Presentation Captain Cutting telescope, maker inscribed on the draw tube Troughton & Simms, London, English/American, 1858. The telescope bears the following inscription on the draw tube: Presented by the British Government to Captain Cutting Master of the American Ship "John Bright" for the assistance generously rendered by him to the Master and Crew of the Ship "Liberal" in October, 1858 Silver plated one draw 1 3/4 inch single draw telescope with sliding sun shade. Telescope has a slight taper and retains its original leather wrap, eye piece with dark slide. The telescope has its original presentation dovetail mahogany box. The box has an inlaid silver plaque at the center of the top and is engraved in beautiful script "Captain Cutting." The box retains its original brass locking hooks and lock and key. (I-863)
Note: Excerpt from the British Medical Journal, December 11, 1858 "...an American captain, while on the high sea, undertook the office of a surgeon, and performed an amputation." "The American ship "John Bright", Captain R. C. Cutting, which has recently arrived in Liverpool after a boisterous passage of thirty-seven days from New York, fell in on Wednesday, October 27th, in latitude 37¦ 20', longitude 68¦ 2', with the brigantine "Liberal", of Weymouth, N.S., in distress. The vessel had been capsized on the previous Monday; and the master, Captain Kinney, in attempting to relieve his vessel, the first day of the disaster, was struck by a plank or spar, which broke his left leg just above the ankle, and in this helpless condition he had been from Monday afternoon until Wednesday, with only a few raw potatoes and apples for food, and without a drop of water. On board the "John Bright" Captain Kinney received every attention, but mortification soon appeared in the fractured limb, which rendered it evident that the only chance of saving his life was in its immediate amputation. Captain Cutting, after advising with the cabin passengers, who fully concurred in this opinion, readily undertook the operation, and on Sunday following the rescue amputated the limb above the knee." Captain Kinney suffered through the prolonged, arduous voyage of rough seas, gradually improved and did recover. SHIP JOHN BRIGHT (1853) The U.S. ship JOHN BRIGHT was built at New York by William H. Webb (hull #83), for Williams & Guion's New York-Liverpool service, and was launched on 29 December 1853. She was 190 feet in length; 42 feet 6 inches in beam; 28 feet 4 inches depth. The ship was named after a British merchant, statesman, and prominent opponent to the Corn Laws. The JOHN BRIGHT was still running in Williams & Guion's New York-Liverpool service in 1869. In April 1872, recoppered and with major repairs, the JOHN BRIGHT resumed sailing as a transient between the United States and Europe, under the command of Joseph E. Hadley.
Condition: The telescope is in excellent operating condition and the box is in excellent condition with a mellow age patina.
Dimensions: Telescope collapsed 26 3/4 inches; Box Length 27 3/4; Width 3 3/4; Height 3 5/8 inches.