London: Printed for James Rivington and James Fletcher, 1759. First edition in English of the first history of California, which “gave the English-speaking world its earliest thorough account of the little-known areas of the west coast of North America,” (Hill). The original Spanish edition was published in 1757. With four engraved plates (including both frontispieces) and a folding map of Baja California. The plates in volume one are “Women of California” and “Men of California” (frontispiece); plus “The Cayote or Fox” and “The Taye or California Deer.” The plates in volume two are “The Manner of Curing the Sick in California” and “Sorcerers of California” (frontispiece); plus “The Martyrdom of Father Carranco” and “The Martyrdom of Father Tamaral.”. Some rubbing to extremities and some light chipping to lower board of volume two. Bookplate of Pacific Voyages collector Kenneth E. Hill on front pastedown and contemporary ink signature to front flyleaf of volume one. Two small contemporary ink signatures to both title-pages. Fresh throughout despite some light offsetting and some toning to last few leaves of volume two. A very good, tight example of the most important early work on Baja California. Contemporary tree calf neatly rebacked to style preserving the original red and green spine labels. Spine stamped in gilt and with raised bands. Two volumes, octavo. , 455; , 387 pp. Item #16912
“First attempt at a history of California. Based, by the anonymous editor, Father Andrés Marcos Burriel, on Venegas’s 1739 MS., but incorporating information from other sources,” (Cowan). Wagner states that it “contains more on Lower California than almost any other book that had been published in one hundred and fifty years.” Cowan considers this work to be “the foundation of a library of Californiana.”.
Cowan v. 2, p. 658. Graff 4471. Hill 1768. Howell, 50: 247. Howes v69. Sabin 98845. Streeter 2435. Zamorano 80, #78 (1757 Spanish edition).