Place Published: London
Publisher: Harvey and Darton
Date Published: 1826
Binding: Hard Cover
First Edition. 5.5 x 3.5 inches, (2), iv, 168pp., [4pp publisher's ads]. Recased preserving contemporary leather spine with gilt type, and marbled boards, worn corners, with minor scuffing, engraved frontis, and half-title. Some off-setting from frontispiece to title-page, Old unsigned bookplate at front pastedown and previous owner gift inscription hand written on reverse of frontis, Elizabeth Jane Bolton given to her by her Dear Mother. Overall a very attractive copy in very good+ condition.
Uncommon initial printing. In a series of letters, written in 1821, by a family of educated emigrants, describing the voyage and journey from Quebec to final settlement in what is now Hamilton. They were befriended by the Hamilton family and started the first school there, chiefly attended by Indian children. Told with simplicity. It has value as being authentic.
One of the earliest children's books to celebrate the frontier life in Canada; Traill emigrated from England to Canada with her husband in 1832.
Insightful comment from Canadian Biography Online:
“Perhaps the most interesting of these books (published between 1819 & 1831) is The young emigrants; or, pictures of Canada; calculated to amuse and instruct the minds of youth (1826). In it, Catharine drew upon her fascination with Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, travel books about the Canadas, including those of John Howison, and the letters of friends who, like her younger brother Samuel*, had immigrated there in the 1820s.
The comment of one of her young emigrants – “I sometimes think I should like to spend my life in exploring the face of this astonishing country” – vividly suggests Catharine’s capacity to find stimulation and involvement in the idea of new experiences, however challenging or demanding they might be.”
Osborne (1958 ed.) p. 192.
Very Good+. Item #2364