The wonders of the Yosemite Valley, and of California. By Samuel Kneeland ... With original photographic illustrations, by John P. Soule. SAMUEL KNEELAND.

The wonders of the Yosemite Valley, and of California. By Samuel Kneeland ... With original photographic illustrations, by John P. Soule. Boston: Alexander Moore. Lee & Shepard. New York: Lee, Shepard & Dillingham, 1872. 26 x17 cm (small quarto), pp. [v-x] xi-xii, 13-79 [80-82: blank], flyleaves at front and rear, 10 plates with mounted photographic prints, each with tissue guard, 3 illustrations in the text, 2 maps (one inserted), all leaves have borders printed in red, publisher's decorated bevel-edged pebbled purple cloth, front and spine panels stamped in black and gold, rear panel stamped in blind, a.e.g., cream coated endpapers. Second edition. The text of this edition is extended, including an account of the Yosemite earthquake of 1872. Two maps are added, one of Yosemite Valley, the other showing routes to it. Kneeland, a professor of zoology and physiology and secretary of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from its founding in 1865 until 1878, produced one of the better early guide books to the Yosemite region. It is an especially attractive book due to the inclusion of an excellent series of mounted photographic images. The book is based on the author's first visit to Yosemite Valley in July 1870. In addition to serving as a guide book, it forms a narrative of his trip from Boston to Yosemite and return. Kneeland made every effort to obtain current and accurate information and each of the later editions of the guide incorporates new material. The second edition adds "The Yosemite in 1872" and "The Recent Earthquake in Yosemite." Though not identified by name, the account of the 1872 earthquake and much of "The Yosemite in 1872" is based on information indirectly supplied by John Muir. It is the first appearance of Muir's writings in a book. See William F. Kimes and Maymie B. Kimes, John Muir: a Reading Bibliography ... (2nd ed. Fresno, California: Panorama Books, 1986), p. 3. The third edition incorporates material gathered by Kneeland during his second trip to Yosemite in the summer of 1872 and accounts of "Winter in the Yosemite Valley" and "The Yosemite Glaciers," the latter based on observations by Muir, who is quoted at length. The second printing of the third edition increased the number of mounted photographic prints supplied by John P. Soule, a Boston photographer, to twenty. Weston J. Naef, Era of Exploration: the Rise of Landscape Photography in the American West, 1860-1885 (Buffalo: Albert-Knox Art Gallery. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Boston: Distributed by New York Graphic Society, [1975]), pp. 72-73, states that Soule published Kneeland's book and comments that the photographs "are curious because there is no evidence that Soule, a talented landscape photographer, was ever in California ... [which] suggests that he might have purchased the negatives from a California photographer, not an uncommon transaction. The photographs have a strong stylistic affinity to Muybridge's work, some of which was still in the hands of Thomas Houseworth, who, typically, did not give credit to the actual author." The photographs credited to John Soule are now thought to be by photographer Martin Mason Hazeltine, Soule having purchased the negatives. See Farquhar (1948), title 10. Currey and Kruska 225. Farquhar 10b. Gift inscription dated June 1872 on the front free endpaper. Some fading to cloth, especially the spine panel, several cracks along gutter margins (due to the method of binding) but binding not shaken. Some of the plates and tissue guards are foxed but mounted photographic prints are in excellent condition. (#166072).

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