An extremely rare and excellently preserved navigation instrument dated 1762, this backstaff, or Davis Quadrant, is attributed to maker Benjamin King of Newport, Rhode Island. It is impact stencil signed with his name, with an exceptional array of degree scales on each arc, including a Gunters Scale on the verso, quite rare and desirable on such a navigation instrument.
Dimensions: 25 5/8 inches long x 15 1/4 inches high x 5/8 inch deep.
With its original stenciled flags and advertisement written on the forward panel, “Guillaume Bossimeau, 31 Nassau St. New York City”, this display piece is a large version of a French Naval Steering Compass.
Of note are the copper-bound corner straps on the top and sides, with a mock-up canister light. It resided in the compass maker’s lobby for a time and recently was discovered in an Iowa home.
Instrument Measures 32 x 32 Inches Square with a 51 Inch Height. The Light Cannister adds an Additional 10-Inch Width. Compass Dial is 13½ Inches in Diameter, Inset into a 19-Inch Suspension Basin.
An excellent signed telescope instrument by Graham & Parkes, 43 Canning Place, Liverpool; it was owned by Captain James Edward Venus of the B.J. Sunderland & Company Shipping Line. The telescope is wrapped in sail canvas with a turk’s head knot weaving.
Captain Venus of Hull commanded S.S. TARANSAY, and S.S. INVERNESS, together from more than 24 years. With his telescope comes the following list of personal effects, including his 1891 Mater’s Certificate on velum from the British Board of Trade:.
Small Silver Gelatin Photo of Captain Venus, 3½ x 2½ inches.
Certificate of Competency Master. To James Edward Venus ... By order of the Board of Trade... 14th day of February 1891.
Two Postcards of Capt. Venus and Crew aboard S.S. TARANSAY; One aboard S.S. INVERNESS.
Oval photographic Portrait of Capt. Venus, 5 x 3½ inches. By Isabel Hartnell, Waltham Street, King Edward Street, Hull.
Mercantile Marine Service Association, Membership Booklet for Capt. Venus.
Book of Anecdotes, Aphorisms and Proverbs. Collected by a Septuagenarian. London: Charles Taylor. 22. 23 & 39, Warwick Lane. E.C. 184 pages. Signed 1891.
Letter of condolence, passing of Captain Venus of heart failure while onboard S.S. TARANSAY, a B.J. Sutherland & Co. Steamship of Newcastle Registry on route to Buenos Aires, 24th September 1923, to Mrs. Venus of 266, Northgate, Cottingham, Near Hull, England.
Several Newspaper clippings of accounts and obituaries.
An early 20th Century Globe in very nice conditon on its turned hard wood base, this instrument was made in Stockholm Sweden by H. Kiepert and Arvid Kempe. It was published by Wahlström & Widsrand of Stockholm and Berlin.
Nathanial Worthington of Piccadilly, London was the successor to Berge, maker of Captain Beechley's Improved Sextext, with a second cathedral mirror and index arm. This was designed for use in surveying and sounding from a moving ship.