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    "A Monumental Collection
    of Scientific Information..."

    [Pacific Railroad Survey]. Reports of Explorations and Surveys, to Ascertain the Most Practicable and Economical Route for a Railroad from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. Made Under the Direction of the Secretary of War, in 1853-4, According to the Acts of Congress of March 3, 1853, May 31, 1854, and August 5, 1854. Washington: A.O.P. Nicholson, Beverley Tucker, and Thomas H. Ford. 1855-1860. First editions. Twelve volumes in thirteen quartos. (Approximately 9 x 11 inches). 594 lithographed plates (some in color) and fifty-eight maps, charts, and profiles (several large folding maps, including the "Map of the Territory of the United States from the Mississippi to the Pacific Ocean Ordered by the Hon. Jeff'n Davis, Secretary of War to Accompany the Reports of the Explorations for a Railroad Route..." engraved by Selmar Siebert). Numerous in-text illustrations. Uniform contemporary brown half-leather over marbled paper covered boards with gilt rules and titles on spines. Bindings worn, rubbed, chipped and soiled, spines crazed and with vertical creases, joints and hinges cracked, few boards coming loose (still attached on binding cords). Few sections of textblocks with visible over-sewing in the inner margins, not affecting images or text. The Siebert map, which also has a detached corner, and "Profiles of Rail Roads" (both from volume XI) are torn out but present. The "Milk R. to the Crossing of the Columbia R." map in volume XII (Pt. I) is also torn out but present. Most maps have edge and fold wear, fold separations, creasing, additional folds, tears (some extended into the image area), chips, and few with paper losses. Plates with image off-set, some browned or darkened, few with minor white stains. Maps, plates, and pages with varying degrees of foxing and soiling, and minor dampstaining. Overall very good.

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    "Despite their flaws, these volumes contain a monumental collection of scientific information, geographical, zoological, botanical, geological, of the still mysterious American West. Upon first examination, the volumes seem forbiddingly disorganized; reports clearly were printed as they were received; there is no overall system or arrangement, nor are there general indices to the volumes, and, as Camp has pointed out, there is the usual duplication of printing and lithography by both houses of Congress. However, these faults are amply compensated by the richness of the material within." - (Wagner-Camp, page 462).


    Vol. I (1855)- Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson.  

    Vol. II (1855)- Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 37 plates, 1 map, 1 profile.

    Vol. III (1856) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 31 plates, 2 profiles, 1 map.

    Vol.  IV (1856), Printed by Beverley Tucker. 59 plates, 1 chart.

    Vol. V (1856) - Printed by A.O.P Nicholson. 66 plates, 11 maps.

    Vol. VI (1857) - Printed by A.O.P Nicholson. 50 plates.

    Vol. VII (1857) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 51 plates. 2 maps.

    Vol. VIII (1857) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 43 plates.

    Vol. IX (1858) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson.

    Vol. X (1859) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 122 plates.

    Vol. XI (1855) - Printed by A.O.P. Nicholson. 12 plates, 36 maps.

    Vol. XII (Pt. I) (1860) - Printed by Thomas H. Ford. 70 plates, 3 maps.

    Vol. XII (Pt.2) (1860) - Printed by Thomas H. Ford. 53 plates.

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    Auction Dates
    September, 2016
    15th Thursday
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