British Secret Agent’s Treatise & Map Claiming Oregon for England
25. FALCONER, Thomas. On the Discovery of the Mississippi, and on the Southwestern, Oregon, and Northwestern Boundary of the United States, etc. With a Translation from the Original ms. of Memoirs, &c. relating to the Discovery of the Mississippi by Robert Cavalier de la Salle, and the Chevalier de Tonty. London: Samuel Clarke, 1844. 100, 99  pp., engraved, folding map of North America with boundary of proposed British Oregon outlined in blue: North America Published under the Superintendence of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge [below border]: London, Chas. Knight & Co. 22 Ludgate Street Engraved by J. & C. Walker (38.7 x 31 cm; 15-1/4 x 12-1/4 inches). 12mo, original dark green cloth, printed paper spine label (neatly rebacked, original spine and endpapers retained). Fragile spine label darkened, rubbed, and lightly chipped. Text with uniform light age toning, otherwise fine, map very fine. Pencil note on front pastedown: “Has fold. map, which considerably enhances the value. A. H. Greenly”. Greenly was a noted historian, bibliographer, and collector. Very scarce, especially in original.
First edition. Anderson 1686:417: “The most important of the English contributions to the celebrated ‘Oregon Boundary Question.’ Much of the work is based on documents in the Archives of the Marine, at Paris. The author, an able lawyer, presents a strong case for the British contention to the Oregon Country, hinging his claim on the broad territorial acquisitions of La Salle and other French explorers who operated under Canadian auspices, which he considers were acquired by Great Britain upon the cession of New France.” Bradford 1610. Graff 1283. Holliday 355. Howes F16: "Weightiest exposition of British claims to Oregon and contains the first English translation of La Salle's report and Tonty's 1693 Memoire.” Plains & Rockies IV:106b. Rader 1328. Raines, p. 79: “Some of the Memoirs relate directly or indirectly to Texas.” Sabin 23726. Streeter 1496n (tracing the development of Falconer’s use of the documents printed herein). Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West 479, Vol. II, p. 189: “Falconer...was probably a secret agent of the British Foreign Office. If his reports were no better than the throwback back he used, they were hardly calculated to obtain their ends.” Wheat (Mapping the Transmississippi West 493) notes that Falconer reused the same map in his 1845 The Oregon Question. ($2,000-3,000)
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