San Francisco: A. L. Bancroft & Co. 1877. First edition. Hardcover. Original blue cloth stamped in gilt and blind, octavo, 349 pp. Moderate scuffing and soiling to boards, bit of foxing, contemporary owner name to front free endpaper, else very good. Good+. Item #19519
Most of the stories were originally published in Overland Monthly and other western magazines. Frances Fuller Victor (1826-1902) had a nearly lifelong career in letters. Along with her sister Metta she began writing for publication while still a schoolgirl at the Female Seminary in Wooster, Ohio. The sisters moved to New York in the 1840s and in 1851 together published an acclaimed collection of their poems - "Poems of Sentiment and Imagination." In 1862, Frances Fuller married Henry Clay Victor, a naval engineer and the brother of her sister's husband (Orville James Victor, author and editor for Beadle's Dime Novels). They moved to San Francisco, where Frances continued writing, mainly feature, advice and criticism columns, articles and essays for newspaper publication. Two years later the couple relocated to Portland, Oregon where she began to research and write about the history of the Northwest. Her essay "Manifest Destiny in the West," published in 1869 in Overland Monthly Magazine, was her first foray into the historical writing that sustained her for the rest of her life. Her first book-length history was "The River of the West" - based on her research and interviews with Oregon politican (and former mountain man) Joseph Meek. In 1878 Hubert Howe Bancroft enticed her back to San Francisco for a position in his "History Company," where she worked for more than 10 years. Her contribution to Bancroft's 39-volume "Works" included the uncredited authorship of the volumes "The History of Oregon;" "The History of Nevada, Colorado, and Wyoming;" "The History of Washington, Idaho, and Montana;" and volumes 6 & 7 of “The History of California” (with William Nemos).