This book presents a collection of contemporary documents throwing light on the campaigns by the Royal Navy, in association with the army, on cities of the Spanish Empire in South America, beginning with the (unauthorised) assault on Buenos Aires in 1806, by Sir Home Popham. One of Popham’s aims was to open South America for British trade and also perhaps to liberate the land from its supposed Spanish oppressors, and although the people of Buenos Aires may not have wished to remain as Spanish subjects, it soon became apparent that they had no wish to become British subjects. It was this fact that led to the subsequent loss of Buenos Aires only six weeks after its capture, and the net result of Popham’s interventions was to begin the process of South American independence and the collapse of the Spanish Empire.
'This is a wonderful history reconstructed from letters, diaries and official documents…A good read' Cruising 'The distinguished series of volumes published by The Navy Records Society remains one of the greatest single treasure troves of original documents available to historians. The volume should be part of any serious library collection on the Royal Navy, the Napoleonic Period, or Latin America.' The Mariner’s Mirror
Contents: Introduction; PART I: ’Commodore’ Sir Home Popham; PART II: Reactions and Plans in Britain; PART III: Rear Admiral Charles Stirling; PART IV: Rear Admiral Sir George Murray; List of Documents and Sources; Table: The Relevant British Government Ministers; Maps: River Plate & Atlantic Ocean, Expeditionary Voyages; Biographical Outlines; Notes.