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33 items found:

KELLY, Hugh. The Romance of An Hour, a comedy of two acts, as it is performed, with universal applause, at the Theatre Royal in Covent-Garden. London, for Kearsley 1774. Octavo modern plain wrapper; [4,8],44pp with publisher's advert on the last page for four other Kelly plays. A rather good copy. Au$800

First edition of this up to the minute Anglo-Indian farce by the literary hack, virulent anti-American independence critic and ministry mouthpiece. Kelly's biographer, Robert Bataille, was surprised that Kelly announced his authorship so early - the first production was on December 2 and this printed edition was on the street by the 17th - given that an earlier play had been disrupted by rioting Wilkites. I suggest it was hope for riotous publicity that made Kelly put his name on the title.
The play got a lot of poor, a few warm reviews and not much attention despite being, as I said, filled with current fads. The only truly admirable character is the Indian servant who is made, poor thing, to sound to us more like an American Indian in an old cowboy film than any Indian. He says everything but "heap big wampum". The heroine is a charming Anglo Indian aristocrat who has two well bred Englishmen competing for her hand despite her tint and Tahiti is thrown in - the latest chart is introduced and Bataille suggests that Kelly was capitalising with his noble native servant, on Omai, then in England.


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Slavery. [Gilbert Francklyn?]. A Very New Pamphlet Indeed! Being the Truth addressed to the people at large. Containing some strictures on the English Jacobins ... respecting the Slave Trade. London, printed in the year 1792. Octavo, disbound; 16pp. Au$495

The very model of a modern refutation, our writer has used all the methods still used to condemn reformers; in this case the abolitionists. By the second sentence the witnesses brought forward by the abolitionists have been "committed to take their trial for perjury." Before the end of the first page the abolitionists - Wilberforce, Clarkson et al - are attached to radical fanatics and Jacobins set on destroying Britain - no small charge in 1792. By page two the secret society of "Old Jewry" - a Presbyterian meeting house - has been unearthed and we learn that the testimony offered by these radicals comes from "discarded servants, starving surgeons, sailors taken drunk from the stews, or parsons convicted of adultery."
There are several points of coincidence between this and the anti-abolitionist writings of slave trader Gilbert Francklyn - and "Mr Francklyn" gets one brief mention, for being magnificently humane - but it may be that our author simply mined Francklyn for material. Certainly Francklyn's known pamphlets were never so thoroughly anonymous as this.
Whoever the author, this received a snappish note in the Monthly Magazine. The Critical Review was also hostile and that hostility extended to a reply to this pamphlet, 'Old Truths & Established Facts' which has been ascribed to Thomas Paine. This second work, Paine or not, was condemned for its lack of originality; our pamphlet for its "scarcely defensible" stratagem of joining the abolitionist with latterday levellers.


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HOYLAND, John. A Historical Survey of the Customs, Habits, & Present State of the Gypsies; designed to develope the origin of this singular people, and to promote the amelioration of their condition. York, printed for the author by Wm. Alexander 1816. Octavo 19th century half gilt calf (a little rubbed); 266,[2 publisher's list]pp. Some light browning, most obvious on the title page, but a rather good, quite handsome copy. Au$275

First edition; only edition really, leaving out modern reprints and facsimiles. Notable for being the first serious book on, and the first sympathetic defence, however misguided, of the English Gypsies. And notable for the insubstantial stories about Hoyland himself, his supposed fall from Quaker grace and dalliance with Gypsy maidens.


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Chinese Immigration. Petition. Arrest of Chinese Immigration. Laid upon the council table by the Honorable W.H.F. Mitchell ... 15th July, 1857. [with] Influx of the Chinese. Petition ... 7th August 1857. [with] Influx of the Chinese. Petition ... 7th August 1857. [with] Petition. Influx of Chinese ... 12th August 1857. [with] Influx of the Chinese. Petition ... 2nd October 1857. [with] Report of the Select Committee ... on the subject of Chinese Immigration, together with proceedings of the committee and minutes of evidence. Melbourne, Govt Printer 1857. Six papers foolscap, disbound; the petitions one page each, the report viii,28pp. Au$750

The first petition, from the Local Court of Castlemaine, is the more verbose about the evils and dangers of the Chinese inundation but unspecific about remedies, calling only for more cogent legislation. The second, also from the Local Court of Castlemaine brings a memorial unanimously approved by "large and influential meetings". The third is from members of the Local Court of Fryer's Creek. The fourth, from the inhabitants of Geelong, is brief and firm, calling for a poll-tax and the outlawing, with severe penalties, of the Chinese passenger trade and the last is from some 1600 gold miners and residents of Campbell's Creek calling on the government to rid them of these Pagan idolaters.
The committee, chaired by Pascoe Fawkner, examined a proposed bill to regulate the Chinese population and a number of witnesses, including a couple of detectives, the Chinese Protector at Sandhurst who was either the most ignorant or most honest of the witnesses, William Young, the missionary who produced a report on the Chinese of Victoria a decade later, and local merchant Kong Meng who spoke of some atrocious behavior by Europeans on the goldfields. The act, printed at the end, is recommended with a couple of amendments and consists of a hefty poll tax and punitive licensing system.


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Barque "Norna." (Correspondence relative to). [with] ... Further Correspondence. Sydney, Govt printer 1861. Foolscap disbound; 6pp and 1 page on blue paper. Au$35

A sordid story of the treatment of Lascar seamen and, to me, surprising use of authority. Seems if a ship's officer complains to the Water Police that his crew are refusing to obey orders said crew is rounded up and thrown into gaol. The Norna's crew were arrested on the charge of Captain Crawford.
The Water Police Magistrate's account here is more defensive than clear but it emerges after much to and froing that one seaman had possibly been murdered at sea and another came close to death in Sydney, due to mistreatment by the captain and second officer. These two were held and charged.
Then, the near dead sailor was put back on board the Norna, told that sea voyage would be good for his health and the Norna set sail with a new captain. Probably not a great decision: the Norna was wrecked somewhere round the Coral Sea and most of the crew pretty much marooned by the new captain. But that's another story.


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POUCHET, Georges. The Plurality of the Human Race: translated and edited ... by Hugh J.C. Beavan. Longman, for the Anthropological Society 1864. Octavo publisher's cloth. A nice copy. Au$200

Pouchet did little to advance his father's belated theories of spontaneous generation but his theories of separate species of humanity were perfectly timed. His intention seems less to be to establish racial supremacy - unlike Gobineau and most of the American polygenesists, being French he probably saw no need to press an already ineffaceable advantage - than to cudgel Christianity.
This English translation is invaluable for having been prepared by a horrified Englishman of the upright and conscientious type; the best type. Having been charged with the task Beavan has dutifully prepared it for presentation to the English public despite his raging disapproval: "when Author and Editor differ so considerably ... such very peculiar ideas ... I am sorry to find in it opinions with which I cannot at all agree ... science is strained in an unnatural manner .. entirely unproved ... much to be regretted ... Author and Editor are in entire disagreement ... better left unsaid ..." come from his quite short preface. Still, he has been unable to restrain himself from peppering the book with angry footnotes.


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YOUNG, Rev. W. Report on the Condition of the Chinese Population in Victoria. Melbourne, Govt Printer 1868. Foolscap folio, stitched as issued; 30pp. A small slip was sometime pinned at the bottom of the first two leaves, leaving marks; no great grief. Au$750

By 1868 the Chinese population of Victoria was on the wane - estimated at less than half its peak at the height of the goldrush - but "vicious practices"were seemingly on the rise. Chief among these were, of course, gambling and opium but their by-products, larceny and robberies, were a growing threat. Young suggested that the decline or disbandment of Chinese Associations had a directly negative effect on crime and has provided a translation of the rules of an association to illustrate to the government the benefit of these associations to the community.
The first part of his report is both valuable and touching in that Chinese translators have provided statistics for each of the areas with Chinese communities; these statistics then are personal and idiosyncratic in their focus, providing the closest thing we have to a Chinese view of themselves at the time. Young includes a report by Dr Clendenning on the condition of Chinese lepers at Ballarat, and then finishes with his own report and suggestions for improvements, including the restitution of 'Headmen', the improvement of interpreters, education in English, Chinese police officers and so on. However, given the "abnormal condition of the great mass" (ie no women), in present circumstances it was best to encourage them to all go home.
Young was an LMS missionary to the Chinese, apparently of Scottish-Malay descent, who had served in Amoy before coming to Victoria in the mid fifties. The impression given by this report and other documents of the period is that he was one of very few non-Chinese in the colony that had any grasp of any Chinese language.


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GOBINEAU, Count A. de. [Arthur]. Typhaines Abbey: A tale of the twelfth century. Translated by Chas. B. Meigs. Philadelphia, Claxton Remsen &c 1869. Octavo contemporary half morocco and mottled boards (a little rubbed); 438pp. A signed presentation from Meigs to E.B. Gardette, with Gardette's handwritten copies of two letters of appreciation to Meigs. Mounted opposite the title is a photograph of Gobineau inscribed 'M. de Gobineau' which I take to be identification rather than a signature. Au$300

First (only?) edition in English of Gobineau's 1867 novel. It seems unlikely Gobineau will ever regain whatever regard he was given by rational persons; he will forever be the father of Nazi Aryan race theories. That's if he ever did have the regard of rational persons.
Meigs is certainly suspect. Being Emeritus Profesor at Jefferson College doesn't save him from gushing like a star struck teen in his prefatory remarks addressed to Gobineau. All the FACTS of human history had been "a myth and mystery to my understanding" until the light of Gobineau's scholarship shone from his essay on the inequality of the human races. And so we go through every one of Gobineau's books until we learn that two of Gobineau's characters in this book share Meigs' love equally with his great-grandchildren.
The recipient of this copy, Emile Gardette, something of a heavyweight in Philadelphia academic and literary circles, is hardly less thrilled by this novel and archly suggests that he may be able to help with widening its circulation. He can't have been as influential as he believed.


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Blackbirding. Polynesian Immigration. (Despatches relative to alleged abuses, etc ...). Sydney, Govt Printer 1869. Foolscap folio modern plain wrapper; drop title, 24pp. Au$200

For the most part this details the murders on the blackbirding ship 'Young Australian' with some information on the seizure of the 'Daphne' by Palmer in the Rosario in Fiji. The captain and supercargo of the 'Young Australian' were sentenced to death and released after a couple of years in prison. Palmer was forced to pay reparations to the owner of the Daphne.


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Blackbirding. Further Correspondence Respecting the Deportation of South Sea Islanders. London, House of Commons 1871. Foolscap, modern quarter calf; vi,212pp. Au$375

A compendium of outrage, murder, slavery and kidnapping according to the index. Bully Hayes is arrested for kidnapping on page 141 and escaped by p.143.


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Blackbirding. James Patrick Murray. Brig "Carl" - James Patrick Murray. (correspondence, &c, as to admission of Murray as an approver.) Sydney, Govt Printer 1873. Foolscap, disbound in a modern plain wrapper; 16pp. Au$200

Atrocity, massacre, mass murder - you choose. Seventy or more kidnapped men from the Solomons and Bougainville trying to break out of the hold of the Carl were shot from the deck and thrown, dead or alive, into the sea. Murray, owner of the Carl, when evidence of kidnapping during the second voyage began to surface, discovered religion and turned Queen's Evidence.
The captain and members of the crew were tried in Sydney. Two were sentenced to death but of course not hung. Murray's father wrote to the Melbourne Herald that if anyone went to the gallows, his son should be the first. Murray disappeared from Sydney before the trial was finished and not much more is known about him. Collected here are sworn statements given by Murray and others to the Consul in Levuka and proceedings of a Naval Court held in Levuka before sending the prisoners to Sydney.
Reading Murray's account I wonder that he wasn't strung up on the spot, for mealy-mouthed hypocrisy as well as murder. He must have had some persuasive skill not conveyed in the words themselves.


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LUCAS, Dr T.P. [Thomas Pennington]. Cries From Fiji and Sighings From the South Seas. 'Crush out the British Slave Trade' ... a review of the social, political, and religious relations of the Fijians .. policy of the English Government .. white settlers; the labour traffic. Melbourne, Dunn [1885]. Octavo publisher's cloth; 124pp & errata slip. An excellent copy. Au$275

'England is once more a slave-holding nation!' A first hand account of investigations in Fiji and a savage attack on the officialdom of Fiji, the treatment of the Fijians, and the labour trade, with a comparative table of practices between the old slave trade and labour traffic customs. Lucas, emigre medico, reformer and later crackpot, invented the eponymous pawpaw ointment and wrote a pair of utopian novels, set in a future Brisbane, that I've never seen and would like to find.


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HIGGINSON, S.J. [Sarah Jane Hatfield Higginson]. A Princess of Java. A tale of the far east. Boston, Houghton Mifflin 1887. Octavo publisher's printed pattern cloth with paper labels (spine tips a bit chipped). Au$175

First edition of this sometimes thrilling romance, or sometimes romantic thriller. I can't decide whether Mrs Higginson ever visited Java. This begins more like a travelogue - and she wrote a travel book for children about Java a few years later - than a novel and it's the surfeit of local colour and language that makes me wonder whether it all comes out of Raffles.
There is a strong streak of feminism. Our heroine princess, infected by association with western women, rejects docile subjection to her arranged marriage and other distasteful traditions but the extraordinary culmination of this book is the celebration of not one but two interracial marriages. Admittedly the duskier half of each couple is the princess and a handsome young prince and the unions eventuate with some fairy tale inevitability. But the ordeals and dangers, the adventures of the heroines (there are three) are directed by their conflict with the cultural and racist demands of their parents.
In the end it's Mrs Higginson's brave appreciation of and close attention to the beauty of the Javanese that lends me to believe she spent time there; more than her cavalcade of murderous amok, Guwa Upas - Valley of Poison - and ular lanang, a king cobra that blows gusts of poison.


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Chung Teong Toy. Ah Toy v. Musgrove. A copy of the report of the arguments and judgment in the case of Ah Toy v. Musgrove - Supreme Court of Victoria. Melbourne, Government Printer 1888. Foolscap, excellent in a modern plain wrapper; 164pp. Au$750

A quick dash through Quick and Garran's Annotated Constitution reinforces the sense of the momentous that surrounds this case. Toy v. Musgrove appears again and again cited as a "great" and "celebrated" case. Chung Teong Toy, a thwarted Chinese immigrant who arrived in Melbourne on the Afghan in April 1888, brought his case - backed by the Chinese Residents Association - against Musgrove, the Collector of Customs, for refusing to accept payment of the poll-tax of ten pounds demanded from Chinese immigrants.
Without getting too bogged down in details Musgrove's defence was that he had been ordered to refuse entry to all the Chinese on the Afghan. The Supreme Court found - four judgments to two - in favour of the plaintiff and ruled that the Colony did not have the right to exclude aliens. One of the Justices - Justice Williams - was reluctant to concur; it left the colony "in this most unpleasant and invidious position", unable to prevent "the scum or desperadoes of alien nations from landing ... whenever it may suit them." This of course was unacceptable and an appeal was made to the Privy Council.
In the meantime the colonies used quarantine regulations to exclude Chinese immigrants where they could and quietly let in some handfuls where they couldn't do otherwise. Amongst the outrage and furor the suggestion was made that the authorities knew they were acting illegally; a sardonic Melbourne journalist wrote, "But isn't it a curious thing that our authorities should have been induced to go to illegal lengths under the spur of excitement and public clamour. I
am told privately that at the time they were warned by council that they were exceeding the limits of their constitutional prerogative, but they felt so sure of having the public at their back that they took the risk. And now an opium-smoking, yellow-skinned Mongolian has given them a lesson they (or rather the country) will have to pay for to a pretty tune." (from the Traralgon Record, 14 Sept 1888).
The appeal to the Privy Council not only succeeded in 1891 but, as I understand it, fortified the bastion of government immunity by refusing to accept that an alien "can, in an action in a British court, compel the decision of such matters as these, involving delicate and difficult constitutional questions affecting the respective rights of the Crown and Parliament, and the relations of this country to her self-governing colonies." It should be noted here that I came across this quote not by reading the Privy Council decision but reading the summary of 'Fong Yue Ting v. United States' in the US Supreme Court in 1893. Saddest from this distance is that, reading of the activities of the Chinese Residents Assocation, it appeared to many that progress was made: the short-lived victories of this case and the grudging admission of those handfuls of Chinese immigrants seemed a great step forward.
Of course all colonial governments doubled their efforts and collectively triumphed with the White Australia Policy come federation. What I can't find among the thousands of words written about this case is what happened to Chung Teong Toy.


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Catalogue - clothing. E. Rosenburger, New York City. A Dark Secret is Let Out By [cover title; inside:] The Clothing Specialists of America. E. Rosenburger & Co. NY, the company [c1890]. Large octavo (26x18cm) publisher's illustrated wrapper; [16]pp, illustrated by wood engravings throughout. A vertical fold, a rumpled but very decent copy. Au$350

A splendid example of the value that even the most casual racism adds to any advertising. Who could resist opening this to find out what could so shock this mammy? What is it about images like this that made them so successful? It can't just be that they were funny, nor that they comforted one race nursing a fear of another. And what makes them so magnetic now. It can't just be that they shock us? And what is the dark secret? I've been right through this and I'm still not convinced there isn't some secret beyond Rosenburger's cheap suits for men and boys.
I can't find this or any Rosenburger catalogue in Romaine, McKinstry or anywhere else I can think of looking.


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MAXWELL, Joseph Renner. The Negro Question or, hints for the physical improvement of the negro race, with special reference to West Africa. London, Fisher Unwin 1892. Octavo publisher's green cloth (spine a bit faded); [8],188pp. Publisher's review slip loosely inserted and cancelled bookplate of Selwyn College, Cambridge. Au$1750

Much stranger than one might think, specially after scanning the chapter titles: Negro Hideousness the Principle Curse of the Race; Divine Discontent; Miscegenation; West African Half-Castes; Relation of Races. So far just another racial diatribe of the period ... but on page 41 we read: "I am a Negro of pure descent, I have travelled .. been educated at Oxford .. but I must confess with regret that, except the Chinese, I have never seen another race approaching, even within a measurable distance, the Negro in ugliness."
Surely one of the most extraordinary documents of the century by a black writer; Maxwell, while a devout anglophile and Christian, cedes no inferiority on the part of the negro except aesthetically - and a developed appreciation of beauty is intrinsic to all civilized people. His solution is breeding out black ugliness and as a black man propounding miscegenation he must have been pretty isolated.
Maxwell is circumspect with personal history; he practiced as a barrister in the Gold Coast (he appears in the roll book of what is now Ghana in 1881) and was a member of the legislative assembly. He was, he tells us, a descendant of two tribes, the Bornous and the Eboes; the former being "fairly civilized", the latter "out and out savages". I found no other specific detail in his book and an astonishing lack of attention given to him anywhere else. He was perhaps the first African graduate of Oxford; in an 1881 lecture on relations between Europe and west Africa - his only other publication I can trace - he describes himself as "a native of west Africa, of Merton College .. and of Lincoln's Inn".


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WAWN, William T. The South Sea Islanders and the Queensland Labour Trade. A record of voyages and experiences in the western Pacific from 1875 to 1891. London, Sonnenschein 1893. Largish octavo, excellent in publisher's blue cloth; xvi,440pp, numerous illustrations. Au$325

First edition. One of the essential works of blackbirding literature; it isn't a rare book but this is an uncommonly good copy. A first hand and an aggressively defensive account of the 'recruitment' of Kanakas for the Queensland sugar industry. I suspect that Wawn was further annoyed at the final form of this work.
His first manuscript, written at the height of the controversy, was lost with the wreck of the Quetta and by the time it was rewritten the question was pretty well settled so the publishers took it upon themselves to omit much of the 'controversial matter'. It is dedicated to the "Sugar-planters of Queensland, .. those Bold Pioneers .. who have done more toward the Practical Civilization of the Cannibal and Savage .. those Good Men and True who .. have been basely betrayed, and Unscrupulously Sacrificed .. ".


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QUATREFAGES, A. de. The Pygmies. London, Macmillan 1895. Octavo, rather good in publisher's cloth; 255pp, 31 illustrations. With the White of Belltrees bookplate. Au$65

First English edition, using the American sheets.


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PHILIPS, F.C A Question of Color. NY, Stokes 1895. Narrow octavo publisher's cloth; [4],148pp, frontispiece. The first in Stokes' Bijou Series. Au$75

First American edition, contemporaneous with the London edition. This begins as an unremarkable light romance of the period, until the question of colour intrudes: the young woman throws over her impecunious fiance to marry a rich African prince, brought up in England and 'University' educated. Towards the end we seem to be heading into a crime thriller and we finish with satisfying tragedy.


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MACKAY, Kenneth. The Yellow Wave. A romance of the Asiatic invasion of Australia. London, Bentley 1895. Octavo contemporary half roan (a repair to the back hinge); folding map and six plates by Frank P. Mahony (two form one view in two panels). A few minor signs of use but a pretty good copy. Au$750

First edition, the same sheets were re-issued a couple of years later as an 'Australian Edition', either form is hard to find. This is by no means the first invasion of Australia novel - an earlier generation's fear of the Russians had produced at least two, and Robert Potter had, in The Germ Growers (1892), written what was possibly the first ever alien invasion novel - but it is early for the Yellow Peril.
The Japanese defeat of Russia a decade later sparked a number of invasion novels but the rabidity of the White Australia movement had produced little more than inflamatory articles and cartoons until this. The Russians are not forgotten - they figure at the centre - but it is the Mongol horde that will (the book is set sixty years into the future) sweep down through Queensland using the land grant railways. This is a long and complicated novel, as much a romance as political hobbyhorse.
Mackay was a politician who had published some outback fiction and horsey verse to a good reception (when was the last time you saw poetry reviewed in newspaper sporting pages? - quoted at the end of this book); here he happily mixes in society life, horse racing and a tragic love affair.


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MACKAY, Kenneth. The Yellow Wave. A romance of the Asiatic invasion of Australia. London, Bentley 1895. Octavo publisher's cloth; folding map and six plates by Frank P. Mahony (two form a double page spread in two panels). Edges rubbed but a rather good copy. Au$1250

First edition, the same sheets were re-issued a couple of years later as an 'Australian Edition', either form is hard to find. This is by no means the first invasion of Australia novel - an earlier generation's fear of the Russians had produced at least two, and Robert Potter had, in The Germ Growers (1892), written what was possibly the first ever alien invasion novel - but it is early for the Yellow Peril.
The Japanese defeat of Russia a decade later sparked a number of invasion novels but the rabidity of the White Australia movement had produced little more than inflamatory articles and cartoons until this. The Russians are not forgotten - they figure at the centre - but it is the Mongol horde that will (the book is set sixty years into the future) sweep down through Queensland using the land grant railways. This is a long and complicated novel, as much a romance as political hobbyhorse.
Mackay was a politician who had published some outback fiction and horsey verse to a good reception - when was the last time you saw verse reviewed in newspapers' sporting pages as quoted at the end of the book?; here he happily mixes in society life, horse racing and a tragic love affair.


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BROOKS, C.P. Cotton. Its uses, varieties, fibre structure, cultivation, and preparation for the market .. manufacture of cotton seed oil .. especial reference to cotton growing, ginning, and oil pressing in the United States. NY, Spon and Lowell Mass, the author 1898. Octavo illustrated green cloth (a little rubbed); 384pp and errata slip, folding map, folding table and 175 photo illustrations, wood engravings &c. Au$125

Copiously illustrated at "considerable expense" and "one of the best illustrated textile books of recent years" says the author, and so it is. An excellent compendium of knowledge and practice in the American cotton industry at the end of the 19th century - and a fine social document, recording the working lives and conditions of 'white trash' or 'crackers' and blacks in the southern states. The author seems to lament the passing of slavery: "the hardworking, civil, virtuous, well trained 'auntie' and 'uncle' of 'befoh the wah' times is fast disappearing ... and their place is being taken by an undesirable class of lighter colored, lazier, and more thriftless colored people".


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NEWLAND, Simpson. Blood Tracks of the Bush. London, Gay & Bird 1900. Octavo publisher's red cloth. Sixteen page publisher's list dated January 1900 at the end. Some light spotting at the beginning; a nice, bright copy. Au$850

First edition. We begin, as we must, on an English country estate with an unscrupulous debt-ridden squire directing his equally unscrupulous son to take his young ward's inheritance, make his fortune in the colonies and save the family home. Scene change to Wilcannia and no-one behaves any better. It's a well filled novel, plenty of murder and robbery, false identity, a dash of lost race fantasy when the last survivor of the Leichhardt romp is discovered and points our hero west into the setting sun to rediscover, under the snow capped mountain, the mysterious chamber filled with gold. And - most notable - graphic accounts of the massacre of Aborigines foolish enough to cause trouble. Not much mercy here. I don't think it's giving too much away that the only protaganist left standing at the end of the book is the noble and loyal young ward and she's badly scarred.
Trove locates only two copies of this first edition - the Bell colonial edition is a bit more plentiful - and OCLC and Copac add few copies outside the four British deposit libraries.


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CALLAHAN, George W. Secrets of Ventriloquism and Vocal Illusions. [cover title: Art of Ventriloqism ...] n.p. n.d. [190-?]. Narrow octavo publisher's illustrated textured wrapper; [16]pp. Au$35

Callahan's ventriloquism was peddled in varied forms for decades but I can't find a record of this particular version in OCLC. Presumably Callahan can teach you a now lost art: the ventriloquist's equivalent to black-face.


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ANSTEY, F. [ie Thomas Anstey Guthrie]. A Bayard From Bengal. Being some account of the magnificent and spanking career of Chunder Bindabun Bhosh, Esq. B.A., Cambridge, by Hurry Bungsho Jabberjee, B.A., Calcutta University, ... London, Methuen 1902. Octavo publisher's cloth with mounted illustration; eight plates by Bernard Partridge, 40pp publisher's list dated August 1902. A touch of browning and minor signs of use, a rather good copy. Au$150

First edition of this spanking example of comedy that can no longer be funny; a slur from the caption on the frontispiece to the very last word. Anstey specialised in fish out of water - or stranger in a strange land - situation comedy, often fantastic, and I get him mixed up with his imitator with a parallel pseudonym, R. Andom who specialised in identity exchange. Here we follow the adventures of our Indian hero in Oxford and highish society as portrayed by a fellow Anglophile and drawn by a last minute stand in for the desired Royal Academician, whose ignorance of things British needs constant correction.
All this sparked a letter to the Spectator from an Andra Singha in September 1902 complaining that Anstey's mockery of Indian writings in English was too easy a target, tired and misguided. Anstey's mockery of Indians themselves went unnoticed.


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