Philadelphia: John Thompson, 1798. Thick Folio, unpaginated; VG; bound in contemporary brown leather boards, newly rebacked with new spine, paneled with burgundy label and gilt lettering; moderate scraping and wear to boards; marbled endpapers; mild foxing throughout; full-page frontispiece engraving; some offsetting onto title page from frontispiece; with separate title page for the New Testament; shelved case 4.
Shelved Dupont Bookstore
It was quite late in Colonial American history when the first English language Bible was printed in America. Robert Aitken did so in 1782 under an authorization by the United States Congress. Prior to this time, English language Bibles were available in the Colonies, but had to be imported from England. In November of 1798, John Thompson of Philadelphia produced the first King James Bible ever to be "hot-pressed" in America. This printing technique helped to sear the ink clearly into the paper with heat. This printing was a large pulpit folio Bible, the largest Bible printed in America up until that time.
Subscribers to this edition include Alexander Hamilton, John Jay (Governor of New York at the time), Robert Livingston, William Peck, Nathanial Livingston, Cornelius Roosevelt, Andrew Jackson, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Pickering;