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Travels through North and South Carolina - BARTRAM William - 1791. 
1791 - BARTRAM, William. Travels through North & South Carolina, Georgia, East & West Florida, the Cherokee Country, the Extensive Territories of the Muscogulges, or Creek Confederacy, and the Country of the Chactaws. Philadelphia: James & Johnson, 1791. Thick octavo, contemporary full brown tree sheep early rebacked with original spine laid down, original burgundy morocco spine label. Housed in a custom clamshell box. $9750.First edition of Bartram's classic work, a masterpiece that "would ensure him a permanent place in American natural history," containing frontispiece portrait of the chief of the Seminoles from a drawing by Bartram, engraved by James Trenchard, folding map of East Florida, and seven engraved botanical and zoological plates (one folding), very scarce in contemporary sheep."William Bartram was the most significant American nature writer before Thoreau and a nature artist who rivals Audubon". Long recognized as an American classic, Bartram's Travels recounts his journeys through the wilderness from 1773 to 1776 in prose famous for its celebratory intensity" (Library of America). "Bartram's account of the remote frontier, of the plantations, trading posts, and Indian villages at the end of the 18th century is unrivaled" (Streeter II:1088). "He not only offers us pictures of Indian life, and sketches of the striking peculiarities of the tribes he visited, but he gives us tables of the names and localities of the numerous towns of the populous nations of the Creeks and Cherokees" (Field 94). Bartram's masterpiece is also notable for its literary style (Coleridge drew from Bartram's descriptions of the lush southern landscape for his celebrated Kubla Khan).In 1777, as Bartram was writing Travels at his father's home near Philadelphia, he was visited by delegates of the Second Continental Congress, among them Washington, Madison and Hamilton. Jefferson, who had a copy of this first edition in his library, often sought Bartram's advice and, like "Jefferson in Notes on the State of Virginia, Bartram described an America that was sublime, magnificent and certainly not inferior to Europe" (Wulf, Founding Gardeners, 75). "Perhaps the key to Bartram's reason for writing this book is in a phrase he expressed to his friend Benjamin Smith Barton in 1791, 'I foresee the Magnificent structure and would be instrumental in its advancement'". The successful trial by combat in the Revolution and the work of the framers of the Constitution suggested a new beginning for America. He would be the instrument and his book the tool for shaping the structure" (Cashin in Fields of Vision, 12). Travels remains "a work of high character well meriting its wide esteem" (Howes B223). Precedes the 1792 English edition. Frontispiece portrait of Chief Mico Chlucco from a drawing by Bartam, engraved by James Trenchard. Separate title page for "Account of the Persons, Manners, Customs" [481-2]. Occasional mispagination as issued: page numbers 265-66 omitted and 289-90 repeated without loss or duplication of text. Sabin 3870. Field 94. Evans 23159. ESTC W29561. Early inked owner signatures, penciled owner inscription. Inked date below title page imprint. Small red bibliographic notation.Interior generally fresh with light scattered foxing, minor marginal dampstaining, occasional minor expert archival tissue repairs, light edge-wear, rubbing to boards. An extremely good copy of this American classic. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
[Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
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