A Summary, Historical and Political, of the First Planting, Progressive Improvements; and Present State of the British Settlements in North America
2 volumes, 8vo
by DOUGLASS, William (1691-1752)
London: R. Baldwin, 1755. 2 volumes, 8vo. (7 7/8 x 5 inches). Engraved folding map by Thomas Jefferys after D'Anville, hand coloured in outline. Contemporary calf, spines with raised bands, green morocco lettering pieces (expert repairs to joints and spine ends) Provenance: W. Dowdeswell (early signature) First English edition of the "First American history of the whole country" (Howes). Douglass was a Scottish physician living in Boston and first published his history serially in Boston. Although not a work noted for its accuracy, Wroth comments, "Modern critics of the Summary have overlooked the fact that its author was the first to attempt this story from the viewpoint of a resident American" and further quotes a contemporary critic in the Monthly Review as finding it "a fuller and more circumstantial account of North-America, than is any where else to be met with." This first English edition is desirable with the map, entitled "North America, from the French of Mr. D'Anville, improved with the back settlements of Virginia and course of Ohio, illustrated with geographical and historical remarks. May 1755. Published by Thomas Jefferys." Sabin notes the work's rarity with the map: "Although at the end of the contents of vol. I there is 'Place the Map to face the Title of Vol. I,' no copy has yet been found, in its original state, with the map." Sabin also states that "the work is authentic and valuable, and should find its place in every American library. Adam Smith characterizes the author as 'the honest and downright Dr. Douglass'." Howes D446; Sabin 20727; TPL 225; Clark I:226; Wroth pp. 87-91; ESTC T145903.
(Inventory #: 31524)
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