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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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It still is today, but then it was the biggest seller in the whole series. I said, “I didn't know this, Mr. Knopf.”

He said, “Well, what are you going to do about it?”

I proposed then that we pay him a royalty on Green Mansions of six cents a copy. I remember that Mr. Knopf thought this was very fair since legally he had no case. That started a friendship with Mr. Knopf that ended up with his becoming a part of our organization many many years later. I left him with my admiration unimpaired and he decided we were pretty decent kids.


Where did you have your first offices?


The first office we took was on 45th Street and Sixth Avenue in a loft building right across the street from a place then called Lewis and Conger, which was very much like Hammacher Schlemmer, a big store where they sold hardware furnishings and such things. It is long out of business. We were on the ninth floor there in a little office. We had as our bookkeeper a kid whom I had known at Liveright. The Liveright advertising manager's wife became my secretary. We had about six people working for us. And Donald and I sat facing each other in the one room. Later on when we moved to more elegant quarters on 57th Street, we still had desks facing each other. And until Donald went off to the Air Force in World War II, all these years we had those desks facing each other. When something private would come up, one of us without being asked would go

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