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Auction 15: Fine Collection of Californiana Formed by Daniel G. Volkmann Jr.
179. [SAN FRANCISCO VIGILANCE COMMITTEE]. FARGO, Frank
F. A True and Minute History of the Assassination of James King of
Wm. and the Execution of Casey and Cora [wrapper title]. San Francisco:
J. W. Sullivan, . 24 pp., printed in two columns. 8vo, original
light yellow pictorial wrappers with engraved portrait of James King
of William from a daguerreotype, neatly rebacked with matching spine.
Wrappers slightly darkened and stained, mild scattered foxing, old paper
repairs to small tears in some blank margins, overall very good. In
half red morocco slipcase with chemise.
First edition (“Compiled from the columns of the Alta California and originally written for that paper, by Frank F. Fargo” p. ). Cowan I, p. 82. Cowan II, p. 202. Graff 1286. Greenwood 679. Howell 50, California 897. Howes F31. Littell 332. Streeter Sale 2802. “The assassination of James King of William, editor of the San Francisco Evening Bulletin, by a political rival caused considerable public outrage. The assassins were executed by the Vigilance Committee amid state-wide eulogies for James King of William, who became a martyr to the cause of law and order” (Greenwood 680). King’s assassination also caused a great shift in San Francisco’s newspaper circulation, hurting those calling for moderation and not supporting the vigilantes. This work is often confused with the pamphlet described in the next entry. The present work seems to be more rare in commerce; in addition, it has the pictorial wrappers with the portrait of King.
180. [SAN FRANCISCO VIGILANCE COMMITTEE]. A True and Minute History of the Assassination of James King of Wm. at San Francisco, Cal. Also Remarks of the Press Concerning the Outrage; An Account of the Formation and Action of the Vigilance Committee; Meetings and Resolutions of the Citizens of Sacramento, Marysville and Stockton; Funeral Ceremonies of Mr. King, with the Addresses of the Rev. Messrs. Cutler and Lacy over the Body; and the Execution of Casey and Cora. Carefully Compiled from Various Sources [wrapper title]. San Francisco: Whitton, Towne, 1856. -26 pp. (complete). 8vo, original tan printed wrappers, stitched. Spine cracked, stained and wrinkled, interior browned, first 16 pp. stained. In three-quarter black morocco and blue cloth folded case with ribbon ties.
First edition. Braislin 700 (mistakenly attributing authorship to Fargo; see preceding item): “Extremely rare. [The murder] led to the prompt formation of the first Vigilance Committee in California.” Cowan II, p. 329. Greenwood 680. Howell 50, California 898. Norris 1953. Sabin 37808 & 97098. Streeter Sale 2808. Vail, Gold Fever, p. 23. The description of King’s funeral is taken almost word for word from the article in the May 23, 1856, Daily Evening Bulletin. Sometimes this work is erroneously attributed to Frank F. Fargo.
181. [SAN FRANCISCO VIGILANCE COMMITTEE]. A True and Minute History of the Assassination of James King of Wm. at San Francisco. Cal. Also Remarks of the Press Concerning the Outrage... [wrapper title]. San Francisco: Whitton, Towne, 1856. -26 pp. (complete). 8vo, pink printed wrappers (in expert facsimile). Slightly faded, interior with light uniform browning and a few light stains, one signature loose. In half blue morocco slipcase with chemise. The Plath-Robbins copy, with printed bookplate of Robbins laid in.
First edition. Another copy of preceding. Assuming that the present copy has not been altered since its sale in 1959 as part of the Plath Collection (lot 654), the description at that auction of “original printed pink wrappers” is erroneous. This same copy was subsequently sold at the Robbins sale (Lot 100).
182. [SAN FRANCISCO VIGILANCE COMMITTEE]. Daily Evening Bulletin vol. 2, no. 39. [San Francisco], May 23, 1856. 4 pp. Folio. Minor losses at folds, some scattered light stains, upper right browned.
First printing. Kemble, pp. 103-104. Very early issue of this influential San Francisco paper. Although its editor, James King of William, had been murdered on May 14, 1856, this issue still has his name in the masthead. His funeral and the executions of Casey and Cora are prominently covered on p. 2. This is the source of the account of events in A True and Minute History of the Assassination of James King of Wm. at San Francisco. Cal. Also Remarks of the Press concerning the Outrage... [wrapper title]. San Francisco: Whitton, Towne, 1856 (see preceding two items).
Also see our Item 31. [CALIFORNIA PICTORIAL LETTER SHEET]. FORT VIGILANT | Rooms of the Committee....