All Our Yesterdays
(1) A Major Work of Fanhistory
Warner started the project in 1963, when he included six pages of questions about various fandoms in the Feb. issue of his fanzine Horizons. It was originally meant to cover the period 1939 through 1959, but had to be broken up into two volumes. John Trimble campaigned for the book to be titled The Immortal Calm (referring to its status as a much less fraught follow-on to The Immortal Storm, Moskowitz's sturm-und-drang book about fandom through 1939) but he was overruled.
The second half of the work (covering the 1950s) was eventually published under the title A Wealth of Fable as a three-volume fanzine in the mid 1970s, and much later, as a hardcover (by SCIFI Press), in 1992.
Both volumes drew a wide range of reaction. Warner’s experience as a journalist shows throughout. On the other hand, the Hermit of Hagerstown was not present for the events he recounted, and he took his version of what happened almost entirely from fanzine accounts, some of them by fanwriters never inclined to let the truth get in the way of a good story.
In Most of My Days Before Yesterday, Harry writes about the writing and publishing of the book.
The title comes from a passage in Macbeth:
To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day, To the last syllable of recorded time; And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury Signifying nothing.
Surely Warner was not hinting that fan history has "lighted fools. The way to dusty death." and is "full of sound and fury / Signifying nothing!" Tell us it isn't true! (On the other hand, considering that Harry bequeathed his fanzine collection and the book’s copyright to his very mundane church, maybe he was.)
(2) A Fanzine Column by Harry Warner
A column of personal memories of fans, fanzines and fannish doings written by Harry Warner between 1951 and 1975 for a variety of fanzines including Fanvariety, Opus, Innuendo, Void, Quip, Focal Point and others.
Richard Bergeron began to cut stencils for, but was unable to complete, a collection of all these "All Our Yesterdays" columns. The stencils were then redone from scratch by Chuck Connor, who published 40 columns in fanzine format as All Our Yesterdays (1991): Harry Warner, Jr. himself felt there was no need for a different title since the Advent book was then out of print. Connor went on to publish a digital version on floppy disk in 1997, and this material was added to eFanzines.com in 2006 as HTML pages and a PDF collection. Dave Langford's Ansible Editions reissued this collection in ebook form as All Our Yesterdays: The Fanzine Columns in December 2019, with many corrections, restorations of missing text, and a 41st column that had been omitted.
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