121
121
Mckenney, Thomas L., and James Hall 
HISTORY OF THE INDIAN TRIBES OF NORTH AMERICA, WITH BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES AND ANECDOTES OF THE PRINCIPAL CHIEFS. EMBELLISHED WITH ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY PORTRAITS, FROM THE INDIAN GALLERY IN THE DEPARTMENT OF WAR, AT WASHINGTON. PHILADELPHIA: DANIEL RICE AND J. G. CLARK ... LONDON: CHARLES GILPIN, 1838, 1842, 1844
Estimate
60,00080,000
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121
Mckenney, Thomas L., and James Hall 
HISTORY OF THE INDIAN TRIBES OF NORTH AMERICA, WITH BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES AND ANECDOTES OF THE PRINCIPAL CHIEFS. EMBELLISHED WITH ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY PORTRAITS, FROM THE INDIAN GALLERY IN THE DEPARTMENT OF WAR, AT WASHINGTON. PHILADELPHIA: DANIEL RICE AND J. G. CLARK ... LONDON: CHARLES GILPIN, 1838, 1842, 1844
Estimate
60,00080,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Fine Printed and Manuscript Americana, Including Cartography

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New York

Mckenney, Thomas L., and James Hall 
HISTORY OF THE INDIAN TRIBES OF NORTH AMERICA, WITH BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES AND ANECDOTES OF THE PRINCIPAL CHIEFS. EMBELLISHED WITH ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY PORTRAITS, FROM THE INDIAN GALLERY IN THE DEPARTMENT OF WAR, AT WASHINGTON. PHILADELPHIA: DANIEL RICE AND J. G. CLARK ... LONDON: CHARLES GILPIN, 1838, 1842, 1844
ILLUSTRATION: 120 hand-colored lithographic plates after Karl Bodmer, Charles Bird King, James Otto Lewis, P. Rhindesbacher, and R.M.Sully, drawn on stone by A.Newsam, A. Hoffy, Ralph Trembley, Henry Dacre and others, printed and colored by J.T. Bowen and others, vol. III with two lithographic maps and one table printed recto of one leaf, 17pp. of lithographic facsimile signatures of the original subscribers. 

3 volumes, folio (20 1/8 x 14 1/2 in.; 511 x 368 mm). BINDING: Expertly bound to style half green morocco and green cloth covered boards, spines with raised bands in seven compartments, lettered in the second and fourth, the others with a repeat decoration in gilt, period marbled endpapers. 

Light and scattered foxing, generally not affecting images.


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Literature

BAL 6934; Bennett p.79; Field 992; Howes M129; Lipperhiede Mc4; Reese, Stamped With A National Character 24; Sabin 43410a; Servies 2150

Catalogue Note

Rare London issue of "one of the most costly and important [works] ever published on the American Indians"(Field), "a landmark in American culture"(Horan), and an invaluable contemporary record of a vanished way of life, including some of the greatest American hand-colored lithographs of the 19th century.

Upon publication of the first edition, a small number of text and plates were sent to Charles Gilpin in London, who represented the work as "Agent for Great Britain and Ireland." Cancel titles, reset and undated, were printed in England with Gilpin's imprint added. This is perhaps the rarest of the folio issues of McKenney and Hall.

After six years as Superintendent of Indian Trade, Thomas McKenney had become concerned for the survival of the Western tribes. He had observed unscrupulous individuals taking advantage of the Native Americans for profit, and his vocal warnings about their future prompted his appointment by President Monroe to the Office of Indian Affairs. As first director, McKenney was to improve the administration of Indian programs in various government offices. His first trip was during the summer of 1826 to the Lake Superior area for a treaty with the Chippewa, opening mineral rights on their land. In 1827, he journeyed west again for a treaty with the Chippewa, Menominee , and Winebago in the present state of Michigan. His journeys provided an unparalleled opportunity to become acquainted with Native American tribes.

When President Jackson dismissed him from his government post in 1839, McKenney was able to turn more of his attention to his publishing project. Within a few years, he was joined by James Hall, the Illinois journalist, lawyer, state treasurer and from 1833 Cincinnati banker, who had written extensively about the west. Both authors, not unlike George Catlin, whom they tried to enlist in their publishing enterprise, saw their book as a way of preserving an accurate visual record of a rapidly disappearing culture. The text, which was written by Hall based on information supplied by McKenney, takes the form of a series of biographies of leading figures amongst the Indian nations, followed by a general history of the North American Indians. The work is now famous for its colour plate portraits of the chiefs, warriors and squaws of the various tribes, faithful copies of original oils by Charles Bird King painted from life in his studio in Washington (McKenney commissioned him to record the visiting Indian delegates) or worked up by King from the watercolours of the young frontier artist, James Otto Lewis. All but four of the original paintings were destroyed in the disastrous Smithsonian fire of 1865 so their appearance in this work preserves what is probably the best likeness of many of the most prominent Indian leaders of the early 19th century. Numbered among King's sitters were Sequoyah, Red Jacket, Major Ridge, Cornplanter, and Osceola.

Fine Printed and Manuscript Americana, Including Cartography

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New York