Jump to content


Photo

Oldest Motor Racing Book


  • Please log in to reply
10 replies to this topic

#1 Hieronymus

Hieronymus
  • Member

  • 2,031 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 09 October 2002 - 09:08

I have always been curious to know about the first book that was ever published, that deals with motor racing as a subject. Not general motoring, but racing as such.

A few oldies that I can think about are:

Full throttle - Henry Birkin
My Motoring Reminiscences - S.F. Edge
Ten Years of Motor and Motor Racing - Charles Jarrott

Apart from English language books, I presume that some real old books must also exist in French, Italian and German.

Does a library record exists in the UK that will give information on all books that were ever published on motor sport? Is there not a copyright law that says that all books after 1911 must be registered?

Advertisement

#2 Joe Fan

Joe Fan
  • Member

  • 5,591 posts
  • Joined: December 98

Posted 09 October 2002 - 09:28

Originally posted by Hieronymus
Is there not a copyright law that says that all books after 1911 must be registered?


Yes. Books and articles published before January 1st 1964, had to have the copyrights renewed for a second term or else they would fall into public domain. My guess is that books published around the turn of the century are now public domain as the original copyrights law allowed the copyright holder to have 56 years of copyright protection (28 years for first term plus 28 additonal years if renewed).

#3 Joe Fan

Joe Fan
  • Member

  • 5,591 posts
  • Joined: December 98

Posted 09 October 2002 - 09:41

This site states that works originally copyrighted before 1923 are now public domain and also states that works copyrighted between 1923 and 1963, could have a 47 year renewal but originally it was 28 years.

http://www.unc.edu/~...ng/public-d.htm

It also states that current works are protected for life + 70 years or 12-31-2047, whichever is greater.

#4 damamaho

damamaho
  • New Member

  • 26 posts
  • Joined: October 02

Posted 09 October 2002 - 10:03

I have some German biographies, but the oldest of them is "MEIN MANN DER RENNFAHRER" from ELLY ROSEMEYER-BEINHORN. 1938 and still in "old-German" writing. Not that easy to understand.
Luckely Chris Nixon almost litterarely translated it for his book: "Rosemeyer, a new biography".
The oldest bio I have in English is "FULL THROTTLE " from November 1932. I have only one more book from the 30's : "FLAT OUT" by G.E.T. Eyston.
More good Bios from before the War?
DAMAMAHO.
www.asag.sk/danny.htm

#5 ensign14

ensign14
  • Member

  • 37,038 posts
  • Joined: December 01

Posted 09 October 2002 - 11:42

My Holy Grail of book purchasing is 'A Record of Motor Racing' by Gerald Rose, originally published in 1909 and reprinted in the late 40s. All about the town to town races. The only time I have seen a decent original copy is in the Bodleian Library in Oxford, which is a copyright library (a copy of every book published must be deposited with the Bodleian and a couple of other universities). Copyright law does vary from country to country.

#6 Vitesse2

Vitesse2
  • Nostalgia Forum Moderator

  • 24,011 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 09 October 2002 - 12:56

Originally posted by ensign14
My Holy Grail of book purchasing is 'A Record of Motor Racing' by Gerald Rose, originally published in 1909 and reprinted in the late 40s. All about the town to town races. The only time I have seen a decent original copy is in the Bodleian Library in Oxford, which is a copyright library (a copy of every book published must be deposited with the Bodleian and a couple of other universities). Copyright law does vary from country to country.


Yep - one of those that you dream about finding at a car boot sale or in a charity shop where no-one knows its real value! Well, I can dream I suppose .... :

#7 Doug Nye

Doug Nye
  • Member

  • 8,327 posts
  • Joined: February 02

Posted 09 October 2002 - 22:27

Gerald Rose was only about 19 when he wrote his great book. When the VSCC tracked him down just after W2 they were stagged by his youth, for he was then still only in his 60s. It was of course reprinted postwar by Kenneth Ball - still book dealing in Brighton, England. The reprints are more common than the original, of course, and they surface fairly regularly at book sales and auctions of motoring literature. Do not despair... I bought one quite recently as a prezzy for a friend, for £75, which considering the price of some new publications :blush: was a bargain?

DCN

#8 Vitesse2

Vitesse2
  • Nostalgia Forum Moderator

  • 24,011 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 09 October 2002 - 22:49

I read somewhere that Rose wrote the book as therapy while recovering from illness (TB possibly?). Anyone know if that's true?

#9 Hieronymus

Hieronymus
  • Member

  • 2,031 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 10 October 2002 - 08:17

I was amazed to learn that Rose's book was published as long ago as 1909. I always thought it was first published in the late 1940's, but it then must have be the reprinted edition that I had in mind. This must have been quite a bold move to publish a book of that format in 1909. Wonder if there was any interest in that book in those days. Was there a market for that book in the UK?

Surely motor sport statistics was something very new in those days and considering the fact that the majority of competitors were French or Italian speaking, makes me wonder if the English speaking public bought this book. (Then again, race results can be read in any language).

I can just dream of finding a copy of that book here in "cuckoo land" where I live. So dear chaps, in the UK, count yourself lucky even if you have to dish out £75 or more. If I buy one for that price, I still have to multiply it by 16,5 and then one discovers that the amount is more than the average monthly salary of a working man out here. :(

A question with regards to copyright - Is it legal to make photostat copies of books in the UK? Locally it does not seems to be much of an issue, especially if the copies you make is for so called private use.

#10 Hans Etzrodt

Hans Etzrodt
  • Member

  • 3,172 posts
  • Joined: July 00

Posted 10 October 2002 - 11:22

Originally posted by Hieronymus
I have always been curious to know about the first book that was ever published, that deals with motor racing as a subject. Not general motoring, but racing as such. ......

Jarrott, Charles: Ten Years of Motors and Motor Racing 1896-1906, London: G.T. Foulis, 4th Ed., 1956 is the one I have. The First Edition dates back to 1906 and to my knowledge is therefore the oldest book about automobile racing.

Rose, Gerald: A Record of Motor Racing 1894-1908, Berkshire: M.R.P./Pitman, 2nd Ed., 1949, which I acquired about 18 years ago, thanks to Eoin Young who talked me into it. The first edition of this book was published three years after Jarrotts publication in 1909.

While Jarrott's work included a three-page "Appendix", incorporating the events from 1895 to 1906 plus the world records over the Flying Kilometer, Rose kept meticulous account of all major races in story and extremely detailed results. He should have received an honorable doctorate for this ‘incredimarvelous’ work.






Originally posted by Hieronymus
.....This must have been quite a bold move to publish a book of that format in 1909. Wonder if there was any interest in that book in those days. Was there a market for that book in the UK?......

Automobile racing was much more popular at that time than it is now. Remember that the racing cars then were light two-seat versions of the regular heavy touring models, which they often resembled closely.

#11 ensign14

ensign14
  • Member

  • 37,038 posts
  • Joined: December 01

Posted 10 October 2002 - 12:05

Originally posted by Hieronymus
I Wonder if there was any interest in that book in those days. Was there a market for that book in the UK?

Maybe the opening of Brooklands had something to do with it? An early 'cash-in'? (Albeit but for such a wonderful work that is pure defamation.)