The Jungle. By Upton Sinclair. First Trade Edition, First Issue. Doubleday. New York, 1906.


Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle is the most consequential muckraker novel of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. A staunch socialist, Sinclair hoped the novel would discredit the capitalist system by portraying in horrendous detail the poor working conditions of Chicago’s meatpacking industry. But while the novel advanced Sinclair’s socialist cause, it was not in the ways he imagined, because in general readers did not respond to the poor working conditions so much as they were appalled by the poor food sanitation practices. As Sinclair himself put it: “I aimed at the public’s heart and by accident, I hit it in the stomach.” Still, one outcome of this powerfully written novel was the Pure Food and Drugs Act of 1906, a forerunner to the Food and Drug Administration and all of the food safety practices that came after it. This first trade edition, first state, was the earliest edition available to the public. Interestingly, this copy belonged to Charles B. and Mabel Power, an influential couple from Helena, Montana. Charles’ father was the Montana senator and business magnate Thomas C. Power. Mabel was the adopted daughter of a wealthy railroad contractor. This copy contains their postage sticker on the front endpaper–the address now a site on the Montana historical registry. Also on the front endpaper is Mabel’s signature, dated 1905. 

About fine in the original green cloth boards. Original impressed factory design fine. Minor rubbing to corners and dampstain to front board, else fine. Text block fine, only former owner’s signature and postage sticker to front endpaper. This copy is a first trade edition, first issue, published simultaneously with the Sustainer’s Edition. Copyright page shows a complete “1” in “February, 1906.” This indicates it is a first issue. Later states have a broken 1.

An about fine first trade edition of Sinclair’s most influential text. Interesting provenance.

1 in stock


The Jungle. By Upton Sinclair. First Trade Edition, First Issue. Doubleday. New York, 1906.

Additional Information provides shipping weight and dimensions.

Additional information

Weight 5 lbs
Dimensions 12 × 9 × 5 in