Charles Francis Hall. Arctic Researches and Life Among the Esquimaux. New York: Harper & Bros., 1865. Quarto. 595pp. “With Maps and One Hundred Illustrations.” Including folding map in back. Original cloth binding, with some wear. Interior, very good.
Charles Francis Hall, a Cincinnati newspaper publisher, became interested in the Arctic and decided to raise money for an expedition to find out the fate of Sir John Franklin’s lost expedition of 1845. He got as far as Baffin Island and spent time there with the Inuit. He found relics of Martin Frobisher’s expedition to Frobisher Bay and also came on what he considered evidence that some of Franklin’s men might have survived. Upon his return, he arranged for the publication of this volume, with its many illustrations and excellent folding map. On a second expedition, he realized that none of Franklin’s men had survived and then set off in 1871 on a U.S. sponsored voyage to the North Pole, during which he died of arsenic poisoning (whether accidental or deliberate has never been determined) and the expedition was a failure. This narrative, of the first expedition, is a priceless source for information on the polar regions and the map is excellent.