Book Collecting

Franklin Library

Franklin Library, the distribution arm of the Franklin Press, began publishing in 1973 and closed permanently in 2000. Franklin books were designed and bound by the Sloves Organization, an affiliate of the Franklin Mint, and one of the few binderies that focused solely on leather book binding. Franklin published in three styles: full genuine leather, imitation leather, and quarter-bound genuine leather. Full leather-bound editions were produced throughout the publisher’s lifespan; but the other two styles -- imitation and quarter-bound -- were only published in the 1970s and ’80s. In addition to their unique leather bindings, Franklin books are known for their interior illustrations.

The 100 Greatest Books of All Time series, published between 1974 and 1982, is among the most collectible work from Franklin Library. The heavily illustrated collection features remarkable works by literature’s most legendary writers, including Charlotte BrontX;, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Shakespeare, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Goethe, Robert Frost, William Faulkner, Ernest Hemingway, Herman Melville, and more.

First Edition Identification

First copies as well as signed first copies published by Franklin Library are “limited” to an unstated number of copies. Franklin Library did not produce reprints. Standard works have no indication of printings within an edition: all printings of the first edition carry the same identification; only second printings with changed or added material are indicated.