By: James Cook & Crew
Date: 1784 (dated) London
Dimensions: 13 x 11 x 0.5 inches
This is a folio atlas of maps from Captain James Cook's 3rd voyage to the Pacific Ocean, which includes the first map of the Hawaiian (Sandwich) Islands along with 23 other important maps and sketches.
Third Voyage of Captain James Cook
On the 12th of July, 1776 Captain James Cook set sail from Plymouth in the ships Resolution and Discovery for his third and final expedition of the Pacific Ocean. By way of the Canary Island and Cape Town, Cook's expedition would visit and chart the coasts of Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) New Zealand, several islands in the South Pacific that would later bear his name as the "Cook Island," the Hawaiian Island, Northwest Coast of America, Alaska, the Bearing Strait, Kamchatka, and parts of Japan and Macao before returning to England over four years later on the 4th of October, 1780.
Discovery of the Hawaiian (Sandwich) Islands
Of the many accomplishments of the voyage, the one that stands out most prominently is the discovery of the Hawaiian Islands that were named the Sandwich Islands after John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich who was responsible for approving admiralty funds for the purchase and outfitting of the Resolution, Adventure and Discovery for Cook's second and third expeditions. Cook noted that the native Hawaiians had distinct similarities in their physique, culture, art, and language to that of the Tahitians, which correctly led to the notion that the people of the two island nations were distant relatives from centuries past.
Death of Captain James Cook
While Cook and his expedition were initially regarded as deities by the native Hawaiians, they soon wore out their welcome. They departed the islands to explore the northern Pacific and upon their return with hopes of making repairs to a damaged mast and restocking on fresh water and supplies, a deadly dispute ensued.
According to members of the crew, one or a few of the natives stole some tools and a cutter (small watercraft). Such acts were common in the Tahitian Islands and Cook usually resolved the issue by taking native hostages until all stolen items were returned. In this instance, he went ashore with several marines and attempted to kidnap and take hostage the King of Hawaiʻi, Kalaniʻōpuʻu. The locals revolted as hundreds of natives pursued them, and as Cook attempted to launch a boat off the beach, he was struck from behind and stabbed many times in the back and side until his body bobbed lifeless, head-down in the surf. Four other mariners were also killed in the attack.
Cook's body was prepared similarly to those of chiefs and esteemed elders in that it was disemboweled, baked, flesh removed, and bones cleaned before being buried. A temporary truces was made so that the expedition could recover parts of James Cook along with some of his personal belongings to present to the admiralty upon their return.
Maps and views included in the folio atlas in the order they appear.
- Kerguelen's Land called by C. Cook Island of Desolation
- Sketch of Port Palliser / Plan of Christmas Harbour on Kerguelen's Land
- Chart of Van Diemen's Land
- View / Plan of Adventure Bay on Van Diemen's Land
- Chart of the Friendly Islands
- Sketch of Tongataboo Harbour. 1777
- Wateeoo I. / Mangeea Island / Toobouai Island
- Sketch of the Harbours on the North Side of Eimeo
- Christmas Island
- Sketch of Nootka Sound
- Chart of Cook's River in the N.W. Part of America
- Chart of Norton Sound and of Bherings Strait made by the East Cape of Asia and the West Point of America
- Sketch of the Harbour of Samganooda on the Island Oonalaska
- Chart of the Sandwich Island / Sketch of Karakakooa Bay
- Plan of the Bay of Awatska on the East Coast of Kamtschatka
- View and Map of Japan or Nipon
- View and Map of Sulphur Islands
- Sketch of the Typa and Macao
- Views of Kerguelen's Land
- Views of the Sandwich Island
- Views on the Coast of Asia
- Views of Kamtschatka / Entrance to Awatska Bay
- Views of the West Coast of America / Prince William's Sound
- Views of the Land of the West Coast of America to the Westward of Cook's River.
In it's totality, this atlas is a remarkable cartographic account of one of the most famous voyages of exploration ever undertaken. It is a must have item for anyone with an interest in the voyages of James Cook and/or the cartographic history of the greater Pacific.
Condition: This atlas is in B+ condition with some ware and scratches to the outer cover. Maps are slightly browned with some light staining and foxing in some areas. Some maps have minor separations along the top or bottom portion of the centerfold, but all are still securely bound into the spine.
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