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Pingenot Auction, Lot 291


291. SOWELL, A. J. Early Settlers and Indian Fighters of Southwest Texas...Facts Gathered from Survivors of Frontier Days. Austin: Ben C. Jones & Co., Printers, 1900. viii, 844 pp., 12 plates (mostly photographic), numerous text illustrations (engraved and photographic). 8vo, original red cloth decorated in gilt and black. Other than slight shelf wear, very fine and bright, preserved in a red cloth slipcase. The Pingenot copy is the best copy that we have ever examined. Most copies offered are smoke and/or water damaged and in the later solid red binding, rather than the pre-fire red and black binding.
         First edition, first issue, with copyright notice on title verso. Basic Texas Books 193: "The work contains 132 accounts of early pioneers, mostly as told by them directly to Sowell....Most of the work relates to Indian fights and Texas Rangers. This material is fresh and for the most part not repeated in Brown, Wilbarger, or other works." Dobie, pp. 58 & 60: "Meaty with the character of ready-to-fight but peace-seeking Texas pioneers, Sowell will some day be recognized as an extraordinary chronicler." Graff 3909. Howes S797: "Nearly all copies were either destroyed or damaged by fire." Rader 2957. Raines, p. 193. Tate, The Indians of Texas: An Annotated Research Bibliography 2432: "Includes numerous anecdotes and first-hand information, but not always trustworthy." The Handbook of Texas Online (Sowell).