SIGSBEE, Captain Charles D. The "Maine". An Account of Her Destruction in Havana Harbour. A Personal Narrative. New York, The Century Co., 1899.
8vo. Original pictorial green cloth blocked in blue, yellow and orange; pp. xiv, , 270, plates after photographs, spine a bit darkened, light marking to boards, otherwise very good, contemporary ownership inscription to front fly-leaf.
First edition of this thorough documentation of the prequel to the the US-Spanish War, a 'mysterious explosion [which] destroyed the American battleship Maine in Havana Harbor and helped propel the United States into a war with Spain. The USS Maine was in Cuba, officially, on a mission of friendly courtesy and, incidentally, to protect American lives and property in the event that Cuba's struggle for independence from Spain might escalate into full-blown warfare … In 1976, Adm. Hyman Rickover of the U.S. Navy mounted yet another investigation into the cause of the Maine disaster. His team of experts found that the ship's demise was self- inflicted - likely the result of a coal bunker fire. There are those, however, who still maintain that an external blast was to blame' (Tom Miller in the Smithsonian Magazine, online).