JONES, John (1729-1791). Plain concise practical remarks on the treatment of wounds and fractures; to which is added, a short appendix on camp and military hospitals; principally designed for the use of young military surgeons, in North-America. New York: John Holt, 1775.
8o (216 x 126 mm). Collation: A4 B-L4 M4 N4 +2 (A1r title, A1v blank, A2r preface, "To the students and young practitioners in surgery," B3r text, N4r blank, N4v advertisement of Donald M'Lean, Apothecary and Druggist in New York, +1r author's dedicatory letter to Dr. Thomas Cadwalader, dated 12 October 1775, +2v blank). 54 leaves. Stipple-engraved portrait of the author signed "Leney," from The American Medical and Philosophical Register (probably from the 1813 issue which carried an article on Jones), inserted before the title. This copy without the errata slip (see below). (Some light foxing and browning, a few leaves spotted, printing flaw on A2v causing omission of part of last line and catchword, hole to final blank leaf, marginal nicks to last 3 leaves.) Contemporary marbled paper boards (rebacked in calf); modern half morocco folding case.
Provenance: John Jones (19th-century? signature on front free endpaper, textual corrections on pages 8, 11, 16, 30 and 38 in brown ink in the same hand); Samuel Smith Purple (1822-1900), a founder of the New York Academy of Medicine and one of the earliest collectors of American medical imprints, whose library was bequeathed to the Medical Society of the County of Kings (Brooklyn Academy of Medicine); unidentified owner (Christie's New York, 11 June 1982, lot 334).
VERY RARE FIRST EDITION OF THE FIRST AMERICAN WORK ON MILITARY MEDICINE AND THE FIRST TREATISE ON SURGERY WRITTEN BY AN AMERICAN AND PRINTED IN NORTH AMERICA. Jones, who was born in Jamaica, Long Island, initiated his medical training under his uncle the Philadelphia physician Thomas Cadwalader, author of an early treatise on lead poisoning (see lot 347) and dedicatee of the present work. He completed his education in Europe, where he studied under William Hunter and Percival Pott in London and under Petit and Henri Franois Le Dran in Paris. He settled in New York as a surgeon and obstetrician, and became known as an expert lithotomist. When New York was captured by the British he moved to Philadelphia, where he remained. Largely derived from the work of his teachers Pott and Le Dran, Jones's Plain concise remarks proved tremendously useful, in part because of the timing of its publication at the start of the Revolutionary War. The work was expressly intended as a manual for field surgeons: "I flatter myself the apparent necessity for some immediate production of this nature, will apologize for those defects which a discerning reader will readily discover: if any of you, by observing the following rules, should save the life, or even limb of but one citizen, who has bravely exposed himself in defence of his country, I shall think myself richly rewarded for my labour" (p. i). Jones himself played an active role in organizing the medical department of the Continental Army, and his treatise became the vade mecum of military surgeons during the war. Jones was a friend of Washington, whom he attended in 1790, and became the personal physician to Benjamin Franklin, whom he attended during his last illness.
Collation of the known copies varies, indicating the possible existence of different states of the first quire. Guerra describes a first quire A of 6 leaves, in which the 2-leaf dedication to Thomas Cadwalalder (signed with a dagger in the Norman copy and bound at the end) is apparently printed on A2-3 and the preface "To the students..." occupies A4-6. The pagination cited by Evans 14134 apparently indicates the same arrangement (Evans 42852, the Dartmouth College copy, seems to be lacking the title-leaf). The errata, not present in this copy, appears both mounted on the verso of the second leaf of the dedication to Cadwalader (Guerra), and as a separate leaf bound at the end.
Austin 1083; Evans 14134 and 42852; Garrison-Morton 2155; Guerra a-570 (listing 9 copies); Sabin 36524; Norman 1176.