The Coppermine Expedition of 1819-1822 had as its goal the exploration of the northern coast of Canada, which was accessed by way of the Coppermine River. The British expedition was organized by the Royal Navy as part of its attempt to discover and map the Northwest Passage. It was the first of three Arctic expeditions to be led by John Franklin, and also included George Back and Dr. John Richardson, both of whom would become notable Arctic explorers in their own right. [wiki]
Four volumes, [Complete] 23 plates and a map. Pocket-sized editions of the expeditions of Franklin. 19th century full calf, red morocco spine labels spines rubbed. Bindings tight and square. Text clean, light even toning. Moderate handling wear.
24mo; 9cm by 13 cm 5 1/8 inches tall. xxi + 255pps. / vi + 268pps. / vi + 265pps. / (i) + 269pps.
REF: Sabin, 25624; Graff, 1406; AB, 5194; Abbey, Travel 635.
The expedition was plagued by poor planning, bad luck and unreliable allies, coupled with unusually harsh weather and the resulting absence of game, meant that the explorers were never far from starvation. Eventually the Arctic coast was reached, but barely 500 mi (800 km) had been explored before the exhaustion of the party's supplies and the onset of winter forced them to turn back.
The expedition made a desperate retreat across uncharted territory in a state of starvation, often with nothing more than lichen to eat. Eleven of the twenty strong party died amid accusations of murder and cannibalism before the survivors were rescued by people of the Yellowknife First Nation, who had previously given them up for dead.
In the aftermath of the expedition, Franklin was much criticized by local fur traders for his haphazard planning and failure to adapt to the circumstances he faced, but in Britain he was received as a hero, fêted for the courage he had shown in extreme adversity. The expedition captured the public imagination, and in reference to a desperate measure he took while starving, he became known as "the man who ate his boots".
Title: Journey to the Shores of the Polar Sea, in 1819-20-21-22 : with a Brief Account of the Second Journey in 1825-26-27.
Publisher: London, John Murray: 1829
Book Condition: Very Good
Jacket Condition: None Issued
Size: 24mo; 9cm by 13 cm 5 1/8 inches tall.
Seller ID: 009511