New York: The Macmillan Company, 1932.
First Edition. Hardcover. 7 3/4" X 5 3/8". xvi, 325pp. Ex-Frenchman Bay Library of W. Sullivan, Maine, with stamp to title page. Black silk moire cloth over boards, with upper board and spine lettered in green. Moderate wear to binding, with small tears to bumped corners, dampstains, difficult to detect on silk moire, and soiling. Lacking dust jacket, with clippings pasted in: front flap to front free endpaper, front panel illustration to half-title, rear panel to rear free endpaper (scrap of "Date Due" paper to corner). Previous owner's name scratched out to front pastedown, with discard to front free endpaper. Soiling to endpapers. Rear hinge tender. Binding remains sound. Dampstain to bottom edge of textblock, intruding into bottom margin and bottom inner corner of pages. Binding is sound. Pages are otherwise unmarked.
An admittedly worn, but solid and presentable first printing of Marion Marle Woodson's memoir, written during his confinement at Eastern State Hospital for the insane in Vinita, Oklahoma for "dispomania," or advanced alcoholism. Written three years before the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous, Behind the Door of Delusion provides a dark look into the years where the means for treatment for alcoholism resided in the insane asylum. Woodson was a successful journalist who had worked as a reporter and editorial writer at Tulsa World and Tulsa Tribune and as a foreign correspondent for the Associated Press, when "kindly friends sent [him to Eastern State Hospital] to break up [his] lifelong chumminess with Old John Barleycorn." The cost of treatment was high for Woodson, the social stigma of being declared insane, daily life surrounded by the severely mentally ill, and even the spectre of sterilization (in 1931, Oklahoma passed a law authorizing sterilization of inmates up for parole). Woodson dedicated his book "to a better understanding of those on the inside by those who are not yet locked in." Good. Item #4369