Providence: Printed by J. Howard, for I.R. Potter, 1824. 108pp. Frontis. Contemporary boards, rebacked in brown buckram, gilt-stamped spine. Library markings on front cover, bookplate of the Forbes Libary of Northampton on front pastedown, library sleeve and slip adhered to rear pastedown and rear free endpaper. Scattered foxing. Good. Produced the same year as the edition bearing Henry Trumbull's name in the imprint, this is likely the second issue, printed by Howard and with the errors corrected in the text. Israel Potter fought at Bunker Hill, became a seaman on an American blockading vessel, was captured and taken to Britain. He escaped and joined in the circle of rebel agents, and saw involvement in many subsequent major events. He lived in England for forty-eight years, until finally returning to his home country in 1824, where he allegedly dictated this narrative to Henry Trumbull, Jr. The frontispiece shows Potter going about his business as a chair-mender in London. Howes calls this work "a purported autobiography, of dubious authenticity." Appleton's Cyclopaedia claims that these memoirs "were sold by peddlers, and finally were entirely lost until a tattered copy fell into the hands of Herman Melville." Melville produced his own rendition of Potter's life, based on Trumbull's work, and published in 1855. HOWES T371. SABIN 97200. AMERICAN IMPRINTS 17677. APPLETON'S CYCLOPAEDIA V, p.89. (Inventory #: WRCAM29056)
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