12mo, pp. , 404, xi, , with an engraved frontispiece by Isaac Taylor; occasional soiling; contemporary calf, spine worn and split; ownership inscriptions of William Chartres (1799 and 1801) and Thomas Houghton (1805 and 1808, see below), stamp of George Houghton to first text leaf, later inscriptions of John Houghton, Nursery-man, with a note of his birth at Putney Park in 1819.
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Every Man his own Gardener. Being a new, and much more complete Gardener’s Kalendar than any one hitherto published … The second Edition, corrected, enlarged, and very much improved.
Second edition, published in the same year as the first, of an immensely popular work, which went through at least twenty-five editions. ‘Abercrombie was the son of a market gardener near Edinburgh who went on to be a gardener at Kew and Leicester House, as well as for a number of noblemen and gentlemen. Despite the title page, he is generally regarded as the sole author of this popular gardening manual, which originally appeared with Mawe, the gardener to the Duke of Leeds, listed as the author because of that worthy’s greater reputation’ (Johnston).
The present copy was owned by one ‘William Chartres’ and used by him to record his employment as gardener to ‘Lord Elcho [i.e. Francis Charteris – was there a family connection?], South Warnbro Castle, Hampshire’ in 1799, and subsequently to Sir John Eamer at Putney Heath in 1801. Eamer (1750–1823), an eminent grocer in the sugar trade, was Lord Mayor of London in 1801. His house at Putney Heath, known as Bowling Green House, was leased to the former Prime Minister William Pitt in 1804. The book then seems to have passed to Thomas Houghton, who records his service to Rev. Primatt Knapp of Shenley, starting 21 June 1805; and William Garrett of Leigh House, Hampshire, on 29 March 1808. Leigh House had been substantially remodelled by Garrett, and ‘The gardens are planned with great judgement, and furnished with pinery, hot-house, green-houses and stoves, and surrounded with shrubberies and walks communicating in all directions’ (Butler, Topographical Account of the Hundred of Bosmere, 1817). Thomas Houghton and his son John were later gardeners to Queely Shiell of Granard Lodge, Putney, and would be key witnesses in the case of the murder of Jane Jones by the coachman Daniel Good in 1842.
Henrey 1053; see Johnston, The Cleveland Herbal, Botanical, and Horticultural Collections, p. 515.
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