Boston: Charles E. Lauriat Company, 1927-1929. First American edition. First impression. Two octavo volumes in four (9 5/8 x 7 1/8 inches; 245 x 180 mm.). Publishers blue cloth, spines lettered in gilt, top edge gilt, map endpapers. Ink signature on front flyleaf of volume 1, part 1. A few small tape repairs to some folding maps otherwise a near fine set. Complete with the original prospectus's for both volumes. Volume One: xiv, 266; [iv], 267-518 pages. With 126 illustrations and 17 plans. Volume Two: xv, [i, blank], 212; [iv], 213-443, [1 blank] pages. With 174 illustrations and 17 plans.
"Here is a real book of the sea, another welcome break in the hasty, monotonous, superficial collections that have made their appearance to exploit the thirst for genuine sea literature created mainly by the appearance of Mr. Lubbock's world- famous books on Clippers and Frigates, narratives that have stirred the emotions and thoughts of readers even far removed from actual seafaring. This book, which will be published in two volumes, will complete the series which commenced with the China Clippers and deals, in particular, with those ships and trades which were not included in the previous volumes. The book was planned to take in every Sailing Ship of any note from the year of the opening of the Suez Canal to the present day, but in practice vessels of a very much earlier date have often been included, especially when sketching the early history of shipping firms. Volume I. is divided into Three Parts. The first deals with the Life and Personnel in Sail, with a chapter on the History of Cape Horn. Part II. is devoted to the vessels in the big Sailing Ship Trades, such as the Jute Clippers and Grain Carriers. Part III. is devoted entirely to the Small Fry -- Swansea Copper-ore-men, Clipper Barques in the South and West African Trades, Intercolonial and South Sea Traders, Fruit Schooners and Fish Carriers. The illustrations and plans, which are very numerous, have been carefully selected and are intended to provide a pictorial record of the last seventy years of the now almost extinct Windjammer. Never before have so many particulars of voyages, incidents and names been included in one boon. It is a simple seamanlike narrative, told in Mr. Lubbock's inimitable style beloved by seafarers and relished by those who love the sea and its traditions. It is a book you will be really proud to possess -- and guard! "(Publisher's prospectus for volume 1).
Volume two deals with the Deep-Water Sailing Ships, 1888-1928. "In this, the second volume, the great steel sailing ships of the last thirty years are described in detail. Although steel plates and wire rigging were a big contrast to oak ribs, pine planking and tarred hemp rigging, these pages show that life at sea aboard the last of the windjammers was very little different from that of our great-grandfathers in the days of Nelson… There are a number of appendices, giving hull measurements, rigging plans, and other statistics… The index of ships, owners and captains is most complete. The end-pieces take the form of a conventionalized chart and the binding is of the same quality that gave Volume One such handsome appearance" (Publisher's prospectus for volume 2). (Item #3675)