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An Auto-Biographical Memoir of Sir John Barrow, Bart., Late of the Admiralty; Including Reflections, Observations, and Reminiscences at Home and Abroad, from Early Life to Advanced Age
Albemarle Street, London: John Murray, 1847. 1st Edition. Hardcover. Very good. Sir John Barrow (1764-1848) was born the son of Roger Barrow in the village of Dragley Beck, in the parish of Ulverston (then in Lancashire, now in Cumbria). He started in life as superintending clerk of an iron foundry at Liverpool and afterwards, in his twenties, taught mathematics at a private school in Greenwich. In 1797 he accompanied Lord Macartney, as private secretary in his delicate mission to settle the government of the newly acquired colony of the Cape of Good Hope. Barrow was entrusted with the task of reconciling the Boer settlers and the native Black population and of reporting on the country in the interior. On his return from his journey, in the course of which he visited all parts of the colony, he was appointed auditor-general of public accounts. He now decided to settle in South Africa, married Anne Maria TrĂ¼ter, and in 1800 bought a house in Cape Town. But the surrender of the colony at the peace of Amiens (1802) upset this plan. He returned to England in 1804, was appointed Second Secretary to the Admiralty by Viscount Melville, a post which he held for forty years. During his travels through South Africa, Barrow compiled copious notes and sketches of the countryside. In his position at the Admiralty, Barrow was a great promoter of Arctic voyages of discovery, including those of John Ross, William Edward Parry, James Clark Ross, and John Franklin. The Barrow Strait in the Canadian Arctic as well as Point Barrow and the city of Barrow in Alaska are named after him. He is reputed to have been the initial proposer of St Helena as the new place of exile for Napoleon Bonaparte following the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. Barrow was a fellow of the Royal Society, and in 1821 received the degree of LL.D from the University of Edinburgh. A baronetcy was conferred on him by Sir Robert Peel in 1835. He was also a member of the Raleigh Club, a forerunner of the Royal Geographical Society. He retired from public life in 1845 and devoted himself to writing a history of the modern Arctic voyages of discovery (1846), as well as his autobiography, published in 1847. He died suddenly on 23 November 1848. This volume is bound in contemporary half leather with raised spine bands, red spine title, and leather corners over marbled paper covered boards. Condition is about very good. The binding is intact, with light overall shelf wear, heavier at extremities and along the hinges. The front hinge is weak, with a gutterbreak at the front pastedown and the binding cords just holding.
      [Bookseller: Churchill Book Collector]
Last Found On: 2013-12-03           Check availability:      Biblio    

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