BAKER, Thomas Turner. The Recent Operations of the British Forces at Rangoon and Martaban. London, Hatchard, 1852.
8vo. Original patterned cloth, spine lettered vertically in gilt; pp. vii, 78, tinted lithographic frontispiece, lithographic plate of a ship and folding lithographic panorama of Rangoon; front hinge repaired, light wear to extremities; internally, apart from a little offsetting from frontispiece, very good; provenance: bookplate of Steel Brothers & Company Limited, major investors in Burma, inside front cover.
First edition of an eye-witness account of the first three months of the second Anglo-Burmese War by the late naval instructor of the H.M.S. Fox who died of cholera, before his book came out. In 1852, Lord Dalhousie sent Commodore George Lambert to Burma to settle some disputed points of the Treaty of Yandabo between the countries. The Burmese immediately made concessions, however Lambert provoked a naval confrontation by blockading the port of Rangoon and seizing the King Pagan's royal ship (illustrated here) and thereby started the Second Anglo-Burmese War which resulted in the East India Company annexing large parts of hitherto unoccupied Burma.
Provenance: 'In 1870 William Strang Steel launched W. Strang Steel and Company in Burma and the company's first rice mill was established in 1871. A London office - Steel Brothers and Company - was opened in partnership with James Alison Steel in 1873. In 1890 the assets of both companies were transferred to the newly incorporated Steel Brothers and Company Limited. The company was involved in the milling and shipping of rice; teak and hard wood extraction; oil; cotton; and cement' (London Metropolitan Archives, online).
Abbey, Travel 407; Cordier 455.