CATLIN, George (1796-1872). Catlin's North American Indian Portfolio. Hunting Scenes and Amusements of the Rocky Mountains and Prairies of America. From Drawings and Notes of the Author, made during Eight Years' Travel amongst Fort-Eight of the Wildest and Most Remote Tribes of Savages in North America. London: Geo. Catlin, Egyptian Hall [but Henry Bohn]; text printed by C. and J. Adlard, 1844 [or 1845].
Broadsheets (23½ x 18 7/16 in.; 598 x 468 mm). 25 fine hand-colored lithographed plates after Catlin by Catlin and McGahey, lithographed by Day and Haghe, each heightened with gum arabic and mounted on card within ink-ruled borders (some mounts restored, some almost imperceptible pale foxing to several plates, otherwise very fine). Letterpress title-page and nine leaves of text in plain cream wrappers with red moiré cloth spine. Plates and text laid loose as issued in later red half morocco portfolio, original large red morocco lettering-piece on front cover, green silk ties (lightly rubbed); modern cloth folding case.
FIRST EDITION, THIRD (BOHN) ISSUE, FIRST ISSUE WITH THE PLATES FINELY HAND-COLORED AND MOUNTED ON CARD. Catlin himself had previously published the very scarce first colored issue with the plates printed on full sheets of paper, unmounted. Although Catlin planned on producing a series of thematic portfolios reproducing images from his Indian Gallery, the present publication overextended his resources. The publication of his North American Indian Portfolio was taken over by Henry Bohn.
"These beautiful scenes in Indian life are probably the most truthful ever presented to the public" (Field). Catlin's eight years of field research and painting of forty-eight tribes produced this immensely rich record of Native Americans. "The history and customs of such a people, preserved by pictorial illustrations, are themes worthy the lifetime of one man, and nothing short of the loss of my life shall prevent me from visiting their country and becoming their historian" (Preface). Abbey Travel 653; Field 258; Howes C243; Sabin 11532; Wagner-Camp 105a:1; William S. Reese, "The Production of Catlin's North American Indian Portfolio, 1844-1876," unpublished paper.
CATLIN, George. Autograph letter in the third person signed ("Mr. Catlin" and "Geo. Catlin"), to the Editors of the Manchester Guardian, "Tuesday morning 11th." 1 page, 8vo, a bit faded, framed with color portrait of Catlin. "Mr. Catlin presents his compliments to the Editors of the Manchester Guardian, and Respectfully invites their attention to a private view of his N. Am. Indian Collection this Afternoon, which is to be opened for public Exhibition tomorrow morning, in the Exchange Picture Gallery. Very Respectfully, Geo. Catlin." (2)