TOBACCONIST

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[John E. McDonough: an American tragedian in Victorian London.] Five Autograph Letters Signed

Author: 
John E. McDonough [John Edwin McDonough] (1825-1882), American actor; D. S. Winebrener of Philadelphia, attorney [John Jabez Stocken (d.1892), London tobacconist, father of actor 'Frank Lacy']
Publication details: 
McDonough's five letters from 1873; one on Stocken's letterhead, 10 Gracechurch Street, E.C. [London]; two on letterheads of Haxell's Royal Exeter Hotel, West Strand, London. Winebrener's letter and obituary from Philadelphia, 1882.
£250.00

A nice collection of material, including five letters in which an American actor writes to a London friend while on a visit to England. The recipient of McDonough's letters is John Jabez Stocken (d.1892), head of a leading City of London firm of tobacconists, and an antiquary. (His son Frank Lacy Stocken (1867-1937) was later an actor under the name 'Frank Lacy'.) From the correspondence it is clear that McDonough stayed with Stocken during his stay in England.

[Two Victorian Welsh street ballads, one with engraved advertisement for 'FINE TEAS AND TOBACCO'.] Two poems printed together: 'Cerdd y Tobacco' and 'Can y Bachgen Main'.

Author: 
[Nineteenth-century Welsh street ballads; tobacco; smoking]
Publication details: 
No place or date. [Welsh, late Victorian.]
£100.00

4pp, 16mo (15.5 x 9 cm). Paginated [1]-4. Bifolium. Disbound. A frail survival, aged and worn. The first leaf (pp.1-2) carries the poem 'Cerdd y Tobacco' ('The Tobacco Poem'), in five eight-line stanzas, with the title followed by a half-page stock woodcut (evidently from a tobacconist's advertisement) of an oriental figure seated on crates on the dockside, with sailing ship in the background. At the foot is engraved: 'FINE TEAS AND TOBACCO'. The second leaf (pp.3-4) carries the poem 'Can y Bachgen Main' ('Song of the Slender Boy'), in six eight-line stanzas.

[ John Brumfit, nineteenth-century City of London cigar merchant. ] Autograph account books ('Journal' and 'Cash') from the firm's foundation in 1864, with explanatory letter from the founder's grandson K. F. Brumfit, and trade letterhead.

Author: 
John B. Brumfit, nineteenth-century City of London cigar merchant [ subsequently John Brumfit Ltd
Publication details: 
London [ John B. Brumfit, Cigar Merchant, 86, King William Street, City. ].Journal: 1864-1870. Cash Book, 1864-1872.
£2,500.00

For more than a century the firm of John Brumfit Ltd of the City of London was one of Britain's leading cigar and tobacco merchants, its reputation international. The firm was founded in 1864 by John B. Brumfit, son of Charles Brumfit of No. 1 Pall Mall West. The items offered here are the journal and cash book written out by the founder at the firm's inception, together with two related items (Items Three and Four below).

Signed Receipt ('Jo: Webb') for '2lbs. Bengal Cheroots', bought by 'Mr Smith'.

Author: 
Joseph Webb, importer of cigars, of 49 Friday Street, Cheapside, London [tobacconist]
Signed Receipt ('Jo: Webb') for '2lbs. Bengal Cheroots',
Publication details: 
2 June 1852; 49 Friday Street, Cheapside, London.
£56.00
Signed Receipt ('Jo: Webb') for '2lbs. Bengal Cheroots',

On one side of a piece of landscape 8vo grey wove paper. Clear and complete. Discoloured and worn, with spike hole at centre. Printed part of receipt reads 'London, ..........18..... | 49, Friday Strt. Cheapside. | M............ | Bought of Joseph Webb, | Importer of Cigars.' The bill is for '2lbs. Bengal Cheroots - 9/- | 18/-', with the receipt reading '1852 | Aug 4th. paid [signed] Jo: Webb'. Docketed on reverse 'Webb | 18/'. Webb does not appear to have traded from the site for very long, and little is to be discovered about him.

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