Chicago: Way and Williams, 1897. First edition of a novel that influenced Jack London’s own pre-historic fantasy novel, Before Adam (serialized in 1906-1907 in Everybody’s Magazine). Waterloo eventually accused London of plagiarism, though the latter denied the charges and insisted he was merely inspired by it. Map frontispiece. Title-page printed in black and red. Binding extremities lightly rubbed. Very minor wear to crown and tail of spine. The occasional minor stain. Contemporary ink signature on front flyleaf. A very good, bright copy. Publisher’s black cloth stamped in yellow and red, designed by Will Bradley (1868-1962). Octavo. 9], [1, blank], 351, [1, colophon] pp. Item #16410
Stanley Waterloo (1846-1913) was a Chicago-born newspaper man, editor, and author. The present work is about Ab, a young Stone Age boy, and his journey to manhood. During the course of the novel, he catches a baby rhinoceros with his friend, Oak, and joins the men in his tribe on a hunt. After both he and his friend become enamored with Lightfoot, a young woman, they fight over her, which ends in his friend’s death. Though burdened with guilt, Ab goes on to become the leader of his tribe. Waterloo’s novel was based on the theory that there was not a sharp division between the Paleolithic and Neolithic periods and that mankind learned to make weapons naturally and gradually.
Wright III, 5819.