I am currently researching the history and development of the covers and dust jackets of the rose books. It is part of a larger work looking at the history and development of the Rose Book as a whole.
The earliest jacket I have is on a revised edition of ‘The Rose Book’ dated 1922. I did not realise that underneath this jacket lay a subdued version of the beautiful binding of 1914, which as far as I am aware did not have a jacket. In fact, in my ignorance I had not realised that the two books were essentially the same book!
This book is interesting in that it illustrates the transition between the decline of the fine binding with dust wrapper and the rise of the plain binding with book jacket. (You may choose different terminology).
The history of dust wappers, dust jackets, book jackets is an interesting one for those interested in books and is worth reading about in one of the many good ‘books about books’, which I seem to be collecting as a result of the research I am doing.
I do not think this will be the first book jacket to be found on a Rose Book so have made an enquiry with the British Library. I am hoping they will be able to tell me the first wrapper to exist. It is likely to be many years previously because the majority of books would have been issued with a dust wrapper but these were usually discarded being regarded as purely a cover to keep the book clean.