Polar interest. Autograph letter from Robert McClure, who led the first navigation of the North West Passage. Dated Dec 11th 1854 from Ballyleek House, Monaghan [Ireland].
My Dear Mr. McNamara, your very kind and welcome note should not have so long remained unanswered but you may imagine my dear fellow how occupied my time was while in that great Babylon between business and pleasure, the one the portion of the day the other until the small hours of the morning. I had so many friends to see and their society after my long and dreary incarceration left me little leisure for even answering an old shipmates letter and one whom I always entertained a deep regard regard for although so many years have elapsed since we took a cup of tea together I think you and Mrs Macnamara lived then at Southsea near the Common. My health was never better than at present with the exception of an ulcerated sore throat that has bothered me for about sixteen months and is troublesome when talking but is now beginning to mend under the care and quietness I now am enjoying with my brother and his wife in my native land. Many thanks to you both on your congratulations on my successful trip and termination, the Admty [Admiralty] have behaved very kindly in giving me time & [?] besides a handsome chronometer with a suitable inscription which is exceedingly flattering I do not know if I shall get anything more – Give my kindest remembrances to Mrs MacNamara…your old shipmate…Robert McClure
McClure was court martialled upon returning to England because of the loss of his ship HMS Investigator but was honourably acquitted. He subsequently served in the Far East. 4 pages in good condition.