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Non-fiction

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  • Travels Amongst the Great Andes of the Equator – Edward Whymper -1892

    Published by John Murray, London. A second printing, same year as the first, of a special book by the great mountaineer, Edward Whymper.

    Large thick octavo, 456 pages. Nicely illustrated and with three maps, one folding and a large folding map in rear pocket. Original cloth covered binding with embellished gilt rule and lettering on front and spine, blind embossed in similar fashion on rear. Showing a little age, as usual, some scattered foxing near ends, otherwise a lovely clean copy.

    The classic South American Mountaineering book, Whymper climbing Cotopaxi and Chimborazo among others. Broader writing includes the natural history and geology of the Andes.

    Essential reading for climbers and South American devotee.

    Edward Whymper – nothing held him back

    $120.00

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  • Knights Errant of Papua – Lewis Lett  – First Ed 1935

    Knights Errant of Papua – Lewis Lett – First Ed 1935

    Published by William Blackwood & Sons, Edinburgh and London a first edition 1935. Octavo, 238 pages, end paper map and frontispiece of native police in marching order. A special introduction by Sir Hubert Murray which provided a very good overview in the absence of a formal contents page by Lett. A few superficial marks here and there still a pretty good copy.

    Longtime expat Peter Villier Best’s copy with his stamp. Peter was with the Australian Petroleum Co and spent time in the Civil System and at BP and Steamies.

    Lewis Lett had been in Papua New Guinea for over twenty years before he wrote this book. He knew Hubert Murray well and many of the Patrol Officers who had adventured into the unexplored regions. This is a book about those adventurous officers … the “Knights Errant’.

    Some amazing stories from the early ascents of Mount Victoria and Mount Albert Edward by Sir William MacGregor, the crossing of the island by Karius and Champion and the well documented patrols of Monckton, Beaver, Griffin et al. Interesting that despite the dangers in what were often first encounters very little violence is noted and not from any “cleansing’ of history. Patrol leaders had one common thread and that was an ability to remain calm and communicate carefully without undue irritation.

    Knights Errant is a unique work that brings together many adventures in very readable form.

    $60.00

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  • Unexplored New Guinea Wilfred Beaver – First Edition 1920

    Unexplored New Guinea Wilfred Beaver – First Edition 1920

    A scarce first edition… a record of the travels, adventures and experiences of a resident magistrate amongst the headhunting savages and cannibals of the unexplored interior of New Guinea.

    Beaver was twenty-seven years resident magistrate in the Western District.

    Published by Seeley, Service & Co, London in 1920. Thick octavo, 320 pages. Nicely illustrated with 34 photographs taken by the author and 4 maps. With a focus on the extreme West – the Fly River, Kiwai Island, The Girara Tribes, The Bamu, Gama and Turama. Much on religious beliefs and practices. A very good copy.

    Another rare PNG book at Voyager – Beaver up the Fly

    $165.00

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  • Among Papuan Headhunters – E Baxter Riley – First Edition 1925

    Among Papuan Headhunters – E Baxter Riley – First Edition 1925

    A very good copy of Riley’s Papuan classic about the people of the Fly River.

    The long subtitle says it all – “An account of the manners and customs of the old Fly River head-hunters, with a description of the secrets of the initiation ceremonies divulged by those who have passed through all the different orders of the craft, by one who has spent many years in their midst.”

    Published by Seeley, Service & Co, London. Thick octavo, 316 pages. Extremely well written in depth with very good photographic images … the head being treated perhaps the most confronting. 50 illustrations and 2 maps one folding. A hint of an old embossed stamp on title, the odd superfluous mark, otherwise a really nice copy.

    Edward Baxter Riley (1868-1929) was put in charge of the Fly River Mission on the island of Daru in 1901. This followed the death of the great James Chalmers who was killed and devoured in the region. Riley, originally a pharmacist became an expert in Papuan languages, particularly Kiwai and, has since been highly regarded for the work put into this classic anthropological account.

    Scarce essential Fly River extensive work

    $190.00

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  • A Voyage Round the World – Captain George Shelvocke – Seafarers’ Library Issue 1928

    A Voyage Round the World – Captain George Shelvocke – Seafarers’ Library Issue 1928

    With Introduction and Notes by W.G. Perrin F.R. Hist. S Admiralty Librarian, Secretary of the Navy Records Society

    Published by the Seafarers’ Library, that is Cassell and Co, London a first of its type 1928. Thick octavo, 262 pages after the xxii Introduction, which adds well to the principal narrative. Foxed along the edges, title and occasionally as is often the case with the thick spongey paper used by the publisher. Still a pretty good copy and rare in a very good dust jacket which has protected the boards well. Illustrated with 7 half tone plates and a map.

    George Shelvocke (1675-1742) joined the Royal Navy at 15 and rose to second lieutenant during two long wars with the French. When the war ended he received no pension which drove him to take up privateering. In 1719 he was given charge of the Speedwell to accompany John Clipperton in the Success to take Spanish vessels in the Pacific. Shortly after leaving England Shelvocke deliberately parted ways with Clipperton to control his own fortunes. In the Pacific they were wrecked at Juan Fernandez. They managed to build a sizeable vessel out of recovered timbers and fresh hewn trees. They carried on and took their first Spanish vessel, occupied it and renamed it the Happy Return. They proceeded to take several prizes accumulating treasure along the way. They sailed north to California and made various remarks on the territory including the prospects of finding gold. From there they sailed the Pacific to Canton and from there back to England. Shelvocke was accused of hiding some of the treasure to his advantage … but got away with it … and wrote this account. A worthy read it was taken on Pacific voyages by all those that were to come after him.

    On rounding the Horn his second shot a black albatross. Later, Wordsworth read the account and suggested to Samuel Taylor Coleridge that the shooting could be a useful device for his epic poem that was to be The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

    Shelvocke after and in the mode of Dampier – before Anson and the great Navigators.

    $40.00

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  • Lady Nelson (Tasmania) Ship’s Manual.

    Lady Nelson (Tasmania) Ship’s Manual.

    Published by the Tasmanian Sail Training Association in 2003 a first printing.

    A Training Manual and guide to the operating systems aboard the Sail Training Vessel Lady Nelson.

    Anyone who has been to Hobart has heard of the Lady Nelson a magnificent working replica of her 1799 namesake which had such an important place in Australian maritime history … more so Tasmania.

    The original vessel a unique sliding keel design was built at Deptford, London. She sailed for Australia under the command of Grant and was the first vessel to pass west to east through the Bass Strait. Grant completed significant coastal charts of the southern mainland regions … the advantage of the sliding keel was the vessel could get in close in shallow water. Later the Lady Nelson was to play an important part in the history of Tasmania or Van Diemen’s Land as it was then known … including being part of relocation of convicts from Norfolk Island.

    The replica is a beauty and the manual does it justice. Just under 200 pages, octavo, spiral bound. It starts proper with a useful history of the original vessel and, the replica which was launched in 1988 having taken two year to build.

    The manual comprises sections … Basic re rigging, mooring lines, heaving, helming, knots, lookout duties. Then intermediate … preparing for sea, sails and handling, anchoring, bells etc, closing down, man overboard! fires. The advanced section … emergency steering, fuels systems, freshwater systems, sullage and bilge, alarms etc. Safety includes first aid and “abandon ship!” … and a final catch-all includes a glossary of terms and a useful “where is it” for those on the find.

    An interesting book for anyone interested in the maritime and especially anyone coming to Hobart who wants to achieve a greater experience of the grand Lady herself

    A scarce and interesting item the Lady Nelson Manual

    $40.00

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