Maritime List 189

Items 51-75

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51. M’Leod, John. VOYAGE OF HIS MAJESTY’S SHIP ALCESTE, ALONG THE COAST OF COREA, TO THE ISLAND OF LEWCHEW; WITH AN ACCOUNT OF HER SUBSEQUENT SHIPWRECK. Lon. 1818. Color and b/w plates. 321 pp. An interesting book, with 5 plates (4 of which are hand colored) of scenes from the orient. It also contains a good deal of hard information about contemporary life in China and Korea. The Alceste carried Lord Amherst on the second British trade mission to China. On the return voyage the ship was wrecked on the Straits of Gaspar near Borneo. This is the first edition of a popular book that was reprinted several times in the next few years. Hill 1167. Huntress 188C. Bound in early calf over boards. Backstrip chipped, front hinge cracked. Text and plates clean. $250
52. Mac Allester, Oliver. A SERIES OF LETTERS, DISCOVERING THE SCHEME PROJECTED BY FRANCE, IN MDCCLIX. FOR AN INTENDED INVASION UPON ENGLAND WITH FLAT-BOTTOM’D BOATS... Lon. 1767. 4to. 2 vols, in 1. v, 263; 268 pp. A wonderfully odd example of nationalistic paranoia evinced by the Seven Years War. In a series of letters and reprinted documents the author proposed to lay bare the designs of the French Court, assisted by Jesuit spies in London, to launch an attack by an army of 50,000 men, sent across the channel in flat bottomed boats. Contemporary calf binding with label. Hinges cracked but holding. $500
53. Manuscript. PRIVATEERING PAPERS. PORT OF GLOUCESTER, 1814. Four printed documents accomplished in manuscript. In 1814 the Fox, a Portsmouth privateer of 13 guns, under the command of Samuel Handy, captured the brig Byker of Newcastle, England. Handy turned the Byker over to prize master James Orn, Jr., who sailed her to Gloucester, where her contents were inventoried and prisoners processed. These four documents delineate that process. They include a landing permit for Orn and the Byker at Gloucester, a cargo manifest for the brig’s contents made out by Orn, a bill of lading for the transfer of the cargo at Gloucester, and a report of prisoners brought into Gloucester aboard the Byker by Orn. Interestingly, one of them turned out to be an American and was released. The other four, three ship’s boys and a cook, were listed as “combatants.” The prisoners were taken to Salem, Mass. Where they were signed for by Marshal John Hathorne. Privateering documents of this sort are rare. $1500
Spplendid Nelson Letter

54. Manuscript. AUTOGRAPH LETTER, SIGNED, FROM HORATIO NELSON TO VISCOUNT MELVILLE, 1805 (AND) AUTOGRAPH LETTER, SIGNED, FROM CAPTAIN WILLIAM LAYMEN TO VISCOUNT MELVILLE, 1806. Two letters, four pages of manuscript. Layman had served with Nelson aboard the Victory and Nelson was a sponsor and protector of his. In 1805, while being pursued by the Spanish squadron, Layman’s ship was driven ashore and captured. In a private report to Nelson, Layman attributed this to neglect of the officer of the watch, but Nelson suggested that Layman not reveal this, as it would result in the death penalty for that man. Accordingly, Layman went to court martial and was censored for his conduct, a serious blot on his reputation. Nelson wrote to Emma, "Poor Captain L. has been censured by the Court: but I have my own opinion. I sincerely pity him; and have wrote to Lord Melville... to try what can be done." We are offering here Nelson's letter to Viscount Melville, pleading Layman's case.

It is a wonderful letter of about 300 words, with content that reveals Nelson's character. He says, of himself and Layman, “I own myself one of those who do not fear the shore, for hardly any great things are done in a small ship by a man that is; therefore, I make very great allowances for him. Indeed, his station was intended never to be from the shore in the Straits: and if he did not every day risk his sloop, he would be useless upon that station. Captain Layman has served with me in three ships, and I am well acquainted with his bravery, zeal, judgment, and activity; nor do I regret the loss of the Raven compared to the value of Captain Layman's services, which are a national loss . . If I had been censured every time I have run my ship, or fleets under my command, into great danger, I should long ago have been out of the Service, and never in the House of Peers.”

Layman’s letter to Viscount Melville, also offered here, was written after Nelson's death. It invokes the great hero's memory in an effort to win support - but to no avail. Layman never found active employment again. Instead dedicating himself to advising the Admiralty on naval matters and writing works on shipbuilding, naval economy, and other, more general, nautical subjects. He committed suicide in 1826.

See Nicolas, “The Dispatches and Letters of Vice Admiral Lord Viscount Nelson,” p. 353 (Nicolas states: ‘It was the perusal of this generous and characteristic letter, which, many years ago, suggested to the Editor the present publication’); “Biographical memoir of Captain William Layman, of the Royal Navy,” Naval Chronicle, vol. XXXVIII, pp. 1-18, 89-112 (our letter quoted in full on p. 13, which is the source for that printed in the Dispatches, and probably provided for the Naval Chronicle by Layman himself); John Marshall, Royal naval biography, vol. III, part II, pp. 323-344.

Both letters housed in a red quarter morocco box. Old description loosely inserted.
55. Manuscript. FISHING LOG OF ELBRIDGE HODGDON, SCHOONER HELEN MARIE, APRIL - SEPTEMBER 1854. Small 4to, 4 pp. plus unpaginated (approximately 50) printed journal pages accomplished in manuscript. This is quite an unusual specimen. It was apparently issued by the federal government, since it begins with four printed pages of instructions from the Treasury Dept. to collectors of customs regarding fishing bounties. At the end of this section is an “Oath of Master” in which Hodgdon, master of the schooner Helen Marie of Cape Porpoise, promises to keep a journal on board during the fishing season of 1854. And so he does on the following 50 pages, noting weather conditions, vessels sighted, events on board, number of fish taken by each of the crew. They left Cape Porpoise April 24 and started fishing May 16, fishing first in Nova Scotian waters, then in the vicinity of the Magdalen Islands. Bound in original marbled boards. Cloth spine partially split. Entries clean and legible. $750
Clipper Ship During the Civil War

56. Manuscript. JOURNALS OF THE CLIPPER SHIP PERUVIAN, 1860-1865 AND 1868-1869. Two 4to vols., about 250 and 150 pp. manuscript entries. The Peruvian was built in East Boston in 1858 by Jarvis Pratt, a contemporary of Hall and McKay. According to a clipping laid into one of the journals she was wrecked off Cape Cod in 1872. (As a gift and curse of the digital age, a cheap reproduction of her clipper ship sailing card is available on eBay.) In the first log, she departed New York for San Francisco in 1860, sailing under Captain Roberts. They had a rough time of it in the Atlantic and it took them 80 days to round the Horn. They made San Francisco in 159 days - not exactly a record. A month and a half later, May 30, 1861, they sailed for Cork and Liverpool, with several South American stops enroute, and arrived in Cork Jan. 3, 1862. In July of that year, they sailed for San Francisco under Captain Sargent (he is the one mentioned on the clipper ship card.) This time it took them more than 90 days to round the Horn. The journal ends short of San Francisco, 152 days out. These entries, all by the same person, are followed by a couple of pages of miscellaneous entries outlining that person's career after 1865. There follows an interesting section in the original handwriting, entitled, "A Days Work" which consists of seven pages of complex instructions for finding the ship's position, course and daily progress. The entries in this journal, which seem to have been made by "Acting Master's Mate George McKay, USN," give information about the weather, ships sighted, shipboard evolutions, position, landfalls and events on board (such as a man nearly being lost overboard early in the first voyage). At the very end of the book is a two page section entitled "Providing Broadside Guns." It outlines procedures for fighting the ship, presumably in the event of an attack by Confederate raiders - "The swords and pistols should always be ready for the Boarders, at the shortest notice. Pistols should be loaded on probability of an action..." I presume Lt. McKay was serving aboard the Peruvian in case of such an attack. Accompanying the journal a clippings relating to McKay's career in later years. Bound in quarter leather over boards. Clean and legible.

Having survived the perils of war, the Peruvian went into the far east trade. According to the second journal, she departed Hong Kong in 1868 and sailed to Manila, then Indonesia, and into the Indian Ocean toward Adelaide, where this account breaks off. The journal resumes a year later, in August, 1869, when the ship departed Japan for Hong Kong. They reached port in September, laid over until January 1870, when headed back toward Manila, through the Sunda Islands and across the Pacific, presumably toward Boston or New York. This was a hard working merchantman, and her unnamed captain was much concerned with navigation and rate of travel. His entries concentrate on navigation. "Note from my own experience: I am confident that when running thru the SE trades we go too far to the southward to run up our longitude... & my only reason for keeping so far south has been a leaky ship at this season altho thus far I consider I have made as good as the average for the month with sharp ships." Indeed, he's constantly comparing his and the ship's chronometers, keeping track of the day's progress (some days over 200 miles) and most interestingly, working out his position right in the log rather than on scrap paper. This was rarely done because it takes up a great deal of room, but obviously this captain thought it worth recording. In fact, this log is more a record of open ocean travel and navigation, as if the captain were fine-tuning his routes for various passages. Technically interesting. Bound in contemporary cloth over marbled boards.

Both are interesting examples of their kind, and reflect on two phases of a clipper ship's career. $2000
57. Manuscript LETTER REGARDING ESCAPED AMERICAN PRISONERS, DOCKETED JUNE 20, 1777. 4to sheet, folded. 2 pp. manuscript. Captain Richard Bailey writes a superior in Portsmouth telling him not to rush the sailing of the Arwin galley, a transport with supplies for British troops in Canada, since the first convoy had already sailed and the next one had not yet departed. The reason for sailing in convoy was, of course, to protect the British supply ships from American privateers. Bailey goes on to say that if the wind is right he will be in London to testify before the Navy Board about stores being shipped. He closes, “The Admiral informs me he knows not of any convoy for Canada; has just received a report from the Agent that eleven of the Provincial Rebel prisoners made their escape from Prison last night.” This would probably be Forton Prison in Portsmouth, where Joshua Barney was imprisoned - he made his escape in 1781, so he is not the subject of this letter, alas. Still an interesting and informative document from the Revolutionary War era. $250
58. Manuscript. “VESSEL BOOK” OF S.W. CAREY, OF NEW YORK, SHOWING HIS OWNERSHIP IN 54 SAILING VESSELS AND 21 FLOATING GRAIN ELEVATORS, 1855-1890. 4to. 263 pp. Half calf over marbled boards, with the spine partially defective. A small label with the manuscript notation “Vessel Book” appears on the front cover. Manuscript entries in sepia and red ink in a fine, bold hand - perhaps Carey’s. Entries are in balance sheet form with debit and. credit entries - usually on facing pages. Carey owned interests in smaller sailing vessels, including clippers (the Western Empire and John Fyfe), a whaler (the Virgin of New Bedford), and a number of large packets (the Isaac Webb, the Yorktown, the Great Western, etc,). Nineteen of Carey’s ships were lost during his ownership and their fates are carefully recorded. The ship Byzantium, for example, was “burned at sea by Pirate Bark Tacony. Capt. Reid June 21st/63.” Or, “Schooner Cordelia, driven ashore and became a total wreck at Vera Cruz.” Or the Octavius, which sailed from New York and was never heard from again. The bark Virginia was “taken by the Rebel Pirate Alabama” etc. From 1864 through 1890 Carey began investing in the floating grain elevators in New York harbor - at greater profit with far less risk. A most unusual manuscript item. $1500
59. Manuscript. MURDER AT SEA! LOG OF THE SHIP SIAM, BANGKOK - MANILLA - BOSTON, 1858-1859 Narrow folio, about 175 pp. manuscript entries. This log begins with a note from Feb. 25, 1858 that the Siam, of Salem, is “laying at anchor on Bangkok Roads,” signed by the journal keeper, Thaddeus Crosby of Dennis, Mass. The journal picks up October 1, as the ship departs Manilla bound for Boston. Much of the journal is taken up with noting weather and sailing conditions, with notes regarding ship’s stores and payments to crew, and with the calculations involved in figuring their position. However, events on board are also recorded. Sometimes they are homely details, such as memoranda of items disbursed from slops. Sometimes they are humorous, such as the detailed report of “The cry of Murder forward repeated several times, and on going on deck saw the black cook with a long knife in his hand...” It turned out he was butchering a pig. Ironically however, a real murder occurred onboard on Jan. 18, 1859. “At 7:30 PM Henry Clair Seaman and Rains, Ordinary Seaman got in a quarrel when Rains stabed Clair in 3 places one in the right breast one in the pitt of the stomach and one in the left thigh. Clair lived till 8 O Clock and expired. Buried him at 7:30 AM” This is confirmed by a copy of a brief article in the NY Times, Feb. 16, 1859 - “News by Telegraph” The journal ends in Boston Feb. 9, 1859, 130 days from Manilla. Some notations from Crosby’s earlier voyage on the Boston clipper ship Queen of the Seas precede this account, and more miscellaneous entries follow it. The bulk of the account - at least 150 pages, is the journal of the Siam - a very dramatic and unusual account. $1250
60. Melville, Herman. MARDI: AND A VOYAGE THITHER. NY. 1849. 2 vols. xii, 365 and xii, 387, 8 pp. First edition of Melville’s third South Seas novel. This work is a departure from the strictly reality-based methodology of the first two books. It begins as a sea story but turns into an allegory during which the narrator tours an imaginary archipelago. Melville experiments with satire and philosophical speculation, trends which were to culminate in his masterwork, Moby Dick. BAL 13658. Hill p. 197. 2 vols in original cloth, backstrips lightly sunned but gold spine lettering still clear. Some wear to spine ends, scattered foxing in both vols. A decent set. $750
61. Melville, Herman. OMOO: A NARRATIVE OF ADVENTURES IN THE SOUTH SEAS... NY. 1847 b/w chart. xvi, 389, (xvi)-xxiii, 16 pp. First American edition of Melville’s popular second novel. Building on the success of his first effort Melville continued his autobiographical portrait of these years. “Omoo” deals with the mutiny aboard Melville’s ship and his subsequent wanderings about various parts of Tahiti and other islands. With 24 pp. of publisher’s advertisements at back. Rebound in full brown morocco with raised bands, gilt lettering and gilt inner dentelles, with cloth from original covers bound in. $500
62. Molloy, Charles. DE JURE MARITIMO ET NAVALI. Lon. 1676. b/w engraved frontispiece. (18)-452, 20 pp. “Or, A Treatise of Affairs Maritime and of Commerce. In Three Books.” Book I deals with rights and laws of maritime nations with letters of marque, privateers, piracy, ships-of-war, etc. Book II deals with mercantile laws regarding ship ownership, masters, seamen, cargo, shipwreck, pilotage etc. Book III relates to those travelling by sea among nations. An important source for maritime law. Rare first edition. But lacks decorative frontispiece. Rebound in full cloth with label. $450
63. Moore, John Hamilton. THE SEAMAN’S COMPLETE DAILY ASSISTANT: BEING AN EASY AND CORRECT METHOD OF KEEPING A JOURNAL AT SEA. Lon. 1785. b/w ills. in text. (2), 84, (unpaginated tables, about 100 pp.), 6 pp. Quite popular in their day, Moore’s works had a ready public among mariners. This volume, largely extracted from his New Practical Navigator, was intended for the aspiring seaman. It contains instructions on navigation by lunars and dead reckoning, as well as other phases of seamanship. Third edition. Adams & Waters 2545. Bound in contemporary full calf with a nice antique look to it. $300
64. Napier, Vice-Admiral Sir C.,(and) G. Butler Earp (editor). THE HISTORY OF THE BALTIC CAMPAIGN OF 1854 Lon. 1857. xlvi, (2), 622 pp. Chronicle of, and excuses for, a bungled campaign. Napier blamed the Admiralty for failing to adequately supply him. Popular opinion blamed it on Napier’s lack of nerve and excess whiskey consumption. A very attractive copy of the first edition, bound in original pebbled green cloth. $250
65. Norton, Charles B. AMERICAN INVENTIONS AND IMPROVEMENTS IN BREECH-LOADING SMALL ARMS, HEAVY ORDNANCE... AND OTHER MUNITIONS OF WAR.. Bos. 1882. Chromo litho and b/w plates and ills. 4to. 425, (4) pp. This is the second edition, “With notes on cast-iron heavy guns and later inventions in machine guns and magazine small arms” - including life saving guns and projectiles. It also features handsome colored lithographs in metallic ink of pistols, and excellent steel engravings of factories and their products - various guns and their components and ammunition. The final four pages are advertisements for gun companies of the day, one of them illustrated. The first edition, 1872, has been reprinted and is readily available. This expanded edition is scarce. Light cover wear, else VG, with gilt cannon on front cover still bright. $350
66. Perkins, George Hamilton, Captain; Commodore George E. Belknap (editor.) LETTERS OF CAPTAIN GEO. HAMILTON PERKINS, U.S.N., EDITED AND ARRANGED. ALSO A SKETCH OF HIS LIFE. Concord, NH. 1908. b/w plates. 270, (1) pp. Perkins was a naval officer who played a part in the Battle of Mobile Bay, and the letters reprinted here concentrate on that part of his career. Broadfoot p. 351. This is the third edition of a book first published in 1886. A nice copy in calf over marbled boards. Inscribed by Perkins. $125
Lady in a Whale's Mouth

67. Photographs. TEN PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINTS OF WHALING OPERATIONS IN WESTPORT, WASHINGTON, CIRCA 1900. Six postcard and snapshot-sized silver prints of steam whaler Aberdeen, crewmen, whales being hauled ashore, etc., an odd image 6 1/2 x 5 inches showing a comely lady standing in a whale’s mouth, 10 x 7 inch print of a steam whaler off the Washington coast, two 13 x 6 inch panoramas of a large whale ashore with 13 workers standing in front of it, and of the entire shore whaling operation, and a 13 3/4x 12 1/2 inch print of a whale gun firing the harpoon into a whale. All vintage prints. A wonderful lot. $350
68. Piddington, Henry. SAILOR’S HORN-BOOK FOR THE LAW OF STORMS. Lon. 1851. b/w ills. and plates. Large folding charts. xxiv, 360 pp. “Being a practical exposition of the theory of the law of storms, and its uses to mariners of all classes... shewn by transparent storm cards and useful lessons.” Second, expanded, edition of an important book that gave mariners a theoretical basis for understanding and avoiding storms at sea. His observations were made mostly in the waters around India and China, and he coined the term “cyclone” to describe a storm off Mauritius. This copy shows moderate cover wear, but contains the two transparent screens used in predicting the movement of storms. $350
69. Prichard, James Cowles. RESEARCHES INTO THE PHYSICAL HISTORY OF MANKIND. Lon. 1826. Hand colored plates. 2 vols. xxxii, 544; 623 pp. Prichard, a physician, was also an early anthropologist, pioneering in the classification of the races of mankind. His book was influential, and went through several editions, but it was in this second edition that he first proposed the theory of the unity of mankind. Vol. I contains descriptions and color plates of Pacific races, and Vol. II contains plates and information about northern races. He was also noted for his studies in mental illness. See DAB. 2 vols. Bound in full calf, rebacked. The 11 plates are clean with good, bright colors. $400
70. (Prinsep, John). STRICTURES AND OCCASIONAL OBSERVATIONS UPON THE SYSTEM OF BRITISH COMMERCE WITH THE EAST INDIES. WITH REMARKS AND PROPOSED REGULATIONS, FOR ENCOURAGING THE IMPORTATION OF SUGAR FROM BENGAL... Lon. 1792. iv, xiv, (15)-210, (8) pp. “Hints for an arrangement of the trade... to which is added, a succinct history of the sugar trade in general.” The DNB notes that Prinsep had first gone to India as a military cadet in 1771, and then made a fortune in India importing indigo, and by introducing the printing of cotton fabrics to that country. Pages 105-164 deal with the beginnings of the Sugar trade in the Americas. This is an excellent copy, untrimmed, in original 18th century marbled boards, with printed cover label. $1500
71. Print. THE MOST NOBLE MARQUIS CORNWALLIS LANDING AT OSTEND IN JUNE 1794. Handsome mezzotint measuring 9 1/2 x 12 3/4 inches. “Published July 28th 1794 by John Fairburn, Map, Chart & Printseller. No. 146 Minories Lane.” The print is trimmed to the edge of the image, with no margin showing, hinged onto a larger sheet of heavy paper. An excellent image, clean and strong. $350
72. Robertson, J(ohn) P(arish) and W(illiam) P(arish). FOUR YEARS IN PARAGUAY: COMPRISING AN ACCOUNT OF THAT REPUBLIC, UNDER THE DICTATOR FRANCIA. IN TWO VOLUMES (WITH) VOL III. FRANCIA'S REIGN OF TERROR. BEING A SEQUEL TO LETTERS ON PARAGUAY. Lon. 1838, 1839. b/w frontispieces, folding hand colored map. 3 vols. xxvii, (1), 359;x, 342; xvi, 400 pp. First edition, with the first edition of the third volume which was printed a year later. Written as a series of letters from two Scottish merchants about the country - including coastal and river navigation - and about the political turmoil that occurred there as General Gaspar Francia ruthlessly carved out an independent Paraguay. “They contain some striking descriptions of the state of the country and of the curious events which were taking place. They were popular works in their day and left a strong impress upon popular opinion.” - Larned 4087. The authors were astute and sophisticated observers (one section is headed “Malthusian Economy”) who actually witnessed most of the events they report on. See also Sabin 71963, 71964. Beautifully bound by Riviere in Half morocco over boards, all edges gilt. A Fine set. $1250
73. Sang, Ly Hoi & Richard Alexander. ILLUSTRIOUS PRIME MINISTERS OF CHINA; THEIR ANCIENT MANNERS CUSTOMS AND PHILOSOPHIES; A SYMPHONY OF THE SPHERES. (NY. 1928) b/w plates. 113 pp. A fun item for lovers of Chinese history - fifteen portraits of Prime Ministers from original Sung Dynasty paintings on silk. With translations of philosophical texts and notes. This is #81 in a limited edition, fine condition, with torn glassine wrapper and marbled slipcase. $65
Dramatic and Attractive Whaling Book

74. Scammon, Charles M. THE MARINE MAMMALS OF THE NORTH-WESTERN COAST OF NORTH AMERICA, DESCRIBED AND ILLUSTRATED: TOGETHER WITH AN ACCOUNT OF THE AMERICAN WHALE-FISHERY. San Fran. 1874. b/w line ills., litho plates. 4to. 319, v pp. Scammon was a whaling captain turned naturalist. He wrote with authority, both of whaling history and the natural history of whales. With its skillfully executed single and double page lithographs of the major species, this is one of the most dramatic and attractive American whaling books. Forster 713. Jenkins p. 143. Howes, S136 (a “b” item). Hill 1530. Bound in original cloth with gold cover decoration (a sea lion). Backstrip laid down. Text and plates clean, showing only occasional light foxing. $2500
75. Seddon, R. J. THE RIGHT HON. R. J. SEDDON’S VISIT TO TONGA, FIJI, SAVAGE ISLAND AND THE COOK ISLANDS. MAY, 1900. Wellington, NZ. 1900. b/w plates, fldg. map. 445 pp. Seddon, the Premier of New Zealand, was sent of a voyage to the South Seas to cure for his failing health. Peabody Museum blind stamp on edge of plates (not affecting images), spine sunned, else VG in original red cloth with gilt lettering. $125
Items 76-84
List 189 Table of Contents
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