Transylvania Press, Inc. is compiling a series of annotated vampire bibliographies.
Our first volume (Vampire Literature:
1746 to 1997) contains more than 7,500 entries.
It includes more than 125 editions of Dracula, but the following essay on Hutchinson’s colonial edition may be of particular interest to book dealers, librarians and collectors.
The new section on Hutchinson's Colonial Edition of Dracula gives some idea of the depth of our research.
Hutchinson’s Colonial Library Edition of Dracula.
By Robert Eighteen-Bisang
concerns the discovery of a newly discovered edition of the world’s most
famous and influential vampire novel.
Hutchinson’s Colonial Library edition of Dracula, which was unearthed in 200l, states the date “1897” on its title page. This edition was printed at the same time as the first Constable edition, and may have preceded it.
We know that Bram Stoker drew up an undated “Memorandum of Agreement” for the publication of Dracula – which was titled “The Un-Dead” in early drafts. His publisher, Archibald Constable and Company, revised and typed up this contract, and both parties signed it on the 20th of May 1897.
It declares that: “The Author having written a work called the “UN-DEAD” and being prior to the signing of this agreement possessed of all the rights therein agrees with the Publishers for its publication in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the British Dependencies (Canada being excepted).“
The contract also makes explicit provisions for a colonial edition. Part 5 says: “The Publishers may with the consent of the Author print and sell a colonial edition (Canada being excepted from the operations of such editions).”
However, it was assumed that the publisher did not exercise this option because, until now, no copy had been found.
Hutchinson’s Colonial Library edition of Dracula is not listed in the British Library Catalogue, The National Union Catalog, OCLC (WorldCat) or any reference on fantasy or horror, including: Ashley, Barron, Bleiler, Clute, Frank, Locke, Reginald, Tuck, Tymn or Wolff. Graeme Johanson’s A Study of Colonial Editions in Australia: 1843-1972 does not make any reference to it, and there is not even a hint that it exists in thousands of articles about Bram Stoker, Dracula or vampires.
A brief description of this edition is called for:
BRAM. Nè: Abraham Stoker, Jr. b. November 8, 1847. d. April 20, 1912.
DRACULA. London: Hutchinson & Co, 1897. [i-vii] viii-ix [ix]  2-390 [391-392] pp. hb. Blood-red binding and gilt lettering. Hutchinson’s Colonial Library Series. Issued for circulation in India and the British Colonies.
The particular features of the copy that was purchased on E-Bay in Auction #1456726870 from Pioneer Books of Adelaide, Australia on August 23, 2001 include:
An old catalog number [“F.433”] appears on the title page and on page one, and there are three library stamps [“TEA TREE GULLY INSTITUTE” ] in the text. The binding has moderate stains, with a large, light stain on the cover and scattered internal markings. The lettering on the cover and spine is faded, and the binding is all but detached from its hinges. This copy is missing the front endpaper, and only a small piece of the leaf that follows the text [pp. 391-392] remains. However, the rear endpaper is intact and the text is complete, including the printer's colophon.
“J. S. Porter” is written in a small, neat script on the inside
of the front cover. The previous owner, Paul Depasquale, recalls that he obtained
it “a long time ago,” but cannot furnish any more information about
The following comparison of the domestic and colonial editions uses a presentation copy of Dracula – i.e., one of several surviving copies that carries the embossment “Presented by Archibald Constable & Co” on its title page – as the basis of comparison. Any and all differences between these editions are noted in the right-hand column:
Archibald Constable and Company Hutchinson & Co.
binding with red Blood-red binding with gilt lettering.
lettering and a red rule.
“DRACULA / By / Bram Stoker” “HUTCHINSON’S COLONIAL
printed in the top right-hand corner.
“DRACULA / By / Bram Stoker / “DRACULA / BRAM STOKER /
Constable / Westminster” HUTCHINSON’S COLONIAL LIBRARY”
No dust jacket. As issued?
Size: 8vo. – i.e., 7 ¾ “ by 5 ¼.“
and binding: (a) 16-page signature
sheets with 8-page signatures at the front
and back of the book. (b) Edges of pages
untrimmed. (c) Bound by hand.
a. Free front endpaper
– blank recto. a. and b. have been torn out. Only a small
b. Free front endpaper – blank verso. piece of this leaf remains.
[i]. Half-title page: DRACULA / BY / BRAM
[ii]. Catalog: “’BOOKS BY THE SAME
AUTHOR. / Under the Sunset.’ / ‘The
Snake’s Pass.’ / ‘The Water’s Mou’.’ /
‘The Shoulder of Shasta’.”
[iii]. Cancelled title page: “DRACULA / BY e. “HUTCHINSON’S COLONIAL LIBRARY /
BRAM STOKER / WESTMINSTER / DRACULA / By / BRAM STOKER / London: /
ARCHIBALD CONSTABLE AND HUTCHINSON & CO. / 34 PATERNOSTER
COMPANY / 1897” ROW / 1897”
[iv]. Copyright page: “Copyright, 1897, in f. “This edition is issued for circulation / in
the United States of America, according India and the British Colonies / only.”
/ to Act of Congress, by Bram Stoker.
/ [All rights reserved.]”
[v]. Dedication page: “TO / MY DEAR
FRIEND / HOMMY-BEG”
[vi] Blank verso.
[vii] Contents page.
viii. Contents continued.
ix. Contents concluded.
[x]. Text: “How these papers…” Eight
lines, which are usually assumed to be
part of the text.
. a. Beginning of text. b. Printer’s mark –
“B” – in the bottom right-hand corner.
2. First numbered page of text.
17. Printer’s mark: “C”.
385. Printer’s mark: “2 C”.
389. End of text.
390. (a) “Note / When we got… “ Eighteen
lines. This is usually assumed to be
part of the text. (b) Printer’s colophon:
HARRISON &SONS, Printers in
Ordinary to Her Majesty, St. Martin’s
. Free flypaper – blank recto. [391-2]. Note: Most of this leaf has been torn
. Free flypaper – blank verso. out, but the remaining fragment appears to be an integral part of the final signature.
. Free rear endpaper – blank recto.
. Free rear endpaper – blank verso.
On one hand, the
discovery of a colonial edition can be likened to finding an important piece
in a complex jigsaw puzzle. On the other, its existence creates a host of new
Dracula is a bibliographic nightmare.
To begin with, there is an extensive pre-textual stage which includes: “Bram Stoker’s Original Notes and Data for his Dracula,” a copy of his manuscript (The Un-Dead), a story (“Dracula’s Guest”) and a play.
Prior to the publication of the novel, the author rewrote it as a play in order to establish his copyright. Dracula: or the Un-Dead was presented to a small group of employees and passers-by at the Lyceum Theatre on the 18th of May at 10:15 a.m.
The fact that the final contract for Dracula was signed two days later serves as an indication of the careful planning that brought Stoker’s vampire to life.
There are also four seminal texts of Stoker’s opus. In addition to the original wording of 1897, both Doubleday and Rider made minor corrections when they designed new editions of Dracula in 1899 and 1912. However, the most important revisions occur in the abridged paperbound version of 1901, in which Stoker presents us with a slightly different view of his creation. The novel has also been revised or re-written for various audiences and adapted for movies, plays, comic books and other media.
Despite the challenges that these variations offer bibliographers, each of them enriches our understanding of the author’s intentions or the text.
No one knows exactly when the first edition of Dracula was published. Possible dates range from late May to late June of 1897. In a letter to William Gladstone on “May 24/97,” Stoker wrote: “May I do myself the pleasure of sending you a copy of my new novel Dracula which comes out on the 26th.” It appears as if his letter was accompanied by a copy of Dracula. If so, presentation copies must have been flying about by May 24th – which was a Monday. Otherwise, Barbara Belford may be correct when she claims that: “Dracula arrived at the booksellers on May 26, 1897.” Other popular candidates include May 30th and June 2nd. Peter Haining and Peter Tremayne, who were granted access to Constable’s archives, champion the date of “Thursday, 24 June 1897… with the first copies destined for the literary editors of the major national newspapers and magazines.” Unfortunately, they do not provide any evidence for these claims.
No matter when Dracula was first published, we know that it existed in some form well before any of the above-mentioned dates, for the original copy of the play “… is partly hand-written and partly pasted into place in sections cut from two proof copies stamped by Harris[on] and Sons, Printers (a firm of bookbinders based in London).”
Every page of the play bears Stoker’s mark. Despite his hurried, often almost illegible handwriting, he put considerable thought into how his novel could best be reworked for the stage. Given the fact that his duties as Irving’s assistant left him little time to write, this task could not have been completed in less than a two weeks, and may have taken a month or two. Therefore, we can conclude that Dracula had been typeset no later than mid- to late-April of 1897.
To the dismay of both collectors and dealers, Constable does not identify first editions or distinguish reprints in any systematic way . The earliest printings of Dracula announce the year “1897” on their title pages, but do not contain any statement of edition until the “FIFTH EDITION” of “1898.”
Evidence from presentation copies and signed editions proves that the first Constable edition has a cancelled title page and does not contain any advertising material after the text. In addition, there is little doubt that the second has an advertisement for The Shoulder of Shasta on page . The third and fourth editions were both printed several times, and exist in various states. There are differences in the texture of the cloth, the thickness of the paper and the number and contents of advertisements. Most later editions have an advertisement for The Shoulder of Shasta, which is followed by a catalog of 8, 10 or 16 pages. Richard Dalby tells us that, “The earliest example… I have seen (with 8 pages of adverts at the rear…) was inscribed ‘July 24/97’.” In lieu of further research, the best rule of thumb is: “the more advertisements, the later the edition.”
Constable’s Dracula appears to have been printed in small lots on different dates with whatever type of paper and cloth was readily available. The fact that it was bound by hand would have made it relatively easy to produce a small number of copies at a time.
From the middle
of the nineteenth century, colonial editions were distributed to four main areas:
Africa, Australia, Canada, and India. They provided publishers with an additional,
early source of profit, and offered countries that did not have a large enough
population to support a local publishing industry opportunities to enjoy the
latest popular literature.
According to Graeme Johanson, “The most important feature of the printing of colonial editions was that it was totally integrated with the printing of original editions, or it was done from stereotype plates made from settings for first or other editions.”
* The only observable differences between the Constable and Hutchinson editions are the binding, the copyright page and the title page.
* Both editions were printed from the same plates and contain the same signature sheets.
* Both of them were printed by the same printer, and have the same printer’s marks. Harrison & Sons printed the first eight editions of Dracula. They produced at least seven editions for Archibald Constable and Company and one for Hutchinson & Co. In contrast, the abridged edition of 1901 was printed by “Chorley and Pickersgill, the Electric Press, Leeds,” while the EIGHTH EDITION of 1904 was printed by Butler & Tanner of Frome and London.
* The Hutchinson Colonial Library edition of Dracula is the only other edition that states “1897” on its title page. The fact that it has a cancelled title page leaves no doubt that it was published in the same year as the first Archibald Constable edition. (In contrast, many subsequent editions reproduce all or part of the original copyright notice on their copyright pages. Reprints that do not state the year in which they were published or number their editions have caused some confusion. More than one collector who has acquired a copy by a publisher such as Doubleday or Grosset & Dunlap has been convinced that they have acquired a first edition.)
* Colonial editions were always printed in conjunction with their domestic counterparts. Indeed, as Graeme Johanson points out: “… the main purpose of ‘colonials’ was to release new novels simultaneously at home and abroad, and publishers achieved this by use of run-on sheets or stereotype plates.” In many cases, “The ‘colonials’ were shipped to Australia weeks in advance of British release to allow a common publication date, and hence were, in effect, the first issues of particular editions.“
* It follows that the colonial edition is either the first or second edition of the best-selling novel in the world.
* In either case, the first American edition, which was published out by Doubleday & McClure in 1999, becomes the third edition of Dracula.
* Had the colonial edition been “remaindered,” it would probably have come out between 1899 and 1901 – i.e., after the hardbound editions of 1897 to 1889 but before the paperbound version of 1901, which targeted a larger but less affluent and less refined audience.
* Hutchinson’s edition is the missing link in a series of colonial editions of Bram Stoker’s novels. The domestic edition of The Shoulder of Shasta was published by Constable in 1895, while the colonial edition was presented as No. 230 in Macmillan’s Colonial Library. Richard Dalby notes that The Jewel of Seven Stars (1903), The Man (1905), Lady Athlyne (1908) and The Lady of the Shroud (1909) were all published “simultaneously” by Heinemann’s Colonial Library.
* The fact that Hutchinson had recently taken on Marie Corelli, whose weird occult thrillers made her the best-selling author in the world, may have inspired Constable to place Dracula in their hands.
Colonial Library edition of Dracula is the first printing by the Hutchinson,
Rider, Arrow, Jarrolds group (now owned by Random House), which assumed the
British rights in 1912.
* It precedes Rider and Company’s colonial edition by half of a century.
* The cancelled title page in the first Constable editions of Dracula has often been attributed to the fact that the title was changed shortly before the novel was published. However, this could have been solved by re-typesetting one page of the first signature. With the discovery of the colonial edition, the mystery of the inserted leaf (i.e., the title page and copyright page) can be seen as an economical way of printing the text, inserting whatever indicia is called for, and binding the book accordingly. Of course, this operation would have to have been planned before the book was typeset.
Our most important
task is to find a copy of the colonial edition with contains the missing leaf
– pages  and . Although there is little no correlation between
the advertisements in domestic and colonial editions, a date code in the catalog
of Macmillan’s colonial edition of The Shoulder of Shasta shows that it
preceded the Constable edition by three months. The missing leaf in the copy
that has been used for comparison is probably blank, but it could contain an
advertisement for The Shoulder of Shasta or other treasures that are waiting
to be discovered.
In addition to Australia, copies of the colonial edition of Dracula could have been shipped to Africa or India.
How many copies were published? We know Bram Stoker’s contract with Constable called for “at least three thousand copies.” Given the rarity of the Hutchinson edition, far fewer copies must have been printed. At the turn of the century, Australia had about one tenth as many people as the United Kingdom, therefore…
Search colonial libraries for records of this copy, and determine when they were received. In 1897 the Suez Canal and the advent of steamships allowed shipments to reach Australia in as little as five weeks. Given the fact that we do not know how Dracula was shipped or how long it would take to arrive at its final destination, it is difficult to determine the value of any such records in advance.
The fact of a colonial edition implies the existence of contracts, royalty statements, advertising material and other materials. It is also conceivable that paperbound versions (or uncorrected proofs) were distributed to agents and other representatives.
It appears as if the colonial edition was printed in London, but we do not know if the sheets were bound before they were shipped to the colonies. (In either case, this could explain why Constable’s first printing does not proclaim itself the “first edition.”) Even if the sheets for the colonial edition were printed at the beginning of the print run, it may be impossible to determine when they were released in Australia. Did they come out before, at the same time as or after the first Constable edition.
In conclusion, I would like to thank Matilda Bisang, Richard Dalby, L. W. Currey, Mark Dwor LLB, Graeme Johanson, Brenda Peterson, Pioneer Books, Michael Thomson and White Dwarf Books for their assistance. Of course, I am responsible for any mistakes in the interpretation of the materials they so generously provided. A special note of thanks is due to David Niall Wilson, who discovered Hutchinson's Colonial Library edition of Dracula on E-Bay and brought this rara avis to my attention.
Ian Auhl. From Settlement to City: A History of the District of Tea Tree Gully 1836-1976; 1976-1993. (3rd edition). Modbury, Australia: The City of Tea Tree Gully, 1993.
Barbara Belford. Bram Stoker: A Bibliography of the Author of Dracula. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1996.
The Book Sail 16th Anniversary Catalogue. Orange, CA: McLaughlin Press, 1984.
Currey, L. W. Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors: A Bibliography of First Printings of Their Fiction and Selected Nonfiction. Boston: G. K. Hall, 1979.
Dalby, Richard. Bram Stoker: A Bibliography of First Editions. London: Dracula Press, 1983.
--. “Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’” in Book and Magazine Collector 159 (June 1997) pp. 4-19.
Haining, Peter and Peter Tremayne. The Un-Dead: The Legend of Bram Stoker and Dracula. London: Constable, 1997.
Johanson, Graeme. A Study of Colonial Editions in Australia: 1843-1972. Wellington, NZ: Elibank Press, 2000.
Starshine, Sylvia, ed. Bram Stoker. Dracula: or The Un-Dead. Nottingham: Pumpkin Books, 1997.
Stoker, Florence A. L. Bram, “Preface” in Bram Stoker. Dracula’s Guest: And Other Weird Stories. London: George Routledge & Sons, Ltd., 1914.
Ward, K. Anthony. First Editions: A Field Guide for Collectors of English and American Literature. Aldershot, Hants, UK, 1994.