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Letters from Alabama, Letters from Alabama, 0817357351, 0-8173-5735-1, 978-0-8173-5735-1, 9780817357351, , Library of Alabama Classics, Letters from Alabama, 0817386475, 0-8173-8647-5, 978-0-8173-8647-4, 9780817386474, , Library of Alabama Classics, Letters from Alabama, 0817317899, 0-8173-1789-9, 978-0-8173-1789-8, 9780817317898, , Library of Alabama Classic

Letters from Alabama
Chiefly Relating to Natural History
Philip Henry Gosse, Edited by Gary R. Mullen and Taylor D. Littleton

E Book
2012. 312 pp.
31 illustrations
Price:  $34.95 d
Trade Cloth
2012. 312 pp.
31 illustrations
Price:  $34.95 t

This new and improved edition of Letters from Alabama offers a valuable window into pioneer Alabama and the landscape and life-forms encountered by early settlers of the state.

Philip Henry Gosse (1810–1888), a British naturalist, left home at age seventeen and made his way to Alabama in 1838. He was employed by Judge Reuben Saffold and other planters near Pleasant Hill in Dallas County as a teacher for about a dozen of their children, but his principal interest was natural history. Letters from Alabama is a personalized record of Gosse’s perceptive observations during his eight-month residence in this small antebellum community. The work addresses a Victorian readership, including entomologists, who Gosse believed were relatively uninformed about the novelty and beauty of this “hilly region of the State of Alabama.” Written in an engaging literary style and organized as a series of epistolary discussions, the book is unparalleled in its detailed evocations of the natural history and cultural conditions of frontier Alabama. By the time Letters from Alabama appeared in 1859, Gosse’s scientific publications and fine illustrations had led to his being elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.
Edited by Gary R. Mullen and Taylor D. Littleton, this authoritative edition features thirty grayscale lithographs shot directly from the 1859 edition, reset type for easier reading, a new introduction and index by the two foremost scholars of Gosse in Alabama, a new appendix that provides modern scientific and common names for the plant and animal species described by Gosse, and a four-color cover featuring one of the plates from Gosse’s Entomologia Alabamensis.

Gary R. Mullen is coeditor, with Lance Durden, of Medical and Veterinary Entomology, currently in its second edition, and coauthor, with Taylor D. Littleton, of Philip Henry Gosse: Science and Art in “Letters from Alabama” and “Entomologia Alabamensis.“
Taylor D. Littleton is coauthor, with Maltby Sykes, of Advancing American Art: Painting, Politics, and Cultural Confrontation at Mid-Century, and coauthor, with Gary R. Mullen, of Philip Henry Gosse: Science and Art in “Letters from Alabama” and “Entomologia Alabamensis.“

“This volume of ’letters’ written by naturalist Gosse during his stay in Alabama in 1838 describes not only natural history phenomena, but also antebellum culture and society as observed from his viewpoint as a guest of the black belt elite.”—Georgia Historical Quarterly

" Highly recommended. All academic and general collections on Alabama history or natural history/history of science. . . . The editors provide an introduction in this revision to the original 1859 work, putting Gosse's time in Alabama in context with the rest of his life. They also include an appendix with tables lisitng the scientific and common names Gosse used, together with their current forms. Illustrations include 29 engravings of original watercolors by Gosse."

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Philip Henry Gosse
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