Report of an Expedition on the Upper Arkansas
Report of an Expedition on the Upper Arkansas
Report of an Expedition on the Upper Arkansas
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Report of an Expedition on the Upper Arkansas

JAMES ABERT, 1846

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Report of an Expedition on the Upper Arkansas
James Abert, 1846
ABERT, James W. (1820-1897). Message from the President ... Communicating a report of an expedition led by Lieutenant Abert, on the Upper Arkansas and through the country of the Camanche Indians, in the Fall of the Year 1845. 29th Congress, 1st Session, Senate Document 438. [Washington, D.C.: 1846.]

An extremely rare hand-colored version of the first printing of the report of Abert's first western expedition. In the late summer of 1845 Abert led an expedition from Bent's Fort (in present southeastern Colorado), west to the Ratom Mountains in the southern Rockies, south to the Canadian River and thence back east, along this tributary of the Arkansas River, arriving in Fort Gibson on 21 October. "Abert made the first astronomical observations in this unknown country, and his map is therefore of great importance" (Wagner-Camp). Colored copies of this report are exceedlingly rare and are believed to have been colored by Abert himself (see Best of the West 101). The original watercolor sketches for this report are in the Yale Western Americana Collection. Creating America 114; Graff 6; Howes A-10 ("a few" copies colored); Wagner-Camp 120; Wheat Transmississippi West 489.

Octavo (226 x 145 mm). (Minor toning to text.) Illustrated with 11 hand-colored lithographed plates by E. Weber and 2 folding maps, the second of which is the large route map, 500 x 715 mm, with route and river hand-colored. Marbled wrappers (backstrip perished but stitching holding). Custom quarter morocco clamshell box. Provenance: Asbury Dickins, 1780-1861, in 1846 Asbury was Secretary of the Senate (ownership signature to title-page).

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