The Last Grain Race
By Eric Newby
An engaging and informative first-hand account of the last `grain race' of maritime history, from respected travel writer Eric Newby. In 1939, a young Eric Newby - later renowned as a travel writer of exceptional talent - set sail aboard Moshulu, the largest sailing ship still employed in the transportation of grain from Australia to Europe. Every year from 1921 to 1939, the vessels involved in the grain trade would strive to find the shortest, fastest passage home - `the grain race' - in the face of turbulent seas, atrocious weather conditions and hard graft.
First published in 1956, `The Last Grain Race', featuring many photographs from the author's personal collection, celebrates both the spirit of adventure and the thrill of sailing on the high seas. Newby's first-hand account - engaging and informative, with frequent bursts of humour and witty observations from both above and below deck - chronicles this classic sailing voyage of the Twenties and Thirties, and records the last grain race of maritime history.
Arthur Beale says:
"A personal all-time favourite that seems to get better every time I pick it up. In 1938, aged 18, Newby signed on as an apprentice aboard the Moshulu, a windjammer engaged in the annual, and as it turns out, last, "grain race", sailing in ballast from Belfast to Australia, and returning laden with grain. Sailors will be captivated by the descriptions of life up the rigging in the last days of sail, but it is Newby's life, and his companions, below decks that steal the show, and Newby's effortless writing sets it apart from the usual nuts-and-bolts descriptions that often accompany this kind of book."