New York: McSpedon & Baker, 1852.
Illustrated manual of the Corporation of the City of New York. 504 pp. with 5 fold out maps and 12 diagrams and lithographed views. Full red leather with ornately decorated gold on title, spine and covers. 12mo. Scuffs and cracks to spine. Scattered foxing throughout, occasional offsetting, some staining and tears to maps. Some illustrations loose. Maps and illustrations complete according to the "Index to the Illustrations in the Manuals of the Corporation of the City of New York", published by the Society of Iconophiles, 1906. Ownership copy of Josiah W. Brown, Esq. D.T. Valentine, New York: 1852.
The "Manuals of the Corporation" were directories of extensive historical and contemporary records of New York compiled by D.T. Valentine. These books include detailed information on the meetings of the Aldermen Council, ordinances passed, public officials, the city's debts, directories of hospitals, alms houses and schools, ferry schedules, lists of public porters, demographics and census information, and descriptions of historic buildings and streets. Much of the information was gleaned from Dutch and English sources, as processed by Valentine. Notable illustrations in this edition include Castle Garden, New York with Governor's Island and Murray Street. Maps include the City of New York (1852), Van der Donck's Map of New Netherlands with a view of New Amsterdam (1656), New York in 1695, Longworth's map of 1808 and a Map of the City of New York "shewing the original high water line and the location of the different Farms and Estates". D.T. Valentine (1801-1869) served as the Deputy to the Clerk of the Common Council for thirty-seven years without being promoted to Clerk. Valentine took it upon himself to compile the "Manuals", which he updated and published annually from 1841-1866. Many copies were personalized for prominent officials. This compendium is an excellent source of early New York City history.