Sacramento: California State Printer/ James J. Ayers, 1883-1884. First edition. Hardcover. Small quarto. 184pp. (1). Appendix 1: 67pp, Appendix 2: 61pp, Appendix 3: 62pp. Brown pebbled cloth with blind-stamped ruling on the covers, gilt lettering on the spine. The publication covers such topics as protection of the vines from infection, specific growth techniques, soil analysis, development of viniculture, promotion of California wine culture, pricing, trade, industrial oversight, grape varietals and many countless others. The report stems from a time when California Wine was in its infancy, and the commission sought to advise the state agricultural authorities with regard to the maintenance and expansion of the industry.
Attached to the report are three separate appendices, each with separate paginations:
Appendix 1: The Chaintre System of Pruning and Conducting the Vine
Appendix 2: The Practical Manual of Pruning as practiced near Bordeaux
Appendix 3: Different Methods of Grafting the Vine.
Opposite page 68 of the report is 11x17" detailed fold-out chart analyzing the California soil of the time, with information including location, depth, local vegetation, as well as mineral and water composition. The report and the appendices are illustrated throughout with more than 200 detailed b/w figures of the vines and the roots.
Binding with some stains and scratches to the front and back covers. Some rubbing to extremities, light chipping and/or fraying to the head and tail of the spine. Some small abrasion or holes along the spine. Light scratches along the bottom of the book block. Interior with minor sporadic smudges or water stains. The fold-out chart contains a 4.5" closed tear at the bottom. Starting at Appendix II and at the inteior back cover. The front free endpaper, with the dated signature of the previous owner Seward Cole*, is detached but present. The rear free endpapers contain some offsetting and some period notes on wine in pencil. Book block tight overall. Binding in good- interior in good+ condition overall. Scarce. g- to g+. Item #42892
The Board of State Viticultural Commissioners was established in 1880 in the U.S. state of California. The board's office was located 526 Montgomery Street, San Francisco. It was the responsibility of the Board to meet semi-annually to consult and to adopt such measures as may best promote the progress of the viticultural industries of the State. It was their duty to select and appoint competent and qualified persons to deliver at least one lecture each year in each of the viticultural districts, for the purpose of illustrating practical viticultural topics, and imparting instruction in methods of culture, pruning, fertilizing, fermenting, distilling, and rectifying, treating diseases of the vine, raisin drying, and others, and to disseminate useful knowledge relating to viticulture by printed documents or correspondence. The Board devoted especial attention to the study of the phylloxera and other diseases of the vine, and made recommendations in their semi-annual reports regarding the protection of vineyards.
*Seward Cole (1856- 1927) was the son Senator Cornelius Cole of California. He served as the postmaster for the Colegrove, which is now part of the modern Hollywood area of Los Angeles. Cole was a member of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce when they were in the process of determining whether or not to erect the Hollywood Dam. Seward St. in Los Angeles is named after him.