The Galley Memento.[Exeter, 1879] Stock Code: 132619
NotesHandsomely bound and illuminated presentation album, one of just two copies, presented to honour the work of solicitor and county clerk Ralph Sanders, one of two men instrumental in reversing the miscarriage of justice in the case of Edmund Galley, who became an international cause célèbre after being wrongfully convicted of murder and transported to Australia in 1836.
On 28 July 1836 Edmund Galley (alias "Dick Turpin") was tried at the Exeter assizes for the murder of one Jonathan May, a wealthy farmer; Sanders was present at his trial. Convicted through mistaken identity, he was first sentenced to death, but a number of junior barristers convinced of Galley's innocence succeeded in commuting his sentence to life imprisonment. Galley spent two years incarcerated on the Ganymede, a floating prison hulk on the Thames, before being transported to Australia, sailing on 12 May 1839 as one of 240 convicts aboard the Parkfield, which docked in Port Jackson, New South Wales on 1 September. Galley served over forty years of labour, first as part of a chain gang assigned to work at Cooks River, then as a farm servant to Thomas Waugh. In 1846 he became a ticket-of-leave man - allowed to seek another master on the proviso that he remained within a certain district and reported regularly to the police - and chose to settle in the Southern Tablelands. He worked as a horse driver for William Howell of Burrowa in the Yass District, then as a farm servant for a Dr O'Brian of Illalong, near the village of Binalong, and finally as a shepherd in Bendinine, employed by one of New South Wales's biggest farmers, Henry Brown (see Lambert, p. 133).
Extraordinarily, Galley's case continued to garner international attention over the decades: newspapers in Australia, New Zealand, and even those in the United States and England - despite his far-flung exile - revisited the details of his trial and advocated his innocence. Moreover, Galley's "excellent character" and status as "an upright man, so impressed his employers that they agitated" in his favour, putting pressure on the English Home Office to revisit the case (Australian Town and Country Journal, 18 October 1879, p. 17). In May 1877 Galley sent a letter of petition to the Home Secretary which further excited public interest, and which prompted Sanders and Latimer to take up his cause once more. Their efforts culminated in 1879 in a remarkable example of persistence in the pursuit of justice. Pardoned on 26 July 1879, Galley, aged 80, received 1,000 compensation for his unjust conviction. His free pardon was announced widely in the Australian press (see the aforementioned Australian Town and Country Journal, which included a stately full-length portrait of Galley alongside their article, and The Sydney Morning Herald for 18 October 1879 as examples).
In acknowledgement of the central part that both Sanders and Latimer played in procuring Galley's pardon, "a number of young men in the city of Exeter determined to prepare and sign an Address expressing their appreciation of the efforts of these gentlemen, and they quietly proceeded without the gentlemen concerned gaining the slightest inkling of what was intended until the movement was complete. Messrs. Latimer and Sanders were then asked to each accept a volume containing the addresses and the names as a Memento of Galley's release The addresses were beautifully illuminated by Mr. F. Faulkner White, and the names of the subscribers written by the same gentleman adorned the subsequent pages of the book. Each volume was handsomely bound by Mr. Henry Harris, of Longbrook-street" (The Daily Western Times, 30 January 1880), and presented at the Athenaeum on Wednesday 28 January 1880, at a meeting of the subscribers, which included persons of every class and political allegiance.
Provenance: from the library of Richard S. Lambert, author of the work presently offered with the Memento, The Innocence of Edmund Galley. The other copy of this album was inscribed to Thomas Latimer, publisher of The Daily Western Times, who alongside Sanders was chiefly responsible for procuring Galley's eventual pardon over 40 years later.
Large quarto (365 x 275 mm). Finely bound by H. Harris of Exeter, c.1880, in contemporary red morocco gilt, smooth spine separated by dot rolls and double fillets, floral motifs to compartments, triple fillet to boards enclosing elaborately decorated brown onlay frames, roundels at each corner with vellum onlays, front board with two additional vellum onlays bearing the coat of arms of Great Britain and date, title lettered to brown onlay ceremonial ribbon in central panel of the same, marbled endpapers, board edges, inner dentelles and edges gilt. With a limp red morocco dust jacket, gilt double fillet frame to boards, title to front in gilt Gothic type.
Contents comprising 14 vellum leaves heavily illuminated by F. Faulkner White, each with a tissue guard, with Gothic-style calligraphic text surrounded by multicoloured floral and decorative borders. Title leaf with small oval albumen photograph of the re
Together with a very good copy of the first edition of Richard S. Lambert's The Innocence of Edmund Galley (London: Newnes, n.d. but 1936), in the dust jacket. Hand written note on lined paper, copying out text of an inscription on a salver presented to Thomas Latimer, laid in. Memento: binding discreetly refurbished and inner hinges repaired, binder's ticket to front pastedown, a little foxing to broadside with small tear to central fold, first tissue guard loose with tape repair to verso, a few guards foxed and with some edge wear. A near-fine copy, the dust jacket a rare survival, spine and extremities expertly restored and inner flaps reattached.
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