[FANNING, NATHANIEL. 1755-1805.]
Narrative of the Adventures of an American Navy Officer, who Served During Part of the American Revolution under the Command of Com. John Paul Jones. New York: for the Author, 1806.
270 pp. 12mo (190 x 110 mm). Original boards, disbound. Custom chemise and morocco-backed slipcase. Heavily worn and edges frayed, crease on title repaired on verso, one gathering torn horizontally through text, lacking spine, covers detached, but no apparent loss of text.
FIRST EDITION, A GREAT RARITY OF AMERICAN NAVAL LITERATURE.. The author was the brother of Edmund Fanning, and private secretary to Captain John Paul Jones during the famous engagement between his ship, the Bonhomme Richard, and HMS Serapis. The narrative provides the "earliest authoritative account of Jones' Revolutionary actions" (Howes); it was preceded only by testimonies in the court-martial against the Alliance's negligent Captain Pierre Landais, and several fanciful chapbooks. Only the Streeter copy, and one other, can be traced at auction. Howes F29; Sabin 23783; Streeter sale 809.
Acquisition: purchased from William Reese Company, 2001, $8,800.