A very rare find has been added to the collection this month:

  • A book titled The Alaskan Journal of Thomas Merton [1988]

It is a numbered (1 of only 4), limited, deluxe publisher’s presentation copy – up until now seemingly unknown by Merton bibliographers.

It was printed by Sandra Reese at Turkey Press from Spectrum type on Hayle paper. Hand sewn at the press and bound into boards covered with original Scholco and Japanese linen and housed in a slipcase which is covered by a relief print of a photograph taken by Merton while in Alaska.

This book came from the collection of poet, publisher, designer, photographer and essayist Jonathan Williams. Williams and Merton were acquaintances and regularly corresponded between 1965-1971. Williams visited Gethsemani Abbey in January of 1967 with Guy Davenport and Ralph Eugene Meatyard. A wonderful photographic portrait of Merton (taken by Williams) can be found in William’s book “Portrait Photographs”. Another nice association is that Turkey Press also published a book of Jonathan Williams.

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