MORTON, Nathaniel (1613-1685). New-Englands Memoriall: Or, A brief Relation of the most Memorable and Remarkable Passages of the Providence of God, manifested to the Planters of New-England in America; With special Reference to the first Colony thereof, Called New-Plimouth. Cambridge, [Mass.]: S. G[reen]. and M. J[ohnson]. for John Usher of Boston 1669. [Bound with:] L. S. A Letter from a Gentleman of the Lord Ambassador Howard's Retinue, to his Friend in London: Dated at Fez, Nov. 1. 1669. London: W.G. for Moses Pitt, 1670.
2 works in one volume, small 4° (176 x 140mm). Title within double-rule border. (Faint dampstain in the bottom right-hand corner, some leaves browned.) 18th-century English mottled calf, sides with gilt double fillet border, spine gilt, red morocco label, marbled edges and pastedowns (most of the gilt lost from the spine, rubbed, upper joint starting); dark green morocco slipcase by Riviere & son. Provenance: Sir Richard Newdigate (1644-1710, second baronet of Harefield and Arbury; bookplate on title verso) -- Sir Roger Newdigate (1719-1806, fifth baronet; bookplate on pastedown; thence by descent to:) -- Sir Francis Newdigate Newdegate (Arbury Hall booklabel; sold, Sotheby's, 23 January 1920, lot 238) -- J.C. Mac Coy (booklabel) -- Pierre S. Dupont III (sold Christie's New York, 08 October 1991, lot 180).
FIRST EDITION OF THIS CORNERSTONE OF EARLY NEW ENGLAND HISTORY (Church). The Newdigate-Mac Coy-Dupont copy. Morton's extensive compilation remains an outstanding primary source for the earliest decades of the fragile Massachusetts Bay colony. It is 'the first strictly historical work printed in America; and is one of the earliest printed books recording the origin of Plymouth colony. The voyage of the Mayflower and the landing and first settlement of the Pilgrims are given in detail. Morton found his main sources in the extensive historical manuscripts left by his uncle William Bradford' (Streeter). AN ATTRACTIVE COPY. Church 606; Evans 144; Howes M-851 ('first original work not religious in character issued from the press at Cambridge'); JCB III, p.188; Sabin 51012; Streeter II:631; Wing M-2827; Wing L-61 (for the second work).