PRAIRIEDOM: RAMBLES AND SCRAMBLES IN TEXAS OR NEW ESTREMADURE. BY A SUTHRON.
New York: Paine & Burgess, 1846. vi,166pp. Engraved map of Texas (approx. 5 ¾” x 3 ½”). The map differs from the one in the first edition in that the first edition map shows Mexico with an insert of Texas whereas this one shows only Texas, east of the Hill Country. Rebound in tan calf with the title in gilt on the front cover, new end sheets. Second edition (the first was done the previous year). Internally, the title page has 3 ¼” triangle piece missing from the lower right corner (no loss of text) with moderate chipping to the perimeter (additional scans available). The next four sheets show some chipping. Moderate staining and age toning to the first ten pages and to a lesser, and more uniform, extent throughout the rest of the book. Overall, a good copy. Streeter, Bibliography of Texas 1604: “This is a pleasant account of the author’s travels in Texas, for the most part, of a journey in the spring of 1839 from the Sabine by way of Nacogdoches, Houston, and Bastrop to San Antonio and return to Houston by way of Goliad…It brings back to us in charming fashion the Texas of 1839.” Raines, A Bibliography of Texas p.167: “Texas, descriptive and historical, by a facile pen.” Clark, Travels in the Old South III 221: “Although the author includes some of his experiences on the road, this work is organized as a description of Texas rather than as a traveler’s log. His tone is favorable…” Page is effusive in describing Texas. He extolls the richness of the soil for farming, the luxuriant nature of the grass for raising cattle, abundance of water, herds of wild horses, richness in minerals, moderate climate, availability of land and its general suitability for settlement. Page includes descriptions of the various cities he visits. For example, he describes Houston as: “…a place of active and profitable trade…and [is] the largest and most flourishing town in the interior, and from its peculiar advantageous location for commerce…it must always maintain its ascendency over any other rival town….” Includes a good bit of information of Texas’ Indian tribes to whose fate he is sympathetic. This is illustrated in an account of a visit with Chief Bowles of the Cherokee Nation in which he remarks: “Alas! His tribe are scattered, and he awaits them in the ‘spirit land’.” An important view of 19th century Texas.