BURTON,VIRGINIA LEE. MIKE MULLIGAN AND HIS STEAM SHOVEL. Boston: Houghton Mifflin 1939 (1939). Oblong 4to (9 1/2 x 8 1/2"), pictorial cloth, a few tiny margin mends and hinge wear else near fine in an amazingly bright price clipped dust wrapper with only a few tiny closed edge tears and 1/4" chip off top of spine. First edition, first printing of this classic, illustrated with rich colors by the author to accompany the wonderful story of an Irish steam shovel operator and his beloved steam shovel Mary Anne. Burton, along with Sendak and McCloskey is among the handful of author/illustrators of picture books whose talents were equally accomplished in both aspects of creating a successful children's book. Bader (p.199-201) says that "Burton knew exactly what she wanted in a picture book, hers or another's, and she wanted a good deal - information and significant detail as well as the accostomed clarity, humor and imagination. The wonder is that she achieved what she wanted without losing the spontaneity..." The result is that her books were read to tatters so not many collectible 1st editions of this title exist. This is a nice copy.