A Voyage to Japan, Kamtschatka, Siberia, Tartary and Various Parts of the Coast of China; in H.M.S. Barracouta. By John Tronson.
John Tronson was a ship’s surgeon in the British Navy. In his travel notes, published in 1859, he provided a detailed and informative account on the first trade negotiations between Britain and Japan. However, the author’s narrative extends beyond diplomatic discourse to include descriptions of English adventures on board the HMS Barracouta while cruising in the Pacific from 1854-1856: the British colony of Hong Kong, the Chinese city of Shanghai, the Korean port Busan, whaling and trading off Siberia and encountering Chinese pirates.
The primary focus of his work, besides Japan, was on Russian naval activity as Britain was at war with Russia at that time. His book also includes a detailed account of British Men-of-War engagement in exploring the western shores of the Sea of Japan, which resulted in the first European maps of many of the bays in this part of the world. One such bay was Port May, now called the Golden Horn Bay, upon whose hills the city of Vladivostok is spread.
In summary, this personal narrative of an Irish-born Englishman is a valuable historical source unknown to the Russian scholarly community and to those who are interested in Russian colonization of the Far East and the Ussury region in particular.
The book contains 8 engravings, including the first ever view of the City of Vladivostok, made in 1856 three years before the Russian Navy entered the port. This edition also includes five maps available as a free download.
Whoever opens this book first will be mesmerised by the exciting and mesmerising journey of the British Navy boat crew undertaken in the middle of the 19th century.
The book has been translated into Russian and is going to print within 2018.