Man, this is just super cool… Wow.




Of the three foundational subcultures around which Richard Prince’s legendary book collection is based — the Beats, the hippies, and the punks — the 700 or so books and manuscripts that cover the Beat Generation are of special interest. Taking Jack Kerouac’s On the Road as its center point, Prince has built up possibly the greatest private collection of Beat books and papers in existence.

Prince has the copy of On the Road that Kerouac inscribed to his mother. He has the copy that Kerouac famously read on The Steve Allen Show, which is dedicated to Allen (actually Kerouac didn’t read from the book itself but from some pasted-in pages that would later appear in Visions of Cody. Prince has these pages too). Prince has an original proof copy of the book and an original galley, but the prize jewel in the collection is the copy owned by Neal Cassady — aka Dean Moriarty — with Cassady’s signature and marginal notes within. “It is,” says John McWhinnie, the rare-book dealer who has created this collection in league with Prince, “the greatest 20th century association copy in American literature.” via…