Lot 514 of 541:
Army Camels in Great American Desert  

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Lot closed - Sold For (Includes Buyers Premium):$60
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Uncle Sam's Camels: The Journal of May Humphreys Stacey Supplemented by the Report of Edward Fitzgerald Beale (1857-1858)

Lesley, Lewis B., editor


Harvard University Press



[10], 298 pp. With 2 plates from photographs (including the frontispiece portrait) & 2 from engravings; folding map. 24.4x16.5 cm (9½x6¼"), cloth, spine lettered in gilt, top edge gilt. First Edition.

Ill-fated scheme devised by then-Secretary of War, Jefferson Davis, to employ Asian camels to provide transportation across the Great American Desert. Edwards notes that "for some reason, or perhaps many reasons, the camel experiment was destined to failure even before the animals arrived in America. Yet the venture itself was not so poorly conceived as the end result would indicate. The camels repeatedly demonstrated their capacity to out-pack, out-distance, and out-smart the stupidly-stubborn mules.... [But] Mule skinners hated the camels before they ever saw them; hated them, first, because they were camels; second, because they were not mules...." Cowan p.869, Edward Enduring Desert pp.155-6. Bookplate of John M. Carroll. Library numbers on spine blotted out with dark rectangle; small glue stain to rear endpaper.

Lot Amendments

Spine dull, rubbing to ends and corners; very good.

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