Item #5000387 Autograph letter signed to I.B. Davis concerning the publication of Harden S. Melville's Sketches in Australia and the Adjacent Islands. Thomas BOONE.

ALS to I.B. Davis concerning the publication of Harden S. Melville's Sketches in Australia and the Adjacent Islands.
Autograph letter signed to I.B. Davis concerning the publication of Harden S. Melville's Sketches in Australia and the Adjacent Islands.

London: n.d., circa 1848.

Octavo, single leaf written on the recto only; in fine condition.

Turning down Melville's wonderful Sketches in Australia

An interesting and revealing letter from the publisher, Thomas Boone, that illustrates the difficulties faced by Melville in finding a publisher for his superb Sketches in Australia and the Adjacent Islands, the fine series of sketches of tropical Australia drawn during the surveying voyage of the Fly and eventually published in 1849.

An interesting and revealing letter from the publisher, Thomas Boone, that illustrates the difficulties faced by Melville in finding a publisher for his superb Sketches in Australia and the Adjacent Islands, the fine series of sketches of tropical Australia drawn during the surveying voyage of the Fly and eventually published in 1849.

As one of their advertisements shows, Thomas and William Boone had contemplated the publication of Melville's work but this letter explains that they did not continue because they considered it uncommercial. The lithographic printer and publisher, Dickinson, eventually took over publication on Melville's behalf and, probably, at his expense. In the preface to his book Melville apologizes for the reduced size of the lithographs and pleads expense as his excuse. This is the letter quoted by Wantrup (Australian Rare Books, p. 317).

Price (AUD): $1,550.00

US$1,043.97   Other currencies

Ref: #5000387