Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - December - 2011 Issue

Maritime Works from the Ten Pound Island Book Company

Tenpound207

A maritime list from Ten Pound Island.

The Ten Pound Island Book Company has published their Maritime List 207. Old, Rare & Exquisite. That title tells the story of what can be found within its pages. These are old and rare books about the sea, boats, sailors, admirals, voyages, and such. Be prepared to get your gills wet as we take a look at a few of the books offered within the pages of this latest list.

There have been few voyages as remarkable, or as well known, even after more than two centuries, than the one retold here: A Narrative of the Mutiny on Board His Majesty's Ship Bounty. Captain William Bligh and his crew were on a rather pedestrian mission, to transport breadfruit trees from Tahiti to the Caribbean. The plan was that this would provide a cheap source of food for the slaves. However, a little ways out of Tahiti, Bligh was in for a major surprise. Part of his crew mutinied. Bligh, and some loyal crewmen, were forced into a longboat, and probable death at sea. History has not always been kind to Bligh, though he was not the tyrant some depicted the man. He was more pompous than cruel. On this occasion, Bligh rose to unimaginable heights. Instead of disappearing into the sea, he led his men on an incredible 3,500-mile journey to rescue in Batavia in this small boat, even charting some of the northern coast of Australia along the way. When Bligh made it back to England, he felt compelled to quickly recount his tale so that authorities would know who were the good guys and who were the bad. Two years later, he wrote a more extended version of this tale, but this book, published in 1790, is the first account. Item 7. Priced at $15,000.

Item 47 is a copy of the 1718 edition of Woodes Rogers' A Cruising Voyage Round the World...Containing an Account of Alexander Selkirk's Living Alone... Rogers was a privateer, a polite word for pirate, who cruised the coast of South America, stealing from Spanish ships. The pilot for this voyage was another noted privateer, William Dampier. This work is considered a “buccaneering classic,” though the most interesting part relates to the rescue of Alexander Selkirk. Selkirk had wisely asked off of a ship of dubious seaworthiness years earlier on deserted Juan Fernandes Island. He was expecting another ship to come by shortly, but it was almost five years until Rogers arrived and rescued him. Selkirk's name may not be that well known today, but he was the inspiration for the well-known fictional character of Robinson Crusoe. $3,500.

Item 58 pertains to a case from a time when failure at sea was treated far more harshly than it is today: An Appeal to the People: Containing the Genuine Entire Letter of Admiral Byng... along with Further Particulars in Relation to the Case of Admiral Byng, both from 1756. Admiral John Byng rose in the British military without seeing much action, but he came with a fine pedigree. His father had been an admiral. During the early years of the Seven Years War, he was sent out with a fleet to defend the British island of Minorca, in the Mediterranean Sea, from the French. The French were in the process of seizing the outpost, and were perhaps better equipped than Byng's British forces. Byng engaged the French, but after indecisive results, retreated for repairs and reinforcements, rather than pursuing the French. Unfortunately for Byng, regulations at the time called for pursuit regardless of perceived difficulties, and the penalty for not pursuing was death. Byng was placed on trial and convicted. Despite Byng's high standing, and friends who called for a pardon, Byng was made into an example, and executed for his “crime.” $750.

Item 30 is a manuscript Journal Kept by George Barnes Aboard HMS Terrible, Off Sevastopol Between July 17th and December 6th 1854. Barnes served on board during the Crimean War, and part of his journal is an account of one of the more infamous chapters in British military history. This incident would become very famous as a result of Tennyson's poem The Charge of the Light Brigade. There was a miscommunication of orders, resulting in the Light Brigade being sent on a suicide mission. The men attacked bravely, but futilely, and many died in a clearly doomed mission. $5,000.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Textile of the Great White Fleet, with portraits of Theodore Roosevelt, Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans & successor Charles Stillman Sperry, 1908. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> William J. Stone, <i>Declaration of Independence,</i> Force printing, 1833. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Shugart family papers including documentation of the Underground Railroad, 63 items, 1838-81. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Records of the Dickinson & Shrewsbury salt works, over 2000 items, with extensive slave labor correspondence, legal records & receipts, bulk 1820-1865. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Gloria Steinem, typescript for her speech <i>Living the Revolution,</i> with related letters and documents, 1941-77. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> <i>Liberty Triumphant or the Downfall of Oppression,</i> depicting the aftermath of the Boston Tea Party, c. 1774. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Juan Eusebio Nieremberg, <i>Historia naturae, maxime peregrinae, libris XVI distincta,</i> Antwerp, 1635. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Antonio de Mayorga, manuscript map of Mexico City, 1779. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Thomas L. McKenney & James Hall, <i>History of the Indian Tribes of North America,</i> first edition, 3 volumes, Philadelphia, 1842-44. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Samuel Walker, diary of the entire first cruise of the USS Kineo, a gunboat on the Mississippi, 1854-69. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Scrapbook on early Stanford football, with letters from Walter Camp, 1893-95 & 1931. $8,000 to $12,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

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