[STEWART, John]. An Account of Jamaica and its Inhabitants. By a Gentleman, long Resident in the West Indies. London, Longman, Hurst, Ress and Orme, 1808.
8vo. Contemporary half-calf over marbled boards, gilt-stamped lettering piece (partly defective) to spine; pp. [ii]-xii, 305 (bound without half-title); binding with wear and old restorations to spine, rear hinge and gutter of title-page reinforced, brown-spotting internally.
Uncommon first edition of this account of the social and economic life of the island, published one year after the Act for the Abolition of the Slave Trade had passed Parliament. John Stewart lived on Jamaica for 21 years and 'gives good accounts of the various social and professional groups there, the interests and work of each, and details of town and planter life. The pictures drawn are rather uncomplimentary to the proprietors and to the Established Church, with the result that the book stirred up great wrath locally' (Ragatz, p. 234).