Laughton, Sir John Knox. (Ed.).


3 Vols., Navy Records Society, First Editions, 1907, 1910 & 1911. Vol. I : Lxvi + 422 + 4 pp. Vol. II : Xxii + 438 + 4 pp., port. frontis. Vol. III : XL + 413 + 4 pp., frontis., (chart, fldg.)., + battle-plan of Trafalgar (fldg.) & a facsimile. All 3 volumes in blue & white buckram ; gilt. 23 x 16cm. From the library of Westfield College, University of London, presented by the National Central Library in 1952. With Westfield's bookplate, presentation & accession labels & small rubber stamps. No external markings. The first 11 leaves of Vol. I has upper corners creased o/w a V.G. set. The correspondence and papers of Admiral Lord Barham provide valuable insights into the naval actions, policies and administration of the Royal Navy in the latter half of the 18th century, during the Napoleonic Wars, and during the Nelson era. Born Charles Middleton, he made captain in 1758 (the year Nelson was born) and rear-admiral in 1787. Middleton was created Lord Barham in 1805 and although he only held office as First Lord of the Admiralty for nine months, this covered the crucial period when Trafalgar was fought. Barham had entered the Navy as far back as 1740 when Anson was setting out on his great circumnavigation, and he had obtained considerable experience both in action (chiefly against privateers) and in naval administration. He was one of the wisest and most knowledgeable officers of his generation. These three volumes contain correspondence between Barham and Lord Nelson, Lord Collingwood, Sidney Smith, 'Nauticus', Sir John Orde, Admiral Duckworth, Admiral Villeneuve, Prime Minister Pitt, Cornwallis, Strachan, Lord Keith, Sir Robert Calder and many other leading naval figures and political personalities of the period. Original editions in three volumes.

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