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Struggles through life, exemplified in the various travels and adventures in Europe, Asia, Africa, and America, of John Harriott, Esq.

Harriott, John.

Published by Pr. for the author, London, 1815
From SessaBks (ABAA, ILAB) (Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.)

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Autobiography of => one of the founders of the Thames police, a clever and independent mariner who went adventuring around the world before settling down to become an Essex justice of the peace and eventually Resident Magistrate of the Thames River Police (a.k.a. the Marine Police Force, sometimes called England's first official police force). Here he looks back on his remarkably varied youthful escapades, including travelling in the merchant-service, visiting "the Savages in North America," meeting the King of Denmark, serving in the East India Company's military service, and narrowly escaping such dangers as tigers, poisonous snakes, floods, fires, and scamming fathers-in-law. If the narrator is to be believed, the two issues that caused him the chiefest distress in life were pecuniary difficulties and other people's unchivalrous treatment of women. He also has much to say about law and business in the New World and the Old, slavery in America, forcible incarceration in private madhouses (with excerpts from a first-person account of such), and the nature of farming in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia, as well as the state of affairs in Washington, DC, and, of course, the history of the creation of the Thames police. Vol. I opens with a steel-engraved portrait of the author, done by Henry Cook after Herv?; vol. III is illustrated with an => oversized, folding plate of a water-engine intended for millwork, devised by the author, and a plate of another of his inventions: the automated "chamber fire escape", which enables anyone to lower him- or herself from a high window. This is the third edition, following the first of 1807. 12mo (18 cm, 7.1"). 3 vols. I: Frontis., xvxv, [1], 443, [1] pp. II: xii, 428, [2] pp. III: vii, [1], 479, [1] pp. (lacking pp. 69?72); 1 fold. plt., 1 plt. NSTC H625; Sabin 30461. Contemporary speckled sheep, spines with gilt-stamped leather title-labels; vol. I with joints and extremities refurbished, vols. II and III with spines and edges rubbed, old strips of library tape reinforcing spine heads. Ex?social club library: 19th-century bookplates, call number on endpapers, pressure-stamp on title-pages, vols. II and III with paper shelving labels at top of spines (vol. I showing signs of now-absent label). Vol. I title-page with offsetting from frontispiece; vol. III with pp. 69?72 excised (two leaves of a rather long religious-themed letter from Harriott to his son) and with upper portion of one leaf crumpled, reinforced some time ago. Some light age-toning, intermittent small spots of foxing and ink-staining, pages generally clean. => Utterly absorbing. Bookseller Inventory # 30651

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Title: Struggles through life, exemplified in the ...

Publisher: Pr. for the author, London

Publication Date: 1815

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