Narrative of a Journey to the Shores of the Polar Sea in the Years 1819, 20, 21 and 22.

London: John Murray, 1823. First edition, first issue. xvi, 768pp, 30 plates (11 colored), 4 folding maps, errata slip (tipped in twice). Collated complete. Franklin's account of his first expedition is a classic of travel literature and arctic hardship. His was an overland expedition commissioned in 1819 to survey the north coast of North America, traveling from Hudson Bay to the mouth of the Coppermine River on the Arctic Sea. Although the party reached the Arctic Sea, the amount of surveying possible was limited, and many problems arose, including failure of provisions, weakness from exposure, starvation, the loss of essential boats, a murder and an execution, probable cannibalism, and a final diet of lichen and boot leather. Eleven of the party of twenty had died. Having accomplished little more than sheer survival, Franklin nevertheless received a hero's welcome, a promotion, and election to the Royal Society upon his return. He returned to the Arctic for a second expedition in 1827-27, and he succeeded in delineating most of the coastline between the mouth of the Mackenzie and Coppermine Rivers. Sent on another expedition in 1845, Franklin and his entire party disappeared. More than forty expeditions were sent in search of him, and arguably his greatest contribution to arctic exploration was made posthumously. This first edition of his first expedition is a cornerstone work for any polar collection. The narrative and technical appendices are among the first descriptions of the far north, its indigenous habitants, and natural history. W-C-B 23-1, Lande 1181, Peel 151, Arctic Bibliography 5194. Item #24893

Price: $3,000.00

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