Chicago and New York: Belford, Clarke & Company, 1887. First edition. Hardcover. Volume I is all that was issued. Quarto [28 cm] xix, 655pp. Plates, portraits, maps (some folding) and a large folding map tipped in at the rear showing the area of the west Fremont explored (with several small splits along the folds). Contemporary full brown leather with stamped, decorative border. Rebacked, with the original gilt-stamped spine laid over. All edges gilt. Gilt turn-ins. Decorative blue floral endpapers. The leather at the bottom fore-edge corner of the front board is chipped, revealing the underlying boards. There is a contemporary owner's name on the front flyleaf. Internally fine, little to no foxing of plates. A very fine, crisp copy. Complete. Howes: F369; Cowan II, pp. 224-25 notes it is "superbly illustrated." May require extra postage due to weight. Very good. Item #55703
The illustrations are masterpieces of Darley, Hamilton, Schussele, Dallas, Kern, Wallin and Others. Engraved under the supervision of J. M. Butler. This work covers Fremont's first three exploring expeditions and the role he played in the conquest of California. Fremont is famous for having made a lasting contribution to cartography, with his assistant Charles Preuss. Charles Preuss, Fremont's chief cartographer on a number of his expeditions, produced a map for Fremont's report, which according to Carl I. Wheat "changed the entire picture of the West." The entry in Howard R. Lamont's "The Reader's Encyclopedia of the American West," states, "True, it had errors, but more important it depicted Fremont's 'Great Basin'..., a term he applied to the vast intermediate region between the Wasatch and the Sierra Nevada with its own system of lakes, rivers, and creeks, and having no exterior drainage."