The Ocean Waves: Travels by Land and Sea

CHAPMAN, Captain Charles. The Ocean Waves: Travels by Land and Sea.

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CHAPMAN, Captain Charles. The Ocean Waves: Travels by Land and Sea. London, George Berridge & Co, 1875.

8vo. Original burgundy cloth, spine lettered in gilt, ornamented in blind; pp. [iv], 295, [2], wood-engraved frontispiece, wood-engraved portrait of Inman, two wood-engraved plates of Inman's residences in Windermere and Birkenhead, wood-engraved plae of the Windsor Hotel in New York, and map of the North Atlantic with route; extremities of spine with minor wear, otherwise a very good copy; bookplate James Bennett Kennedy of Chester.
First edition. This book celebrates and describes cheap steamer travel offered by Inman's line for emigrants to North America. The book is dedicated by Captain Chapman, to William Inman, who 'was the first to send the poor emigrant across the Atlantic at a cheap rate by a steamer; and also the first to send steamers to Ireland to take on board poor passengers' (p. iii). The shipowner William Inman (1825-1881) was the first to provide steam navigation for passengers across the Atlantic. 'The Inman Line probably reached its peak in 1870 when its eighteen ships carried 44,000 passengers, mostly emigrants, to New York. The 1870s brought further competition, especially from the White Star Line, and Inman was forced to spend large sums on new ships. His 5500 ton City of Berlin of 1875 was the largest merchant ship in the world after Brunel's Great Eastern, but cost £200,000 at a time when passenger traffic had slumped. In the hope of raising more capital, a new public company, the Inman Steamship Company, was set up in 1875, but conditions were still difficult at the time of Inman's death' (ODNB). A good deal of the book, after a detailed description of the passage to the US, describes wandering about in New England and New York.
COPC locates only two copies, at University of Manchester and in the British Library.