San Francisco: Samuel Carson & Co. / New York: C.T. Dillingham, 1888. First Edition, First Printing. Hardcover. First Edition. Octavo, original brown cloth lettered and designed in gold, black and blind. 333 pp, Frontispiece. Of several noted bindings, this appears to be a deluxe issue, with extra black decorations on the front panel which appear only in blind on the rear panel of every other issue we have seen. Formerly, J. Sterling Morton's copy, with his handwritten inscription on front blank leaf "J. Sterling Morton / Arbor Lodge / May 23, 1896 / At Los Angeles, California / and bought this book". There is a stamp on the copyright page stating "Withdrawn from the Sterling Morton library, and a lovely bookplate, "Ex Libris Joy Morton", on the front paste-down, with a shelf location stamp on the recto of the rear endpaper. Small bookseller's ticket from Jones Book Store, 226 W. First Street, Los Angeles, CA to lower corner of front past-down. A clipping from a catalogue, giving a long description of this book, is loosely laid in, a pencil note shows that the catalogue was from Paul Elder, 6-2-36. Overall, a fine copy. J. Sterling Morton was Secretary of Agriculture under President Groer Cleveland, his son Joy Morton was the founder of the Morton Salt Company. Very Good. Item #309326
¶ An account of California in the 16th Century. "A singular book ascribed to Cornelius Cole. Being apparently a weird fiction, to ascertain its purport would be as difficult as to find the individual who has read it. Pp. 141-186 are occupied by a remarkable poem in superlative doggerel, relating chiefly to San Francisco, from the arrival of the "San Carlos" to the advent of Denis Kearney and the Spring Valley water ring, which is only one of the numerous incongruities found in the "Narrative" - Cowan. To quote the Paul Elder catalogue description: " CORNELIUS COLE - AUTHOR AND PHILOSOPHER. A LITERARY PLUME IN CALIFORNIA'S CAP. If we put aside all thought of historical implications it is not hard to guess the purport of Manuelo's Narrative. Cornelius Cole was regarded in later life as a sage and philosopher. His reason for writing this intriguing romance, it would seem fairly clear, was to create a frame upon which he could hang bits of philosophy, observations on social, religious, political, and human customs and habits. he wrote for the same reason that Jonathan Swift wrote when he created the immortal Gulliver, in fact, Manuelo's Narrative bears a striking resemblance to Gulliver's Travels in charm as well as style and purport, though lacking the coarseness, the bitter caricatures of individuals, and the misanthropic philosophy of Swift's furious satire. Cole's reflections on life are kindly critical and tolerant."