RYAN, William Redmond
Personal Adventures in Upper and Lower California, in 1848-9 with the Author’s Experience at the Mines. Illustrated by Twenty-Three Drawings, Taken on the Spot. In Two Volumes.
Early Illustrations of California Life, New Towns and Gold Mining
“Ryan, an Englishman enlisted in Colonel J.D. Stevenson’s First Regiment of New York Volunteers in 1847 and landed in Monterey with the force on the Isabella in February 1848. When the regiment disbanded, Ryan went off to the Stanislaus diggings for a brief and unsuccessful try at mining, and then returned to Monterey. Ryan devoted the first two chapters of volume II to life in the diggings. The adventurer quickly found that trading pistols and rifles reaped a much greater and less strenuous reward than mining. Consequently, his opinion of mining was negative. Cowan calls this title, ‘the charming narrative of an artist and bohemian who left unrecorded but little he saw.’ The plates by Ryan furnish the reader with some of the best contemporary views of mining, cities, pueblos, and daily life in California” (Kurtuz)
London: William Shoberl, Publisher, 1850, First Edition, Two volumes, 347 and 413 pages, tinted lithographed frontispiece in each volume and twenty-one wood-engraved plates. Advertisement leaves have been removed. Later half black calf, decoratively tooled in gilt over brown cloth boards. Spines decoratively tooled and lettered in gilt in compartments. Marbled endpapers. Top edge gilt, other sprinkled red. Housed together in a blue marbled slipcase with morocco tips.
Cowan II, Graff 3626, Kurutz 548, Howes R559, Wheat Gold Rush: 173