The Library’s Edgar Rice Burroughs Collection was established in the 1970s, thanks to the generosity of several donors. Since that time it has grown to 140 volumes, most of which are hardback first editions. Although the emphasis is on the Tarzan titles, the collection also contains other lesser-known series, such as the Barsoom, Pellucidar, and Venus books. Our collection includes:
- Tarzan of the Apes (1914)
- Tarzan and the Lion Man (1934)
- Tarzan's Quest (1936)
- Tarzan the Magnificent (1939)
- The Land That Time Forgot (1924)
The Edgar Rice Burroughs Collection is housed in the Downtown Main Library’s Cincinnati Room. If you’d like to browse through some of the material in the collection, just stop by the Cincinnati Room service desk—our staff will be happy to assist you!
About Edgar Rice Burroughs
Edgar Rice Burroughs was born to a well-to-do mercantile family in Chicago in 1875. Following a military-academy education, he served briefly in the U.S. Army 7th Cavalry. After trying a variety of pursuits, Burroughs turned his talent and imagination to pulp fiction. When he did, he made magic.
“Under the Moons of Mars,” the first of the eleven Barsoom (John Carter) adventures, appeared as a serial in 1911. The following year, Burroughs wrote Tarzan of the Apes, the story of a British nobleman’s son raised by great apes. The book became a sensation, and Burroughs had established his place in the world of popular literature.
Although best known for his twenty-two Tarzan novels, Burroughs introduced several significant science fiction/fantasy series: the Pellucidar cycle, begun with At the Earth’s Core;. The Land That Time Forgot trilogy; and the Venus sequence, which was written in the 1930s.
Burroughs' astonishing success derived from a brisk narrative style and a genius for creating imaginative, dreamlike worlds. He produced popular fiction that found an ideal audience in a burgeoning middle class eager for escapist reading. His work, with its fantastic settings, was Romance in the traditional sense, offering archetypal heroes, virgins in distress, and vividly realized, sometimes bloody, action sequences. Burroughs' characters and imaginative worlds earned a permanent place in the popular imagination of a global reading public, and it wasn’t long before his stories and his characters found their way on to film.
- Edgar Rice Burroughs: Master of Adventure by Richard A. Lupoff. A critical overview of Burroughs⁏ most important works.
- Edgar Rice Burroughs: The Exhaustive Scholar’s and Collector’s Descriptive Bibliography by Robert A. Zeuschner. Detailed information about Burroughs’ work through 1995. A must for collectors.
- A Golden Anniversary Bibliography of Edgar Rice Burroughs by H.H. Heins
- Edgar Rice Burroughs: The Man Who Created Tarzan by Irwin Porges. Considered the definitive biography. Porges was given complete access to Burroughs' files and documents.
- Tarzan Forever by John Taliaferro. An “entertaining, warts-and-all bio” (Publishers Weekly).
- Brother Men: The Correspondence of Edgar Rice Burroughs and Herbert T. Weston Drawing on the letters, photographs, postcards, drawings, and telegrams exchanged by Burroughs and Weston, Matt Cohen offers readers “a panorama of the difficulties, advantages, and possibilities of the middle-class white manhood in the early twentieth century.”
- The Burroughs Bulletin. A quarterly publication “dedicated to stimulating interest in and preserving the works of the great American author.”