||THE MAN IN THE HELMET
See also 'Try Anything Twice' by the same author.
At last, I was able to find an excellent copy of this rare book. It is
a great read, covering the life and achievements of Sir Robert Davis and
the earlier pioneers of diving. From the fly blurb: "This is the story
of diving, from the earliest days of pearl fishing without a dress to the
"routine" salvage of sunken wrecks and cargoes, the progressive development
of deep diving, the wartime employment of frogmen and "human torpedoes"
and the comparatively recent cult of skin diving with the aqualung. Inevitably
the story has become inter- twined with that of the growth of Siebe, Gorman
and Co., pioneers of the craft, the firm which has produced diving and
breathing apparatus for the Admiralty and other users for the past 125
years. In its turn, the name of this great company owes much to the devoted
service of its moving spirit, Sir Robert Davis, whose name was synonymous
with the evolu- tion of diving before most of us were born. What matters,
says Sir Robert modestly, is not the individual but the achievement. But
in this case the indi- vidual is no ordinary man. Having joined Siebe,
Gorman at the age of eleven on five shillings a week, he retired in 1962
from the chairmanship after eighty-one years' continued service. He played
a great part in both world wars. He was honoured by King George V in 1932
for his work in connection with submarine escapes and diving at great depths.
He has earned national respect for his far- sighted vision when, without
specific medical encouragement, he introduced the Iron Lung into this country
in the early 'thirties. Thanks to his humour as well as to his inquiring
and practical mind, he has always been the friend of the Royal Navy-and
of everyone who has come in contact with him during his long career. Those
who have testified to his ingenuity and generosity range from scientists
as distinguished as the late Professor Ibhn Scott Haldane, C.H. to the
leader of the successful Everest expedition and the holder of the world
speed record on water. They include, as well as ''submariners'', airmen,
soldiers in tunnelling companies, mineworkers, fire- men and many another
man in the helmet or gas-mask who has been enabled to breathe in irrespirable
atmospheres- and to survive. For Sir Robert has always been steadfast in
one purpose, neatly summed up in his own slogan: Everything for safety
everywhere, On land, submerged, or in the air. "
||I VERI EROI DEGLI ABISSI MARINI
Desmond Young, translated by Sebastiano Morin.
This is the Italian version of The Man in the Helmet.
Nothing is lacking from the original. The Italian version
contains some extra colour photos.
Availability: Rare, but not impossible.
Info and phto acknowledgement: MB
||TRY ANYTHING TWICE
The autobiography of Desmond Young.
Published by Hamish Hamilton, London 1963.
Hardcover, dustjacket, 368 pages, index, mono photographs.
||The author's father, Commodore Sir Frederick
Young, was an experienced hard-hat salvage diver. The author entered World
War 1 and was wounded at Ypres in 1915. When thje war ended he took charge
of a Greek salvage company in North Russia. This episode in his fascinating
life takes up about 64 pages of the 358 page book. The third phase in his
life was as a journalist. This is an exceptionally well written book in
the polite English of the times. His other works include 'Ship Ashore',
and 'The Man in the Helmet'. The book 'All The Best Years' is believed
to be the same autobiography, probably the US edition. Hardcover, rther
unimaginative dust jcket, mono photographs.
US Edition: ALL THE BEST YEARS.
Harper & Brothers, New York, NY, 1961.
Hardcover, dustjacket, 342 pages, index, mono photographs.
Books are identical in content.
Published by Jonathan Cape, 1932.
Hardcover. Blue cloth boards.
The first book by Desmond Young. As usual very well written.
This book is more about shipwrecks and salvage than about commercial diving.
Totally enjoyable to read.
Availability: rare, when it appears on the market without
dust jacket 400.00 USD.
Info acknowledge: [mb],[ph]
Ebay offer for sale 112/2016: US$257, no jacket.
||RUTLAND TO JUTLAND
London, Cassell and Company Ltd., (1963). Hardcover, dustjacket,
8vo; pp. 191; b/w illustrated frontispiece, 4 pages of b/w plates, appendices,