Auction 129, Lot 903

"Picturesque America; or, the Land we Live in… Volume I", Bryant, William C.

Subject: Plate Books - North America

Period: 1872-74 (dated)


Color: Black & White

11 x 13 inches
27.9 x 33 cm

"Picturesque America" was published by Appleton & Co., New York, 1872-75. It was the most elaborate publication of travel imagery produced in the 1870s. This publication set out to reveal the unique and varied scenery of all of America. This was made possible by the recent opening of transcontinental railroads and overland communications. It was considered the definitive treatment of the American landscape, and its appearance just before the nation's Centennial graphically marked the United States' progress in exploration and development of scenic wonders during its first century. Appleton employed many of America's most celebrated and respected artists to prepare the illustrations. Click here to see a complete list of the 49 steel engravings. Click here to see a complete list of the 578 wood engravings.

This is one of the most beautiful plate books on the United States and Canada ever produced. The 24 excellently rendered, steel engraved views and 284 wood engravings, many full-page include works by Thomas Moran, Harry Fenn, Granville Perkins, James D. Smillie and other important American artists of the 19th century. This important volume contains Yellowstone, Yosemite, Richmond, Savannah, Charleston, Watkins Glen, Mackinac, the California Coast, the Golden Gate, and the terrific frontispiece of Niagara Falls. In full leather with fancy tooling and embossing with gilt, raised bands on spine. Volume I - 568 pp., full gilt on all page edges (T.E.G.).


Condition: B+

The plates are fine (A+). The boards are rubbed with leather tips lifted and abraded, and abraded at spine edges. Inside first page, marbled, is loose.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $325

Closed on 9/23/2009