First Illustrated American Edition

[English Bible]. The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments.
Volume 1 of two.
Worcester, Massachusetts: Isaiah Thomas, 1791. (Prothro B-113)

The first illustrated edition of the Bible produced in the Americas was published by Isaiah Thomas (1749–1831) of Worcester, a printer, bookseller, antiquarian, and author of The History of Printing in America (1810). His impressive folio Bible includes fifty copperplate engravings by Joseph H. Seymour, Amos Doolittle, Samuel Hill, and John Norman. The exhibited opening shows the beginning of Genesis, accompanied by Seymour’s light-filled engraving of the Creation. The biblical text is preceded by a single page of “Directions to the Binder for Placing the Plates,” a reminder that books of this period were sold as unbound sheets, to be bound at the purchaser’s expense. 

THE ELIZABETH PERKINS PROTHRO BIBLE COLLECTION

<a href="/items/browse?advanced%5B0%5D%5Belement_id%5D=50&advanced%5B0%5D%5Btype%5D=is+exactly&advanced%5B0%5D%5Bterms%5D=Prothro+B-113">Prothro B-113</a>
Eighteenth Century
First Illustrated American Edition