[Volume 2] The Last of the Arctic Voyages; Being a Narrative of the Expedition in H. M. S. Assistance, under the Command of Captain Sir Edward Belcher, in Search of Sir John Franklin, During the Years 1852-53-54 with Notes on the Natural History by Sir John Richardson, Professor Owen, Thomas Bell, J. W. Salter, and Lovell Reeve.
Admiral Sir Edward Belcher's 1852-54 expedition to rescue Sir John Franklin was the last official British attempt to rescue the crew of Franklin's lost and final expedition. On the HMS Assistance, Belcher successfully navigated through the Wellington Channel, but was unable to return to Lancaster Sound due to ice floes and was forced to abandon the ship. The present account of the expedition also includes essays on the natural history of the region by Richardson, Owen, Bell, Salter and Reeve.
Belcher describes his passage through Wellington Channel and the discovery of Exmouth and North Cornwall Islands and the channel leading to Jones Sound. He also describes his meeting and rescue of Commander Robert McClure of the HMS Investigator on northern Banks Island. His decision to abandon four ships frozen in the ice in Wellington Channel in 1854 led to his court-martial, although he was later acquitted. Belcher became an admiral in 1872.
This was the last British government sponsored expedition to search for Sir John Franklin, the rest being private. The narrative describes the expedition in detail including the weather, snow conditions, food, ice, scurvy, optical phenomena, natural history, hunting, fishing, etc. The Appendices include an account of the fishes by John Richardson, fossils by T. W. Salter and Sir R. Owen, shells by l. Reeve, Crustacea by T. Bell. This important expedition to the Arctic was the first to use photography although none were published in the book.
Octavo, two volumes, original publisher's dark-blue cloth cover with gilt titles. 8vo; [xx], 383pp.; [vii], 419pp
Each volume has a lithographed frontispiece and overall illustrated with 36 chromolithograph plates, charts, 3 folding maps and 2 additional maps in rear cover pocket.
Abbey Travel 645. Hill p. 21. National Maritime Museum Catalogue I, 921. Sabin 4389. TPL 3409. Arctic Bibliography 1241.
List of Images
1. Book Display
2. Front Cover
3. Title Page
4. H.M.S Assistance Blown out of Winter Quarters, October 1853
5. Crystal Palace Winter Quarters, 1853-4
7. Upper Deck Fittings 1853-4
8. Snowflake I
9. Snowflake II
10. Snowflake III
11. Snowflake IV
12. Natural History Drawings I
13. Natural History Drawings II
14. Natural History Drawings III
15. Natural History Drawings IV
16. Natural History Drawings V
17. Natural History Drawings VI
18. Natural History Drawings VII
19. Natural History Drawings VIII
20. Natural History Drawings IX
21. Natural History Drawings X
22. Plate Illustrating the Fossiliferous Oval
23. Natural History Drawings XI
24. Natural History Drawings XII
25. Natural History Drawings XIII
26. Natural History Drawings XIV
27. Back Cover
Value: $1,000-5,000 (set)
Location: Online Only