or, The Child of the Cavern. Translated by W. H. G. Kingston. Philadelphia: Porter & Coates, n.d.[by 1883]. Original brown cloth pictorially decorated in black and gilt.
First American hardbound edition of this supernatural tale sited deep in a Scottish mine. Per Kingston's introduction, Verne~has called into existence a mine of fabulous wealth, and has placed in it a mysterious being endowed with superhuman powers, who performs wonders unsurpassed in the present prosaic age.~Quoting also from T&M,~The unusually attractive front cover shows the supreme moment when old Silfax, standing with arms raised in a small boat in Loch Malcolm, calls Harfang the bird to ignite the explosive gas trapped under the cavern ceiling.~This tale's first publication in English was in the Spring of 1877, THE BLACK INDIES in George Munro's self-wrappered "Seaside Library." The British authorized edition, THE CHILD OF THE CAVERN, fully illustrated, was issued later that year. The publication date of this Porter & Coates edition is uncertain (Myers cites "[1878?]", while T&M states simply that it had to have been sometime before October 1883); however, it is regarded as the first illustrated (and first hardbound) American edition, as T&M cites no other such American edition earlier than 1888 (and that too was by Porter & Coates). Although P&C published numerous later-printings of Verne tales from the Osgood plates it bought, UNDERGROUND CITY is the only Verne "first" published by Porter & Coates.~This copy is in brown cloth; we have also had terra-cotta (no priority). It is a bright, near-fine copy (trifling wear at the tips, front endpaper with small edge-chips, a few signatures slightly proud) of this attractively-bound book. Rather uncommon. Taves & Michaluk V017; Myers 10. Item #13862