Winds of Change
“Dreadnought” over hauling the steamer “Sirius”. The latter made the first powered only transatlantic crossing
Exhibited at the European Parliament, May 2011
Click on the image above or the images below to see more detail.
Marine painting by Gordon Frickers 51 x 76 cms (20″ x 30″), oils, available.
A marine painting about change.
To think things don’t change is an illusion.
On the subject of which if you like what you see on these pages you will love the originals.
This illustration shows the Liverpool ‘crack’ packet boat “Dreadnought” over hauling the steamer “Sirius“.
The latter made the first powered only transatlantic crossing beating I K Brunel’s magnificent custom bult “Great western” into New york by 4 hours
A typical Saint George’s Cross line packet the ‘Dreadnought‘ capable of over 20 knots can be seen here fast overhauling the Sirius which averaged a mere 8 knots – but the future was with Sirius.
In 1838 there were considerable doubts about the ability of steamships.
The paddle steamer (side paddler) Sirius carrying 45 passengers made the historic first ever fully steam powered crossing of the Atlantic Ocean, no sails used – ‘kosher’.
Sirius beat I.K. Brunel’s magnificent innovative and much larger “Great Western” into New York by a narrow 4 hours thus winning a place in the history books for Sirius.
Of Sirius it was said as her coal was insufficient so her furniture and decks were burnt to ensure she got into New York under power and probably gave Jules Verne an idea for his book Round the World in 80 Days.
1816 saw the start of a new American innovation, the Black Ball Line’s ‘crack’ clipper packet ships which departed on a schedule, even if only half loaded; some crossing in as little as 10 days.
The reliable service was an immediate success.
Credit where due: to Cunard Line for taking Frickers as a celebrity guest as a marine artist in residence to Cobh (formerly Queenstown) on the elegant Queen Elizabeth 2 where he was allowed to photograph the excellent model in the Cobh Museum and credit to all the brave souls who operated ships on the stormy Atlantic called by sailor men The Western Ocean.
Further Reading: Useful facts + excellent stories about Winds of Change.
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Gordon Frickers © 12.08.2011 updated 08.06.2015, 17,05,2016, 19.05.16