New York: David Denniston, 1801. 40pp, slight chipping to blank edges of title page and last leaf. Bound in modern plain wrappers. Inscribed in ink, to "New York Historical Society from Timothy B. Crane." Good+, Inconspicuous release stamp.
Originally printed in Paris in 1799, the first American printings occurred-- in New York and Philadelphia-- in 1801. The letter is dated December 20, 1799. Barlow was "an American radical, writing under the influence of the French Revolution" [Larned 2692], and a friend of Thomas Paine: "When Paine was imprisoned in Paris, it was Barlow who took charge of the manuscript of The Age of Reason and achieved its publication." DAB. Here he says, "The art of governing a nation is the art of substituting a moral to a physical force." Barlow believes in "the perfectibility of human society." That goal is "not a subject of idle speculation, fit only to adorn the pages of a book." To assure continuation of American liberties, the nation "must be out of debt." Moreover, universal education, and easy transportation among all sections of the country is imperative.
AI 134 . 35 NUC 0127813 . BAL 903. Howes B144 [ref.]. Item #11108