New York: n. p., 1838. First edition. 8vo, original decorated marbled roan, gilt spine, 487 pages. Illus. Fragile roan rubbed, some foxing; a good, sound copy. Item #21022
“In most things our country is still an infant Hercules, which time, and taste, and talents, is fast ripening into manhood.” A remarkable and apparently little-noticed self-published work from a sort of Thomas Browne of late Jacksonian America, a collection of brief critical essays and collected accounts of curiosities (interspersed with his verses on same), ranging from reports of giant skeletons, the mound-builders, comets, stumps of trees found ninety feet underground, phrenology, sleepwalking, “Cases of Nancy Hazard, Jane C. Rider, Mrs. Cass, and Miss M’Evoy, who told colors by touch,” the trance preaching of New York girl Rachel Baker, etc., etc. In an attractive (if somewhat worn) American trade binding. This title was also published with an imprint of Hartford, 1840 (not 1825 as given in error on OCLC). Sabin 15076; Howes C-656; Field 351. An early reader has made occasional marginal notes in pencil and some penciled and sparse ink notes in the rear endpapers, including a rubbing in pencil of an American coin dated 1834 (both heads and tails). Front free endpaper excised.