Paris: Edition Cardinale, 1927. One of 125 copies. Published by Harry Crosby, though not under the Black Sun Press imprint, with his preface. Inscribed by the author on recto of preliminary blank: “For / Ruth Elder / With sincere admiration / Mary Koutouzow Tolstoy / Paris / … / 1927. It was to be accompanied by a companion volume, Part II: Aftermath, but this was never published. Black-and-white photographically reproduced frontisportrait of the author. Illustrated with three black-and-white photographic reproductions. Binding extremities lightly rubbed with slight wear to crown and tail of spine. Hinges slightly cracked, but sound. Small chips to upper gutter margin of a few leaves. Slightly toning to edges of illustrations. Original wrappers bound in. A very good, clean copy of a scarce work. Contemporary brown calf over marbled boards with brown morocco spine labels lettered in gilt. , [1, blank], 166, [1, blank], , [+1, colophon] pp. Item #16402
Mary Koutouzow Frothingham Tolstoy (1884-1976) was an American author, artist who specialized in etchings, and director of couture houses in Paris. According to an article printed in 1976 in The New York Times, Tolstoy remained in France and worked as a nurse in hospitals during both World Wars. She also worked with the French Resistance in World War II. In 1903, she received the Chevalier of the Legion of Honor for heroism, followed by the Croix de Guerre and the Medal of Verdun in 1917. Tolstoy was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and regent of the Rochambeau Chapter in France from 1955-59. She married Count Alexander Tolstoy, nephew of Leo Tolstoy, in 1910. Some of her published writings include The Right Age, The Rewarding Years, and Charlemagne to Dior, a history of French fashion, and the present work, which serves as a memoir of her time during World War I.