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shalom dustjacketWilliam Addison Dwiggins (1880-1956) had studied under Frederic W. Goudy in Chicago, Illinois. He was a highly respected American typographer, book illustrator and graphic designer. His design work for the publisher Alfred A. Knopf helped to establish this firm’s reputation for design excellence. Some of the book titles Dwiggins was involved with were American classics like Poe’s Tales by Edgar A. Poe (1930), The Time Machine by H.G. Wells (1931), Gulliver’s Travels by Swift. Dwiggins also designed 18 important typefaces for the Mergenthaler Linotype Company. The two most famous ones, Caledonia and Electra, are counted among the greatest type designs of the twentieth century. Thirty nine of his finest book designs were included in the American Institute of Graphic Arts Fifty Book Awards.

shalom typographicalThe book (top of post) The World of Sholom Aleichem  published during WWII (1943) was written by Maurice Samuel (1895-1972) a Romanian /American Jewish author.

shalom spineshalom inside flapshalom covershalom titleThis book earned Maurice Samuel the coveted Anisfeld-Wolf Award, one of the many literary awards he received during his lifetime. Posthumously, he was awarded the Manger Prize for Yiddish literature.

Samuel, today an almost forgotten writer, wrote 25 books, fiction as well as non fiction, but also has to his credit the many translations from Yiddish to English of a body of work from the writer Isaac Singer. From 1953 to 1971, he appeared on a radio program with the Pulitzer Prize winning poet Mark van Doren where the two discussed many biblical themes.

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