The Diary of Jacob F. Mentzer, U.S. Marines, 1862-67. Civil War - Pacific Squadron - South America.
Mentzer, Jacob F. Various Places, 1862-67.
The extensive diary of Jacob F. Mentzer, of Mount Joy, Lancaster County, Penna. 5.5 x 8.5”, 260 closely written pages.
Mentzer enlisted in the Marines at Washington, DC in 1862. After his training at the Washington Marine Barracks, he sailed on the
USS Sabine to the battles at Morris Island, near Charleston, and Folly Island. After that action, he sailed to New York, where the draft riots were well underway.
The USS Wateree, a sidewheel gunboat, had just been commissioned in 1863, and Mentzer sailed with the ship on its arduous voyage down the east coast of South America,
around the Horn, up the west coast to Mexico, and finally to the new Navy Yard at Mare Island, California, where the ship underwent repairs.
Once the war ended, the Wateree was ordered to cruise waters off South America, as part of the southern group of the Pacific Squadron. Mentzer’s diary ends in April of 1867. The following year, the Wateree was off the coast of Peru when a massive 8.5 earthquake struck, triggering a horrific tsunami that carried the ship inland, fully intact. A sister ship did not fare so well, with all but one on board drowned. The Wateree’s stores were distributed to the needy survivors of the earthquake.
From the estate of Mentzer’s descendants, this diary has not been offered online or elsewhere -- new to the market.
1872 Fort Defiance Letter Re Murder of Indian Agent by Ute Indians.
Miller, Mrs. James A. Fort Defiance, Arizona, 1872.
A Poignant Letter from Fort Defiance
From a Lady Who’s Just Learned That Her Husband,
Indian Agent James A. Miller,
Was Killed in His Sleep by a Ute Raiding Party.
“Defiance June 13 . My Dear Parents -- Oh how shall I tell you My Dear Husband is dead was shot by the Ute Indians while on his trip shot in the head
while sleeping never waked or moved. I am nearly crazy I don’t know what to do Oh it is so hard I can hardly bear up under the awful shock. Oh Oh my Dear
Husband they had to bury him away out at the San Juan River can’t get his body for some time Oh how awful...”
James Miller took over as Navajo Agent at Fort Defiance in 1871. He “was conscientious and believed that the economic independence of the Navajos would be
accomplished by rebuilding the farms that had been destroyed by Kit Carson’s soldiers... Soon after he took office the agent made an inspection trip
[in June 1872] to study the feasibility of building an irrigation system to bring water from the San Juan river to the adjacent farmlands...”
(Locke, The Book of the Navajo)
Miller was accompanied by the post trader, the agency farmer, and a Navajo interpreter. On the morning of June 11, while the four men were camped
at the present site of Shiprock, New Mexico, Miller was shot dead by a band of Utes. The Capote and Wiminuche Utes had been raiding along the northern border of New Mexico for some time, after their Capote chief was agitated by the Paiute “Indian Messiah,” Wovoka (aka Jack Wilson). Wovoka’s prophecies spread to other tribes, and eventually inspired the Ghost Dance Religion of 1889-90.
Two pages, lined paper, 7.5 x 9.5”. Old folds and some stains but otherwise very good. Mounted under double-sided glass in a black frame.
The first appearance in print of the word psychiatry (here as "psychiaterie"), and earliest formal proposal to make psychiatry a new medical discipline.
Beyrage zur Beforderung einer Kurmethode auf Psychischem Wege..
Reil, Johann Christian and Joh. Christ. Hoffbauer, Professoren zu Halle. Halle, Germany, 1808-12.
An extremely rare and short-lived journal or compilation by Reil and philosopher Johann Christian Hoffbauer. Reil's seminal 118-page paper,
"Uber den Begriff der Medizin und ihre Verzweigungen, besonders in Beziehung auf die Berichtigung der Topik in der Psychiaterie"
(On the term of medicine and its branches, especially with regard to the rectification of the topic in psychiatry), appears on page 161 of
volume I. 8vo, two volumes. Volume I dated 1808, volume II 1812. Texts clean. Full tree calf, edge and joint wear with some chipping,
otherwise bindings tight. Reil (1759-1813) was a German physician, physiologist, anatomist and psychiatrist. He worked at a hospital in
Halle from 1788 to 1810. "Reil presented the reasons why the creation of a medical discipline, which he named ‘psychiatry’, was an urgent
necessity. He argued for psychiatry as a specialty of medicine and outlined the reasons that people who were mentally ill should not be
treated by experts of other disciplines, but by physicians; moreover, he presented strong arguments that it could only be the very best
physicians who would have the skills to become psychiatrists. These opinions arose from his concept of mental illness, which he had elaborated
5 years before in his impressive book Rhapsodieen uber die Anwendung der psychischen Curmethode auf Geisteszerruttungen (Rhapsodies on the
Application of Psychic Treatment Methods to Mental Disturbances).The creation of the word ‘psychiatry’ was not in any way serendipitous or
even accidental, but was the result of a considered discussion following many theoretical and practical arguments, which are documented in his paper.
Reil’s two essential reasons for establishing a new medical discipline to be named ‘psychiatry’ were, first, the principle of the continuity of
psyche and soma, and second, the principle of the inseparability of psychiatry and medicine.
"According to Reil’s arguments, the causes of human diseases cannot be distinguished into purely mental, chemical or physical ones, but rather
there is an essential interaction among these three domains." (Andreas Marneros, British Journal of Psychiatry, 2008 -- "Psychiatry's 200th Birthday").
Medical conditions and anatomical features named after him include Reil's finger, Beau-Reil cross furrows on the fingernails and the Islands of Reil
in the cerebral cortex. In 1809, he was the first to describe the white fibre tract now called the arcuate fasciculus, and the locus coeruleus.
Broadsheet - Explanation of the Two Prints Representing the Batle of Bunker's Hill, and the Attack of Quebec.
Trumbull, John. (London? Philadelphia?), circa 1790-97.
The very rare broadsheet supplement for John Trumbull's first two iconic prints of the American Revolution. 8 x 13", laid paper, with large
Britannia watermark. Slight small stain at left margin of page two, light creasing, otherwise very good. With his teacher Benjamin West's
encouragement, Trumbull, a veteran of the American Revolution, undertook painting a series of scenes from the war, depicting the characters
in their military dress rather than classical garb. He started in 1785 with The Death of General Warren at the Battle of Bunker's Hill,
finishing it the following spring. West also prompted Trumbull to consider creating engraved prints after the paintings, which could
potentially earn him more money than the originals. In July of 1788, German engraver Johann Gotthard von Muller agreed to execute the
engraving of Bunker's Hill. The following year, Trumbull sailed to America to promote his prints, including to the American Congress.
Nearly ten years later, in 1797, Bunker's Hill was finished, followed soon thereafter by the Death of Montgomery in the Attack on Quebec.
However, Trumbull had realized only a modicum of interest in his efforts, and reluctantly put aside his dream of a complete series of prints
of scenes from the Revolution. The final paragraph on page two states: "The present state of human Affairs is most unfavourable to the
Arts of Peace;--and it is with much Regret that Mr. Trumbull finds it altogether inconsistent with Prudence to go on at present, in so
expensive an Undertaking as was his original Plan;--The Paintings will be finished--and if the present Work should be favourably received,
and future Events will permit, the Engravings will hereafter be resumed." Trumbull also issued a key, or "Plate of Reference" with each print,
which is mentioned on page two.