3 December 2007
GREGG, Josiah (1806-ca 1850). Commerce of the Prairies: or the Journal of a Santa Fé Trader, during Eight Expeditions across the Great Western Prairies, and a Residence of Nearly Nine Years in Northern Mexico. New York: Henry G. Langley and London: Wiley and Putnam, 1844.
2 volumes, 8o (188 x 115 mm). Two engraved maps, one folding, 2 engraved frontispieces after E. Didier by A.L. Dick, 4 wood-engraved plates by Lossing, 3 wood-engraved text vignettes. (Some occasional pale spotting.) Original brown pictorial gilt publisher's cloth (some minor wear to spine ends, otherwise a fresh, bright copy); brown quarter morocco slipcase. Provenance: P. Handy (inkstamps on front free endpapers); Jay T. Snider (bookplate; his sale Christie's New York, 21 June 2005, lot 228).
FIRST EDITION OF ONE OF THE CORNERSTONE ACCOUNTS OF THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI WEST. Gregg originally moved to Santa Fe for matters of health, but soon became one of the region's foremost traders. His account is the principal source book relating to the Santa Fe Trail and trade, the Indians of the south plains and New Mexico and the Mexican period. Wheat calls the map of the Indian Territory, Northern Texas and New Mexico "a cartographic landmark... one of the most useful maps of this region at that day." Dobie p.76 ("one of the classics of bedrock Americana"); Flake 3716; Graff 1659; Howes G-401; Rittenhouse 225; Streeter I:378; Streeter Texas 1502; Wagner-Camp-Becker 108:1; Wheat Mapping the Transmississippi West II: pp. 186-88.
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