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Total Number of Reprints Published by the National Geographic Society (NGS)

In a letter dated July 13, 1989, signed by Eugenia M. Ryan, Research Correspondence for the NGS, a copy of which was posted on the National Geographic Collector’s Corner forum by Mr. Jeffry Persons on 9 March 2015, the following 1964 reprint production is summarized:

 

                                                            Individual Issues                     Bound Volumes

Volumes 1-8 (1888 – 1897)                1,400 copies per issue             1,600  

                                                +2,000 additional Volume 1, No. 1

                                    +1,000 additional Vol. 1, No.1 reprinted in 1975 (special identifier printed within)

 

Volumes 9-18 (1898 – 1907)              500 copies per issue                1,500

To understand the numbers above, divide the table into four quadrants split vertically down the middle between "Individual Issues" and "Bound Volumes"

AND

split horizontally between "Volumes 1-8" and "Volumes 9-18" - this is actually how the NGS published these issues/volumes (not as complete sets) but as grouped volumes as indicated on the left side of the table. These volumes were made available several months apart from one another.

If one wishes to determine the "maximum" number "possible" of complete sets of reprints available to the public you must use the lowest publication number in the vertical column.

For "Individual Issues" that number is 500.

For "Bound Volumes" that number is 1500.

Therefore, the maximum number of "possible" complete sets of 1964 reprints (both individual and bound) is 2000.

Of course there is no way of determining the actual number of complete sets floating around out there as many volumes (individual or bound) have been partitioned in the 5 1/2 decades since they were published.

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. . . I guess I didn't realize the qty. total for 1898-1907 was so far below the 1888-1897 run. I guess I thought they printed all of them even-steven!

Can you find the "75"?

I found it (barely), but what does it represent?

The inside back cover of the 1975 Reprints of Vol.1, No.1 have this easily-missed mark to distinguish them from the 1964 Reprints.

And only "1,000" were produced in 1975 versus the "3,400" produced in 1964.

The 1975 version is considered "rare" by book collecting standards.

The 1964 version is considered "scarce."

i had a '75 copy, but sold it.

Mel,

Shouldn't that be Volumes 1-8 (1888-1897) and Volumes 9-18 (1898-1907).

Good catch Tom - correction made.

That's been in my sales summary since 2015 - can't tell you how many times I've reviewed it and just glossed over the same mistake every time.

Thank you!

Mel

P.S. I'll fix it in my revised guide when I get around to it. There just weren't that many additions this year to justify the amount of time required to put it all together for a complete revision. I might do the revision this coming January.

This is all really helpful information on collecting the reprints, Thanks for doing this Melvin. I was also just wondering if the bounded Reprinted Volumes Include the Covers of the magazines in the binding?

Yes they do include the covers - at least those bound by the NGS.

I have observed, on two occasions, bound reprints for private collections bound like all the other volumes in the private collection, i.e. not the standard brown with gold trim as the NGS copies.

One was bound with covers clearly identifying the collection as reprints and one without covers.

In the later case, an individual was attempting to sell the "complete" collection he had inherited. I sincerely believe the seller had no idea his first 18 volumes were actually reprints and not originals. He was truly disappointed they were not originals, but accepted all the arguments validating the fact they were indeed reprints.

Buyer Beware!

Okay yeah that is nice that they included the covers. 
Forsure always have to be careful and mindful. Thanks for all the information

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