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Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

Lot 314

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Description: WILLIAM BAINBRIDGE
(1744 - 1833) American naval officer captured at Tripoli, and later commanded the Constitution in her victory over the Java. A.L.S., "Wm. Bainbridge", 2pp., 4to., London, July 20, 1806, to William Jones in Philadelphia, a duplicate retained copy. Bainbridge writes while working for the merchant service to pay off personal debts incurred during war with the Barbary States, in part: "I wrote to you on the 24th... informing that I had purchased two Chronometers, and an artificial Horizon for you... Enclosed is Mr. Hutton's the maker, artifacts of the daily rate of each piece I intended at first to have them set at Greenwich time on the day which I received them but as I found, to effect that, some part of the internal machinery must be disturbed, on Hutton's advice I declined it. Capt. Williams of the Ship Eliza Ann has been so polite as to take charge of them, to wind them up carefully on the necessary days. I have assured him in addition to my thanks, that you will consider his obliging attention as a favor conferred upon you...". The recipient, Jones, was later Secretary of the Navy. With the attached integral address leaf. Letters from Bainbridge, particularly later in his career, sometimes appear in the marketplace, but those documenting his brief merchant career are quite unusual. Very good.

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March 30, 2011 11:00 AM EDT

Stamford, CT, US

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