling errors, including the persistent use of "Copywright" and "Franch" (sic) throughout. The catalogue documents a curious assemblage of incomplete sets of the works of Guy de Maupassant in French (!), Irving, Milton, Walter Scott's Waverley Novels, Tolstoy, Shaw, Reader's Digest Condensed Books, and various books to which Smitty has assigned the following headings: "Story Books All-Kinds" (sic), "Books About Paris," "Story Books and Poems," "Reading Books, Short Storys (sic) and Novels, Music Books," "Novel Books, Poet and Proem" (sic), Art Books," "Books of Inside-Europe" (sic), "All Kinds of Reading Books," "Mixed Books Short-Stories, Franch (sic) Books, Paris" and so forth. ¶ Unsurprisingly, little biographical information about Smitty has been found. He was born in El Dorado, Kansas and moved to Enid and attended Enid public schools. He served in the Army Corps from 1946 to 1948, during which time he married Joyce Foster (of Lockhart, Texas) at the Lackland Field Airforce Base in San Antonio. He worked for Banfield Meat-Packing Co. in Oklahoma, and was a Garfield County jailer from 1956 to 1974. After his retirement he was self-employed in the home repair and remodeling business. Smitty was a founding member of Madison Avenue Baptist Church, and was a member of the Odd Fellows Lodge. He wife Joyce worked for F.W. Woolworth Co. for 23 years, retiring in 1991. ¶ Highly curious piece of American bibliophily.

Price: $650.00