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Class Visits to Rare Books and Special Collections: American Literature to 1830

Lists of materials for specific classes that have visited RBSC. Click on the tabs for your subject areas

American Popular Culture Links

American Literature before 1830

These are examples of materials related to American Literature through 1830 available in RBSC. Students have an opportunity to learn the proper handling of early materials. Specific topics may yield more materials; please ask about your topic. To request a class visit, please email the Curator.

Indian Captivity Narratives

Williams, John, 1664-1729. The redeemed captive returning to Zion, or, A faithful history of remarkable occurrences in the captivity and deliverance of Mr. John Williams ... drawn up by himself ; annexed to which, is a sermon ... ; also, an appendix, by the Rev. Mr. Williams, of Springfield ; likewise, an appendix, by the Rev. Mr. Taylor, of Deerfield ; with a conclusion to the whole, by the Rev. Mr. Prince, of Boston. 4th ed., with additions. Printed at Greenfield, Massachusetts : by Thomas Dickman, 1793. Other Title: A faithful history of the remarkable occurences in the captivity and deliverance of Mr. John Williams. Rare Books Collection E87 .W7251793A

Narrative of the capture and providential escape of Misses Frances and Almira Hall : two respectable young women (sisters) of the ages 16 and 18, who were taken prisoners by the savages, at a frontier settlement, near Indian Creek, in May last ... : likewise is added the interesting narrative of the captivity and sufferings of Philip Brigdon, a Kentuckian, who fell into the hands of the merciless savages ... communicated by persons of respectability living in the neighborhood of the captives. [New York : William P. Edwards?], 1832. Notes: The names of the girls were Rachel Hall (afterwards Mrs. Munson) and Sylvia Hall (afterwards Mrs. Horn). Cf. Baldwin, Hist. of La Salle County, Ill. and Moses, Illinois, historical and statistical. Cover title: War and pestilence! Capture of two young ladies by the savages... Illustrated covers. Rare Books Collection E83.83 .N26

Caverly, Robert Boodey, 1806-1887. Heroism of Hannah Duston, together with the Indian Wars of New England, by Robert B. Caverly. Boston, B. B. Russell & co., 1874. American Popular Literature Collection. E82 .C37

Early American Literature: Fiction and Poetry

Foster, Hannah Webster, 1759-1840. The coquette, or, The history of Eliza Wharton : a novel, founded on fact by a lady of Massachusetts. 3rd edition. Newburyport [Mass.] : Published and sold by Thomas & Whipple ; Salem, Mass. : Sold also by Henry Whipple, 1811 (Newburyport : W. & J. Gilman) References: Shaw & Shoemaker, 22837. Notes: Publisher's advertisements: p. [2]-[9]. Former owner: Maria Bemis, Charleston. American Popular Literature Collection PS744.F7 C67 1811a

Rowson, Mrs., 1762-1824. The history of Charlotte Temple. A tale of truth. By Mrs. Rawson. Two volumes in one. Printed for Hez. Steel no. 218 Warren street, Hudson.Catskill, NY: Elliott, 1808. Rare Books Collection PS2736.R3 C51808A

Cooper, James Fenimore, 1789-1851. The wept of Wish Ton-Wish : a tale / by the author of The pioneers, Prairie, & c. Philadelphia : Carey, Lea & Blanchard, 1838, c1829. American Popular Literature Collection PS1418 .W7 1838a

Brown, Charles Brockden, 1771-1810. Jane Talbot . Boston : Published by S.G. Goodrich, 1827. Notes: Originally issued as volume 6 of Goodrich's edition of Brown's novels. Bound in marbled paper boards; tan leather shelfback. American Popular Literature Collection PS1134 .J36 1827a

Wheatley, Phillis, 1753-1784. Poems on various subjects, religious and moral. By Phillis Wheatley, Negro servant to Mr. John Wheatley, of Boston , in New England. London , Printed for A. Bell, bookseller, Aldgate; and sold by Messrs. Cox and Berry , King-street, Boston , 1773. Notes: Frontispiece (trimmed and mounted) is an engraved port. of the author. First edition; cf. Afro-Americana, 1553-1906 ( Philadelphia : Library Co.), no. 11111; Negro history, 1553-1903 ( Philadelphia . Library Co.), no. 194; and The Negro in the United States , by Dorothy B. Porter, no. 1284. "Published ... Septr. 1st, 1773 by Archd. Bell , bookseller no. 8 near the Saracens Head Aldgate."--Front. African American Collection. PS866 .W5 1773a

Irving , Washington , 1783-1859. Abbotsford and Newstead abbey . By the author of "The sketch-book". London , J. Murray, 1835. Rare Books Collection DA890. A1 I67

Irving , Washington , 1783-1859. The Crayon miscellany. By the author of the Sketch book. Philadelphia : Carey, Lea, & Blanchard, 1835. First edition. Rare Books Collection PS2060 .A11835 

Irving , Washington , 1783-1859. A book of the Hudson : collected from the various works of Diedrich Knickerbocker. Edited by Geoffrey Crayon. New York : G.P. Putnam, 1849. Contents: Communipaw -- Guests from Gibbet island -- Peter Stuyvesant's voyage up the Hudson -- The chronicle of Bearn island -- The legend of Sleepy Hollow -- Dolph Heyliger -- Rip Van Winkle -- Wolfert Webber. Rare Books Collection F127.H8 I86 1849ab

Instructional Literature for Children

Janeway, James, 1636?-1674. A token for children : being an exact account of the conversion, holy and exemplary lives and joyful deaths of several young children by James Janeway ... to which is added, A token for the children of New-England, or, Some examples of children, in whom the fear of God was remarkably budding before they died, in several parts of New England ; preserved and published for the encouragement of piety in other children ; with new additions. Boston : Printed and sold by Z. Fowle, in Back Street, near the Mill-Bridge, 1771. American Popular Literature Collection. BR1714 .J3 1771a

Prince, Thomas. The Great And Solemn Obligations To Early Piety [Boston : S.n., 1721. RBX BJ1661 .P7361721A

The story-teller: a collection of original tales, calculated to lead the youthful mind to the love of religion, morality, and virtue. Munroe & Francis' juvenile library. Boston : Munroe and Francis, [181-?] Rare Books PZ5 .S775

Cameron, Mrs. (Lucy Lyttelton), 1781-1858. Marten and his two little scholars at a Sunday school / by the author of "The two lambs," &c; revised by the Committee of Publication. Philadelphia : American Sunday School Union, 1827. American Popular Literature Collection PZ6.C146 MA

Kennedy, Grace, 1782-1825. Anna Ross; a story for children. By the author of "The decision;" Profession is not principle," "Father Clement," & c. 4th American ed. New York, Burgess, 1828. American Popular Literature Collection PZ6.K48 AN6

Non-fiction: Politics and History

Paine, Thomas, 1737-1809. Common sense ; addressed to the inhabitants of America , on the following interesting subjects : I. Of the origin and design of government in general, with concise remarks on the English constitution ; II. Of monarchy and hereditary succession ; III. Thoughts on the present state of American affairs ; IV. Of the present ability of America , with some miscellaneous reflections. [The fourth edition, corrected]. A new edition with several additions in the body of the work ; to which is added an appendix ; together with an address to the people called Quakers. N. B.; the new addition here given increases the work upwards of one-third. Philadelphia printed ; London : Re-printed, for J. Almon, 1776.  

Bound With: Plain truth / James Chalmers. London : Reprinted for J. Almon, opposite Burlington House, in Piccadilly, 1776 with:  Additions to Common sense / Thomas Paine. London : Reprinted for J. Almon, opposite Burlington House, in Piccadilly, 1776.   With this work Paine had nothing to do. It is a reprint, with some omissions and considerable additions, of the"Large additions" collected by R. Bell of Philadelphia , the original publisher of "Common sense", and published after his quarrel with Paine, as a device to help the sale of his third edition against that printed about the same time by Paine's new publishers, W. and T. Bradford. According to the advertisement at the end of the Philadelphia edition, the "Large additions" were written by "some worthy and and respectable citizens of Philadelphia ". cf. Sabin, v. 14, p. 126. The fourth edition, corrected.   Rare Books Collection E211.P131 1776

Paine, Thomas, 1737-1809. COMMON SENSE. PHILADELPHIA , 1776. Rare Books Collection E211 .P129

Pamphlets Of The American Revolution[s.l. : S.n.], [1776-1908]. Rare Books Collection E203 P3

Edwards, Jonathan, 1629-1712. The exposition given by My Lord Bishop of Sarum of the second article of our religion examined. [ London ] Printed for Tho. Bennett, 1702. Rare Books Collection BX5137.B8 E3

Wollaston, William, 1660-1724. The religion of nature delineated. London , Printed by S. Palmer, and sold by Lintott, 1725. Notes: Title vignette (printing press) The edition upon which Benjamin Franklin worked as a compositor at S. Palmer's printing office shortly after his arrival in London on Dec. 24, 1724. Although referred to by Franklin as the second edition, it is really the third, as a privately printed edition of 1722 and a 1724 edition preceded it. cf. Curtis Publishing Company. The collection of Franklin imprints ... 1918; Solly, E. "Benjamin Franklin, printer" in the Bibliographer, v.3, p.3-4. Signed: William Wollaston. Rare Books Collection BL180 .W61725

Poor Richard improved: being an almanack and ephemeris ... for the bissextile year, 1748 : ... Fitted to the latitude of forty degrees, and a meridian of near five hours from London ; ... By Richard Saunders, philom. Published: Philadelphia : printed and sold by B. Franklin, [1747]. References: Evans 5952. Miller, C.W. Franklin, 419 variant 3. Drake, M. Almanacs, 9694. Notes: Signatures: [A]4 B² C-F4?² At head of title: Note, this almanack us'd to contain but 24 pages, and now has 36; yet the price is very little advanc'd. Astronomical calculations attributed to Theophilus Grew. Rare Books Collection PS749 .A21748

Transatlantic Advertising/Americana

Hariot, Thomas, 1560-1621. A brief and true report of the new found land of Virginia by Thomas Hariot. A facsimile ed., of the 1588 quarto, with an introduction by the late Randolph G. Adams. Ann Arbor : Clements Library Associates, 1951. Rare F229 .H287 1951

St. John de Crèvecoeur, J. Hector, 1735-1813. Letters from an American farmer; describing certain provincial situations, manners, and customs ... and conveying some  idea of the late and present interior circumstances of the British colonies in North America. Written for the information of a friend in England, by J. Hector St. John ... London, Printed for T. Davies [etc.] 1782. Rare E 163 C82

St. John de Crèvecoeur, J. Hector, 1735-1813. Lettres d'un cultivateur américain, écrites à W. S., ecuyer, depuis l'annee 1779, jusqu'à 1781. Traduites de l'anglois par ***. Published: Paris, Cuchet, M.DCC.LXXXIV (1784). A free translation, by the author, of "Letters from an American farmer," with large additions. These titles were hugely important in encouraging European immigration to America. Rare Books Collection E163 .C82 1784

Wansey, Henry, 1751-1827. The journal of an excursion to the United States of North America in the summer of 1794. Salisbury : Printed and sold by J. Easton, 1796. Rare Books Collection E164 .W367 1796a

Cooper, Thomas, 1759-1839. Some information respecting America collected by Thomas Cooper. Edition: The 2d ed. London , Printed for J. Johnson, 1795. Contents: Letters from America to a friend in England -- [Tables of weight and measure, prices, duties, etc.] -- Constitution of the United States --Extract from a work not yet published ... entitled, A view of the United States of America / by Tench Coxe -- Information to those who would remove to America, written some time since / by Dr. Benjamin Franklin. Rare Books Collection E164 .C78

Burke, Edmund, 1729-1797. An account of the European settlements in America . In six parts. I. A short history of the discovery of that part of the world. II. The manners and customs of the original inhabitants. III. Of the Spanish settlements. IV. Of the Portuguese. V. Of the French, Dutch, and Danish. VI. Of the English ... London , R. and J. Dodsley, 1757. Notes: Probably the joint work of Edmund and William Burke, but usually attributed to the former, who called himself merely the reviser of his kinsman's work.--cf. Dict. nat. biog. Sabin, Bibl. amer. Rare E143 B94

Robertson, William, 1721-1793. The history of America . By William Robertson. Published: London , W. Strahan [etc.] 1777. 1 st ed. Contains Books I-VIII, the history of the discovery of America and the conquest of Mexico and Peru . (Books IX-X, the history of Virgina and New England , first appeared spearately in 1796). "A catalogue of Spanish books and manuscripts": v.2, p.523-535. Errata on last page of v. 2. Robertson was a Scotch Enlightenment writer. This title focused as part of a larger theme on the Spanish, Portuguese, and British colonizations of America. Rare E 143 R62

Descriptions of America by Americans

Morse, Jedidiah, 1761-1826. The American gazetteer, exhibiting, in alphabetical order, a much more full and accurate account, than has been given, of the states, provinces, counties, cities, towns ... on the American continent, also of the West-India islands ... with a particular description of the Georgia western territory ... Collected and comp. by, and under the direction of, Jedidiah Morse. Illustrated with seven maps. Printed in Boston, At the Presses of S. Hall, and Thomas & Andrews, and sold by E. Larkin, and the other booksellers in Boston; by Gaine & Ten Eyck, and S. Campbell, New-York; [etc.,etc.] 1797. Rare E 14 M84

Church, Benjamin, 1639-1718. The history of Philip's war, commonly called the great Indian war, of 1675 and 1676. Also, of the French and Indian wars at the eastward, in 1689, 1690, 1692, 1696, and 1704. By Thomas Church, esq. With numerous notes to explain the situation of the places of battles, the particular geography of the ravaged country, and the lives of the principal persons engaged in those wars. Also, an appendix containing an account of the treatment of the natives by the early voyagers, the settlement of N. England by the forefathers, the Pequot war, narratives of persons carried into captivity, anecdotes of the Indians, and the most important late Indian wars to the time of the Creek war. By Samuel G. Drake. 2d ed. ... Exeter, N.H., J. & B. Williams, 1829. Notes: Includes reproduction of t.-p. of original edition: The entertaining history of King Philip's war ... 2d ed. Boston, printed, 1716; Newport, reprinted, 1772. Rare Books E83.67 .C573 1829B

Subject Guide

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Sarah Cain
RBSC: 815.753.0255; Regional History Center: 815.753.9394