New York: G.P. Putnam & Col, 1854-1855. Scarce. The first appearance of Israel Potter, Melville’s novel about the Revolutionary War, was published in six parts in Putnam’s Magazine between July 1854 - March 1855. It was published in book form in March 1855. Loosely based on a real person, Israel Potter recounts the life of a young American who fights in the Revolution, is captured at sea by the British Navy, and has a series of adventures in England involving King George III, Benjamin Franklin, John Paul Jones, and Ethan Allen. The work ends sadly, with Potter exiled in poverty in England for fifty years, finally returning to America shortly before his death. The book was a commercial failure in its time but garnered critical appreciation. Volume IV also includes Melville’s “The Lightning-Rod Man.” Both volumes are bound in the original green cloth with embossed designs to covers and gilt titling to spine. Volume IV is stained, bumped, and rubbed, with faded gilt design and titling to spine. Remnants of spine label, hole in back cover not affecting interior and small tears to joint. Ownership stamp of D.F. Tillinghast to front and rear pastedowns. Interior pages clean and bright with age darkening to some pages. Covers of Volume V have soiling and bumping. Foxing to endpapers and occasional light foxing to text pages but otherwise clean and bright. Overall in very good condition. Volume IV: 672 pages; Volume V: 668 pages. LIT/.
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Philadelphia: Hopkins and Earle, 1808. Hardcover. First edition of this contemporary account of the famous treason trial of Aaron Burr, for which he was found not guilty. Two volumes bound in full brown leather with red title labels and black volume numbers to spine. Leather is scuffed, abraded, bumped, and worn. Joints are tender but text block is tight. It appears that there were small labels on the front covers at some point, and there are debossed library stamps on title pages. Volume I title page also has library deaccession stamp. Bookplate of Wight on front pastedowns.Tear to rear free endpaper in Volume II. Interior pages have offsetting, scattered browning and foxing, but still quite legible. Not quite very good but still a nice copy of this important historical work. Octavo. Volume I: 596 pages; Volume II: 539 pages. AMERHIST/051921. Very Good -.
Boston: Richardson and Lord, 1824. Hardcover. Scarce travel classic written by Henry Knight [1789-1835] using the pseudonym of Arthur Singleton. Includes Knight's letters from Philadelphia, Washington City, Virginia, Kentucky, New Orleans, and the Gulf of Mexico with Knight's detailed and interesting observations of each city or region. Attractively bound in three quarter navy blue leather over marbled paper covered boards with gilt title and raised bands to spine. Wear and rubbing to hinges, bands, and edges of boards. Rubbing to marbled paper covers. Exlibrary with book stamp of Headlee's Book Exchange to title page and verso. Bookplate to front pastedown featuring an unidentified family crest. Occasional spots of foxing to interior and handwritten note in pencil regarding pseudonym on title page, but clean and bright overall. Marbled endpapers and top edge gilt. 159 pages. AMER/010720. Very Good.