Stockholm: P.A. Norstedt & Sömer, 1893. First English language edition. Hardcover. [362pp] Folio [36.5 cm] in 3/4 textured maroon cloth over blue boards. Title and bands gilt stamped on backstrip. Printed title on front board. Centimeter-long perforation to spine at foot, numerous small abrasions to rear board, heavy rubbing to boards at extremities; small bookseller's label on each pastedown; interior is clean and crisp; a few short tears to last few plates at foot.
Although the Swedish first edition was also published in 1893, the English language edition of Nordenskiöld's pioneering work on the ruins of Mesa Verde is by far the scarcer edition of the two, and contains over fifty additional pages (primarily illustrative) than does the Swedish edition. Item #50431
Nordenskiöld came to the American southwest in 1891 at the invitation of Richard Wetherill, a local cattle rancher, who along with Charles Mason is credited with discovering the Mesa Verde ruins. This collection contains Nordenskiold's notes and photographs of his travels and excavations in the area. The English edition contains many additional plates not in the Swedish edition. The Swedish edition contained seventeen full page plates, this edition contains fifty-one plates. This edition also contains an appendix that was not in the original. The appendix is titled: 'Human Remains from the Cliff Dwellings of Mesa Verde', by G. Retzius. The appendix contains ten full page plates. These large plates include some absolutely exquisite photogravures of the ruins, including the double-page centerfold of "The Cliff Palaces". Also includes 159 smaller black and white illustrations. Full page map present at the rear. The earliest scholarly monograph on Mesa Verde. Mesa Verde comprises some of the most spectacular American Indian ruins in all of North America.
"I shudder to think what Mesa Verde would be today had there been no Gustaf Nordenskiöld. It is through his book that the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde became known and his volume might well be called the harbinger of Mesa Verde National Park as we know it today." - Robert Heyder, former National Park Superintendent.