A Journey From Prince of Wales's Fort in Hudson's Bay to the Northern Ocean. Undertaken by Order of the Hudson's Bay Company for the Discovery of Copper Mines, A North West Passage, &c. in the years 1769, 1770, 1771, & 1772.

London: A. Strahan and T. Cadell, 1795.

Price: $6,000.00


About the item

First edition. 5 folding maps including a large folding engraved frontispiece map ("Copper Mine River") hand colored in outline, and 4 folding engraved plates. xliv, 458, [2]pp. 4to (11-3/4 x 9-1/4 inches). Contemporary marbled paper covered boards, rebacked and retipped with calf, retaining the original red morocco lettering piece, lacks rear endpaper. Foxing. Provenance: Henry Wise Harvey (armorial bookplate). Sabin 31181; Lande 1220; TPL 445; Cox II, p. 171; Hill 791; Bell H73; Streeter Sale 3652.

Item #365307

A classic of American travel, by "the first white man to gaze on the Arctic or Frozen Ocean from the northern shores of the continent of America" (Lande). Hearne was sent by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1769 to find a northwest passage via Hudson Bay and to explore the country for copper mines which had been reported by the Indians. After two initial failures, Hearne reached the Coppermine River in December of 1770 and followed it to its mouth on the Arctic coast. On his return he discovered Great Slave Lake. As a result of Hearne's explorations, any theory of a western exit was disproved, and much was learned and reported about the natural history and Indian tribes of the region. Curiously, it is to the great French explorer, La Perouse, that we owe the publication of Hearne's narrative, for it was La Perouse who discovered the manuscript when he captured Fort Albany on Hudson Bay. After the British recaptured the fort, La Perouse insisted on the publication of the manuscript by the Hudson's Bay Company, which honored his request with this handsome, large quarto volume and its marvelous maps and plates.