[WEST, Benjamin, attributed to]
Bickerstaff's New-England Almanack, for the Year of Our Lord 1776 ... Containing, besides what is usual in others, The Method of Making Gun-powder, which at this juncture may be carried into Execution in a small way
Norwich, CT: Robersons & Trumbull, 1775. 12mo. (6 1/2 x 4 inches). 24pp. Full-page plan of Boston on the second page.
Issued without cover. Stitched as issued, with some added old sewing.
An important Revolutionary-era almanac, with the notable map of Boston.
This rare early New England imprint contains two items relevant to the early months of the American Revolution. There is a small map of Boston titled "A very neat Plan of the Town of Boston, shewing at one View, the Provincial Camp, Boston Neck, Fortification, Commons, Battery, Magazine, Charlestown Ferry, Mill Pond, Fort Hill, Corps Hill, Liberty Tree, Windmill Point, South Battery, Long Wharf, Island Wharfs, Hancock ditto, Charlestown, Bunker's Hill, Winter Hill, Cobble Hill, Forts, Prospect Hill, Provincial Lines, Lower Fort, Upper ditto, Main Guard, Cambridge College, Charles River, Pierpont's Mill, Fasciene Battery, Roxbury Hill Lines, Ministerial Army's Lines, Dorchester Hill and Point, and Mystick River" that seems to be based on the extremely rare "A New and Correct Plan of the Town of Boston and Provincial Camp," which appeared in the Pennsylvania Magazine for July 1775. The text includes an article describing "the Method of making Gun-powder, which at this Juncture may be carried into Execution in a small Way, by almost every Farmer in his own Habitation," which would have been interesting at that time, as the American Army was experiencing a gunpowder shortage. Evans attributes the almanac to Benjamin West (1730-1813), who was an astronomer, professor and almanac publisher based in Providence. Over the course of thirty years, he published almanacs under a number of titles, including "Bickerstaffs New-England Almanack," "Bickerstaffs Boston Almanack," "The North American Calendar," and "Bickerstaffs New York Almanack."
Drake Almanacs 304; Evans 14618; Trumbull 252; Brinley 7339; Hamilton, Early American Book Illustrators 72.