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  • The First Crossing of Spitsbergen – Martin Conway – First Edition 1897

    And a rather exhausting full title …The First Crossing of Spitsbergen Being an account of an Inland Journey of Exploration and Survey, with Descriptions of Several Mountain Ascents, of Boat Expeditions in Ice Fjord, of a Voyage to North-East-Land, the Seven Islands, Down Hinloopen Strait, Nearly to Wiched Land, and Into most of the Fjords of Spitsbergen, and an almost Complete Circumnavigation of the Main Island.

    First edition published by Dent, London in 1897. Quarto, 372 pages, 8 coloured plates, 2 folding maps and 99 black and white illustrations. Original brown bevelled boards with tan spine, gilt lettering and decoration. Spine darkened somewhat as usual from sunlight. Occasional light spotting, plates and maps clean. A good to better copy.

    Martin Conway spent the summers of 1896 and 1897 exploring Spitsbergen. During the first year Conway led a party of five overland from Advent Bay to Bell Sound and on to Sassen Bay and Agardh Bay before returning. Altogether there were thirteen mountain ascents, such is the territory. During their endeavours they complied generous geologic and natural history collections.

    Sir Martin Conway (1856-1937) was a critic, politician, cartographer, mountaineer and more. He studied Mathematics at Trinity College, Cambridge. His first significant expedition was to Spitsbergen in 1896 (the subject of this book) and then an expedition to the Bolivian Andes. He was President of the Alpine Club 1902-04 and knighted for his cartographic work on the Karkoram region of the Himalaya. Later in life he was made First Baron Conway of Allington. Quiet a chap!

    Spitsbergen means “Pointed Mountains” from the Dutch. Now under the jurisdiction of Norway. The archipelago has been named Svalbard since 1925 with Spitsbergen reserved for the largest island, which is the 36th largest island in the World. Spitsbergen is the only island in the group with permanent habitation although even now there are barely 3,000 people.

    Conway across Spitsbergen – first time recorded

    $390.00

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  • Byron of the Wager – Peter Shankland

    Byron of the Wager – Peter Shankland

    The detailed story of the loss of the Wager in the Strait of Magellan during Lord Anson’s circumnavigation of the 1740’s with a primary aim of sticking it up the Spanish fleet.

    Published by Coward, New York a first edition 1975. Octavo, 288 pages with illustrated endpapers, maps and illustrations. A little rubbing to jacket (now Brodart protected as all Voyager books), still a very good copy.

    Through the eyes of the Hon John Byron Lieutenant who wrote a primary account of the events, before during and after. Fourth Lord Byron was the famous poets Grandfather and went on to be respective Admiral of the fleet.

    One of the greatest wreck stories, part of a the monumental Anson voyage (despite its losses) and an individual who would go on to be a maritime legend.

    The wager better than any novel … tension, intrigue, excitement

    $35.00

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  • Log of the Centurion – The Anson Voyage – The Log of Saumarez – Edited Leo Heaps

    Log of the Centurion – The Anson Voyage – The Log of Saumarez – Edited Leo Heaps

    The great Anson circumnavigation of the mid-18th century to basically steal as much Spanish gold – as possible (successful in that regard). This book based on the papers of Captain Saumarez and an essential part of the incredible story that makes up this historic adventure.

    Based on the original papers of Captain Philip Saumarez on Board HMS Centurion, Lord Anson’s flagship during his circumnavigation 1740-44.

    The four Saumarez logs have not been previously published or referenced. They had been lost for year until found in the 1960’s in a cardboard box along with letter and other documents at the Saumerez manor in the Channel Islands.

    Published by Macmillan, New York a first edition 1974.Large octavo, 264 pages, world map end papers showing the track of the fleet, numerous illustrations from original works, some in colour. A slight ageing still a very good copy.

    While Great Britain was at war with Spain in 1740, Commodore George Anson led a Squadron of eight ships on a mission to harass the Spaniards on the west coast of South America and cut off their supplies of wealth from the Pacific.

    “Returning to England in 1744 by way of China and thus completing a circumnavigation, the voyage was notable for the capture of the gold laden Acapulco Galleon but also for the loss of all ships except Anson’s Centurion and horrific losses to disease with only 300 of the original 900 surviving.

    Anson’s voyage is remembered as a classic tale of endurance and leadership in the face of fearful disasters, but to Englishmen of 1744 it was the treasure of the galleon, triumphantly paraded through the streets of London, which restored national pride after an unsuccessful war against the Spaniards.”

    Saumerez another perspective on Anson

    $40.00

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  • Solomon Islands with the Unusual Fictitious Terre de Qvir – Mallet – 1683

    Solomon Islands with the Unusual Fictitious Terre de Qvir – Mallet – 1683

    An unusual and scarce original copper engraved map “Isles de Solomons” by Allain Mallet published in Paris in 1683 as part of his great work on “the Universe”.

    One of the most intriguing Mallet maps. It purports to show that Queiros had a theory that a great land mass existed between the Solomon Islands and New Zealand … here named “Terre de Qvir” … similar to, or as a part, of the supposed great southern continent “Terra Australis”. Decorated with nine sailing ships.

    In 1567 Alvarode Mendana de Neira (Mendana) set out from Lima to fine gold in the Pacific. Legend had it that the Biblical Ophir which had provided the gold for Solomon’s Temple lay somewhere out there. They sailed for over eighty days and 6,000 miles before the reached land … and here marked Isle St Isabelle. It was almost thirty years later in 1895 that Mendana set off on a voyage to colonise the Solomon’s, following Drake’s plundering of the Spanish interest on the west coast of South America . His Chief Pilot was Pedro Fernandes de Queiros and they set sail with four vessels and 378 individuals (including family, criminals, prostitutes etc). First, the discovered the Marquesas and treated the native people very badly, many of whom were killed as if for sport. They then went on to find the Santa Cruz Islands … but failed to find the Solomon Islands. They headed for Manilla and only 100 survived the dangerous adventure. Mendana died on the voyage.

    Allain Manesson Mallet (1630-1706) was a French cartographer and engineer. He started his career as a soldier in the army of Louis XIV and became a Sergeant Major and an Inspector of Fortifications a role which afforded him the resources required to produce this treasure.

    Price $190.00 unframed or $320.00 framed in Voyager style … enquire if you wish

    Historical important mallet Map for the Pacific region from the Solomon Islands to New Zealand

    $190.00

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  • Bibliography of Antarctic Exploration Expedition Accounts from 1768 to 1960 – Conrad

    Bibliography of Antarctic Exploration Expedition Accounts from 1768 to 1960 – Conrad

    A first edition of Conrad’s superior bibliography. We say superior in that each expedition has its own section which contain a brief expedition account (very good); expedition responsibilities; expedition accomplishments; bibliographic information and reviews the bibliographic entries.

    Makes good use of Spence, Renard, Scott Polar Collection etc. Effectively self-published, Washington, USA 1999.

    Octavo, 424 pages a substantial book in fine condition. One of 975 available copies (set out in WordPerfect for those that remember it!)

    Larry Conrad was in the Antarctic from 1982 to 1985 flying helicopters transporting scientists, explorer and “distinguished visitors” in an area about 150 miles of Ross Island. This would includes Scott’s huts at Hut Point and Cape Evans and Shackleton’s hut on Cape Royds. His interest continued afterwards and this important reference was a result.

    Conrad .. thorough and with expedition accounts.

    SO SORRY SOLD

    $140.00

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  • Important Microscope Slide – HMS Challenger Expedition –  Globigerina Ooze – Station 21 South Atlantic in 1876. Preparer John Browning, the Strand, London.

    Important Microscope Slide – HMS Challenger Expedition – Globigerina Ooze – Station 21 South Atlantic in 1876. Preparer John Browning, the Strand, London.

    Contemporary prepared microscope slides of samples taken on the Challenger Expedition are highly sought after. This one is of particular interest as few can be found prepared by John Browning.

    The Challenger Expedition 1873-1876 was the perhaps the world’s greatest marine focused scientific expedition. Organised by the world’s greatest club. The Royal Society, a total of 126 thousand kms were travelled. She carried 190km of Indian hemp for making soundings and taking samples, had beautiful fitted laboratories and the finest instruments of the day; and no doubt microscopes made by John Browning a leading maker of microscopes and spectroscopes of the highest standard.

    The slide is very clearly labelled with the preparers name and address at 63 The Strand. The date the sample was taken on the Challenger, 21st March 1876. The depth of sample taken, 1,990 fathoms and the location Latitude 21.15 South Longitude 14.2 West.

    On the 21st March 1876 the Challenger had been at sea three years and was on her way home to England. The location is almost the same longitude as Voyager’s favourite island Tristan d’Acunha and a few degrees north.

    Campbell’s “Log Letters from the Challenger” recorded the passage of the vessel. In literally the final paragraph we have our location.

    “On the 6th February 1876 the Challenger left the Falklands for Monte Video; thence she proceeded towards Tristan d’Acunha. [Here they found the water very cold at depth, finding a stratum of water 400 fathoms in thickness below freezing.] From the neighbourhood of Tristan d’Acunha the ship sailed to Ascension, finding shallow soundings, and the bottom temperature 35.9F having left Ascension she touched at Porto Praya, St Vincent, and Vigo, and arrived at Spithead on the 24th May 1878. And so ended the cruise of the Challenger”

    In our images we show a chart showing the track of the vessel (taken from Campbell’s Log-Letters – see our copy) and the nature of various sample taken [Yellow] is Globigerina Ooze. The location of this sample is almost equidistant between Tristan and Ascension [just south west of St Helena}. You will see that it is marked Station 21 and the depth of 1,990 noted.

    Globigerina refers to planktonic foraminifera with calcareous shells.

    See our Research Section for a note on the achievements of John Browning. We have his spectroscopes for sale elsewhere on this site.

    Original Challenger Expedition prepared slide, of good Globigerina sample, from known location and date of sample – rare distinguished preparer.

    $290.00

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