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Clipper ship FLYING CLOUD

Date: 1852
Overall: 650 x 820 x 30 mm
Medium: Ink on paper in wood frame
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Object Name: Lithograph
Object No: 00030324

User Terms

    This hand coloured lithograph depicts the clipper ship FLYING CLOUD from its starboard side. FLYING CLOUD was a famous vessel built by renowned shipbuilder Donald McKay for the Australian trade route. This lithograph was printed in the early stages of the ships career during the Australian gold rush.
    SignificanceThis lithograph is representative of 19th century ship portraits which were often commissioned by ship Captains or owners. It is one of many lithograph portraits produced by the publishing office of Nathaniel Currier in New York.
    HistoryThe era of the clipper ships was dominated by a sense of romance, competition, national pride and innovative technology. These sleek and graceful ships were a symbol of American modernity and fundamental to the expanding global economy. Their design concentrated on speed instead of cargo capacity and was a great benefit to shipping companies eager to transport goods quickly.

    FLYING CLOUD was a famous clipper ship that was built by renowned shipbuilder Donald McKay. Its launch in 1851 at East Boston, Massachusetts coincided with the Californian gold rush. Ships making the passage to the gold fields between New York and San Francisco took an average of two hundred days, while FLYING CLOUD took a groundbreaking eighty-nine. In its later years the vessel transported tea from China to London, making the journey in one hundred and twenty-three days. Eventually the growing prevalence of steam powered ships diminished the use of FLYING CLOUD and its companion clipper ships. In 1874 the ship became grounded and was used for scrap metal after it was condemned.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: Clipper ship FLYING CLOUD

    Primary title: Clipper ship FLYING CLOUD

    Related People
    Lithographer: Nathaniel Currier

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