Philadelphia: J. Grigg, 1831. 162pp. 12mo. Original printed boards, expertly rebacked to style in quarter roan, spine gilt lettered. Light dust soiling and rubbing to boards, light wear at corners and edges. Small numerical ink stamp at foot of first text leaf recto. Light tanning and foxing. Very good plus. Item #1298
The second edition, after the unobtainable first of 1799, of this important captivity narrative and account of the early western frontier of America by James Smith. "Smith's journal is one of the great personal narratives of western history. It is the most informative work by a frontiersman on Indian warfare in the Ohio country. The author was captured near Fort Duquesne in 1755, witnessed Braddock's defeat, and spent the next four years in Ohio and Michigan as an adopted Iroquois warrior. After escaping at Montreal, he served with Bouquet's Ohio expedition in 1764; explored south into Tennessee, 1766-67; and was a colonel of the Pennsylvania militia in the American Revolution. He served in the Pennsylvania legislature in 1776-7 and later became a prominent Kentucky lawmaker" - Nebenzahl.
At the time of publication of the present work, the first edition printed in Lexington, Kentucky, was already a great rarity, with the publisher of this edition stating in his introduction that, "It is presumed there is not now a dozen entire copies remaining... and it is believed the time has now arrived when a second edition, in more durable form, will be well received by the public." The second edition is quite scarce on the market in and of itself, with only three copies appearing in auction records for the past seventy-five years.
"One of the most historically valuable of captivities" - Vail. "One of the imperial books on the early Ohio valley" - Howes. A handsome copy, in the excellent original printed boards.
American Imprints 9211. Ayer, Indian Captivities 267. Decker 41:230. Eberstadt 136:305. Howes S606, "b." Nebenzahl 34:141. Sabin 82764. Thomson 1056. Vail 1216 (note).