AUCTION 23

 
 

A Grand Canyon & Colorado River Rarity

Wonderful Plates - Only Fifty Copies Printed

 
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28.  BERTON, Francis. Un Voyage sur le Colorado par Francis Berton Membre Correspondant de la Société de Géographie de Genève. San Francisco, 1878. [1-5] 6-64 pp., 17 lithograph plates, one of which is Kino’s map (see plate list below), text illustrations. 8vo (21.5 x 13.3 cm), original blue ribbed cloth, title in gilt on upper cover. Spinal extremities very lightly worn, corners slightly bumped, very light shelf wear, and minor abrasion on upper cover. Endpapers browned, interior and plates very fine and fresh. Regrettably, the folding map which was affixed to lower pastedown (Map of Arizona Prepared Specially for R.J. Hinton’s hand book of Arizona)is not present (often lacking). Here it is provided in excellent facsimile. Very rare, only fifty copies printed as gifts. Printed at upper right on title: “Avec les compliments de l’auteur.”

Plates

Jesuit Map of Arizona 1698. [above neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 16.6 x 10 cm. Follows title. Kino’s map, see Burrus, Kino and the Cartography of Northwestern New Spain, after title page.

Casa Grande | Gila Valley [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10.2 x 16.3 cm. Ruins of Casa Grande with one cowboy climbing on ruins while four others look on, one on a horse. Follows p. [4].

Plan of Loop | Tehachapi Pass | On the Line of | Southern Pacific R.R. [below title] G.E Gray. Chief Engineer. | W. Hood. Chief Ass. & Engr. [below lower neat line] F.T. Newbery. Del. | Lith. Britton & Rey. S.F. Image and title 9.4 x 16.2. Map shows railroad routes between Los Angeles and San Francisco with tunnel passes numbers 9, 10 and 11. A county road is noted with a double dotted line. Tehachapi Creek is located on map. The map shows topography without naming the elevations. Image of a decorative compass rose as crossed Indian arrows. Follows p. 6.

View of Loop | Tehachapi Pass. | S.P.R.R. [below lower neat line at right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10.4 x 16.4 cm. Rocky landscape of scrub and cacti with road winding around the bases of elevation in the topography. Follows p. 8.

San Fernando Tunnel | South Portal. [below lower neat line at right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10.2 x 16.4 cm. Railroad train steaming down the tracks toward lower left of image. At the base of a distant mountain is the tunnel. Various structures along the rail line. Follows p. 10.

Santa Monica Harbor | And Surroundings [below lower neat line at right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10.1 x 16.3 cm. Village on bay with structures clustered on a grid of streets; six ships in harbor, half with steam and half with sails; railroad train lower left travels toward the harbor. Follows p. 12.

Fort Yuma [below lower neat line at right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 9.8 x 16.2 cm. Military structures on cliff, boat approaching a prominent uplift at the edge of the water; U.S. flag flies outstretched over the left of the compound; a couple of rowboats and a sailboat on bay; trees in foreground. Follows p. 14.

Two images on one plate: [Upper image] Cactus Yucca [lower image] Steamer Cocopah [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Images and titles: 16.7 x 8.9 cm. Upper image shows multi-branched yucca against a backdrop of a sparse cacti landscape. The lower image is steamship with a couple of men standing on deck. The steamer is docked with a single plank to the river’s bank. A man in a rowboat is on the calm river in the background. Follows p. 16.

Ancient Cliff House. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 17 x 9.2 cm. Two people look toward structures built within the cliffs that rise to the upper right of image. Sunrays naturally light the cliff. Small tree and grass landscape in foreground. Follows p. 22.

The Grand Cañon of the Colorado [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 9.9 x 16.4 cm. The Colorado River falls over a precipice into a canyon below. In the distance the winding river emerges in view between distant canyon walls. Small tree and grass landscape in foreground. Sunrays light the canyon. Dramatic. Follows p. 24.

Prescott | Capital of Arizona [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10 x 16.3 cm. Bird’s-eye view with a cluster of town streets and structures encircled by tree-covered hills. Faces p. 37.

Ruins of the Mission of Tumacacori | Destroyed by Apache Indians. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10 x 16.3 cm. Mountains rising behind the abandoned mission. From center left in the image, sunlight illuminates wisps of clouds across the sky. Faces p. 43.

Grand Cañon of the Colorado—Mouth of Kanab Wash, Looking East [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 16.3 x 9.2 cm. At center river rushing through canyon walls rising from both sides of the image. Sunlight shines on distant mesa and clouds. Follows p. 44.

Indien Yuma. Indienne Yuma. Indienne Mohave. Indien Mohave. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 9.6 x 16 cm. Image shows four Native Americans: two bare-breasted women and two men in loin cloths. The landscape is cacti and grasses. Mountains rise in the distance. Faces p. 48

Two images on one plate: [Upper] Entrée du Cañon du Colorado | Roche Fendue Surplombant le Fleuve [lower] Orangerie à Los Angeles. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Images and titles: 9.8 x 16.1 cm. The image on the right shows a steamship traveling on the river next to rock pillars with rising mountains in the distance. The left image is an orange orchard with palm trees. Faces p. 50.

The Saguara [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 16.8 x 9.2 cm. Image shows a couple of majestic saguaros and prickly pear in foreground. Standing in the shadow of a saguaro is a Native American with a walking stick holding a spear. Faces p. 52.

Two images on one plate: [Upper] Chimney Pick [lower] Pont du Chemin de fer à Yuma sur le Colorado. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Images and titles: 16.3 x 8.8 cm. The upper image is a cactus landscape with a vertical rock formation standing in the topography. The lower image is a river scene with a docked steamship and a railroad bridge. A person is in a rowboat on the water. Faces p. 58.

Loop Line |Tehachapi Pass | S.P.R.R. [below neat line at lower right] Lith. Britton. Rey & Co. S.F. Image and title: 10.4 x 16.4 cm. The engine of a train emerges from a tunnel at the center of the image. Another train is travelling across the horizon in the distance. One man stands and another sits below a tree to the left of the tunnel. They appear to be holding rifles. Faces p. 62.

     First edition, 50 copies privately printed. Cowan II, p. 51. Edwards, Desert Voices, p. 27. Edwards, Lost Oases, p. 75: “The author leaves San Francisco in April, 1878, and crosses the San Joaquin and Merced Rivers, the Tehachapi Pass, the Mohave Desert, the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles, San Gorgonio Pass, the Colorado Desert (with special mention of Seven Palms, Indio, and Dos Palmas). Pp. 14-15 (Mojave) and pp. 22-26 and 93-95 (Colorado) afford us our direct desert references.” Holliday Sale 85. Howell 50, California 1475: “The charming lithographs and maps were prepared by Britton and Rey of San Francisco and include a view of the Tehachapi Pass, the San Fernando Tunnel, and Santa Monica Harbor.” Howes B394. Nasatir, French Activities in California, p. 416. Spamer, Grand Canyon, p. 16. Streeter Sale 523.

     Farquhar, The Books of the Colorado River & The Grand Canyon 29:

Berton, Swiss consul at San Francisco, journeyed overland to Yuma and the Gila River country. He published his account in an edition of 50 copies for the benefit of his friends. He acknowledges the courtesy of R.J. Hinton for the use of some of the lithograph stones of the plates in the latter’s “The Hand-Book of Arizona,” New York, 1878. Several of the plates in Berton’s book are from his own sketches or photographs, notably a photograph of the steamer “Cocopah.”

($1,500-3,000)

Sold. Hammer: $1,500.00; Price Realized: $1,837.50.

Auction 23 Abstracts

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