Genevieve (Virginia) Jones visited the 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia and saw for the first time some of the paintings from Audubon's Birds of America. Genevieve was 29 years old. She returned to her home in Ohio and decided to create a book of the missing details for these birds: eggs and nests of all the birds of North America. Gennie's father got her to limit this under-taking to 130 species of birds that nested in Ohio. Genevieve died in 1879 of typhoid fever and the project was carried on by her family. The illustrations were published in Circelville, Ohio between 1879 and 1886 with the economic help of the family and friends of Virginia Jones.
By subscription only 90 copies were made. The illustrations were hand colored in about 50 of those copies. Today only 26 intact copies have been located in the US and abroad. The plates are digitized and can be viewed at the Smithsonian Library website.