Souvenir of Ninety-Four [Australian and Malayan] Gift Battle-Planes which helped us to Victory, August 4th, 1914 to November 11th, 1918. Charles Alma BAKER.
Souvenir of Ninety-Four [Australian and Malayan] Gift Battle-Planes which helped us to Victory, August 4th, 1914 to November 11th, 1918

Souvenir of Ninety-Four [Australian and Malayan] Gift Battle-Planes which helped us to Victory, August 4th, 1914 to November 11th, 1918

London, Printed at The Field Press 'For Private Circulation Only' [by Charles Alma Baker], [1920].

Large quarto, [vi], 148 pages with a pictorial title page and small decorations (by Fred Leist) and 2 illustrations (of pamphlet covers) plus an additional colour pictorial title page (by Leist), a frontispiece portrait of Baker, 40 plates depicting 78 individual gift battle-planes, 4 plates showing various types of aircraft, and 8 monochrome plates of air battles (after paintings, one by Leist, the others by the official British war artist of the RFC/RAF, Joseph Simpson); all plates have tissue-guards.

Full cream vellum, lettered and decorated in gilt on the spine and front cover, top edge gilt, others uncut; vellum a little mottled; boards slightly bowed and a little bumped at the corners; endpapers foxed; one tiny inkspot to the bottom edge (impacting very slightly on a few bottom margins); an excellent copy.

Inscribed in pencil on the initial blank page 'With the compliments of the Honorary Organiser, C. Alma Baker'; mounted above this inscription is an original pencil drawing (approximately 160 × 210 mm, dated 1918 and signed with indecipherable initials) of the nose of the SE5a biplane, 'The Victory', one of the gift aircraft (it appears in the plate facing page 51). Mounted on the verso of the same blank is an original cabinet card photograph (100 × 150 mm, on the original card mount, both a little spotted on two margins), captioned in white ink 'Farmers and Settlers Battleplane Fund, 1918'. An additional label attests to the amount contributed by them (£141); the money was put towards the purchase of 'The Victory'. Baker's address to the Farmers' and Settlers' Conference, July 1917, is reproduced on pages 50-53. New Zealand-born Charles Alma Baker (1857-1941) made a fortune from mining and rubber in the Federated Malay States in the early twentieth century. 'A strong believer in King and Empire, Baker was a prominent fundraiser for the Royal Flying Corps during the First World War, raising funds in Australia and Malaya for the purchase of 94 aircraft. For this work he received the CBE in 1919' (C. Alma Baker Trust website). This deluxe volume commemorates this extraordinary project.

Item #114928

Price: $1,500.00

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