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Non-fiction

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  • Byron’s Journal of His Circumnavigation 1764-1766 – Edited by Robert E. Gallagher

    Byron’s Journal of His Circumnavigation 1764-1766 – Edited by Robert E. Gallagher

    Another well produced piece of work put out by the Hakluyt Society.

    John Byron of Wager fame (the poets Grandfather and Voyager hero) has come in for some criticism regarding his circumnavigation of 1764-1776. Hard to understand considering he is in the all time top 20.

    Sent by the Admiralty to search for Pepys’s Island and the Southern Continent and then around in the Pacific north to find the “other end” of the North West passage. He re-discovered the Falkland Islands (but was beaten by Bougainville) and when in the Pacific decided for his own reasons (quite valid) to go in a more direct route and all around back to Blighty.

    His journal is at the mecca of all journals marine, the National Maritime Museum, London. And, here it is published with super supporting items by editor Robert Gallagher. Much about the giants of Patagonia.

    Printed by the Cambridge University Press for the Hakluyt Society in 1964. Octavo, 230 pages with numerous illustrations and maps and charts many folding or multiple folding. A particularly good thoroughly clean copy.

    John Byron first the Wager then the Circumnavigation on of the greatest naval heroes of the 18th C.

    $50.00

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  • James Cook Bicentennial Medal (1970) by Andor Meszaros

    James Cook Bicentennial Medal (1970) by Andor Meszaros

    A striking medal issues by the National Trust of Australia in 1970 to commemorate the 200-year anniversary of James Cook’s discovery of the east coast of mainland Australia.

    Copper bronze 50mm in diameter, weigh 60gm (160gm cased). Heavy relief portrait of Cook dominates the right hand edge of the medal with the Endeavour helmsman covering the whole of the background … the impression is of is singularly focused observation of the fits sighting .. which would have been at Point Hicks. The narrative James Cook 1770-1970 to the left and below that the signature of the medallist Andor Meszaros. On the reverse the National Trust emblem. A fine example still housed in its original felt lined case all in fine condition. 3,000 medals were cast so it is not uncommon but how many still have their original case and remain unmarked.

    Hungarian born Andor Meszaros (1900-1972) perhaps Australia’s greatest medallist. He was a natural sculptor and held high positions in the art in Australia and, recognised by his peers internationally. His name was made as a medallist when he designed the Melbourne Olympic Games Medals in 1956 … he also designed the Australian Vietnam War Medal in 1968.

    James Cook honoured at 200 years by distinguished medallist Meszaros

    $120.00

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  • The Iceland Journals of Henry Holland 1810 – Edited Andrew Wawn

    The Iceland Journals of Henry Holland 1810 – Edited Andrew Wawn

    The British had visited Iceland for many years, but little was written about it before this expedition.

    Led by Sir George Mackenzie accompanied by a party of young Edinburgh scientists. Among them was Henry Hall, who later became a physician to Queen Victoria in London. Hall was 22 at the time of the expedition.

    The object of the exercise was to explore and investigate several volcanic regions to contribute to the important and controversial mineralogical debate that was then taking place in Europe. There are three fundamental journeys … to Gullbringusfsala; the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Rangarvallasyla.

    On return Mackenzie published the first good account on Iceland for over forty years … “Travels in the Island of Iceland etc”. Henry Hall had kept a detailed diary which, never published was retained in family hands until gifted by them to a Reykjavik institution.

    The author of this work, Andrew Wawn, carried out the sort of research expected of a Hakluyt contributor concluded that Mackenzie’s published work relied heavily on Hall’s manuscript without acknowledgement. Furthermore, Hall’s more detailed and in the moment account contained much missed by his illustrious leader … so here we have it.

    Published by Hakluyt in 1987. Octavo, 342 pages after preliminaries. The extent of Wawn’s work in bringing this account to life is clear from the 70-page introduction. Then we have 200 pages of the text of the journals illustrated by numerous sketches made by Hall. Followed by several useful appendices. A very good copy.

    Hall’s missing journals on Iceland 1810.

    $50.00

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  • King Island and the Sealing Trade 1802 – Helen Micco

    King Island and the Sealing Trade 1802 – Helen Micco

    An important work regrading Tasmania’s King Island and the sealing trade at the very beginning of the 19th century.

    Put together by Helen Micco and published by Roebuck as part of their historical series. A first printing of 1971. Small quarto, 51 pages after preliminaries, 7 full page plates not included in the pagination. A particularly good copy. Carries the nicely style bookplate ex libris Gisborne Park, carefully affixed only at the top so as not to actually intrude on the endpaper map.

    Based around extracts from Francois Peron’s account of the Baudin voyage in Le Geographe and Le Naturaliste from 1800-1804 during which they visited King Island.

    After a description of the original documentation an outline of the voyage we have a translation of Peron’s work … “King Island: The Hunter Islands: The northwest part of Van Diemen’s Land. From 18th November to 27th December” 1802. And .. “History of the Sea Elephant or Trunked Seal: English fisheries in Southern Lands … the advantages that the English derive from the Seals of the Southern Lands.

    There follows a tribute to Peron and a series of Appendices including to and from Baudin and Governor King. Finishing with a useful note by Isobel Bennett of the Department of Zoology, Sydney University regarding the Australian wildlife mention in the voyage with reference to the illustration by Lesueur of which Voyager often has examples.

    King Island a magnificent place and an important part of its history.

    $40.00

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  • Utopias and Imaginary Voyages to Australasia – John Dunmore

    Utopias and Imaginary Voyages to Australasia – John Dunmore

    Who else could be more qualified to write and present on this subject at the National Library of Australia than John Dunmore?

    Octavo, card cover of 23 delicious pages, the text of Dunmore’s lecture of 2nd September 1987, published by the N.L.A. the following year. A fine copy.

    From Joseph Hall’s “Mundas Alter et Idem’ the first utopian account to be set in the Antipodes, with mentions of La Perouse and “Fragmens” … Aldous Huxley is a bit of a drift … then back to Utopian reality and the Adventures of Alexander Venderchurch and many more esoteric accounts before back to the likes of Gulliver and that endearing Swiss Family.

    A special lecture by Dunmore on down under Utopia – wish I had been there.

    $30.00

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  • A Solomons Sojourn: J.E. Philp’s Log of the Makira 1912-1913

    A Solomons Sojourn: J.E. Philp’s Log of the Makira 1912-1913

    A limited edition of 500 available copies published in 1978 by the Tasmanian Historical Research Association and one of their best efforts.

    Octavo, 208 pages nicely illustrated from period photographs and with useful maps of the region. A very good copy.

    John Ernest Philp was a Tasmanian shipping clerk. Likely seeking greater adventure he served for two year on the Makira as engineer, mate and then captain of the vessel in and around the Solomons. His log reproduced here is an important contribution to the somewhat scant detail available regrading activities during the pre WWI colonial era. His crew drawn from native stock were special to him and his warmth comes through in his writing. Tragedies such as murder and cannibalism arise and are recorded with precision.

    Nicely edited by Richard Herr and Anne Rood and a helping hand by Dan Sprod, of course, to get it through the Press

    Detailed account of a trading ketch in the Solomons when it was pretty lively.

    $40.00

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