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D'WOLF, John, Captain (1779-1872). A Voyage to the North Pacific and a Journey through Siberia. Cambridge: Welch, Bigelow, and Company, 1861.

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D'WOLF, John, Captain (1779-1872). A Voyage to the North Pacific and a Journey through Siberia. Cambridge: Welch, Bigelow, and Company, 1861.

8o (209 x 137 mm). 19th-century quarter morocco, marbled boards (some rubbing to edges).

FIRST EDITION, PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed by D'Wolf on preliminary blank: "J. Peck Esq. with the regards of John D'Wolf." The work was according to D'Wolf's preface written to leave "some slight record of that voyage in my family." This is supported by the fact, that Sabin notes that only 100 copies were printed. "From our point of view it is fortunate that D'Wolf published this account as it gives many interesting and important details regarding a difficult period in the life of the Russians in Alaska (sickness, near starvation, constant dangers from the Koloshes, etc.). He also recorded his meeting Rezanov, the Russian Emperor's Chamberlain, who was visiting Alaska on an inspection tour and who bought from D'Wolf--at a handsome profit to the previous owners--the ship Juno with all her cargo. This work by D'Wolf is highly desirable and very rare " (Lada-Mocarski). Herman Melville writes in Chapter 45 of Moby Dick about a whale that his Uncle, "who, after a long life of unusual adventures as a sea captain, this day resides in the village of Dorchester near Boston," encounted in the Russisloff in the Sea of Okhotsk: "A whale bigger than the ship set up his back and lifted the ship three feet out of the water." Howes D-310; Lada-Mocarski 148; Sabin 19883; Wickersham 6666.

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