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For Brisbane, Queensland, the British brig NELLIE, Henry W. Peabody & Co. Australian Line

Date: 1883
Overall: 165 x 100 mm
Medium: Paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Object Name: Clipper card
Object No: 00008617

User Terms

    This card is an advertisement for the British brig NELLIE's journey from Boston to Brisbane in 1883. The ship was chartered by the Henry W Peabody & Co shipping line, which were active on the Australian trade route. This card features a wood-cut illustration on white enamel card, depicting the logo of the Peabody company between the Australian and American coat of Arms.
    SignificanceClipper ship cards of the 19th century rarely survive as they were often discarded when the ship left the dock. This example is representative of the prominent shipping line Henry W Peabody & Co and their role in Australian trade.
    HistoryClipper ship cards were one of the advertising methods used by ship owners to promote their vessels and transport schedules. In colourful print and bold designs they publicised the supposedly superior qualities of each vessel, often using images of maritime scenes, mythology, patriotism and women to promote their cause. The cards were largely manufactured during the late-19th century and were designed to be handed out at the docks. They were brighter and more appealing than the newspaper advertisements of the time but often used similar wording. They could be printed in up to seven different colours including blue, red, green white, black, brown, and yellow. Some printers also used gold, bronze and purple.

    The majority of clipper cards were produced when the popularity of the clipper ship was dwindling and merchants were opting for faster steam powered vessels. Clipper ships were largely active between 1845 and 1875. Their design concentrated on speed instead of cargo capacity, which was a great benefit for shipping companies eager to transport goods quickly. The sleek and graceful ships generated a sense of romance, competition, national pride and innovative technology. They were a symbol of American modernity and fundamental to the expanding global economy.

    NELLIE was a British brig of 500 tons that was used on the Australian trade route during the 19th century, carrying passengers and freight.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: NELLIE

    Primary title: For Brisbane, Queensland, the British brig NELLIE, Henry W. Peabody & Co. Australian Line

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