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Chronicles of the sea

Date: 24 March 1838
Dimensions:
Overall: 243 x 188 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Magazine
Object No: 00009002
Place Manufactured:London

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    Description
    This pamphlet features a lithograph and article on the loss of the convict ship AMPHITRITE in 1833. The pamphlet also contains articles entitled 'The ocean fiend', 'The loss of the ATHENIENNE 1806' and a poem called 'Casa Bianca'.
    SignificanceThis pamphlet is an example of society's abiding interest in convict transportation disasters and shipwrecks.
    HistoryPamphlets and broadsheet featuring rhymes and verses were the cheapest prints available during the 18th and 19th century. They were sold by street sellers known as Flying Stationers, who charged a minimal fee of a penny or half-penny. They featured popular songs that were often sung in homes, inns and taverns and covered a range of themes relating to contemporary events or stories. Printed alongside the songs were woodcut illustrations. Most of the broadsheet publishers did not date or mark their works, making it difficult to pinpoint when they were produced.

    The publication of ballads was part of the commemoration and production of material about shipwrecks. Ships were part of everyday life in the 19th century and stories about their voyages, wrecks, record breaking voyages and commissions often featured in newspapers and commemorative souvenirs.

    The loss of the AMPHITRITE on 1 September 1833 was the first major convict transportation shipwreck, with the loss of 136 people. It was transporting 108 female convicts, 12 children and 16 crew.

    AMPHITRITE left Woolwich, England on 25 August 1833 and ran into a heavy gale and large sea off the coast of Boulogne, France. The captain of the ship attempted to use the anchor to prevent the vessel going ashore but to no avail. Several bystanders attempted to offer assistance but the captain was hesitant to offload the convicts and therefore refused. The female convicts managed to get on deck and begged to be allowed to leave the ship but the captain remained obstinate, as he felt unable to ensure their continued imprisonment. After several hours, AMPHITRITE broke in two and only three of the crew survived.

    Additional Titles

    Web title: Chronicles of the sea

    Primary title: Chronicles of the Sea. No. 14. Loss of the AMPHITRITE

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