Renowned American historian and leading horticulturalist Francis Parkman (1823-1893), briefly a Professor of Horticulture at Harvard University and President of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, wrote "The Book of Roses" specifically for American rose enthusiasts. The book contains information on the culture, training and propagation of roses, as well as descriptions of rose families, groups, and best varieties. According to Parkman biographer Howard Doughty, "(Parkman) was among the foremost of American rose-growers. He is said to have had at one time over a thousand varieties in his garden, and 'The Book of Roses, ' which he published in 1866, was for many years a standard manual of the subject." Beautiful black-and-white illustrations accompany the text.