New York: Henry G. Bohn, 1857.
Ninth Edition. With 313 black and white engravings on 180 leaves including fold-out map. 2 vols. 8vo. Original red cloth, gilt spine. Spines laid down. Very good. Item #231017
An idealist and dreamer in the best American sense, Catlin's purpose, as noted in these letters, was to "[snatch] from a hasty oblivion what could be saved for the benefit of posterity, and perpetuating it, as a fair and just monument, to the memory of a truly lofty and noble race." There was a practical, ethnographic element to his project, as well: five years after Catlin painted them, the Mandan tribe was devasted by smallpox (DAB).
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