Lebanon, PA: Joseph Hartman, 1819. First American edition. Thick 8vo. Two parts in one volume, both with separate title-pages: , 458, , 426,  pp. Text foxed as is true in all copies, but COMPLETE and UNMARKED. Binding: original Pennsylvania binding by a workshop that was closely associated with Joseph Hartman: reverse beveled wooden boards covered with acid-treated sheep; the leather on the covers of the binding mottled whereas the turn-ins are striated; sprinkled edges, two original catches and clasps (catches on upper cover). Minor wear to binding extremities but an excellent copy. Item #3453
This binding is apparently AS ISSUED by the printer / publisher Joseph Hartman as is attested by the Library Company copy of this edition that is identically bound, but which -- unlike our copy -- is very worn (as is a copy known to us that is currently in a private collection USA).
Affixed to the inside front cover of our binding is the booklabel of "Maria Fisher, No. 133," presumably indicating that there were at least 133 volumes (or titles) in her library; such a collection would not have seemed insignificant at that time; that it included (at least) one German book printed in Pennsylvania is of further interest. But who was Maria Fisher? She was likely related to Henry Fisher who wrote the following inscription on the first blank:
"Henry Fisher’s. Jesus all the day long. Was my joy and my song. O that all his salvation. He loved me I cried. He suffered and died. For such rebel as me."
The printer, Joseph Hartman (1791-1860) was born in New Berlin, PA but lived most of his life in Lebanon. He was an apprentice in 1809, and by 1816 he founded his own press, in that year establishing the newspaper "Der Unpartheyische Berichter" which, under various titles, outlived Hartman by many years. The present tome is a remarkable testament to the industry of a young man who at the time of publication had been in business for only three years. Hartman continued to print until 1830.
Croll, Lebanon County Imprints, p. 9. Shaw & Shoemaker 49578. Botte, First century of German language printing in the United States of America, no. 2366.
CATALOGUER'S NOTE: We are grateful to Rachel D'Agostino, Curator of Printed Books at the Library Company, for her kind assistance on our behalf.