W.J. Huggins. “The Archimedes, Steamer.”
London: Huggins, ca. 1839. Late 19th century re-strike from original plate. 13 3/4 x 19 3/8. Aquatint by C. Rosenburg. Original hand color. A few abrasions in image due to damage to plate. Bottom right corner evidence diagonal crack in plate. Else, good condition.
William John Huggins (1781-1845) was a member of the Royal Academy in the 1830s and was marine painter to George IV. His most famous painting is the “Battle of Trafalgar” that hangs in Hampton Court. His famous paintings were translated into popular prints, including “South Sea Whale Fishery,” which illustrates the multiple functions of whaling in a single print.
Here, Huggins highlights the Archimedes, a British steamship that was the first oceangoing vessel to be fitted with the newly-invented screw propeller. The ship had a long career before its sinking in the Baltic in 1908; this print heralds its landmark improvement.