London. Longman, Brown, Green, Longman's & Roberts, and Williams And Norgate. 1859. 1st Edition. iv, 214; , 171, [1 (blank)]; lxxii, [2 (blank)] pp. Couple illustrations, at least one lithograph by W[alter]. [Hood] Fitch (1817-1892). 8-3/4" x 5-1/4". Period binding, black ink stain to all edges. A VG copy. Boards and edges are rubbed/(scuffed), some tears to the paper wrapped boards, some soiling to boards and back strip, some fraying to back strip, blue ink inscription to ffep - possible previous signature, some soiling to end papers (particularly to fore-edge), embossed library stamp to head of title page, age toning to leaves, water damage to fore-edge of leaves and boards, water damage particularly bad at tail of boards and leaves -going towards middle of leaves, binding a bit tender, some gatherings are loose or torn, but still enact, overall internally clean and bright. Item #46469
Walter Fitch was a botanical illustrator from Scotland. Fitch's illustration have appeared in Curtis's Botanical Magazine, most publications issued by Royal Botanical Gardens Kew, George Bentham's 'Handbook of the British Flora', James Bateman's "A Monograph of Odontoglossum" and William Hooker's "A century of Orchidaceous Plants". "Fitch was made a fellow of the Linnean Society in 1857." [wiki].
The previous owner inscription reads "Skipper Kent 1953". Skipper Kent was a restauranteur in the San Francisco Bay Area, owning Zombie Village in Oakland and Skipper Kent's in San Francisco. These "tiki" inspired restaurants were his pride and joy as he was already and avid collector of Polynesian art and artifacts. Kent was also an avid orchid collector, so we suspect this was in his library at one time, with his interest in botany.
The embossed library stamp comes from the library of Herman Knoche (1870-1945). Knoche was born in San Jose, California and studied botany at Stanford University. He moved to France to further his studies at University of Montpellier; his particular interest was island vegetation.