I’ve come into some unusually good deals lately and have added significantly to the “old wing” of my library… hence old things are indeed new again. The majority of these (in fact, all but the two on the top) date prior to the Civil War. Essentially, all that you see here have connections to the Shenandoah Valley… either by topic or author… or both. In the case of two of the books… one copy of Virginia Illustrated and the copy of Quodlibet… they are signed by the author. Some will note that, at the bottom of the stack, there are three copies of David Hunter Strother’s Virginia Illustrated… that’s just reflective of my Strother obsession. I’m still puzzling (except for the possibility that it may have just been that the color of the day was just what they had available) over why there were three different cloth covers (and two types of “pressing” used) in a book that was published in the same year. Incidentally, one is signed to a person with very close ties to the John Brown incident.
Authors represented in this stack include David Hunter Strother, John Pendleton Kennedy, William Gilmore Simms (though he was neither from the Valley or writing about it… just that Strother prepared the illustrations for the book), Philip Pendleton Kennedy (brother to J.P. Kennedy), John Esten Cooke, John White Page, Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer, and Frances Courtenay Baylor. The book at the very top was written by Rhode Islander, Hezekiah Butterworth, but focuses on Greenway Court (Lord Fairfax and George Washington in days prior to the Revolution and French & Indian War). All the rest are Southern writers (though John Pendleton Kennedy’s “Southernness” has been questioned a few times.
With the exception of one of the works, all are part of my research effort regarding literature and the Shenandoah Valley.
I’ll write more about some of these in the coming months.