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Sea of Glory: America's Voyage of Discovery, the U.S. Exploring Expedition, 1838-1842
Sea of Glory America's Voyage of Discovery the US Exploring Expedition 1838-1842 Author:Nathaniel Philbrick In 1838, the U.S. government launched the largest discovery voyage the Western world had ever seen-6 sailing vessels and 346 men bound for the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Four years later, the U.S. Exploring Expedition, or Ex. Ex. as it was known, returned with an astounding array of accomplishments and discoveries: 87,000 miles logged, 280 Pac... more »ific islands surveyed, 4,000 zoological specimens collected, including 2,000 new species, and the discovery of the continent of Antarctica. And yet at a human level, the project was a disaster-not only had 28 men died and 2 ships been lost, but a series of sensational courts-martial had also ensued that pitted the expedition's controversial leader, Lieutenant Charles Wilkes, against almost every officer under his command.
Though comparable in importance and breadth of success to the Lewis and Clark Expedition, the Ex. Ex. has been largely forgotten. Now, the celebrated Nathaniel Philbrick re-creates this chapter of American maritime history in all its triumph and scandal.
Like the award-winning In the Heart of the Sea, Sea of Glory combines meticulous history with spellbinding human drama as it circles the globe from the palm-fringed beaches of the South Pacific to the treacherous waters off Antarctica and to the stunning beauty of the Pacific Northwest, and, finally, to a court-martial aboard a ship of the line anchored off New York City.« less
Philbrick is the author of "The Mayflower" and "In The Heart of the Sea, The tragedy of the Essex". The book was written for the geographically oriented. I am always impressed with the factual knowledge he has in his books resulting from the abundance of research it must take to hold one's attention with facts.
"The Sea of Glory", covers Lt. Charles Wilkes Exploration Exposition starting in 1838 with 6 ships to explore the areas of Antarctica, the Pacific Islands, and the NW Coast of America. They study the flora and fauna, survey, and map the area for future American sailing ventures and the new knowledge they might find for science. He is the first one to recognize Antarctica as a continent. I was impressed with icebergs they mentioned with dimensions of 100 miles long. Ships and men are lost in their explorations. They get into some hair raising troubles with the natives on the Pacific Isles as well as some love making. This Exploration Exposition is the one which furnishes the foundation of collections for the Smithsonian Museum. Wilkes proves to be a task master almost as bad as Capt. Bligh