Bryant, William Cullen. Picturesque America; or, The Land We Live In (Two volume set); A Delineation by Pen and Pencil of the Mountains, Rivers, Lakes, Forests, Water-Falls, Shores, Cañons, Valleys, Cities, and other Picturesque Features of our Country; With Illustrations on Steel and Wood, by Eminent American Artists. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1872-74. First Edition. 
Two volume set, complete. Maroon leather bindings with gilt-decorated spines & front boards, spine faded to brown, 10 3/4 x 13 inches, bindings show scuffing at the edges but have no cracks or damage. Marbled end papers, all page edges gilt. Contents very good with infrequent small smudges from use. Vol. I - vii., 568 pp., extra engraved title page, 26 total steel engravings with tissue guards, hundreds of illustrations both full page and in text. Vol. II. - vi., 576 pp., extra engraved title page, 26 total steel engravings with tissue guards, hundreds of illustrations both full page and in text. Very good. Leather bound.
There are 900 illustrations - many full-page - and 52 steel-engraved plates total in this set, including the engraved title pages.
Blanck, BAL 1732, 2nd state: "The statement Edited by William Cullen Bryant appears on the title-page of each volume." "The main literary work on this publication was done by Oliver B. Bunce. The introduction was written and proof-sheets read by W. C. Bryant." - Library of Congress catalogue, quotation in BAL.
"The work's essays, together with its nine hundred wood engravings and fifty steel engravings, are considered to have had a profound influence on the growth of tourism and the historic preservation movement in the United States...This two-volume set...achieved great popularity in the nineteenth century. Their illustrations provided a tour of nineteenth-century America, unspoilt and pastoral, its centres of commerce, ports, architecture and natural treasures. In a modern (2001) treatment of the work, Sue Rainey, who is a historian of American graphic arts and has a particular interest in the artists who drew landscapes and cityscapes for periodical and book illustrations, wrote 'As the first publication to celebrate the entire continental nation, it enabled Americans, after the trauma of the Civil War, to construct a national self-image based on reconciliation between North and South and incorporation of the West.'
"The volumes display both steel and wood engravings based on the paintings of some of the best American landscape painters of the nineteenth century, primarily Harry Fenn and his friend Douglas Woodward, but also including John Frederick Kensett, William Stanley Haseltine, James David Smillie, John William Casilear, Thomas Moran, A. C. Warren, David Johnson, Granville Perkins, Felix Octavius Carr Darley, Albert Fitch Bellows, James McDougal Hart, Casimir Clayton Griswold (1834-1918), Worthington Whittredge, Charles G. Rosenberg (1818 - 1879), William Ludwell Sheppard (1833-1912), Homer Dodge Martin, Alfred Rudolph Waud, William Hart, Robert Swain Gifford, Jules Tavernier, William Hamilton Gibson, and Thomas Cole."
"Engravers included Robert Hinshelwood (1812-1885), Edward Paxman Brandard (1819-1898), Samuel Valentine Hunt (1803-1893), William Wellstood (1819-1900), William Chapin (1802-1888), Henry Bryan Hall (1808-1884). Robert Hinshelwood was born in Edinburgh in 1812 and emigrated to America in 1835 where he became renowned for his landscapes, etchings and engravings. His meticulous attention to detail was appreciated by publishing houses such as Appleton’s and Harper's, and also by the Continental Bank Note Company who employed him to produce plates for the printing of currency...This ambitious work was published and delivered as a subscription; semi-monthly parts were sent out to subscribers. Once complete, the subscription would be bound into volumes. A variety of bindings were available, from cloth-bound with leather corners at the low end to full Morocco leather bindings with elaborate tooling. The stately, bound two volume set was proudly displayed in parlors of subscriber homes as a show of status." - quotations courtesy of Wikipedia.