Charles Dexter Allen bookplate, 1899

Contributed by Cary Memorial Library in Wayne


Charles Dexter Allen was a prominent bookplate collector who was known for his writings on the subject, which included "American Bookplates: A Guide to Their Study with Examples", published in 1894.

He corresponded with Elizabeth Mast Hyatt, summer resident of Wayne, who compiled an extensive collection of bookplates in honor of famed opera and concert singer Annie Louise Cary (1841-1921).

In a 1925 letter, Allen wrote, "The most sought for plates here are the works of the late E.D. French." This bookplate of Allen's was engraved by French in 1899.

The text includes a partial quotation from Robert Louis Stevenson ("To be honest, to be kind..."), the phrase "Club of Odd Volumes," and the designation "Ex Libris Society."

Edwin Davis French (1851-1906) began as an engraver on silver, but turned to bookplates and completed around 250 plates for American and European collectors. His work was influenced by Durer, and he developed an ornate style, in this case including an elaborate frame of acanthus leaves.

Elizabeth Mast Hyatt became involved in the efforts to build a library in Wayne. It was dedicated in 1939 as the Cary Memorial Library, and the bookplate collection later became part of the library's holdings.

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About This Item

  • Title: Charles Dexter Allen bookplate, 1899
  • Creator: French, Edwin Davis
  • Creation Date: 1899
  • Subject Date: 1899
  • Town: Wayne
  • County: Kennebec
  • State: ME
  • Media: Ink on paper
  • Dimensions: 10.21 cm x 7.48 cm
  • Local Code: B (Box)
  • Collection: Bookplate collection
  • Object Type: Text and Image

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For more information about this item, contact:

Cary Memorial Library in Wayne
17 Old Winthrop Road, Wayne, ME 04284
(207) 685-3612

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