Catalog Archive
Auction 189, Lot 200

"[Map in Book] The Gold Districts in Alta California [in] California. Four Months Among the Gold-Finders...[and] What I Saw in California...",

Subject: California

Period: 1849 (published)


Color: Black & White

4.8 x 6.7 inches
12.2 x 17 cm
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This hard to find volume contains J. Tyrwhitt Brooks’ (pseudonym for Henry Vizetelly) “Four Months Among the Gold-Finders” and Edwin Bryant’s “What I Saw in California.” Both works promoted travel to the gold country at the start of the Gold Rush. Despite Brooks’ 49-page work being described in the preface as “an authentic record of a variety of interesting particulars connected with the original discovery and present condition of the Gold Districts of California,” it was in fact completely fabricated. Howes describes it as "one of the most remarkable 'imaginary voyages' since Defoe." It includes a basic map by the Thierry brothers covering all of California and Nevada with yellow outline color identifying the gold region where "gold has already been found in large quantities." The volume also includes Edwin Bryant’s 87-page “What I Saw in California,” which is considered one of the more reliable journals of American life in California prior to the discovery of gold. Published by A. & W. Galignani in Paris. 136 pages. Hardbound in contemporary quarter calf with tips over marbled boards.

References: cf. Howes #V-134; Wagner-Camp #146:16; Wheat (Gold) #60; Wheat (TMW) #577.

Condition: B+

The map has some light scattered foxing mostly in the margins. Text is mostly clean and bright with an occasional spot of foxing. Title page has some minor ink notations. Front hinge is starting and has been reinforced. Covers have light shelf wear.

Estimate: $400 - $475

Sold for: $425

Closed on 9/14/2022