San Francisco: Thompson & West, 1876. First edition. Hardcover. New black morocco spine and corners, original cloth boards stamped in gilt and blind, folio (17.75 x 15.5 inches), 110 (i.e. 113) pp. Profusely illustrated with 21 handcolored maps (9 are double-page, several contain inset plats of townships, listed separately in table of contents), 109 lithographed views (10 are double-page, most single-page, several pages contain multiple images). Images and maps are included in the pagination, which also includes pages numbered 16¼ /16½, and 18¼ (verso blank). New spine and corners, boards faded, contents moderately soiled, but complete and free of tears or staining. Good. Item #20306
Now famous as the "Silicon Valley," Santa Clara County, one of the original 27 California counties, created and named in February 1850, was once one of California's most beautiful locales and one the state's most fertile agricultural regions. Her small cities and towns were surrounded by an extraordinarily varied landscape of lush meadows, forests, vineyards, and rolling hills. At her eastern boundary lay the southern shore of San Francisco Bay and to the west her stretch of Pacific coastline, with its alternating sandy beaches and rocky tidepools. In the 1870s, Santa Clara County was truly idyllic, as evidenced here in the dozens of views of farms and homesteads shown nestled into a pristine landscape. Text includes a brief history of the county, biographical sketches of early settlers, and tables of information about climate, crops, population, industries, etc. One of the most lavishly illustrated and, we believe, the first published of the California county historical atlases or illustrated histories. Cowan p. 567, Rocq 13727.