[MARITIME JOURNAL] RAYMOND, Robert. Manuscript journal of a British sailor, with extensive entries dated from 1767 to 1783, including eyewitness accounts of many Revolutionary War events, the text embellished with original poems and 24 finished watercolor drawings and small vignettes depicting British naval vessels and naval combat. Calligraphic title “Journal and Remarks of the most particular Passages that happened on board the different Ships Sail’d in. by Robert Raymond. Commencing, May 13 1767.” Folio, 320 pp., 377 x 245 mm., bound in contemporary half vellum and pasteboards, edges stained red. Some soiling and rubbing to extremities but overall in excellent condition.
A FINELY ILLUSTRATED SEAMAN’S JOURNAL, WITH EXTENSIVE ENTRIES COVERING THE WHOLE PERIOD OF THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR AND ENDING WITH THE EVACUATION FROM NEW YORK. Among the warships depicted is the earliest known in-service image of the iconic HMS Victory, later the flagship of Admiral Horatio Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar.
AN UNPUBLISHED MARITIME JOURNAL OF UNIQUE INTEREST.
An exceptional record, covering Raymond’s sixteen years at sea as a warrant officer. Raymond kept meticulous meteorological records and describes not only the minutiae of daily life at sea but also provides detailed accounts of events, with lists of casualties, orders of battle and ammunition used. His involvement in the events of 1776-83 include a voyage on an East India Company ship carrying 698 chests of taxed tea to New York, the Battle of Sullivan’s Island (1776), the blockade of Boston harbor, ending with the occupation of Dorchester Heights (March 2, 1776) which forced the British to abandon Boston. Raymond’s ship, HMS Chatham, was part of the large British flotilla that anchored off Staten Island on 25 June, 1776, in the opening phases of the decisive Battle of Long Island (27 August, 1776). Raymond notes the capture of Generals Sullivan and Sterling and the later destruction of a lead statue of George III - “we hear the lead with which this monument was made is to be run into bullets by the Rebells” and an “attack by the Rebells made at Quebec” that was “Totally Defeated by General Carlton.”
Raymond added to his journal a detailed watercolor panoramic view of New York in the wake of the fire which virtually destroyed the city (20-21 September 1776), with another view of Bedloe’s Island, the present site of the Statue of Liberty. He adds a decorative chart showing “A List of the Kill’d and wounded in the Attack at the White Plains, on the 20th of October 1776.”
He provides detailed accounts of engagements against French warships in the West Indies, Chesapeake Bay and elsewhere, including the Battle of Ushant (1778) – even down to the number of rounds of shot fired by each deck of guns, the Battle of Cape St. Vincent (1780) and the subsequent lifting of the Siege of Gibraltar, itself the subject of a watercolor view, the Battle of St. Kitts (1782), and the Battle of the Saintes (1782).
Raymond lived ashore in New York for over a year (1782-3), before the final entries recording the British evacuation from New York and the greasing of the flagpole as a closing gesture of contempt. This dramatic event is accorded by a panoramic watercolor view of New York on the day of the evacuation (November 24, 1783).
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