Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Haldeman-Julius (Emanuel) Big Blue Books and Larger Books Collection
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Overview
Table of contents What's This?
Emanuel Haldeman-Julius (1888-1951) moved to Girard, Kansas in 1915 to begin writing for Appeal to Reason, a leading socialist newspaper in pre-World War I America. In 1919, he purchased a partnership with Louis Kopelin in the newspaper and its printing facility with money borrowed from his wife Marcet Haldeman. He began issuing the Big Blue Books in 1925. They were 5 ½ inches x 8 ½ inches and generally 30,000 words in 64 pages. Customers could order titles from mail order catalogs or visit one of the outlet stores in Cincinnati, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Venice, Colorado. The Los Angeles store opened in 1924 in the downtown Mercantile Arcade Building. These larger format versions cost from 25 cents to $1.00 each.
Emanuel Haldeman-Julius, a newspaper publisher, opened a publishing house in Girard, Kansas, in 1919 where he published small, inexpensive paperback books, including classic works of literature and essays on myriad topics, for the working and middle classes. For his first printing project, he selected fifty classic and socialist works. In 1923 he named the series "Little Blue Books." Little Blue Books measure 3½" x 5" and took their name from their blue covers. They fit into a pants or shirt pocket, and were especially popular across the US through the 1930s and 1940s, especially with travelers. He began issuing the Big Blue Books in 1925. They were 5 ½" x 8 ½."
4.17 linear feet
Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection has not been transferred to California State University, Northridge. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
The collection is open for research use.