c1938 Original Manuscript Book of An Englishman’s America


A very interesting original typed manuscript that was written by Gerald Walter Price with colour and black illustrations.

The book is called ‘An Englishman’s America’ and describes the country in depth, also including Canada. The book came about from a visit in the 1920s, by Price, when he was looking for a large industrial breadslicer for his bread factory Price’s Bakeries, in Leeds. The trip took on the air of a ‘Grand Tour’ and Price met many influential people. His admiration for the Americans is evident throughout the book, yearning for a similar freedom of spirit and space in Britain. He covers in his chapters: Quebec, Montreal, the Eastern States, with New York, Washington Chicago, in more detail. He then moves to the Colorado Rockies, the Royal Gorge and Salt Lake City, Yellowstone Park. Moving on West to California, with Los Angeles, Hollywood, Palm Springs, the desert, San Diego, Coronado, Agua Caliente, Mexico, the Forest Lawn Memorial Park, San Francisco. He finishes in the Canadian Rockies, before returning back to Britain. In one of his last chapters he writes of the American and English contrasts, mostly linguistically.

On his return to England he commissioned the building of an Art Deco gem, a large house in Newton Ferrers, near Plymouth, in South Devon. He calls the house ‘Casa del Rio’ (River House in Spanish) and it is heavily influenced by the house ‘Pickfair’ of famous actors Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford, whom he met in Hollywood.

Whether the book was ever submitted to a publisher is unclear. There is no evidence of any correspondence with any book companies. There are however 3 sheets titled ‘Mr Gerald’s Weekly Bulletin’, dated 1943, which suggests that it was partly published in a newspaper or magazine.

The book is bound in a black-blue leatherette covered folder. Inside are different addresses, where he resided, including Casa del Rio, and he has signed it Gerald Walter Price October 1938. There is also a printed portrait photograph of him.

Nice unique piece of social history in good condition. We are also selling a photograph album of his factory vehicles, in the 1940s.

Size: 24.5 x 27 x 5.5 cm (9 5/8 x 10 5/8 x 2 1/8 inches)
Weight: 1959 g