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Biography/ autobiography

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  • A Strange Career – The Life and Adventures of J. G. Jebb – 1895

    A Strange Career – The Life and Adventures of J. G. Jebb – 1895

    John Gladwyn Jebb led as an adventurous life as could be possible. This book was compiled by his widow and carries the introduction of none other than possibly the greatest adventure writer H Rider Haggard.

    English born Jebb’s adventures began as a military man in India. Soon he was conducting privately funded explorations into Central and Southern America. Involved in numerous business dealings… helped to start White Line … was in involved in armaments. He moved to the US and the Wild West … bear hunting, gold mining and a few conflicts with local bandits and Indians. Off to Mexico to make his fortune gold mining (made it and lost it) and much of the later part of the books is about his times in Mexico padded a bit with history of the region.

    Published by Blackwood, Edinburgh in 1895 octavo, 271 pages, frontispiece of the great man, illustrated in a Victorian way by John Wallce. Pictorial boards nice but rubbed especially at the tips. Overall, still a particularly good copy of a book rather hard to find so.

    Inspiration for Rider Haggard – John Jebb Adventurer

    $80.00

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  • Mawson’s Antarctic Diaries & Remembering Sir Douglas Mawson – Audio Collection

    Mawson’s Antarctic Diaries & Remembering Sir Douglas Mawson – Audio Collection

    A audio tape (cassette) set of six – representing a five part radio series produced with the assistance of the University of Adelaide Foundation.

    Surely a Polar Exploration antique of the future. The programs were produced in the studios of Radio 5UV at the University of Adelaide and broadcast in October 1990. The box set of tapes was produced in 1991.

    After an introductory tape we have two tapes covering the AAE expedition and two for the later BANZARE expedition … a final tape “Remembering Sir Douglas Mawson”. The producer and narrator was Helen Oliver with Colin Elix being the voice of Mawson. A distinguished list of contributors includes Fred and Eleanor Jacka who compiled the diaries, Eric Rudd, Patrick Quilty and may others.

    Anyone struggling to find a cassette player … get in touch!

    An unusual yet special item of Mawson memorabilia.

    $150.00

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  • Egyptology – “The Mummy’s Curse” – Letter from Sir John Alexander Cockburn 1929 re mysterious death of Hackett on Sayce expedition.

    Egyptology – “The Mummy’s Curse” – Letter from Sir John Alexander Cockburn 1929 re mysterious death of Hackett on Sayce expedition.

    Manuscript letter over two sides on Cockburn’s letterhead – Dean’s Hill, Harrietsham, Kent, January 1929. To Mr Chesson concerning the mysterious death of Hackett, signed John A Cockburn. Very legible and excellent condition.

    “I wonder if you ever heard that Hackett died dome years ago when with Sayce in Egypt. They had been witnessing the desecration of the royal tombs & superstitious folk imagined that the curse which falls on the sacrilegious had lighted on him …”

    Sir John Cockburn was a politician and Premier of South Australia and later Agent General in London. He had wide and varied interests.

    Archibald Sayce was a leading British Egyptologist and Voyager hero … we have an original letter penned by the great man and usually one or two of his books online.

    James Thompson Hackett (1858-1974) was born in Collinwood, Victoria. He became a solicitor and partnered John Cox Bray who also became Premier and Agent General of South Australia. Hackett became greatly interested in metaphysics and the supernatural hence ending up in Egypt with Sayce. He died (of the curse?) in Luxor on 6th March 1924.

    The recipient of the letter was Wilfred Hugh Chesson (1870-1952) writer and editor at publishers Unwin, London. Chesson has been involved published Hackett’s books on the unusual.

    Mysterious Death in Egypt! Intriguing Australian connections

    $120.00

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  • George Bass 1771-1803: His Discoveries, Romantic Life and Tragic Disappearance – Keith Bowden – First Edition 1952

    George Bass 1771-1803: His Discoveries, Romantic Life and Tragic Disappearance – Keith Bowden – First Edition 1952

    A very good first edition of this well researched and written book on Bass.

    Published by the Oxford University Press Melbourne in 1952. Octavo, 171 pages with illustrations and a fine dust jacket.

    The author Keith Macrae Bowden was the author of the official Australian Dictionary of Biography re Bass and therefore holds a certain authority on the subject explorer.

    After various introduction we have a family history and the first naval activity on HMS Shark and HMS Reliance. Off to Australia and the exploratory adventures on the Tom Thumb before a trip to South Africa. Time in Port Jackson and the discovery of coal before the “Discovery of the Bass Strait” and the final whale boat voyage. Plans for a fortune and his Pacific voyages and on to South America and his disputable fate.

    Nice appendices on the Tom Thumb; Source of Information and a succinct listing of the subjects achievements.

    George Bass a fairly full life

    $50.00

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  • Dreamtime Justice [In the Northern Territory] – Vic Hall – First Edition 1962

    Dreamtime Justice [In the Northern Territory] – Vic Hall – First Edition 1962

    A first edition of an interesting true bush crime book, the author a member of the Northern Territory Police.

    Published by Rigby, Adelaide in 1962. Octavo, 160 pages, end paper maps and illustrated throughout from period photographs.

    The event took place in the early 1930′s. The spearing of Constable Albert McColl and the shooting of the Rev John Evans is at the heart of this book. The perpetrators being from the Balamumu at Caledon Bay in Arnhem Land and then Woodah Island in the Gulf of Carpentaria. A patrol set out, including the author and aboriginal trackers. Despite the killings, the author writes with warm and sympathetic feelings towards the aboriginal people.

    Outback expedition to bring culprits to justice.

    $35.00

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  • Disturbing Element [An Autobiography] – Xavier Herbert – First Edition 1963

    Disturbing Element [An Autobiography] – Xavier Herbert – First Edition 1963

    A very nice first edition copy of Australian writer Xavier Herbert’s autobiography.

    Born in 1901 Xavier Herbert had a rather strange upbringing. He trained as a Pharmacist having worked in a chemist’s shop at the age of 14. He went to Melbourne to study medicine. Writing was a passion but he was in his thirties before his great work “Capricornia” was published to great acclaim. He was much admired by HG Wells.

    Xavier Herbert was the “Disturbing Element’. Published by F.W. Cheshire, Melbourne etc in 1963. Octavo, 271 pages, a very good if not better copy.

    Xavier Herbert published few works and his final novel “Poor Fellow My Country” was published in 1975 and won him the Miles Franklin award. It is also the longest novel ever published by an Australian writer at 1,466 pages and an estimated 852 thousand words

    Interesting autobiography of the elusive talented Xavier Herbert.

    $30.00

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