FRANKLIN (JOHN) AND GEORGE BACK – ARCTIC EXPEDITION 1818 Last Will and Testament of Lieutenant Arthur Fleming Morrell, signed ("Arthur Morrell"), witnessed by John Franklin ("J.W. Franklin. Lieutenant Comm. H.M.B. Trent"), J. Jarman ("J.J. Jarman. Purser H.M.S. Dorothea") and George Back ("George Back Mid H.M. Brig Trent"), [London], [day and month left blank], 1818

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 205
FRANKLIN (JOHN) AND GEORGE BACK – ARCTIC EXPEDITION 1818
Last Will and Testament of Lieutenant Arthur Fleming Morrell, signed ("Arthur Morrell"), witnessed by John Franklin ("J.W. Franklin. Lieutenant Comm. H.M.B. Trent"), J. Jarman ("J.J. Jarman. Purser H.M.S. Dorothea") and George Back ("George Back Mid H.M. Brig Trent"), [London], [day and month left blank], 1818

Sold for £ 2,550 (US$ 3,321) inc. premium
FRANKLIN (JOHN) AND GEORGE BACK – ARCTIC EXPEDITION 1818
Last Will and Testament of Lieutenant Arthur Fleming Morrell, signed ("Arthur Morrell"), witnessed by John Franklin ("J.W. Franklin. Lieutenant Comm. H.M.B. Trent"), J. Jarman ("J.J. Jarman. Purser H.M.S. Dorothea") and George Back ("George Back Mid H.M. Brig Trent"), by which he leaves everything to his brother Lieutenant John Arthur Morrell ("Commanding H.M.Revenue Cruizer Richmond") and Robert Brine Esq. of Clifford's Inn, London, and appointing them as executors; completed in manuscript on a will form pre-printed by Samuel Smith of Postern-Row, Tower Hill, headed with a woodcut of the royal arms, with a small papered seal set against the signatures; contemporary docket, 1 page, integral blank, some dust-staining where folded and exposed overleaf, but overall in fine and attractive condition, folio, [London], [day and month left blank], 1818

Footnotes

  • WILL WITNESSED BY JOHN FRANKLIN & GEORGE BACK BEFORE THE DEPARTURE OF FRANKLIN'S FIRST ARCTIC EXPEDITION TO SPITZBERGEN. Lieutenant Arthur Morrell was an experienced naval officer, having served in the Caribbean and in the Napoleonic Wars, and joined the crew of the Dorothea under Captain David Buchan as First Lieutenant in 1818, the expedition being under the overall command of John Franklin on H M Brig Trent. Their instructions 'directed that they were to make the best of their way into the Spitzbergen seas, where they should endeavour to pass to the northward, between Spitzbergen and Greenland... and use their best endeavours to reach the North Pole – with a suggestion, that where the sea is deepest and least connected with land, it will be found most clear of ice.' (John Barrow, Voyages of the Discovery and Research within the Arctic Regions, 1846, p.63). Buchan and Franklin however were beaten by the impenetrable pack ice and, after the Dorothea was damaged in a storm, were forced to return without success. In the years of peace it is said Morrell 'nearly broke his heart for want of employment' (Clements Robert Markham, report, The RGS and the Arctic Expedition of 1875-76) but was awarded the Arctic Medal in 1856 and served as the Governor of Ascension Island for sixteen years. Morrell's Log of the Dorothea providing meteorological observations and notes of the voyage is held in the National Archives at Kew (ADM55/36).

    Accompanying Franklin on the Trent and fellow witness to Morrell's will on this 'first modern voyage of discovery' (A.H. Beesley, ODNB) was George Back who was also to serve under Franklin in his two overland expeditions to survey the northern coast of North America. An accomplished artist, he also served as an advisor during the Admiralty's search for Franklin's lost 1845 expedition. The executor Robert Brine was a naval agent based in London who offered legal advice and representation to Naval officers and acted as Franklin's agent in financial affairs.
Contacts
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories, buyer's premium excluding Cars, Motorbikes, Wine, Whisky and Coin & Medal sales, will be as follows:

Buyer's Premium Rates
27.5% on the first £2,500 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £2,500 up to and including £300,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £300,000 up to and including £3,000,000;
and 13.9% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of £3,000,000.

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

For payment information please refer to the sale catalog.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.