Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Lightning-Rod Man, reprinted from Putnam's in the Albany Evening Journal and elsewhere

Cyclopædia of Wit and Humor
Originally published in the August 1854 issue of Putnam's Monthly Magazine, Melville's comic sketch "The Lightning-Rod Man" was reprinted in several contemporary newspapers, including the Albany Evening Journal (August 5, 1854). As customary, Putnam's magazine did not credit Melville for the story. Likewise the newspaper versions reprinted from Putnam's contain no byline or other identification of the author. Eventually the story would appear with "Benito Cereno" and other of Melville's magazine pieces in The Piazza Tales (New York: Dix & Edwards, 1856).

No newspaper printing of "The Lightning-Rod Man" is cited in the Northwestern-Newberry edition of The Piazza Tales and Other Prose Pieces, 1839-1860.

Albany Evening Journal - August 5, 1854
 "The Lightning-Rod Man" was also reprinted anonymously in these newspapers:
  •  Sandusky Commercial Register (in two parts), August 12, 1854 and August 14, 1854
"The Lightning-Rod Man" in Yates County Whig - August 17, 1854
via New York Historic Newspapers

  • "From Putnam's Monthly" in the Oneida [New York] Sachem, August 19, 1854
  • Albany Atlas & Argus, May 14, 1859.

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  1. Good work, Scott. This is all true news. Yesterday I handled my Winter 1964 Studies in Short Fiction "Melville's Salesman Story." Did you see the reprinting in Burton's--let me see if I can find the little thing in the great piles of paper. Congratulations!

    1. Thanks Maestro! I'll get the Studies in Short Fiction article next trip south to the Cities. Before or after Super Bowl weekend, not during. Lots of Burton's with LRM are digitized I see, for instance