New-York: Wiley & Putnam, 1846. Original blind-stamped red cloth.
First Complete American Edition, issued as No. LXIII in Wiley & Putnam's "Library of Choice Reading" -- available either in wrappers on its own, or bound in red cloth together with Mrs. Jameson's MEMOIRS AND ESSAYS, as here. During 1846 seven letters from Dickens in Italy were published in The Daily News in London, and in America Wiley & Putnam jumped on them and published them in two wrappered parts titled TRAVELLING LETTERS WRITTEN ON THE ROAD -- the only such book edition on either side of the Atlantic (and extremely scarce today). Later that year Dickens polished up the letters and added considerably to their number, creating the U.K. volume PICTURES FROM ITALY, published on May 18th; Wiley & Putnam quickly issued this corresponding American edition on June 8th, followed "a day or two" [Smith] later by William Colyer's edition.
Condition of this copy is very good: the original endpapers are intact but there is some wear along the outer joints (though the book is tight). Smith pp 77-80 (including photographs of this copy); Podeschi (Yale) A100 (listing only a copy in wrappers); Carr (Texas) B495 (likewise); Wilkins p. 28. Provenance: the front paste-down bears a college bookplate, and a number is stamped onto the copyright page; the front free endpaper bears the penciled signature of Dickens bibliographer Walter Smith. Item #14394