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Handmade Commonplace book with Newspaper Clippings and Original Watercolors

United States: c.1824. Handmade scrapbook filled with newspaper clippings and original watercolors, the second captioned "Cornucopia or Horn of plenty". The book itself has been handmade from scrap paper including manuscript waste with arithmetic lessons, as well as repurposed newspaper (The Mercury, 1818). There are two large watercolors of flowers, as well as a smaller watercolor of a country church used as waste inside the wrappers. As an object, it provides remarkable insight into the internal life of a single individual (a woman?), including their political leanings, thoughts about culture, and the nature of their world in 1820s America. Notable newspaper clippings include: a glowing 1824 feature on Lafayette from a Newport newspaper; a humorous anecdote about a large cow who had been led to the fourth story of a Yale building; a report of a wealthy Gloucesterhsire lady bequeathing her substantial estate to "thirty cats"; the shocking account of a 15-year-old boy's suicide; a review of "Lord Byron's New Poem" excerpted from the Athenaeum; and a staunch defense of "The Female Sex": "Whatever we say of their rank in the scale of mere intellect, surely there can be no doubt of their preeminence above man in their moral feelings and affections, and the vigor, courage and fortitude arising out of these ... The thousand instances of their heroick conduct during the French Revolution, have settled this fact forever." There are also at least two newspaper clippings with anecdotes about Native Americans from White points of view.

Small 4to (8" by 6"), approx. 30 leaves, nearly all filled with newspaper clippings, and two full-sized naive watercolors of flowers. Crudely sewn in original marbled paper wrappers. Fair. Water staining first four leaves, toning, extensive wear and chipping. Upper wrapper detached. One or two clippings appear to have fallen out.

Price: $325.00

Item #22006228