PENDERGRAST, Garrett Elliott (1760-1850). A Physical and Topographical Sketch of the Mississippi Territory, Lower Louisiana, and a Part of West Florida. Philadelphia: Office of the Gazette of the United States, 1803.

$ 9,000.00

8vo., (8 ¼ x 4 ¾ inches). (Lower corner of title page renewed; a bit spotted throughout). (Disbound).

First edition. “This rare work contains the first scientific description of the lower Mississippi Valley, based on the author’s observations and on material supplied by William Dunbar” (Streeter). Pendergrast attended medical school at the University of Pennsylvania, and dedicated this dissertation to his mentors there: Caspar Wistar, Benjamin Smith Barton, and James Woodhouse. “In Natchez centered the activities of the Mississippi Society for the Acquirement and Dissemination of Useful Knowledge, the most vigorous and long-lived of half a dozen literary and library societies. Incorporated in November, 1803, for the purpose of ‘acquiring and disseminating useful information in natural science and primarily agriculture,’ the society had some interesting members…The several medical doctors included Garrett Elliott Pendergrast, graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, member of the American Linnean Society, and author of ‘A Physical and Topographical Sketch of the Mississippi Territory, Lower Louisiana, and a Part of West Florida’” (Hamilton, “The Southwestern Frontier, 1795-1817: An Essay in Social History”). Howes P197. Shaw & Shoemaker 4831. Sabin 65056 (“Prendergast”). Streeter 3:1532.

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