Samuelson is famous for his economics textbook that has been used by college students for decades. The first edition was published in 1948. My father used this textbook in college, and a copy sits on my bookshelf. (Well, it sat there until this morning when I pulled it down to read it.) Who cares about an old economics textbook? According to another Krugman post, it’s still relevant. Pretty cool, I was able to find the passage Krugman cited and read it in print myself.
A note on the title page states, “The quality of the materials used in the manufacture of this book is governed by continued postwar shortages.” Despite this, the book isn’t in bad shape for being over 60 years old. The cloth cover is somewhat scuffed, the pages are a bit yellowed, but they are quite readable and don’t feel like they’re going to fall out. I’ve seen many younger books in much worse condition.
Somehow my father also ended up with a copy of the sixth edition. It was on the bookshelf right next to the first edition. This was published in the 1960s. Not sure where this might have come from; nobody in the family was in college during those years. I also have a copy of the 12th edition (co-authored with Nordhaus) somewhere. I used it when I was in college in the 1980s. The most recent edition was the 18th, published in 2004.
Paul Samuelson, R.I.P.