Peake, Mervyn

Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor

Published: London, Country Life

Date: 1939

First edition. Original quarter green cloth over pictorial boards. Illustrated from cover to cover by the author. Boards a little rubbed and marked with slight wear to tips and spine ends. Ink inscription on fly. Title page somewhat browned. A few pencil letters rubbed out on several pages and some scattered fingerprints. Two pages towards the end with short closed tears. Very good +.

The author’s first published book was issued just as the Second World War began and struggled to find an audience. As a consequence, most copies were unsold when the warehouse containing them was destroyed by a Luftwaffe bomb in 1940. This copy has a note at the beginning, ‘Evacuated Infants at Storrington’. Storrington is at the foot of the South Downs in West Sussex. During the Blitz, Londoners evacuated to the area included 30 children from Peckham who were taken in at Parham House on the outskirts of the village. Perhaps this strange pirate story, of Captain Slaughterboard and the crew of the Black Tiger, was bought to provide them with distraction as they adjusted to the upheaval? Scarce.


Offered by Anthony Smith Books