First edition of Journal of an African Cruiser by Horatio Bridge in the publisher’s original paper wrappers, from the personal library of and signed by Maine Governor Joseph H. Williams.
Small octavo, viii, [v]-vi, 179pp, [32pp ads]. Original printed wrappers, title in black on spine. No additional printings listed on copyright page. Slight lean to text block, faint dampstain to leaves at end of volume, not affecting text, Kennebec Historical Society bookplate on half-title, a very good example. Price “Fifty Cents” listed on front cover, tape remnant on front cover, wear to spine. BAL’s printing A and wrapper 1, including misnumbered page “x” with “vi” in Preface, copyright information in four lines, and three titles listed under “Library of American Books” on rear cover. (BAL 7597) (Moebs 80) In custom brown cloth clamshell with title printed on paper label. Signed by J.H. Williams on front cover.
Joseph H. Williams (1814-1896) served in the State legislature of Maine as both a Senator and House Representative, and he was also Governor of Maine for one year. Williams was a relative of the author of this work, Horatio Bridge (1806-1893). Bridge, a U.S. Navy officer, served aboard the sloop-of-war USS Saratoga off the west coast of Africa from 1843-1844. The USS Saratoga was stationed there to protect American citizens and suppress the slave trade. According to correspondence, Bridge’s roommate at Bowdoin College, Nathaniel Hawthorne, allegedly inspired Bridge to keep a journal of his travels, which Hawthorne helped edit and compile into the Journal of an African Cruiser.