Pacific Ocean and South Seas. Letter from the Secretary of the Navy, Transmitting A Report of J. N. Reynolds, in Relation to Islands, Reefs, and Shoals in the Pacific Ocean, &c. January 27, 1835.
“Reynolds! Reynolds! Reynolds! Reynolds!”
“Report of J. N. Reynolds with a list of impediments (reefs, shoals, etc.) to be contended with in Pacific Ocean navigation. This report was added to others to help form the growing consensus regarding the need to mount an exploring expedition (under Wilkes).” (Johnson)
An explorer and writer, Reynolds was Edgar Allan Poe’s muse, of a a fashion. “Poe borrowed directly in The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym (1838) from both Symmes’s [hollow earth] theory and Reynolds’s ‘Address to Congress.’ Apparently Reynolds’s influence on Poe extended beyond the literary. Biographers have long puzzled over why the delirious poet shouted ‘Reynolds’ continuously the night before his death. Arthur Hobson Quinn speculates that Poe envisioned a voyage, a chasm similar to that in Pym, and thus called to ‘Jeremiah Reynolds, protector of the voyages of the South Seas, whose very language he used in that tale’” (ANB)
“In 1828 Reynolds was asked by the secretary of the navy to conduct interviews with sea captains and to study logbooks, journals, and charts to generate information for a government-sponsored voyage to the South Seas. The voyage was canceled in 1829 because of costs. Refusing defeat, Reynolds organized a private expedition. Sailing under the command of Captain Nathaniel B. Palmer, the man credited with the discovery of Antarctica, expeditions were made in the South and Antarctic seas.” (ibid)
Description: Pacific Ocean and South Seas. Letter from the Secretary of the Navy, Transmitting A Report of J. N. Reynolds, in Relation to Islands, Reefs, and Shoals in the Pacific Ocean, &c. January 27, 1835.
[Washington, D.C.] Gales & Seaton, printers. House of Representatives Doc. 105. 23d Congress, 2d Session. 1835. 28pp. Stitched and uncut, as issued. Some stains and foxing. Overall, Very Good.
Johnson 1737-753. Eberstadt 138-533.