Hamilton, Sir Richard Vesey. (Ed.).


Navy Records Society, 3 Vols., 1st.eds., 1898, 1901 & 1903. Vol. I : (1903). Xxiv + 384 + 3 pp., frontis + 2 other plates & a view/plan (fldg.). Vol. II : (1898). Xvi + 416 pp., frontis + 2 other plates. Vol. III : (1901). Xxii + 399 + 3 pp., frontis + 1 other plate. All bound in blue/white buckram ; gilt; 24 x 16cm. Spine of Vol. I slightly discoloured o/w V.G. Third volume signed by Rear-Admiral P. W. Brock, R.N. (See item No. 65). ( See also, Item No. V451 ) The collected letters and papers of Admiral-of-the-Fleet Sir Thomas Byam Martin, GCB., (1773-1854), an officer whose naval career began as a captain’s servant in the PEGASUS in 1786. During the French Revolutionary War of the 1790s, Byam Martin held command and captured a large number of privateers and other ships while cruising in the West Indies and off the coasts of France and Ireland. Perhaps his most interesting service (making his papers so historically valuable), was his duty in the Baltic in 1808 when he played a major role in the capture of the Russian ship SEWOLOD for which he received the Swedish Order of the Sword. Sweden had not joined the coalition between Russia and France that other Scandinavian countries had been drawn into, and for her protection England sent a powerful fleet into the Baltic under Saumarez’s command. Among this force was the 74-gun ship IMPLACABLE, commanded by Captain Thomas Byam Martin. He was also dispatched in this ship to assist in the defence of Riga in 1812. Martin went on to serve as Comptroller of the Navy after Napoleon’s defeat (1816-1831). The first volume of this work (the last in the set to be published) deals with Byam Martin’s early years. The second volume concentrates on his all-important Baltic period. The third volume covers the era from 1814 when he was second-in-command at Plymouth and responsible for supplying Wellington’s army ; down to the year of his death in 1854. He died an officer with the highest flag-rank and respected throughout the Royal Navy for his experience and knowledge. Three volumes.

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