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Pingenot Auction, Lot 198

"A VADE MECUM FOR THE STILL BUSY PLAINS"—WHEAT

198. MARCY, Randolph B. The Prairie Traveler: A Hand-Book for Overland Expeditions. With Maps, Illustrations, and Itineraries of the Principal Routes between the Mississippi and the Pacific.... New York: Harper & Brothers, 1859. 340 pp., engraved frontispiece of Fort Smith, Arkansas, text illustrations, folding engraved map: Sketch of the Different Roads Embraced in the Itineraries (23.4 x 28.0 cm; 9-1/4 x 11 inches); text map Sketch of the Country in the Vicinity of the Gold Region near Pike’s Peak and Cherry Creek (11.3 x 7.3 cm; 4-1/2 x 3 inches). 12mo, original green blind-stamped cloth. Minor edge wear, upper hinged cracked (but strong), front flyleaves browned, occasional mild foxing. A very good copy, the maps very fine.
         First edition. Cowan, p. 414. Graff 2676. Howes M279. Plains & Rockies IV:335:1: "After half a lifetime spent on the western plains and in the Rocky Mountains, Captain Marcy was well qualified to advise the prospective emigrant, and he ably summarized his experiences in this book." Rittenhouse 399: "A how-to-do-it book widely used by emigrants over all Western trails. It describes equipment to carry, methods of organizing a wagon train, techniques of avoiding dangers and attacks." Smith 6509. Wheat, Transmississippi West 984: "This map [of the West] covers the entire trans-Mississippi West, with the main emigrant routes and Capt. Marcy’s various trails and routes....It affords an excellent general view of the routes of travel just prior to the railroad building era, most of the routes shown by Marcy closely approximating the later railroad routes to the Pacific Coast"; 985 & pp. 145-46 & 174-75: "[Marcy’s map of the Colorado Gold region] is one of the best that appeared that year." Wynar 3415.
($300-600)