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AUDUBON, John James. Autograph letter signed John J. Audubon"), to "my dear children," Edinburgh, 6 December 1834. One page, 4to, closely written, neatly backed, otherwise in fine condition.
AUDUBON, John James. Autograph letter signed John J. Audubon"), to "my dear children," Edinburgh, 6 December 1834. One page, 4to, closely written, neatly backed, otherwise in fine condition.

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AUDUBON, John James. Autograph letter signed John J. Audubon"), to "my dear children," Edinburgh, 6 December 1834. One page, 4to, closely written, neatly backed, otherwise in fine condition.

"I HAVE MUCH TO DO IN THE WAY OF DRAWING AND WRITING THE WHOLE OF THIS WINTER..." A typically exuberant Audubon is elated at the publication of a new volume of his Ornithological Biography (vol.2, 1834), descriptive text to accompany the Birds of America: "I revised the introduction last evening with [William] MacGillevray, therefore the book you may conclude is nearly out! We think that by Tuesday next it will be before the readers here; at least some copies of it. Charles Black and father will be agents here on the same terms as before, but I will leave only 200 copies with them, 20 with Hill and will send a proportional number to our agents All the rest I shall ship by steamer to Havell...." He is sending "by the Royal William steamer one new box containing 352 bird skins, which take great care of my journals, sundry books, 55 original small drawings including several of eggs 18 middle size (2 wanting) and 20 large ones [watercolors], drawing paper etc. etc...." The date of his return has not been set, and he regrets that he will not be able to visit a certain Mr. G., but I have much to do in the way of drawing and writing the whole of this winter...."

Audubon had begun his ambitious project in 1826, working with British printmakers and ornithologists including the Scottish ornithologist MacGillivray and the father and son engravers, Robert Havell and Robert Havell, Jr. The first part of the monumental Birds of America was issued in 1827; the last completed in 1838. During this period Audubon traveled frequently between England and America, seeking subscribers, searching for new species and overseeing the production of his elephant folio color-plates. At the same time he wrote and edited the accompanying descriptive text, the Ornithological Biography (5 vols., Edinburgh, 1831-1839).
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