Title: A Treatise on Navigation By Steam Comprising...
Publisher: London: Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green
Publication Date: 1828
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: 1st Edition
FIRST EDITION. xxiii, 182 pages, 1, 68 pages (Appendix), frontispiece aquatint plate (an illustration of an armoured paddle-steamer "James Watt, Steam Packet, Propelling against a storm."). 31 text figures including engraved full-page plate. List of authors on the subject of steam: p. 174. Errata inserted after page xxiii. Somewhat foxed on frontispiece and tissue guard, otherwise exceptionally clean. Marbled edges and marbled endpapers. 23 x 28 cm. 4to. Contemporary calf bound by Henington, Ingram Court, Fenchurch St. [London] with original rose binder's label on front paste-down endpaper. Boards with gilt hand-tooled borders (light wear to spine and edges). Spine with black lettering-piece and with gilt hand-tooled decoration (rebacked sympathetically). Provenance: neat ownership inscription in ink of R.T. Creighton, dated April 1844 on title page. Also gift inscription from Lady Rivett-Carnac, 1st April 1844 (James Rivett-Carnac had distinguished career in the military, a Director/Chairman of the East India Company and Baronet in 1836. Elected Member of Parliament for Sandwich, and Governor of the Bombay Presidency in 1839). Most important association with Bert Plimer (1929-2009). Plimer (Franklin Search bookplate laid in & letters pencilled on the endpaper), born in North Berwick, Scotland. At sixteen he joined the British Army, moved to Ottawa in the 1950s, where as a photojournalist and freelance camera man and film maker, he founded Plimer Productions Limited. Bert's interest in the Arctic, particularly the NorthWest Passage began about 1975 & led to avid research, especially on the search for Franklin. Bert looked for the finest copy available & created the greatest collection of rare books on the subject. Captain John Ross (1777-1856), is the first naval officer to write about steam engines. His Treatise on Navigation, published the year before he sailed on his second voyage in search of the Northwest Passage, was much in advance of its time, and forerunner of many similar works.The natural conservatism of sailors, combined with the unreliability of early engines, had created a great prejudice against steam in the Royal Navy.In this work, Ross attempts to show the merits of the use of steam engines. Sir John Ross made two attempts between 1818 and 1833 to find the North West Passage and, like so many others, failed. He was knighted anyway. He also made one of the many attempts to find the missing Franklin expedition later. Like all early attempts to find Franklin, this was unsuccessful too. [N]o vessel, explained John Ross, a captain in the Royal Navy, can ever be constructed to sail in direct opposition to the wind. A steamer could run straight into any wind without drifting off course. Impelled by a source of energy utterly extraneous to local weather conditions, it went wherever its commander decreed. In this book, Ross suggested that stokers were so essential to the smooth running of the ship's engines he advocated that they should be: "Employed solely on their duties in the boiler room and are to be relieved every two hours and awarded a double quantity of beer or other beverage while so employed". Ross recommended stokers be regularly bred for their calling, arguing that it was a mistake to believe that ordinary seamen were able to tend the fire as well as a qualified stoker. Moreover, he argued that by keeping a better fire, a stoker would be able to apply a more steady heat on the boiler, which would result in considerable fuel savings. Ross was also influential in recommending the minimum levels of manning for steam vessels by stipulating that every steam-fitted ship would require one head-engineer, one assistant engineer, and one head foreman. With ships fitted with engines rated up to forty-horsepower, Ross calculated that three stokers would be sufficient, with an extra stoker added to the complement for every additional twenty-horsepower delivered. Scarce edition in commerce. Seller Inventory # 5156