Sefer HaHayim / The Book of Life - by Rev. (Rabbi) Dr. H[enry] Vidaver; Hebrew Publishing Company, NY; undated; 194 + 4pgs. With original binding (some wear on edges, corner tips bent) & more contemporary reinforcement on first/last pages; inner pages in near-mint condition except 79-80 which is torn at center + some pages whose corners were once folded. A comprehensive book of laws & prayers pertaining to the sick, the dying and the dead; the emphasis is on the immediate period of death (not the Shiva, Shloshim or first year of mourning); in English with English & Hebrew prayers. This may be a first edition pre-dating the J. Rosenblum published 1889 edition. Rabbi Henry Vidaver (1833-1882) was born in Warsaw and served American congregations in Philadelphia, Saint Louis, New York and San Francisco. According to a biography, a year into the American Civil War, Vidaver was deeply impressed with the bravery, high character and self-sacrifice of the Southerners who, in his opinion, were a superior breed to Americans of the North who he regarded as hypocritical in their espousal of equality for African-Americans: in his judgment, the Northerners despised 'Negroes' more passionately than the Southerners. Est. value $700-900++ (2nd edition 1889 sold at Kestenbaums for $700 in 2005).