Lot 277 of 364:
1st memoir by an “ordinary” Chinese American NY Laundryman  

Click image to enlarge
Lot closed - unsold
$200 - $300

The Life Stories of Undistinguished Americans As Told by Themselves

Holt, Hamiton (editor)

New York

James Pott & Company



299 pages. (12mo), original gray cloth, gilt titles. Third Impression, first issued in 1906.  


An anthology which contains the chapter, “Life Story of a Chinaman” on pp. 281-299, a singled out by historians as the first autobiographical memoir of an “ordinary” (uneducated) Chinese-American, who owned a laundry in New York. Probably “ghost-written, but with unquestionably authentic content. 

The anthology also includes a chapter by an anonymous Japanese domestic servant to rich Caucasians, butler to a “fashionable mistress” in New York; and other accounts by a Filipino, an African American, and a Native American. Owner’s inscription by a woman missionary who worked with immigrants in New York.


Lot Amendments

Spine darkened; ownership signature on front pastedown; very good.

Item number:
Shipping info:

We have a full service shipping department to ensure proper packing and safe delivery of purchases at reasonable cost. We are specialists at packing and shipping books and works on paper.   All lots purchased by the same client are combined for shipping in order to keep the cost as economical as possible.  Our preferred method for domestic shipments is UPS Ground but we can also ship via FedEx or USPS Priority Mail. We do NOT ship USPS Media Mail under any circumstances.For international orders we select the most appropriate carrier depending on the value and weight of the items purchased.  We are happy to accommodate special arrangements by request.

Invoices are sent out the day following the auction and include a minimum $10 handling fee plus actual shipping and insurance charges.

Shipping estimates can be obtained  by contacting [email protected] prior to the auction.


Terms and conditions


All accepted bids are contracts and are considered final and non withdrawable.


A buyer's premium of 20% will be applied to all purchases.


The person posting the bids online has to be the person who has registered for the auction.