Texas historian Alexander Dienst's copy

    [Richard Penn Smith]. Col. Crockett's Exploits and Adventures in Texas: Wherein is Contained a Full Account of his Journey from Tennessee to the Red River and Natchitoches, and Thence Across Texas to San Antonio Including his Many Hair-Breadth Escapes: Together with a Topographical, Historical and Political View of Texas. London: R. Kennett, 1837. First English edition. 12mo, 152 pages. Sixteen pages of ads preceding the title page. Bound in modern brown leather with blind and gilt stamped to front board and gilt lettering on spine. Marbled endpapers. This copy once belonged to Alex Dienst, who has made many pencil and ink notations throughout. Moderate to heavy foxing scattered throughout, especially in the front and near the back. Light scuffing to boards. In clear dust jacket.

    Although we are assured on the title page that this book was indeed "Written by [Crockett] Himself," we are also informed that "The Narrative [was] Brought Down From the Death Of Col. Crockett To the Battle Of San Jacinto, by an Eye-Witness." In fact, the book was written by one Richard Penn Smith, the son of a prominent Philadelphia lawyer, who reached his widest literary audience and left his most lasting mark on the American literary tradition through his anonymous authorship of Col. Crockett's Exploits, a book that gave his countrymen a new, sanitized Crockett as a figure worthy of emulation. Although a clumsy fabrication produced with pecuniary profit and political gain as its only goals, Smith's work was the early forerunner of one of America's unique art forms - the popular western.

    Dr. Alexander Dienst was a dentist, author, and historian who amassed a collection of books and primary sources dealing with Texas history, primarily the Texas Revolution and the Texas Navy. From 1932 to 1935 served as president of the Texas State Historical Association and authored the book "The Navy of the Republic of Texas, 1835-1845."

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    Auction Dates
    March, 2012
    3rd Saturday
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