New York: Harper & Brothers, 1853. 552pp., including numerous in-text illustrations, plus three maps (one folding) and fourteen plates (some tinted) including frontispiece. 8pp. of advertisements. Original publisher's cloth boards, stamped in blind and gilt, rebacked in matching cloth, spine gilt. Minor soiling and edge wear. Ownership signature on front free endpaper. Plates (and adjoining pages) and map with old tideline. Folding map a bit foxed, worn along outer margin. Withal, a very good copy. Item #WRCAM55257
The true first edition of Kane's narrative of the Grinnell Expedition in search of the Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin. Most of this edition was destroyed in the 1853 Harper's warehouse fire, and it was reissued with an 1854 titlepage. This 1853 edition survived in only a small number of copies. "The adventurous Kane, a medical doctor, joined the U.S. Navy as a surgeon in order to travel the world. His duties took him to China, Brazil, and the Philippines, before he was wounded in a skirmish in the Mexican- American war. He volunteered to be a member of this unsuccessful rescue expedition in 1850-1851, financed by the American merchant- businessman Henry Grinnell, which searched for Franklin in the Arctic regions. The nine ships spent sixteen months in the far North" - Hill. The narrative is illustrated with many very handsome plates depicting the Arctic region. ARCTIC BIBLIOGRAPHY 8381. SABIN 36998. HILL 903 (1854 ed).