Eldorado, Or Adventures in the Path of Empire: Comprising a Voyage to California, Via Panama; Life in San Francisco and Monterey; Pictures of the Gold Region, and Experiences of Mexican Travel. CALIFORNIA, Bayard Taylor.
Eldorado, Or Adventures in the Path of Empire: Comprising a Voyage to California, Via Panama; Life in San Francisco and Monterey; Pictures of the Gold Region, and Experiences of Mexican Travel

Eldorado, Or Adventures in the Path of Empire: Comprising a Voyage to California, Via Panama; Life in San Francisco and Monterey; Pictures of the Gold Region, and Experiences of Mexican Travel

New York: George P. Putnam, 1850.

First Edition. Hardcover. Very good. Two volume set. Volume I: 19.1cm, pp [i]-xii, [1]-251, with 4 colored plates. Volume II: 19.4 cm. pp [1], 2-3 [4-6], [5 (sic)]-251 + 45 page publisher's catalogue, paginated as in BAL (19638) variant A. The Mazatlan plate in Vol. II is not on p. 8 (where it is listed in the table of illustrations), but on p. 80, as in the Volkmann copy catalogued by Dorothy Sloan. Original green cloth stamped in blind, gilt lettering on spines. Both spines mildly slanted, lettering faded but legible, otherwise a very nice, sound set with minimal foxing. Provenance: each front pastedown bears the attractive bookplate of Goshen, Kentucky stock breeder, economist, and state representative (1924-28, 34-35) William Burke Belknap (1885-1965) and his wife, Helen Strong Belknap. Taylor, a correspondent for the New York Tribune, made this trip to California as gold fever reached its height. He describes his outbound journey via the Isthmus of Panama and his return by way of Mexico, but the work is most noteworthy for its detailed and lively description of life in the mines and camps, as well as in early Sacramento and San Francisco. Howes (T-43) lauds this book for its "unexcelled description of California's gold rush" and Gary Kurutz (Sloan Zamorano 80 Catalogue p. 259) writes that "Taylor's command of the language and the scenes he witnessed make Eldorado one of California's greatest books." Zamorano 80 #73; Graf 4073; Rocq 16098; Cowan p 630; Hill 1674, Sabin 94440, Streeter 2654.

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