1843 Narrative Of Visit To Australian Colonies J. Backhouse Antiquarian Book 1st

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Condition: Very good

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1843 Narrative Of Visit To Australian Colonies J. Backhouse Antiquarian Book 1st

A Narrative Of A Visit To The Australian Colonies
By James Backhouse
Illustrated by 3 Maps, Fifteen Etchings And Several Wood-Cuts ( All Present )
Published by Hamilton, Adams And Co: London 1843 1st Edition

A fascinating work detailing the long travels of the Author in the Australian colonies, including Van Diemen's Land. It contains a large number of natural history observations, as well as commentaries on prison conditions and Aborigines. A scarce book complete with original binding and all plates, illustrations and fold out maps.

"James Backhouse (1794 - 1869) was a botanist and missionary for the Quaker church in Australia. In September 1831, Backhouse sailed for Australia on a mission to the convicts and settlers. In this venture he had the support of the monthly meeting and of his brother, Thomas, also a devout Quaker, who believed evangelising took precedence over business, and who therefore looked after the business on his behalf.

The initial journey took five months. His Quaker ministry, assisted by his companion and secretary, George Washington Walker (1800-1859), began immediately with the crew which was prone to drunkenness and violence. The missionaries arrived at Hobart in February 1832, and they spent the next six years journeying all over the then settled districts of Tasmania, New South Wales, and as far north as the site of Brisbane. They visited Port Phillip in 1837, and the states of South Australia and Western Australia just before they left."

They visited penal settlements working for and interceding for prisoners, and deeply concerned by the cruelty and rigours they found. They wrote to Elizabeth Fry about the condition of women prisoners on ships and to the Governor of Van Diemen's Land on the prisons. Death of prisoners was often by murder from other prisoners in appalling conditions. Backhouse and Walker issued a lengthy address to the prison population of New South Wales and Van Diemen's Land pleading for prisoners to find salvation in religion. They were tireless campaigners for temperance and thrift. A third of wages paid in spirits was mentioned at a temperance meeting in Perth and they felt 'the prevailing immorality' was fuelled by drink. They also looked at the policy towards Aborigines 'this injured race of our fellow men'. Alongside their work with prisons they set up and visited Quaker meeting houses."

Light wear to original covers and spine as shown. Rear hinge split but structural integrity of book is not compromised. Very light foxing to some plates and opposing pages/tissue papers with the vast majority of the book being very clean, bright and well presented. Complete with original binding and all plates, illustrations and fold out maps. There are no inscriptions or evidence of prior ownership. There are no loose pages. Very good condition overall and reasonable to be described as near fine. Please study photos to understand condition. Happy to provide more photos or specific details of interest on request.


Size 23cm x 15.5cm x 5.5cm

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PRODUCT DETAILS


Condition: Very good
Binding: Cloth
Special Attributes: ["1st Edition", "Illustrated", "Folding Maps x 3"]
Region: Australia, Oceania
Subject: History
Original/Facsimile: Original
Seller Notes: Light wear to original covers and spine as shown. Rear hinge split but structural integrity of book is not compromised. Very light foxing to some plates and opposing pages/tissue papers with the vast majority of the book being very clean, bright and well presented. Complete with original binding and all plates, illustrations and fold out maps. There are no inscriptions or evidence of prior ownership. There are no loose pages. Very good condition overall and reasonable to be described as near fine. Please study photos to understand condition. Happy to provide more photos or specific details of interest on request.
Language: English
Author: James Backhouse
Publisher: Hamilton, Adams And Co: London
Year Printed: 1843
Sub-subject: Australian History