Albany, NY: Hoffman and White, 1833. 2nd Edition Revised. Leather bound. 8vo. Contemporary calf. Large folding frontispiece, additional folding map, full-page and text illustrations. 400 pp.
Leather worn. Front hinge split but firmly attached. Contemporary signatures in front and end matter. Foxing throughout, mostly marginal. Frontispiece intact but tender at creases. One crease appears to have once been torn and repaired with thread. An excellent copy.
This is a scarce 2nd edition of popular 19th century historian Priest's most influential book. All of Priest's books, including this one, toe the line between history, speculation, religion, and outright fantasy. American Antiquities promotes the theory that a lost Israelite tribe once existed in America and built elaborate "mounds" and architectural wonders -- a popular idea at the time, owing to the disbelief that the perceived savage indigenous people couldn't have had the skill and intellect to build these themselves. Racism is a theme that runs through all of Priest's works, as he was an overt proponent of both slavery and the genocide of indigenous people, basing these beliefs on his literalist interpretation of the Bible. (Howes P592; Sabin 65484). Good. Item #1700