WALPOLE, Frederick. Four Years in the Pacific. In Her Majesty’s Ship “Collingwood,” from 1844 to 1848. London: Richard Bentley, Publisher in Ordinary to Her Majesty, 1849. 2 volumes. Vol I: [iii-vii], viii-xiii [1, blank],  2-432; Vol II: [i-v] vi-ix [1, blank],  2-415 [1, blank] pp., 2 woodcut frontispieces (drawn by John Speer and engraved by J.W. Cook). Lacks list of illustrations at front. 8vo (22 x 14.5 cm), contemporary polished calf; sympathetically rebacked in tan sheep, with new red and green morocco labels, spine with raised bands, edges sprinkled. Interior very fine.
First edition. Borba de Moraes, p. 933. Cowan I, p. 243; II, p. 667. Forbes 1757: “Lively account of this voyage.” Hill II, 1815: “Arrived at Monterey a few days after the American flag had been raised there by John Drake Sloat.” Howes W62. O’Reilly & Reitman 1093. Palau 373766. Sabin 101142.
The section on California is found at vol. 2, pp. 204-219. Arriving on July 16, 1846, the crew was astonished to discover the place under U.S. control. Only a few days after they anchored, Frémont also arrived. Although Walpole liked scenic Monterey, he was somewhat shocked at some of the incidents and people encountered and in the end remarks, “It was with little regret, and no idea of the hidden treasures since discovered, that the anchor was weighed, and we set sail for the Sandwich Islands” (vol. 2, p. 219). “The Collingwood was the flagship of Admiral Sir George Seymour, commander-in-chief in the Pacific, despatched to lend weight to British diplomacy in relation to the French in the Pacific islands and the United States on the north-west coast of America, a task which he fulfilled with great ‘tact, ability, and decision’” (DNB). Walpole's account of this cruise relates extensively to the Pacific coast of South America and also to Hawaii, Tahiti, and California.
Walpole (1822-1876) was a British naval officer and politician who was the father of Robert Walpole.