Jul 09, 2020 - Sale 2540

Sale 2540 - Lot 326

Price Realized: $ 3,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 2,000 - $ 3,000
(SHIP'S LOGS.) Grant, E[dmund] P[ercy] F[enwick] G[eorge]. Log of HMS Achilles Commanded by Captain E. Kelly / Log of HMS Constance Comd. by Capt. F[rederic] Proby Doughty. Two titles, the first a stock-printing with manuscript modifications, the second a full-page watercolor, approximately 110 leaves of recto/verso manuscript log records with over 25 watercolor and ink drawings and maps tipped in. Small folio, 12 1/2x8 inches, contemporary morocco-backed cloth, ships names blocked in gilt on upper cover, backstrip lost; some light foxing and small closed tears but generally good; log-keeper's bookplate to front pastedown. Vp, at sea, 1882-1884

Additional Details

The first account of the Achilles is quite short and involves our man E.P.F.G. Grant only recording mundane activities aboard the ship between her place of anchor at Alexandria [Egypt] on September 1st, 1882 and their subsequent installment at Chatham Dockyard [Kent, England] on October 6th. Following a well- painted watercolor break-page, Grant immediately begins documenting the daily details of his much lengthier and more exciting service aboard the newly-commissioned corvette Constance. The log begins at Chatham on October 7th, 1882 and terminates as the ship is moored at Constance Cove, Vancouver with the last entry of June 7th, 1884.

Under Captain Frederic Proby Doughty, Constance voyaged across the Atlantic, rounded South America and then spent time in Hawaii and other parts of the Pacific. The hand-drawn charts offer just the right visual connection to Grant's meticulous logs. There are many, and each delicately display Constance's tracking: Plymouth to Madeira December 20th-28th, 1882; Madeira to Cape Verde Islands December 29th, 1882-January 5th, 1883; Cape Verde Islands to Montevideo, Uruguay January 7th-February 3rd, 1883; Montevideo to Sandy Point, Chile February 8th-16th; Sandy Point to Coquimbo March 2nd to 12th; Coquimbo to Callao, Peru April 8th-20th and from Callao to Payta [Paita] April 21st-27th, 1883; Coquimbo to Pitcairn Island February 20th-March 15th, 1884; Pitcairn Island to the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) March 20th-April 13th; Honolulu to Esquimalt, Vancouver April14th-27th, 1884.

Other finely drawn maps include: a large fold-out South America with a charting of the overall track of the ship from Montevideo to Guayaquil, Ecuador; a detailed plan of Callao Harbor; a detailed topographic map of Easter Island; a detailed topographic map of Pitcairn Island; a detailed plan of Hanalei Bay, Kauai, Hawaii; and a small general map of the Sandwich Islands. Also of interest, within the entry for April 4th, 1883 while anchored off Coquimbo, a note mentioning the arrival of the American Frigate 'Pensacola' appears with an American flag drawn in watercolor to commemorate the rendezvous.

A note penned opposite the first title declares: 'This is to certify that E.P.F.G. Grant joined this his first seagoing ship on Sept 1st, 1882. Captain E. Kelly'. Edmund Percy Fenwick George Grant served in the Anglo-Egyptian War of 1882, immediately after which we see him here, practically a boy, coming on board the Achilles in Alexandria. Following his adventures on the Constance, Grant enjoyed a lengthy career as a Royal Navy Officer, eventually retiring at the rank of Admiral.