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The Last of the Arctic Voyages:Being a Narrative of the Expedition in H.M.S. Assistance, under thecommand of Captain Sir Edward Belcher, in Search of Sir John Franklin,during the years 1852-53-54. With Notes on the Natural History, by SirJohn Richardson, Professor Owen, Thomas Bell, J.W. Salter, and LovellReeve.
London. Lovell Reeve. 1855. - sm4to, 24.6cm, The First Edition,in 2 volumes, xx,383,(24) & vii,419,pp., with 11 full colour lithographedplates, 25 litho plates (inc several tinted and scientific), and 4 maps(3 folding), 25 wood engraved text illustrations, in contemporary fullpolished calf, gilt decorated raised bands, full blind stampeddecorations and borders in the panels, double red and black crushedmorocco labels, gilt titles, gilt and blind ruled borders on the boards,blind decorated inner dentelles, marbled endpapers and edges, armorialengraved bookplate, some slight wear on the edges, expertly restored, anear fine attractively bound set. (cgc) Abbey Travel. 645. A.B. 1241.T.P.L. 3409. Sabin 4389. Not in Lande. Hill (3) -106. Narrative of thefive ship expedition under Belcher's command, in search of Franklin. Thecolour lithograph plates are, with the exception of the view port-foliosof Creswell, Browne and May, the most attractive illustrations to gracean Arctic narrative since the coloured aquatints of the earlier Ross andFranklin voyages. Belcher was forced to abandon four of his five shipsto the pack-ice just off Melville Island. Over one year later an Americanwhaler, one thousand miles south, in Davis Strait found the Resoluteless the crew, drifting towards them. It was returned to the UnitedStates where it was sold to the American government; after restorationit was presented to the British government. When it was retired and stripped down, oak from its planking was used to make a desk which waspresented to the American Government and it is still in use today in theWhite House. Halifax-born Belcher gained considerable distinction as asurveyor in the Royal Navy. He served under on the western Arctic coastalsurvey in 1825-27, and subsequently headed surveys of the west coast ofNorth and South America and in the South China Sea. In 1852, he wasplaced in command of an expedition of five ships (Resolute, Intrepid,North Star, Assistance and Pioneer) to search in the Canadian Arctic forSir John Franklin, missing since 1845. Belcher records his sailingthrough Wellington Channel and discovery of Exmouth and North CornwallIslands and the Belcher Channel leading to Jones Sound. Also describedis the meeting and rescue of Commdr. Robert McClure of the Investigatoron northern Banks Island by the western arm of the expedition under HenryKellett. Belcher's decision to abandon four ships icebound in WellingtonChannel in 1854 led to his court-martial, and despite his acquittal, hecontinued to be severely criticized in England. Weather and iceconditions are recorded through-out, as well as optical phenomena,natural history, scurvy, etc., and a summary of results of Franklin'ssearch expeditions to date. Appended are several scientific reports onnatural history: John Richardson's on fishes, J. . Salter on fossils,Lovell Reeve on shells, Thomas Bell on crustacea, etc. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Patrick McGahern Books, Inc. (ABAC)]
Last Found On: 2014-12-26           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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