Stuttgart. 1854. Two volumes. ,390; ,381pp. Modern three-quarter calf and marbled boards, spines gilt, leather labels. Light scattered foxing. Very good. Item #WRCAM43392
An important travel narrative by a learned German who was keenly interested in American customs, religions, politics, and folklore. The author's training in theology explains his interest in American religious groups such as Mormons, Shakers, and Dunkards, but his translation and analysis of thirteen Negro spirituals place Busch above the standard observer and may even establish him as the pioneer scholar of American folklore. His itinerary through New York, Ohio, Kentucky, and Missouri provided much material for his absorbent mind to digest. "...His scholarly training, wide experience, understanding, and attention to detail make Busch an important observer" - Clark. "Trenchant observations on the Middle West, etc." - Howes. The author concludes by stating what he believed to be the four characteristic qualities of Americans: "hostility to all authority," "a certain philosophical attitude which expresses itself through questioning and searching for final causes and general ideas," "extraordinary intensity in life and endeavor," and "an exaggerated love for material things...which sets money above the value of the human." Bosch later became known as "Bismarck's Boswell" and published many travel books. HOWES B1038. SABIN 9520. CLARK III:283. FLAKE 1041. BUCK 482. STEVENS 1966.