Hartford / (Auburn, New York): Silas Andrus & Son, (1854-1861).
Hardcover. Tall octavo. Approximately7" x 8¼". Commercially produced journal with brown leather boards and blind tooled decorative borders and gilt decoration on the front cover. Boards are worn and rubbed. Original spine perished and replaced with a vintage silk hand-embroidered design, else very good or better. 59 leaves with 29 albumen photographic portraits of various sizes ranging from miniature portraits to 4" x 2½", with most identified by name. About 15 pages of the album are used for inscriptions with many signed by residents of Syracuse, Lafayette Hill, Lafayette, Red Creek, and Davenport, all in Iowa. Dates of the inscriptions range from Miss Knapp's own ownership signature written on the front flyleaf in 1854 until the last contribution in 1861. Knapp started the book when she was 18, she appears in the 1860 census living with her widowed mother and four other sisters, earning her living as a dressmaker. While "memory" books of this sort with written sentiments are by no means uncommon, photographically illustrated examples of the type are more elusive.