London: Printed for W. Strahan and T. Cadell, 1772. ,viii,542pp. plus errata and eighteen folding engraved maps. Large quarto. Contemporary half calf and marbled boards, edges sprinkled red, gilt spine label. A bit of cracking to spine leather, boards slightly rubbed. Contemporary ownership inscription on titlepage. Light tanning, otherwise internally clean. A fine copy. Item #WRCAM43633C
The best contemporary account of the French and Indian War, justly celebrated for its cartography and textual content, and one of the great rarities of colonial Americana, complete with all maps and the elusive errata leaf. Virtually all of Mante's account relates to the war in North America, with detailed narratives of Braddock's campaign and the other frontier and Canadian campaigns of the conflict. The work is particularly desirable for its contemporary descriptions of Pontiac's War, a campaign in which the author participated as major of brigade to Colonel Dudley Bradstreet. In addition, the introduction includes an interesting account of young George Washington's escape in 1753 from assassination by an Indian who acted as his interpreter and guide. Mante evidently took great care to gather information that was both historically and cartographically accurate for the present work. The maps are praised by all bibliographers as being by far the best relating to the war, and include several seminal maps which are the most accurate produced to that time. They comprise: 1) "Fort Beau Sejour, & the adjacent Country Taken Possession of by Colonel Monckton" 2) "Lake Ontario to the Mouth of the River St. Lawrence" 3) [Map of Lake George and vicinity] 4) "A Plan of Fort Edward & Its Environs on Hudsons River" 5) "Communication Between Albany & Oswego" 6) "Attack on Louisbourg" [by Amherst & Boscawen] 7) "The Attack of Ticonderoga" [by Major General Abercromby] 8) "Plan of Fort Pitt or Pittsbourg" 9) "Guadaloupe" 10) "Attack on Quebec" [by Wolfe & Saunders] 11) "A Sketch of the Cherokee Country" 12) "The River Saint Lawrence from Lake Ontario to the Island of Montreal" 13) "A Plan of the Attack upon Fort Levi" 14) "River St. Lawrence from Montreal to the Island of St. Barnaby...& the Islands of Jeremy" 15) "A View of the Coast of Martinico Taken by Desire of Rear Adml Rodney" 16) "Part, of the West Coast, of the Island of Saint Lucia" 17) "Plan of the Retaking Newfoundland" [by Colville & Amherst] 18) "Attack of the Havanna" [by Albemarle & Pococke] Sabin writes of this great rarity: "Copies with all the maps are scarce. It is probable that but few were printed, though the large and beautiful plans and military maps (which gave it so great a value), must have made its production a work of much expense." The Streeter copy was bought by Sessler in 1967 for $900. CHURCH 1092. HOWES M267, "c." STREETER SALE 1031. FIELD 1003. SABIN 44396. BEINECKE, LESSER ANTILLES COLLECTION 283.