The Stranger in America
The Stranger in America

CHARLES WILLIAM JANSON, 1807

Details
The Stranger in America
Charles William Janson, 1807
JANSON, Charles William (fl early 19th century). The Stranger in America. London: James Cundee, Albion Press, 1807.

First edition, colored issue, of "a petulant view of U.S. life" (Howes). This rather off-beat item is a "handsomely produced book … the view on the engraved title page is the earliest known published image of the White House, and the Mount Vernon plate is one of the earliest of Washington's home. The appendix to the book contains what appears to be the first British printing of Thomas Jefferson's December 1806 message announcing the completion of the Lewis and Clark expedition, as well as other western explorations. This seems to have been unnoticed by bibliographers" (Federal Hundred). The author was an Englishman who lived in America from 1793-1805 and did not like what he saw. "Janson draws a picture of unrelieved black, but one worthy of attention because of the length of his stay and the breadth of his interests. He covers an astonishing variety of subjects" (Clark), from bear attacks and the ungovernable bees of the Carolinas to the American church and other "Yankee notions." Abbey 648; Federal Hundred 100; Howes J-59 ("b"); Sabin 35770.

Quarto (257 x 201mm). Engraved additional title with hand-colored vignette, 9 hand-colored plates, plan of Philadelphia, one engraved vignette in text (without ads, some leaves toned). Late 19th-century plum morocco gilt, edges gilt (light wear to surface of joints). Provenance: Jay Snider (bookplate).

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