Item #5000378 Narrative of the Adventure and Suffering of Samuel Patterson, experienced in the Pacific Ocean, and many other parts of the World, with an account of the Feegee and Sandwich Islands…. Samuel PATTERSON.
Narrative of the Adventure and Suffering of Samuel Patterson, experienced in the Pacific Ocean, and many other parts of the World, with an account of the Feegee and Sandwich Islands…

Narrative of the Adventures and Sufferings…
Narrative of the Adventure and Suffering of Samuel Patterson, experienced in the Pacific Ocean, and many other parts of the World, with an account of the Feegee and Sandwich Islands…

Palmer (Mass.): "From the Press in Palmer" May 1, 1817.

Duodecimo, paper browned as always; original simple calf binding with red leather label; a very good copy.

Ghost-written on account of shipwreck-shock

First edition: a rare Pacific narrative, with important material on Hawaii (1806) and Fiji (1808), at comparatively very early dates for both groups of islands, and a short but good description of Patterson's 1808 visit to Port Jackson. The narrative was "edited from his papers" or ghost-written by Ezekiel Terry as Patterson's 'nerves were so affected by his sufferings [during his shipwreck in Fiji] as that he is incapable of writing himself'. Patterson travelled widely, including three trips to the Northwest coast of America -- 'interesting details of the early experiences of New England traders on the Northwest coast, including Alaska' (Lada-Mocarski).

First edition: a rare Pacific narrative, with important material on Hawaii (1806) and Fiji (1808), at comparatively very early dates for both groups of islands, and a short but good description of Patterson's 1808 visit to Port Jackson. The narrative was "edited from his papers" or ghost-written by Ezekiel Terry as Patterson's 'nerves were so affected by his sufferings [during his shipwreck in Fiji] as that he is incapable of writing himself'. Patterson travelled widely, including three trips to the Northwest coast of America -- 'interesting details of the early experiences of New England traders on the Northwest coast, including Alaska' (Lada-Mocarski).

'Very important' (Hill), this is scarce on the market: the publisher's advertisement claims that 'about nine hundred copies are subscribed for…', a relatively small printing. This is the first edition (though Howes refers to this as second issue, citing a Rhode Island version of the same year as the first; but no Rhode Island issue is recorded by any other authority consulted and it may well be a ghost). There was however a later edition (Providence, 1825). This copy, very much better than most copies seen, did not initially travel far in time or place -- published in Palmer, Mass., on 1 May, by 3 June it was a twenty-minute drive away in Sturbridge (see provenance note).

Patterson landed in Port Jackson in 1808, at a time when few Americans visited Australia. The intimacy of the world of this period is quite extraordinary: "there came a young man on deck, and enquired if there were any Americans on board, and was informed of me. He gave me a call, and after a little conversation I found that he had lived in the neighbourhood of my father, and informed me that my parents, and brothers and sisters were all recently well, which was very satisfying to me".

Provenance: Joshua Fiske (front flyleaf inscribed "Joshua Fiske's property, Sturbridge,June 3 1817").

Hill, 1315; Howes, P 122; Lada-Mocarski, 74.

Condition Report: The paper browned as in all copies, thanks to American paper of the time; binding a little rubbed; a very good unsophisticated example of a book usually seen only in poor condition.

Price (AUD): $3,200.00

US$2,062.94   Other currencies

Ref: #5000378

Condition Report