Usa Trilogy

by Dos Passos, John

John Dos Passos’s USA Trilogy covers the historical development and evolution of American society during the first three decades of the twentieth century. Originally published individually, the trilogy includes The 42nd Parallel, covering the period from 1900 up to World War I; 1919 (or Nineteen Nineteen), dealing with the war and the critical year of the Treaty of Versailles; and The Big Money, which moves from the boom of the 1920s to the bust of the 1930s.

Dos Passos uses an experimental technique in portraying the everyday situations of the characters around WWI with special attention to the social and economic forces that drive them. In a complex format, he incorporates four narrative modes: fictional narratives with free indirect speech telling the life stories of the twelve main characters; fragments of Dos Passos’ own autobiographical stream-of-consciousness (often referred to an “The Camera Eye”); collages of blaring newspaper headlines and article clippings along with some song lyrics  (“The Newsreel”); and biographies of various public figures of the time, including Woodrow Wilson and Henry Ford.

The 42nd Parallel, what would become part one of the trilogy, was first published by Harper and Brothers in February 1930. Dos Passos intended for Harper to publish 1919 as well; however, the publisher rejected the book when the author refused to cut a satirical portrait of J.P. Morgan, who had recently financially assisted Harper. Thus, Harcourt, Brace published 1919 in March 1932 and The Big Money in August 1936. The next summer, Harcourt, Brace agreed to published Dos Passos’s three works in a single volume edition, for which the author selected the name USA.

The USA Trilogy is ranked 23rd on Modern Library’s list of the “100 Best” English-language novels of the 20th century.

First Edition Identification and Notes

Harcourt, Brace published the first one-volume USA Trilogy in January 1938. First editions have no additional printings listed on the copyright page.

Other Collectible or Notable Editions

Constable published the first UK edition of the USA Trilogy in London in 1938. Following World War II, Houghton Mifflin published USA in a boxed three-volume edition with colored endpapers and illustrations by Reginald Marsh. This deluxe edition was limited to 365 copies, 350 of which are signed by both Dos Passos and Marsh.

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The U.S.A. Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel, 1919, The Big Money

by DOS PASSOS, JOHN

Seller
Peter L. Stern & Company, Inc.
Published
1930, 1932, 1936
Condition
First Editions. The 42nd Parallel has a bookplate and is very good in dust jacket. 1919 is very good in a very good dust jacket
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$2,750.00

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New York: Harper & Bros./ Harcourt, Brace, 1930, 1932, 1936. First Editions. The 42nd Parallel has a bookplate and is very good in dust jacket. 1919 is very good in a very good dust jacket with paper tape inside the top and bottom of the spine. The Big Money is very good in dust jacket, and was inscribed by… Read more
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$2,750.00
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The U.S.A. Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel, 1919, The Big Money

by DOS PASSOS, JOHN

Seller
Peter L. Stern & Company, Inc.
Published
1930, 1932, 1936
Condition
First Editions. The 42nd Parallel is very good in dust jacket, with some small chips and internal archival mending. 1919 is very
Item Price
$2,000.00

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New York: Harper & Bros./ Harcourt, Brace, 1930, 1932, 1936. First Editions. The 42nd Parallel is very good in dust jacket, with some small chips and internal archival mending. 1919 is very good in dust jacket. The Big Money has an owner’s signature and is very good in dust jacket.
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$2,000.00
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U.S.A. Trilogy:42nd Parallel, 1919, Big Money

by DOS PASSOS, John

Seller
mclinhavenbooks
Published
1946
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
Limited Edition
Item Price
$1,400.00

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Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1946. Limited Edition. Hardcover. Near Fine/No Jacket. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Signed by Author(s). 1st Printing 3 DOS PASSOS, John (1896-1970). U.S.A. Trilogy: 42nd Parallel, 1919, Big Money. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1946. 3 volumes. 8vos. LIMITED EDITION, number 273 of 365 sets, SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR AND ILLUSTRATOR on limitation page.… Read more
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$1,400.00
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U.S.A. Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel, Nineteen Nineteen, The Big Money

by Dos Passos, John

Seller
Carpetbagger Books, IOBA
Published
1946
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
First Edition
Item Price
$1,350.00

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Description:
Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1946. First Edition. Hardcover. Near Fine. Limited to 365 sets signed by Dos Passos and illustrator Reginald Marsh. Very Good in a Good slipcase, generally rubbed and worn but all in one piece. Cream buckram, generally toned but with some uneven spots at the heads and feet of the spine, with maroon pastedowns and gilt… Read more
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$1,350.00
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USA Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel; Nineteen Nineteen; and The Big Money [3 Vol]

by Dos Passos, John

Seller
Parrish Books
Published
1946
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
Limited Numbered First Illustrated Edition
Item Price
$935.00

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Houghton Mifflin, 1946. Limited Numbered First Illustrated Edition. Cloth. Near Fine/No Jacket as Issued. A handsome 3-volume set of John Dos Passos' classic trilogy in the scarce Limited Numbered First Illustrated Edition signed by the author and the artist, Reginald Marsh, on the limitation page in the first volume ["The 42nd Parallel"] and numbered 370 of 375 [Original… Read more
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The U.S.A. Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel, Nineteen Nineteen, and The Big Money.

by DOS PASSOS, JOHN.

Seller
George Robert Minkoff, Inc.
Condition
Near Fine
Item Price
$875.00

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Description:
Hardcover. Near Fine. Illustrated with line drawings and decorated colored endpapers by Reginald Marsh. 8vo. Original beige cloth, leather labels on front covers and spines; teg; partially unopened. Houghton Mifflin 1946. First signed-limited edition with these illustrations. Limited to 365 copies signed by Dos Passos and Marsh. This copy is #296. 3 volumes. Some fading and scuffing to… Read more
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$875.00
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U. S. A Trilogy

by John Dos Passos

Seller
mclinhavenbooks
Published
1930
Condition
Good
Edition
first Editions.
Item Price
$375.00

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Description:
New York: Harper & Harcourt Brace and Company, 1930. first Editions.. hardcovers. Good/Fair. Copyright Dates 1930, 1932 And 1936, First Editions. Book 1-The 42Nd Parallel, First Edition, First Printing. Decorative Cover Over Boards With Faded Label On The Spine Orange Inside Covers Front And Back. No Tears, Bent Pages, Nor Any Writing. A Small Book Seller Label… Read more
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$375.00
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USA Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel; Nineteen Nineteen; and The Big Money [3 Vol]

by Dos Passos, John

Seller
J. Mercurio Books, Maps, & Prints
Published
1947
Condition
Near Fine
Item Price
$350.00

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Description:
Houghton Mifflin Company. All three volumes spine darkened in rough original slip case. Internally about fine. . Near Fine. Hardcover. 1947.
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$350.00
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U.S.A. Trilogy (The 42nd Parallel, Nineteen Nineteen, The Big Money)

by John Dos Passos

Seller
Capitol Hill Books
Published
1946
Condition
Very Good
Edition
Illustrated Trade Edition
Item Price
$275.00

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Description:
Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1946. Illustrated Trade Edition. Very Good/No Dust Jacket. Reginald Marsh. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1946. Three Volumes. Illustrated Trade Edition, preceded by a signed limited edition the same year. Signed by the author with brief inscription to author and columnist William Safire on cut half title from another copy of The Big Money laid… Read more
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$275.00
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USA Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel; Nineteen Nineteen; and The Big Money [3 Vol]

by John Dos Passos

Seller
Dunaway Books
Published
January 1946
Condition
Good
Item Price
$45.00

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Description:
Houghton Mifflin, January 1946. Hardcover. Good/No Jacket.
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$45.00
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U.S.A Trilogy

by John Dos Passos

Seller
Dan A.Domike
Published
1946
Condition
Good
Item Price
$35.00

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Description:
Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1946 Includes all three volumes.42nd Parallel has ink scribbling on the inside cover and on page 43.Big Money is slightly soiled on side edge.1919 has small dent on spine.All volumes bumped at corner.A very good reading copy of this classic 20th century work.. Cloth. Good/No Jacket. Illus. by Reginald Marsh. 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall.… Read more
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$35.00
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U.S.A. Trilogy (Hungarian Editions: Three Volume Set)

by Passos, John Dos

Seller
Book People
Published
1978
Condition
Good
Item Price
$30.00

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Budapest: Europa Konyvkiado, 1978. Hardcover. Good/Fair. GOOD. Books have minor bumping at the corners of all covers as well as the top and bottom of the spines, pages have yellowed. The book jackets have minor chipping, book spine on all three volumes are black with white text. A könyvek kisebbek az összes borító sarkainál, valamint a tüskék… Read more
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U.S.A. Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel, Nineteen Nineteen, and The Big Money (Sentry Edition 37) (Sentry 37)

by john dos passos

Seller
ThriftBooks
Published
1960
Condition
Very Good
Item Price
$30.00

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Description:
houghton mifflin sentry edition, 1960. Paperback. Very Good. Disclaimer:May have limited writing in cover pages. Pages are unmarked. ~ ThriftBooks: Read More, Spend Less.Third printing. Minor shelf and handling wear, overall a clean solid copy with minimal signs of use. VERY TIGHT AND BRIGHT COPY, FREE FROM MARKINGS ON INTERIOR. Secure… Read more
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$30.00
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USA Trilogy: The 42nd Parallel; Nineteen Nineteen; and The Big Money [3 Vol]

by Dos Passos, John

Seller
ThriftBooks
Published
1946
Condition
Very Good
Item Price
$26.12

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Description:
Houghton Mifflin, 1946. Hardcover. Very Good. Disclaimer:Missing dust jacket; May have limited writing in cover pages. Pages are unmarked. ~ ThriftBooks: Read More, Spend Less.Dust jacket quality is not guaranteed.
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$26.12
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U.S.A.Trilogy: 42nd Parallel; 1919; Big Money

by Dos Passos, John

Seller
Laurel Reed Books
Published
1960
Condition
Good
Item Price
$18.00

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Description:
BCE, 1960 Three volume set, clean copies.. Hard Cover. Good/Good to Poor.
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Item Price
$18.00