Custer, S.D. The Chronicle Shop, 1935. 102,pp., including photographic illustrations. Original suede-texture illustrated wrappers. Loocke's name inscribed on front wrapper; Library of Congress duplicate stamp on verso of front wrapper. Text block detached from wrappers. Small tear to upper edge of titlepage, occasional fingerprint stains to pages. Overall, very good. Item #WRCAM55067
A presentation copy, inscribed "To you old Scout from The 'Sky Pilot,' [i.e. Carl Loocke] 1935." Dedicated to "the American Boy of red blood and adventure who sees always the beautiful and worthwhile things in life" (p.), this is a warm and folksy introduction to the Black Hills of South Dakota for Boy Scouts and others coming to the region. Carl Loocke promises it all: "ADVENTURE did you say - Indians, cowboys and Gold? Yes we have all of that - just come with me." And he delivers, recounting the history of the Black Hills and Dakota Territory, stories of Indian warriors (noting that American Indians are the "true Americans"), cattle drives, Custer's campaigns, Deadwood and the gold rush, and then more recent developments, such as Mount Rushmore (which was under construction as Loocke was writing) and recent developments in aviation. Loocke had a colorful life himself. Originally from New Jersey, he moved west at seventeen to follow his dream of becoming a cowboy. After time on the ranch, he found a new calling, was ordained to the ministry, and served multiple parishes throughout South Dakota by biplane, earning the moniker "Sky Pilot." He was also a Scoutmaster, historian, and inventor - receiving a patent for an aircraft that merged the maneuverability of a plane with the stable lift of a dirigible; he called it the "Aero-Zep," and casually includes information on it towards the end of the book. This book is scarce, this is the only copy we have seen at auction, and the first time we have handled this title. JENNEWEIN 181.