Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley
The first recorded owner of Bancroft’s Folio was Rev.ReginaldChomondeley of Condover Hall in Shropshire, England, in the late 19thcentury. A naturalist and collector, he was a friend of literary figures including Mark Twain. After his death the Folio was sold at auction in 1897 to a bookseller, for an undisclosed sum. Aftersubsequentlybeing boughtby Ethel Willard Crocker, the wife of the president of Crocker National Bank and a philanthropist and patron of the arts, the book arrived in California in 1899.The Crocker family gifted the First Folio to UC Berkeley in 1955. The copy is not pristine: 26 facsimile pages were inserted in the 19th century. These pages, hand-drawn in pen and ink by copyist John Harris are nearly indiscernible from the original leaves. Indeed, Harris had to sign the pages to avoid being accused of forgery.
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