Collection of the Travels in the Interior of North America by Karl Bodmer and Prince Maximilian, five volumes in total and the complete travelogue with 81 hand-colored plates. One of the finest depictions of the American frontier and the American Indian culture of the Missouri territory.
All five volumes bound in matching quarter black morocco, blue marbled paper, titles in gilt on spines and over black label on covers. The three volume octavo set is the first French edition, which includes half-titles, 31 wood engraved vignettes, 6 full page wood-engraved illustrations, lacking map. Green text stain on leafends, occasional foxing, solid text blocks.
The oblong quarto volume of illustrated plates is complete with 33 hand-colored aquatints and a map of Ft. Clark on the Missouri River, each plate measuring 10.25″ x 12.25″, all with vibrant imagery and hand coloring. A few points of faint foxing, finger soiling, marginal repairs. Of the 33 plates, 10 are supplied, with variations to paper and toning.
The atlas folio is complete with 48 aquatint plates, all hand-colored, with the artists blind stamp. Of the 48 plates, 14 were supplied, with slight variances to toning and margins. Plate 36 with tissue reinforcement at hinge. Plates are a mixture of first issue and second issue, most undated. Each plate measures approximately 24.5″ x 18.25″. Includes the first state portrait of Pehriska Ruhpa, undated and mis-numbered. An exceptional collection.
(Sabin 47015) (Abbey 615) (Wagner-Camp 76b) (Howes M443d)
This record of Prince Maximilian’s journey up the Missouri River is one of the definitive records of the lost American Indian nations of the upper Midwest. The illustrations by Karl Bodmer depict the major Plains tribes, including the Crow, Blackfeet, Cree and the Mandan. These illustrations, drawn before the 1837 smallpox epidemic that decimated the Blackfoot and Mandan peoples, remains one of the few records of their cultures.