Apr 12, 2018 - Sale 2473

Sale 2473 - Lot 8

Price Realized: $ 6,500
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 2,500 - $ 3,500
(AMERICAN INDIANS.) Williams, Eleazer. Group of Iroquois religious tracts by a renowned Mohawk missionary. 5 pamphlets in one volume. 12mo, contemporary 1/2 calf, worn; first and fifth pamphlets incomplete, contents worn, cropped with occasional loss of text, intermittent dampstaining, extensive notes in Iroquois; inscribed on front free endpaper in 1833. Vp, 1813-15 and undated

Additional Details

Eleazar Williams (1788-1858) was a Canadian Mohawk who served as an Episcopalian missionary to the Iroquois, writing or translating several tracts. He later claimed to be the lost son of Louis XVI of France. Included here are 5 tracts, most or all of them written or translated by Williams. The volume was owned and likely compiled by Joseph Powless or Bowless (died 1868) of Oneida Castle, NY, who served as clerk of the Oneidas.
[Gaiatonsera Ionteweienstakwa / A Spelling-Book, in the Language of the Seven Iroquois Nations.] 3-24 pages; lacking title page. [Plattsburgh, NY: F.C. Powell, 1813] [Solomon Davis.] Otiogwatokenti: Tontaterihonniennita Nongwehogon. 12 pages; issued without a title page, described by Pilling as a catechism in the Language of the Six Nations. Np, undated Good News to the Iroquois Nation: A Tract on Man's Primitive Rectitude, his Fall, and his Recovery through Jesus Christ. 12 pages. Burlington, VT: Samuel Mills, 1813 Iontatretsiarontha . . . A Caution against our Common Enemy. 12 pages. Albany, NY: Churchill & Abbey, 1815 [Samuel Blatchford, translated by Williams.] [Ronwennenni . . . An Address Delivered to the Oneida Indians.] 3-14 pages, lacking the first and final leaves. [Albany, NY: Churchill & Abbey, 1815]. Pilling 4131, 998b, 4130, 4134, 4133; Pilling Iroquoian, pages 54 and 167; Sabin 104210, 104211, 104212, 104213 (Otiogwatokenti not listed). These titles are all scarce. The only copy of Otiogwatokenti we have traced at auction was in the 1999 Siebert sale, and the only Iontatretsiarontha we have traced at auction was at Swann on 5 June 2008, lot 21.