The Quantuck Lane Press
145 East 16th Street--Suite 20A, New York, NY 10003
Distributed by W.W. Norton & Company, 500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
Order Department: 1-800-233-4830; Fax: Fax: 1-800-458-6515
who changed America penned memoir of
Jack Corbett, Mariner by A.S. Hatch--a newly discovered seafaring masterpiece--will be published November 14, 2002 by The Quantuck Lane Press.
Alfrederick Smith Hatch changed
* He raised the capital to finance the transcontinental railroad, making possible the exponential growth of American business and expansion westward.
* He was president of the New York Stock Exchange, 1883-1884.
* As a humanitarian, he personally financed the first urban rescue mission for the homeless and destitute in New York--the model for thousands of such missions around the world today.
* Along the way, Hatch sired enough children to make up a football team, sailed his yacht Calypso in the 1870 America's Cup race around New York harbor, and commissioned a painting of his family that is today one of the crown jewels in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's American Wing.
Those who have written about A.S. Hatch always alluded to a harrowing voyage he made in 1849 as an apprentice seaman on the huge, three-masted Liverpool packet, New World, in the company of what he called "the roughest, dirtiest, swearingest, drinkingest men alive." He was a delicate, asthmatic boy of 20 whose physician father sent him on a strenuous voyage that would either cure him or kill him.
Hatch very likely would not have survived had it not been for a British sailor, an illiterate, bewhiskered Jack-tar named Jack Corbett who became young Hatch's guardian and mentor.
Jack Corbett, Mariner is rich in language and in description of life aboard a mid-19th century square-rigged sailing vessel chock-a-block full of refugees from the Irish potato famine. Included are vivid first-hand descriptions of sailors frozen to the mast, food riots, fumigation of the steerage passengers, and burials at sea.
The voyage was indeed life changing---the equivalent today of going to war, climbing Kilimanjaro, or spending months in the sub-Sahara as a Peace Corps volunteer. On his return to New York, young Hatch stayed with cousins in New Jersey between voyages:
I astonished some relatives living there who had last seen me pale and thin in broadcloth clothes, kid gloves and patent leather boots, by walking in on them in my rough sea clothes, with brown cheeks, tarry hands, and a gait that seemed to suggest that their house was rolling and pitching in a seaway.
In a stunning reunion thirty years later--long after Hatch had become a rich and powerful Wall Street investment banker--Jack Corbett came back into his life and became the guardian of his eleven children and remained to the end of his days.
Following Jack's death, Hatch sat down and wrote a tribute to his old friend and shipmate--an action-packed memoir of his adventures before the mast, as well as a remarkably tender reminiscence of the old salt's life ashore in his last years.
A .S. Hatch's extraordinary life following his adventures at sea
In an Afterword, great-grandson Denny Hatch briefly touches
on Hatch's many-faceted life and
career--yachtsman, business tycoon, family man, art
collector, humanitarian, and preacher.
*256 pages; casebound; 5 x 8; 15 halftone illustrations; $24.95 (Can. $35.99); ISBN 0-9714548-2-5
Reviewers and, Media Note: You are invited to visit www.jackcorbett.com and download jacket art, illustrations and excerpts. Thank you.
All royalties after out-of-pocket expenses from Jack Corbett, Mariner will be donated by the Hatch family to The New York City Rescue Mission founded by Jerry McAuley and A. S. Hatch 130 years ago. See The New York City Rescue Mission on 9/11.