Item #3705006 A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines. Captain Watkin TENCH.
A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines.
A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines.
A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines.
A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines.

A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales…
A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales, including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions: taken on the spot, by Captain Watkin Tench, of the Marines.

London: G. Nicol and J. Sewell, 1793.

Quarto, folding map, early owner's name "R.J. Little" on title-page, handsome twentieth century full tree calf, gilt.

Tench's second book from the private library of his nephew and executor

An important and attractive copy of Tench's large-format second book: one of the scarcer First Fleet accounts, the present copy has a marvellous provenance, with the bold ownership signature of Tench's nephew, lifelong friend and fellow officer in the Royal Marines, Robert John Little.

An important and attractive copy of Tench's large-format second book: one of the scarcer First Fleet accounts, the present copy has a marvellous provenance, with the bold ownership signature of Tench's nephew, lifelong friend and fellow officer in the Royal Marines, Robert John Little.

Tench's book is prized for the map of the settlement at the end of Phillip's governorship and is an 'accurate, well-written and acutely observed account of the earliest years of Australia's colonization,' particularly notable for the travel diaries of his expeditions as far afield as the Nepean River and the foothills of the Blue Mountains (Wantrup).

Tench was one of the large group of Marines who returned to England on HMS Gorgon in mid-1792, where he soon married Anna Maria Sargent of Plymouth. A few years earlier Anna's sister Elizabeth had married a local surgeon, Daniel Little MD, and the two families became very close: not only did Tench's brother-in-law immediately subscribe for a copy of this book, but it was in Little's Plymouth house that Tench died some 30 years later. Tench became a patron of their eldest son Robert John Little (c.1787—1861) when he followed his uncle into the Marines, serving closely with him for the rest of his career: Little was, for example, Quartermaster at Plymouth when Tench was the Commanding Officer there in the early 1820s. Most significantly of all, Little becoming the executor of his uncle's will and was given many of his books and papers: he would obviously have treasured the present work as a personal relic of his dashing uncle.

For a much-published writer of memoirs very little survives relating to Tench's life and personal artefacts with a genuine connection to him are very scarce indeed. Only one book from Tench's evidently quite substantial library has ever been identified (now SLNSW), making the rediscovery of this family copy of particular note.

Provenance: Robert John Little (Tench's nephew, with signature on title-page).

Crittenden, 'A Bibliography of the First Fleet', 238; Ferguson, 171; not in the catalogue of the Hill collection; Rowe, 'The Panorama of Plymouth' (1821); Wantrup, 16.

Condition Report: Very good, some very slight scattered foxing; as often bound without the list of subscribers.

Price (AUD): $14,850.00

US$9,768.47   Other currencies

Ref: #3705006

Condition Report