Autograph manuscript page: The Sea Lions; Or, The Lost Sealers. James Fenimore Cooper.

Autograph manuscript page: The Sea Lions; Or, The Lost Sealers.

[Otsego Hall, Cooperstown: 1848].

Published: London, 29 March 1849 by Bentley (vol. III, pp. 195-6). 1 page, ink on blue wove paper, approx. 272 words, from Chapter XXIX. 1 vols. Oblong 8vo. Long ago laid down on white paper. Some minor fading. Provenance: House of El Dieff (1985); Andrew Myers. Item #305546

Two and a half substantial paragraphs, beginning, “I’ll not answer for the craft, though that’s her blue peter …” and continuing to: “… as almost to persuade the expectant legatees that their visit was premature, and that they might return hom, to renew”

Choice Cooper manuscript leaf, from his late novel of mariners stranded in the Antarctic ice, inspired by the Wilkes Expedition. The tale was reviewed by Herman Melville in The Literary World: “The story … turns mainly upon the mysterious existence of certain wild islands within the Antarctic Circle, whose precise whereabouts is known but to a choice few, … For this region, impelled by adverse, if not hostile motives, the two vessels, the Sea Lions, in due time sail, under circumstances full of romance."

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