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AUCTION 22

 

The Mexican-American War on the Pacific Front—A Mexican Perspective


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396.     [MEXICAN-AMERICAN WAR]. GAXIOLA, F[rancisco] Javier. La Invasión norte-americana en Sinaloa. Revista histórica del Estado de 1845 á 1849 por Javier Gaxiola Socio activo del “Liceo Mexicano” y de la “Prensa Asociado de México.” Segunda edición. Mexico: Imprenta à cargo de Antonio Rosas, Avenida Oriente 8. Número 1129, (Antes 1a. de la Merced núm. 4), 1891. [i-vii] viii-xiii [1, blank], [1] 2-234 pp.), 2 lithograph plates (portraits of Rafael Vega and Colonel Francisco Vega). 8vo (20.8 x 14.8 cm), original upper grey printed wrapper (lacking lower wrap), bound in later half tan speckled sheep over brown cloth, spine with raised bands and red gilt-lettered leather spine label. Spine label slightly chipped, wrapper with light staining and a few spots, text waterstained along lower blank margins of first few leaves, otherwise very good. Author’s warm, lengthy, signed presentation on verso of half title to influential Mexican poet-author Luis G. Urbina dated October 1, 1891 (Dicc. Porrúa, pp. 3637-3638). Very rare in commerce, as well as institutional holdings (we locate copies at Yale and the University of Texas).

     First separate edition. According to the author (p. 225), the work first appeared as part of Emilio del Castillo y Negrete’s multi-volume México en el siglo XIX, o sea su historia desde 1800 hasta la época presente… (Mexico, 1875-1891). Palau 100857. Tutorow 3452. Not in Garrett & Goodwin (The Mexican-American War of 1846-1848) and other Mexican-American War bibliographies.

     The author (1870-1933), apparently a young man when the book was written, is praised profusely in the prologue by senior poet, author, and fellow Sinaloan Francisco Gómez Flores for this display of his historical and literary talents. In this work, Gaxiola treats broadly of the political and social situation of the state at the time of the U.S. blockade and invasion of Mazatlán. He paints a sad picture of politicians, military leaders, and a populace too busy fighting each other to give any real resistance to what was actually a small U.S. force sent to subdue the area. The account covers the Mexican perspective on Commodore William Branford Shubrick’s little-known U.S. Navy operations around Mazatlán during the Mexican-American War, including interesting details on surfboats and horse marines. Gaxiola states, however, that U.S. forces were very well behaved, committed practically no atrocities, and conducted themselves as gentlemen (p. 217). Shubrick was dispatched to Monterey to replace Sloat in his command of naval forces in California in July of 1846. He, in turn, was soon replaced by Commodore James Biddle and went south to blockade Mazatlán until he was recalled in July, 1847, to command in Alta California.

     The lithograph portraits of Rafael Vega and Francisco Vega depict two of the more important political and military figures in Sinaloa at the time.

($600-1,200)

Sold. Hammer: $950.00; Price Realized: $1,140.00

Auction 22 Abstracts

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