Ned Myers, or A life before the mast.
Inspired by Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana, Ned Myers: A Life Before the Mast is Cooper's retelling of the life of one of his shipmates on the merchant vessel Stirling. Before joining the Navy, Cooper worked as a seaman from 1806 to 1807. After Myers and Cooper encountered each other again in 1843, they spent five months collaborating on the book.The first American edition of Ned Myers was stereotyped in September 1843 by John Fagan in Philadelphia. After sheets from the stereotyped edition were printed, Cooper sent them to Richard Bentley in London to print his British edition. Bentley's edition was published in November 1843 and Lea and Blanchard's Philadelphia edition three days later. Cooper later came to own the plates and sold them to Burgess, Stringer & Co. Even though the work was only marginally successful, Cooper paid Myers for his work and tried to obtain posts for him over the next several years.