From The Wonders of the Yosemite Valley, and of California
By Samuel Kneeland
With Original Photographic Illustrations by John P. Soule
Boston: Alexander Moore, Lee & Shepard, 1872 (Third Edition, Revised and Enlarged; orig. pub. 1870)

[This is an early example of photos of the West being published in the East. These "photographic illustrations" had to be pasted in by hand, and sat in the middle of wide white margins. The first image below, the book's Frontispiece, gives the way all the photos looked. For the others, though, the margins have been cropped out.]


From Preface

In the lover of mountain scenery--even in one familiar with the Alps--the Rocky Mountains, especially the Sierra Nevada, will excite a new and exquisite sensation. Such extent of grandeur is unparalled in any mountains explored in civilized regions.

. . . The beauties and wonders described in this book, however, are not presented for the benefit of the sick, but to the crowd of pleasure-seekers who make their annual visitations to Niagara, Newport, Satatoga, Cape May, and other centres of fashion, frivolity, foppery and folly. With half the expenditure of money and vital force thus thrown away, to the moral and physical deterioration of all concerned, the California trip, via the Pacific Railroad, may be thoroughly enjoyed. There is nothing in it to enfeeble, but everything to strengthen; the exhilarating mountain air, by day or by night, makes the lungs tingle with a sensation never experienced at the Eastern watering-places; the cool mountain-streams will prove a better tonic to the dyspeptic, than all the drugs he has swallowed. The brains of the student and the overworked merchant can here lie fallow amid scenes which, by their strange fascination, will drive from the memory all thought of books and ledgers; even the love of dress, and the pursuit of fashions, leave their votaries, as they take their seat in the saddle for the Valley or the Big Trees.

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