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Catalog entry

inv. 29
Three Master on the Gloucester Railways
1857
Oil on canvas
39 1/4 x 59 1/4 in. (99.7 x 150.5 cm)
55 x 76 in. (frame)
No inscription found
On view at the Cape Ann Museum

Commentary

 This large painting was created in 1857 by Fitz Henry Lane as a sign to be hung outside John Trask’s paint shop at Burnham Brothers’ marine railway. The ship “California” belonging to Gloucester and Boston merchant George H. Rogers is shown hauled out for repairs and painting. On the adjacent railway is a schooner receiving similar attention.

In 1876, when John Trask was elected to Gloucester’s Common Council, he gave "Three Master on the Gloucester Railways" to the citizens of the city to hang in City Hall. Before it was displayed, Trask had artist Addison Center (1830-92) “retouch” the painting, perhaps repairing damage that was done during the years the work hung over the paint shop. No record survives of exactly how much work Center did on the canvas; it is possible that it was extensive.

The painting in its current state is deceptive, having lost much of the exacting detail for which its artist was known. An article which appeared in the Cape Ann Advertiser after the painting was hung “over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask” suggests that it did exhibit more detail when new. A photograph taken in 1890 confirms this, but also shows that weather and cleaning had already taken a toll. A comparison of the painting in its present state with the photograph indicates that further erosion of surface detail has happened due to further cleaning.

Loss of paint, color intensity, and detail has flattened the image, divesting the composition of a sense of depth – something Lane was a master at capturing in his work. This effect was somewhat abetted by the distance from the subject from the artist, who made the drawing from Rocky Neck, thereby visually compressing the image’s foreground and background.

This picture is the only business sign that Fitz Henry Lane is known to have created.

- Martha Oaks and Erik Ronnberg

 

Viewpoint chart showing location of buildings in Lane's painting. 

The Cape Ann Advertiser of August 1, 1857 contained the following announcement:

“PRETTY SIGN. – If our readers wish to see something pretty, let them walk down to Burnham Bros. Railway, and take a peep at the new sign recently hung out over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask. It is a painting on canvass 4 1/2 feet by 5, executed by Fitz H. Lane, Esq., representing a view of Burnham Bros. Railways, the wharf and stores adjoining. The front view represents the ‘way’s’ with a ship and schooner receiving a coat of paint. The workshop and counting-room of Burnham Bros., and the buildings of Mr. Joseph Shepherd, together with the old Parrot and Caswell houses are plainly visible. In the background a partial view of the residence of Capt. F. Norwood, on Spring street, the Universalist Church, on Elm St., Capt. Isaac Somes’ residence on Pleasant St., and several other buildings on Prospect St. The view was taken from Rocky Neck and makes a very pretty picture.”

 

Identification of buildings and wharves in painting.

[+] See More

Supplementary Images

Photograph taken by Walter Gardner c1890, from James Pringle collection. The photograph shows the im... [more]age prior to cleaning.
Photo: James Pringle
© Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
Detail of painting showing construction of marine railway
Photo: © Cape Ann Museum
Viewpoint chart showing location of buildings in Lane's painting.
 

Explore catalog entries by keywords view all keywords »

Subject Types:   Harbor Scene »
Vessel Types:   Named Vessel »   //   Schooner »
Cape Ann Locales:   Duncan's Point »
Activities of People:   Shipbuilding »
Objects:   Anchor »   //   Barrel »
Building Types:   Marine Railway »

Historical Materials
Below is historical information related to the Lane work above. To see complete information on a subject on the Historical Materials page, click on the subject name (in bold and underlined).

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publication
1849 Unknown Newspaper 6.13.1849
6.13.1849
Newspaper clipping from scrapbook with clippings from other dates
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

References Mr. Joseph Stevens as secretary of the American Art-Union, having provided Transactions for 1848, containing 'two paintings by Fitz Henry Lane Esq., of this town, viz. "Rockport Beach" and "Ipswich Bay."' 

Image: Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
[ top]
publication
1857 Cape Ann Advertiser 8.1.1857
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

“PRETTY SIGN. – If our readers wish to see something pretty, let them walk down to Burnham Bros. Railway, and take a peep at the new sign recently hung out over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask. It is a painting on canvass 4 1-2 feet by 5, executed by Fitz H. Lane, Esq., representing a view of Burnham Bros. Railways, the wharf and stores adjoining. The front view represents the ‘way’s’ with a ship and schooner receiving a coat of paint. The workshop and counting-room of Burnham Bros., and the buildings of Mr. Joseph Shepherd, together with the old Parrot and Caswell houses are plainly visible. In the background a partial view of the residence of Capt. F. Norwood, on Spring street, the Universalist Church, on Elm St., Capt. Isaac Somes’ residence on Pleasant St., and several other buildings on Prospect St. The view was taken from Rocky Neck and makes a very pretty picture.”

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
[ top]
publication
Description of the wreck of the "California" in 1857
Alfred Mansfield Brooks (Joseph E. Garland, footnote editor)
c.1857
Book excerpt
Joseph E. Garland, "Gloucester Recollected: A Familiar History," (Gloucester, Massachusetts, Peter Smith Publishers. 1974), 69, n. 9.
[ top]
photo (historical)
Burnham Brothers Marine Railway
unknown
c.1870
Mounted print
8 x 10 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Railway at the tip of Duncan's Point. Vessels on the ways are "Isabell Leighton" and "Hattie B. West."

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Lane was commissioned by his neighbor John Trask to paint a sign for his shop at the Burnham Brothers' Marine Railway, as seen in Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29). The railway, built in 1849-50, was a vital component of the ship building and repair trade, allowing large ships to be hauled out of the water to repair and clean the hulls. Originally there was just one railway, but a second was added due to increased demand. It consisted of a heavily reinforced timber structure anchored with iron spikes and topped with pairs of iron rails fitted with cast iron rollers. The vessel was hauled onto a wood cradle using a steam-powered winch, where it remained, blocked to prevent movement, for the duration of the repairs. Upgrades to the steam power plant can be observed when comparing the height of the smokestack in the painting with that in the later print View of Gloucester, 1859 (inv. 446). This may also be visible in drawings such as Gloucester from Fresh Water Cove, 1850s (inv. 144). Burnham’s was probably up-dating its steam power plant, not just to run power saws, but to power the steam winch which pulled the cradle with a ship on it up the rails.

Gloucester City Archives, Valuations for Harbor Parish, East Ward, 1851, 1852, 1853, 1854.
Valuations for wharf facilities and railway, 1851: $3,280; 1852: $4,800; 1853: $6,000; 1854: $9,000.

This steady and substantial growth is hard to explain in any other way than in the form of mechanical improvements, including steam-powered machinery to operate the hauling winch and power saws for a mill building for shipbuilding timber and planking. A note in the 1853 valuation, simply stating “new railway”, probably refers to the addition of a second railway, which would account for the significantly higher valuation in 1854.

Erik Ronnberg

photo (historical)
Burnham Brothers Marine Railway
unknown
c.1870
Mounted print
8 x 10 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Railway at the tip of Duncan's Point. Vessels on the ways are "Isabell Leighton" and "Hattie B. West."

Also filed under: Duncan's Point »

[+]
model
Shadow box model of Burnham Marine Railway
Erik Ronnberg
1997
Wood, cordage, acrylic paste, metal
~40 in. x 30 in.
Erik Ronnberg

Model shows mast of fishing vessel being unstepped.

Image: Erik Ronnberg

Also filed under: Fishing »   //  Schooner (Fishing) »

[+]
map
Locator map showing Burnham Brothers' marine railway
H.F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
[+]
map
1851 Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport (detail of Gloucester Harbor)
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
Henry Francis Walling, Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Essex Co. Massachusetts. Philadelphia, A. Kollner, 1851
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts. H.F. Walling, Civil Engineer. John Hanson, Printer. 1851. Population of Gloucester in 1850 7,805. Population of Rockport in 1850 3,213."

[+]
publication
1857 Cape Ann Advertiser 8.1.1857
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

“PRETTY SIGN. – If our readers wish to see something pretty, let them walk down to Burnham Bros. Railway, and take a peep at the new sign recently hung out over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask. It is a painting on canvass 4 1-2 feet by 5, executed by Fitz H. Lane, Esq., representing a view of Burnham Bros. Railways, the wharf and stores adjoining. The front view represents the ‘way’s’ with a ship and schooner receiving a coat of paint. The workshop and counting-room of Burnham Bros., and the buildings of Mr. Joseph Shepherd, together with the old Parrot and Caswell houses are plainly visible. In the background a partial view of the residence of Capt. F. Norwood, on Spring street, the Universalist Church, on Elm St., Capt. Isaac Somes’ residence on Pleasant St., and several other buildings on Prospect St. The view was taken from Rocky Neck and makes a very pretty picture.”

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
[+]
publication
1859 Gloucester Telegraph 6.3.1859
6.3.1859
Newspaper

Fire in the steam planing mill of Parker Burnham & Bros, foot of Water St. It spread through the block that included Ignatius Winter's sash-and-blind factory and John Trask's paint shop.

[+]
map
1865 Commissioners' Map of Gloucester Harbor Massachusetts
A. Boschke
1865
41 x 29 inches
Courtesy of the Massachusetts Archives
Maps and Plans, Third Series Maps, v.66:p.1, no. 2352, SC1/series 50X

.

[+]
publication
1874 Gloucester Telegraph 4.15.1874 Parker Burnham obituary
4.15.1874
Newspaper obituary
Obituary of Parker Burnham, Esq.
Sawyer Free Library

Parker Burnham, Esq., the alderman from Ward 5, died at his residence on Spring Street on Thursday morning, of neuralgia of the heart, after a few days’ illness. Mr. Burnham was a native of Essex, son of the venerable Parker Burnham, recently deceased, but settled in Gloucester when quite a young man, and has been closely identified with the business interests of the town and city. On his removal to Gloucester, in connection with his brothers, Joseph B. and Elias, he established a shipyard, and the firm, under the name of Burnham Brothers, were successfully engaged in the building and repairing of vessels. Subsequently they built the first marine railways ever constructed in Gloucester, and in the business connected therewith Mr. Burnham remained to the time of his death. He was a man of marked character, honest in his dealings, kindly in his intercourse with his fellows, correct in his deportment and unassuming in his manners, devoting himself to his business without stepping aside to seek notoriety or distinction from his fellow citizens. In religion he was a Universalist and a regular attendant upon the services of the Independent Christian Church. In politics he was a Republican from the earliest formation of the party, and fully in accord with its principles, although he was elected upon the Board of Aldermen upon a democratic nomination, unsought, by a large majority. Since the organization of the city government Mr. Burnham has devoted a large portion of his time to the interests of the city, being constant in his attendance upon the meetings of the board and taking an active part in its deliberations. As chairman of the joint standing committee upon public property he had the oversight upon the Collins School House and the investigations concerning the remodeling of the City Hall; he was also a member of the committees upon finance and highways. His loss will be deeply felt by his associates in the city council, and by the community generally. His funeral took place on Saturday afternoon, and was attended by the members of the city council in a body.

[+]
publication
1883 Cape Ann Weekly Advertiser 7.13.1883 Elias Burnham obituary
7.13.1883
Newspaper obituary
Obituary of Elias Burnham
Sawyer Free Library

Mr. Elias Burnham, whose severe illness was alluded to in our last issue, died at eleven o’clock on Saturday morning, having been unconscious for several hours before his death. He had been in his usual health until within a little over a week before his departure, when he was taken with an ill turn at the camp of his son, Mr. Elias P. Burnham, at West Gloucester, and grew rapidly worse until the end. Mr. Burnham was a native of Essex, being a son of Parker Burnham of that town. He was a ship carpenter by trade, and came to Gloucester over forty years ago with his brothers Parker and Joseph B., and engaged in the vessel building business on Pearce’s wharf, under the name of Burnham Brothers.  Subsequently the firm purchased the Hough wharf, now owned by Walen & Son, and on the flats adjoining built the first marine railway ever constructed in Gloucester. To this business they afterwards added a planing mill, doing an extensive business. Mr. Joseph B. Burnham withdrew from the firm several years ago, carrying on for several years a planing mill on Pearce Street, and Mr. Parker Burnham, the oldest of the brothers, died in 1874, the firm of late years consisting of Elias, Elias P., son of Elias, and Parker H. and Enoch, sons of Parker. Identified for nearly half a century with the business interests of Gloucester, Mr. Burnham won a high place in the regard of his fellow citizens by his industrious habits, by the promptness and honesty which characterized all his business transactions, by his kindly social nature, his unassuming manners, and his respect for the rights and opinions of others. He was a prominent member of and liberal contributor to the support of the First Baptist Church, and his loss will be deeply felt by the members of that communion. He leaves a widow, son and daughter. His funeral took place from his late residence on Elm Street on Wednesday afternoon, his pastor, Rev. Dr. Morris officiating, and was largely attended.

[+]
publication
1884 Cape Ann Weekly Advertiser 3.25.1884 Joseph Burnham obituary
3.25.1874
Newspaper obituary
Obituary of Joseph Burnham, Esq.
Sawyer Free Library

Mr. Joseph Burnham, for many years a well known resident of this city, died very suddenly at his residence in West Gloucester on Tuesday, of paralysis, in the 67th year of his age. Although in somewhat feeble health of late years, he was able to keep about, and was out of doors the evening before his death. He was a son of Parker Burnham of Essex, and was formerly a member of the firm of Burnham Brothers (Parker, Joseph B. and Elias), who commenced ship- building in this city some two score years and more ago, and afterwards built the first marine railway in Gloucester and established a planing mill. Subsequently he retired from the firm and carried on a planing mill on Pearce Street for a number of years. He was also engaged in the remeasurement of our fishing fleet when the new tonnage law went into effect. Later, he purchased a farm in Rowley, but after a short residence there returned to Gloucester and took up his permanent residence at his summer camp at West Gloucester, where his death occurred.

He was an ingenious mechanic, steady, honest and industrious, and his sudden death will be deeply deplored by a large circle of friends. Mr. Burnham was a veteran Odd Fellow, having long been a member of Ocean Lodge, and was one of the seven charter members of Cape Ann Encampment, from which he withdrew about five years ago. His death is the second among the seven charter members of the Encampment, Capt. Edward Staten having been the first to depart from the earth life. The funeral of the deceased took place yesterday afternoon, Rev. Wm. H. Rider officiating, and was attended by the brethren of Ocean Lodge.

[+]
object
1892 Gloucester Harbor Diorama (detail of marine railway)
Lawrence Jensen, Erik. A.R. Ronnberg, Jr.
Detail views: marine railway and hauling cradle for vessel
Wood rails, metal rollers, chain; wood cradle. Scale: ½" = 1' (1:24)
Original diorama components made, 1892; replacements made, 1993.
Cape Ann Museum, from Gloucester Chamber of Commerce, 1925 (2014.071)

A schooner is shown hauled out on a cradle which travels over racks of rollers on a wood and metal track.

[+]
model
1892 Gloucester Harbor Diorama (detail of Marine railway)
Lawrence Jensen, Erik. A.R. Ronnberg, Jr.
Detail views: marine railway and hauling cradle for vessel
Wood rails, metal rollers, chain; wood cradle. Scale: ½" = 1' (1:24)
Original diorama components made, 1892; replacements made, 1993.
Cape Ann Museum, from Gloucester Chamber of Commerce, 1925 (2014.071)

Close up showing detail of rollers and hauling chain.

Image: Erik Ronnberg

Also filed under: Marine Railways »

[+]
map
Chart showing key buildings
Erik Ronnberg / H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Also filed under: Marine Railways »

[+]
artwork
Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (detail)
Fitz Henry Lane
1857
Oil on canvas
39 1/4 x 59 1/4 in.
Detail showing construction of marine railway. Details of the rollers and chain are obscured due to past cleaning efforts.

Also filed under: Marine Railways »

[+]
[ top]
Gloucester Buildings & Businesses: John Trask Paint Store

Lane's painting of the Burnham Brothers marine railways was hung as a sign outside Trask's paint store, and served as an advertisement for Trask's paint and for the railway's services. An advertisement in the [Gloucester] Telegraph and News, September 11, 1858: "John Trask / Paint Store / for ship paints / pure verdigris / English & American Green / Lead and Zinc paints / Varnish, Oil, Gloss, & Putty / Burnham & Bro's Railway / Commercial Wharf/Ship Work."

Buck and Dunlap (p. 33 n. 119)

publication
1857 Cape Ann Advertiser 8.1.1857
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

“PRETTY SIGN. – If our readers wish to see something pretty, let them walk down to Burnham Bros. Railway, and take a peep at the new sign recently hung out over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask. It is a painting on canvass 4 1-2 feet by 5, executed by Fitz H. Lane, Esq., representing a view of Burnham Bros. Railways, the wharf and stores adjoining. The front view represents the ‘way’s’ with a ship and schooner receiving a coat of paint. The workshop and counting-room of Burnham Bros., and the buildings of Mr. Joseph Shepherd, together with the old Parrot and Caswell houses are plainly visible. In the background a partial view of the residence of Capt. F. Norwood, on Spring street, the Universalist Church, on Elm St., Capt. Isaac Somes’ residence on Pleasant St., and several other buildings on Prospect St. The view was taken from Rocky Neck and makes a very pretty picture.”

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
[+]
[ top]

In 1849, Lane bought a small lot of land on top of a hill that jutted into Gloucester Inner Harbor. The name Duncan's Point refers alternatively to the entire hill, or only to the rocks that form a point beneath the current Coast Guard Station. The hilltop was vacant when Lane bought the property. He designed and built a gabled stone house on the hill, the northwest room of which was his studio. He lived there with his sister Sarah and her husband, Ignatius Winter, until he died in 1865, having bequeathed the house to his friend, Joseph L. Stevens, Jr. (1)

Reference:

1. Sarah Dunlop and Stephanie Buck, Fitz Henry Lane: Family and Friends (Gloucester, MAChurch & Mason Publishing; in association with the Cape Ann Historical Museum2007), 59–74, 150–55.

photo (historical)
Lane's House at Duncan's Point
E. G. Rollins
c.1869
Glass plate negative
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
Detail from CAHA#00279

The magnificent views of Gloucester Harbor and the islands from the top floor of the stone house at Duncan's Point where Lane had his studio were the inspiration for many of his paintings.

From Buck and Dunlop, Fitz Henry Lane: Family, and Friends, pp. 59–74.

[+]
map
1851 Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport (detail of Gloucester Harbor)
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
Henry Francis Walling, Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Essex Co. Massachusetts. Philadelphia, A. Kollner, 1851
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts. H.F. Walling, Civil Engineer. John Hanson, Printer. 1851. Population of Gloucester in 1850 7,805. Population of Rockport in 1850 3,213."

[+]
map
Locator map: Duncan's Point
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 inches
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
[+]
map
1834–35 Mason Map: Gloucester Harbor (detail 1)
John Mason
1834–35
Lithograph
24 x 38 in.
Gloucester City Archives

"Drawn on a scale of one hundred feet to an inch. By John Mason 1834–45 from Actual Survey showing every Lott and building then standing on them giving the actual size of the buildings and width of the streets from the Canal to the head of the Harbour & part of Eastern point as farr as Smith's Cove and the Shore of the same with all the wharfs then in use. Gloucester Harbor 1834–35." 

This map shows the location of F. E. Low's wharf and the ropewalk. Duncan's Point, the site where Lane would eventually build his studio, is also marked.

The later notes on the map are believed to be by Mason.

[+]
map
1851 Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport (detail of Harbor Village)
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
Henry Francis Walling, Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Essex Co. Massachusetts. Philadelphia, A. Kollner, 1851
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts. H.F. Walling, Civil Engineer. John Hanson, Publisher. 1851. Population of Gloucester in 1850 7,805. Population of Rockport in 1850 3,213."

Segment of Harbor Village portion of map showing Lane-Winter property on Duncan's Point.

Also filed under: Maps »   //  Union School »   //  Winter, Ignatius »

[+]
map
1872 Beers City Map segment
1872
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Segment shows Lane's home on Duncan's Point (as F. G. Low property) and neighboring businesses about five years after his death.

Also filed under: Maps »

[+]
photo (historical)
Burnham Brothers Marine Railway
unknown
c.1870
Mounted print
8 x 10 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Railway at the tip of Duncan's Point. Vessels on the ways are "Isabell Leighton" and "Hattie B. West."

[+]
photo (historical)
Inner Harbor, Gloucester
c.1870
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive (2013.068)

Schooner fleet anchored in the inner harbor. Looking east from Rocky Neck, Duncan's Point wharves and Lane house (at far left), Sawyer School cupola on Friend Street.

[+]
[ top]

Preceded by Annisquam as the earliest permanently settled harbor and Gloucester’s original first parish, Gloucester Harbor did not become a seaport of significance until the end of the 17th century. Its earliest fishing activity was focused on nearby grounds in the Gulf of Maine, few vessels venturing further to the banks off Canada. After 1700, as maritime activity was well-established in fishing, shipbuilding, and coastal trade, the waterfront saw the expansion of flake yards for drying fish and wharves for berthing and outfitting vessels, loading lumber and fish, and receiving trade goods. Shipbuilding was also carried on, using shorelines with straight slopes not suited for wharves.

By 1740, the majority of Cape Ann-owned vessels were berthed in Gloucester Harbor; three years later, Watch House Point (now called Fort Point) was armed and fortified. The fishing fleet continued to grow, numbering over 140 vessels by the time of the Revolution. A customs office was established in 1768, resulting in strong protests over seizures of contraband. Revolution brought hardship to the fishing industry, forcing many vessel owners to resort to privateering.

Independence saw a much-diminished fishing fleet and a severely impoverished seaport. With the Federally-sponsored incentive of the codfish bounties, Gloucester fishermen began to rebuild their fishing fleet. By 1790, trade with Surinam was under way, leading to the building and purchase of merchant vessels, new wharves, and improvements to old wharves in Harbor Cove, which had become Gloucester’s center of maritime activity. In addition to shipyards and sail lofts, two ropewalks furnished cordage for rigging.

The first four decades of the 19th century saw fitful growth in the fishing industry, due to the interruptions of war and financial panics. Few wharves were added to the waterfront in that period, and when new ones were built, their purpose was to serve the growing Surinam Trade. Fishing had come to its low point in the 1840s when the railroad reached Gloucester, opening a huge inland market for the fish it caught. The use of ice to keep fish fresh, combined with new and faster fishing schooners to get it quickly to port, sparked a revival in Gloucester’s fishing industry. 

As Gloucester’s fishing industry revived, its growth in the Surinam Trade was hampered by its shallow harbor which made berthing of ever larger ships more difficult. Forced to seek a deeper harbor, merchants reluctantly sent their largest ships to Boston for unloading. Between 1850 and 1860, this process continued until ships and warehouses were relocated and their owners commuted to Boston by rail, leaving their old wharves to the fishing fleet. In 1863, the Surinam trade collapsed.                                                                                                                                 

Gloucester’s fishing fleet grew dramatically in the 1850s for more reasons than ice, railroads, and faster schooners. The technology of catching fish also improved dramatically. Hand-line fishing (two hooks on a line) gave way to dory trawling with many hooks on a very long “trawl line,” while fishing for mackerel with hand-lines was replaced by “purse seining,” setting a 1,000-foot-long net in a circle around a school of mackerel. These dramatic improvements in productivity were expensive but made possible by the fishermen organizing a mutual savings bank to serve their needs and a mutual insurance company to cover their risks. These advantages could not be matched by any other fishing communities in New England or in the Canadian Maritime Provinces, sparking a huge migration of fishermen to Gloucester. These newcomers were welcomed to fill a growing work force while Gloucester’s native work force moved on to other, less dangerous, occupations.

Lane’s depictions of Gloucester’s waterfront best illustrate the period before 1850. After that date, his attention turned more to the Harbor’s outer shores, to nearby communities such as Manchester, to New York, back to Boston, and north to Maine. While his lapse of interest is regrettable, the scenes and activity he missed were becoming popular with photographers while his earlier waterfront views are nowhere else to be found.

–Erik Ronnberg

References: 

Dates and happenings were based on (or confirmed by):

Mary Ray and Sarah V. Dunlap, “Gloucester, Massachusetts Historical Time-Line (Gloucester: Gloucester Archives Committee, 2002).

Improvements to Gloucester’s fishing technology, management, and financing are based on:

Wayne O’ Leary, “Maine Sea Fisheries” (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1996), pp. 166–179 (fishing technology), 235–251 (management and financing), and 235–251 (in-migration to Gloucester).

 

photo (historical)
Harbor Cove and skyline from the fort
unknown
c.1870
4 x 6 in.
Cape Ann Museum, Benham Collection

George Steele sail loft, William Jones spar yard, visible across harbor. Photograph is taken from high point on the Fort, overlooking business buildings on the Harbor Cove side.

[+]
photo (historical)
Head of the Harbor, Gloucester
William A. Elwell
1876
Photograph
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
Image: Cape Ann Museum
[+]
photo (historical)
View from Belmont House, of a fishing wharf, with the Old Fort of 1812 opposite
William A. Elwell
1876
Photograph
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Ignatius Weber's windmill (now defunct) is shown.

Image: Cape Ann Museum
[+]
1851 Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport (detail showing wharves)
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Map of the Towns of Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts. H.F. Walling, Civil Engineer. John Hanson, Publisher. 1851. Population of Gloucester in 1850 7,805. Population of Rockport in 1850 3,213."

[+]
photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 44 Gloucester Harbor
John S. E. Rogers, Publisher
c.1875
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

This view of Gloucester's Inner Harbor shows three square-rigged vessels in the salt trade at anchor. The one at left is a (full-rigged) ship; the other two are barks. By the nature of their cargos, they were known as "salt ships" and "salt barks" respectively. Due to their draft (too deep to unload at wharfside) they were partially unloaded at anchor by "lighters" before being brought to the wharves for final unloading.

– Erik Ronnberg

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photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 82 View of Sch. "E. A. Horton"
Procter Brothers, Publisher
1870s
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Said schooner was captured about the first of September, 1871, by Capt. Torry, of the Dominion Cutter 'Sweepstakes,' for alleged violation of the Fishery Treaty. She was gallantly recaptured from the harbor of Guysboro, N.S., by Capt. Harvey Knowlton., Jr., (one of her owners,) assisted by six brave seamen, on Sunday night, Oct. 8th. The Dominion Government never asked for her return, and the United States Government very readily granted her a new set of papers."

Also filed under: Fishing »   //  Historic Photographs »   //  Schooner (Fishing) »

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photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 908 Winter Scene, Gloucester Harbor
Procter Brothers, Publishers
1876
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Stereo view showing Gloucester Harbor after a heavy snowfall

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model
Crib wharf model, period 1825
Laurence Jensen
c.1898
Wood, metal, and paint
20 1/4 x 10 1/4 x 10 1/2 in., scale: 1/2" = 1'
Made for the Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1892–93
Cape Ann Museum, from Gloucester Chamber of Commerce

The wharf is built up of "cribs", square (sometimes rectangular) frames of logs, resembling a log cabin, but with spaces between crib layers that allow water to flow freely through the structure.Beams are laid over the top crib, on which the "deck" of the wharf is built. Vertical pilings (or "spiles" as locally known) are driven at intervals to serve as fenders where vessels are tied up.

– Erik Ronnberg

Image: Erik Ronnberg

Also filed under: Cob / Crib Wharf »

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photo (historical)
Gloucester wharf
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Also filed under: Fishing »   //  Historic Photographs »

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photo (historical)
Inner Harbor, Gloucester
c.1870
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive (2013.068)

Schooner fleet anchored in the inner harbor. Looking east from Rocky Neck, Duncan's Point wharves and Lane house (at far left), Sawyer School cupola on Friend Street.

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Vessels (Specific / Named): "California" (Full-Rigged Ship)

The ship “California” was built at Medford, Massachusetts in 1830-31 under the direction of master carpenter George Fuller for the Boston shipping firm of Bryant and Sturgis (and associates). She was used in the hide trade, making passages to California with general cargos, returning with cow hides and large profits from these voyages. (1)

Richard Henry Dana encountered “California” during his voyaging days on the West Coast in 1834-36. Viewing her on her arrival at San Diego, he commented:

“She was a good substantial ship, not quite as long as the Alert, and wall-sided and kettle-bottomed, after the latest fashion of south shore “cotton and sugar wagons;” strong, too, and tight, and a good average sailer, but with no pretensions to beauty, and nothing in the style of a “crack ship.” (2)

“California” worked the California trade constantly from Boston until 1855, when she was sold to George H.Rogers, who put her in the Surinam trade from Gloucester, bringing salt fish to Paramaribo for feeding the slaves who worked the plantations, and returning with rum, molasses, and a multitude of fine Dutch domestic wares. In January, 1857, when anchored off Ten Pound Island, off-loading cargo to a schooner, a blizzard struck, sweeping her out of Gloucester Harbor and southerly across Massachusetts Bay, driving her ashore on Cohasset, a total loss. (The two men on board surivived.) (3)

-Erik Ronnberg

References:

1. Hall Gleason, “Old Ships and Ship-building Days of Medford” (West Medford, MA: Hall Gleason, 1936), pp. 26, 37, 59.

2. Richard Henry Dana, “Two Years before the Mast” (Los Angeles, CA: The Ward Ritchie Press, 1964), pp. 259, 478.

3. Alfred Mansfield Brooks, “Gloucester Recollected: A Familiar History” (Gloucester, MA: Peter Smith and Cape Ann Historical Association, 1974), pp. 67-69.

publication
Description of the wreck of the "California" in 1857
Alfred Mansfield Brooks (Joseph E. Garland, footnote editor)
c.1857
Book excerpt
Joseph E. Garland, "Gloucester Recollected: A Familiar History," (Gloucester, Massachusetts, Peter Smith Publishers. 1974), 69, n. 9.
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"The Way They Go to California"
c.1849
Published by N. Currier, New York
Library of Congress catalog number 91481165
Gold rush cartoon, showing dock crowded with men with picks and shovels, and men jumping from the dock to reach departing ship; a crowded airship and a man on a rocket fly overhead; and a man with a pick and shovel parachutes from the airship.
Image: Library of Congress
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publication
Two Years Before the Mast (1964 edition: The Ward Ritchie Press)
Richard Henry Dana (1964 notes by John Haskell Kemble)

Frequent mention of "California," then in the hide trade, as was "Pilgrim."

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Schooners in Lane’s time were, with few exceptions, two-masted vessels carrying a fore-and-aft rig having one or two jibs, a fore staysail, gaff-rigged fore- and main sails, and often fore- and main topsails. One variant was the topsail schooner, which set a square topsail on the fore topmast. The hulls of both types were basically similar, their rigs having been chosen for sailing close to the wind. This was an advantage in the coastal trade, where entering confined ports required sailing into the wind and frequent tacking. The square topsail proved useful on longer coastwise voyages, the topsail providing a steadier motion in offshore swells, reducing wear and tear on canvas from the slatting of the fore-and-aft sails. (1)

Schooners of the types portrayed by Lane varied in size from 70 to 100 feet on deck. Their weight was never determined, and the term “tonnage” was a figure derived from a formula which assigned an approximation of hull volume for purposes of imposing duties (port taxes) oncargoes and other official levies. (2)

Crews of smaller schooners numbered three or four men. Larger schooners might carry four to six if a lengthy voyage was planned. The relative simplicity of the rig made sail handling much easier than on a square-rigged vessel. Schooner captains often owned shares in their vessels, but most schooners were majority-owned by land-based firms or by individuals who had the time and business connections to manage the tasks of acquiring and distributing the goods to be carried. (3)

Many schooners were informally “classified” by the nature of their work or the cargoes they carried, the terminology coined by their owners, agents, and crews—even sometimes by casual bystanders. In Lane’s lifetime, the following terms were commonly used for the schooner types he portrayed:

Fishing Schooners: While the port of Gloucester is synonymous with fishing and the schooner rig, Lane depicted only a few examples of fishing schooners in a Gloucester setting. Lane’s early years coincided with the preeminence of Gloucester’s foreign trade, which dominated the harbor while fishing was carried on from other Cape Ann communities under far less prosperous conditions than later. Only by the early 1850s was there a re-ascendency of the fishing industry in Gloucester Harbor, documented in a few of Lane’s paintings and lithographs. Depictions of fishing schooners at sea and at work are likewise few. Only A Smart Blow, c.1856 (inv. 9), showing cod fishing on Georges Bank (4), and At the Fishing Grounds, 1851 (not published), showing mackerel jigging on Georges Bank, are known examples. (5)

– Erik Ronnberg 

References:

1. Howard I. Chapelle, The History of American Sailing Ships (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1935), 258. While three-masted schooners were in use in Lane’s time, none have appeared in his surviving work; and Charles S. Morgan, “New England Coasting Schooners”, The American Neptune 23, no. 1 (DATE): 5–9, from an article which deals mostly with later and larger schooner types.

2. John Lyman, “Register Tonnage and its Measurement”, The American Neptune V, nos. 3–4 (DATE). American tonnage laws in force in Lane’s lifetime are discussed in no. 3, pp. 226–27 and no. 4, p. 322.

3. Ship Registers of the District of Gloucester, Massachusetts, 1789–1875 (Salem, MA: The Essex Institute, 1944). Vessels whose shipping or fishing voyages included visits to foreign ports were required to register with the Federal Customs agent at their home port. While the vessel’s trade or work was unrecorded, their owners and master were listed, in addition to registry dimensions and place where built. Records kept by the National Archives can be consulted for information on specific voyages and ports visited.

4. Howard I. Chapelle, The National Watercraft Collection (Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1960), 74–76.

5. Howard I. Chapelle, The American Fishing Schooners (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1973), 58–75, 76–101.

artwork
Gloucester Harbor
Fitz Henry Lane
Gloucester Harbor
1852
Oil on canvas
28 x 48 1/2 in.
Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester, Mass., Deposited by the City of Gloucester, 1952. Given to the city by Mrs. Julian James in memory of her grandfather Sidney Mason, 1913 (DEP. 200)

Detail of fishing schooner.

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photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 321 " Marine Study"
Heywood
c.1865
Stereograph card
Frank Rowell, Publisher
stereo image, "x " on card, "x"
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

View showing a sharpshooter fishing schooner, circa 1850. Note the stern davits for a yawl boat, which is being towed astern in this view.

Also filed under: Historic Photographs »

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model
Model of fishing schooner "Amy Knight"
Model and photography by Erik A.R. Ronnberg, Jr.
Wood, metal hardware, cordage, paint
Model made for marine artist Thomas M. Hoyne
scale: 3/8" = 1'
Thomas M. Hoyne Collection, Mystic Seaport, Conn.

While this model was built to represent a typical Marblehead fishing schooner of the early nineteenth century, it has the basic characteristics of other banks fishing schooners of that region and period: a sharper bow below the waterline and a generally more sea-kindly hull form, a high quarter deck, and a yawl-boat on stern davits.

The simple schooner rig could be fitted with a fore topmast and square topsail for making winter trading voyages to the West Indies. The yawl boat was often put ashore and a "moses boat" shipped on the stern davits for bringing barrels of rum and molasses from a beach to the schooner.

– Erik Ronnberg

References:

Jeffrey Bolster, Black Jacks: African American Seafarers in the Age of Sail (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1997).

Howard I. Chapelle, American Small Sailing Craft (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1951), 29–31.

Image: Erik Ronnberg

Also filed under: Hand-lining »   //  Ship Models »

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illustration
Fishing Schooner sail plan, with overdrawing
Draftsman unknown; overdrawing attributed to Fitz Henry Lane
Pencil on paper in sail plan book titled William F. Davis, Gloucester 1845
20 x 14 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive, Gloucester, Mass.

The image, as originally drafted, showed only spars and sail outlines with dimensions, and an approximate deck line. The hull is a complete overdrawing, in fine pencil lines with varied shading, all agreeing closely with Lane's drawing style and depiction of water. Fishing schooners very similar to this one can be seen in his painting /entry:240/.

– Erik Ronnberg

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publication
1842 Gloucester Telegraph 8.3.1842
8.3.1842
Newspaper
"Shipping Intelligence: Port of Gloucester"

"Fishermen . . . The T. [Tasso] was considerably injured by coming in contact with brig Deposite, at Salem . . ."

Image: Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
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publication
1857 Cape Ann Advertiser 10.1.1857
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

"A Prize Race—We have heard it intimated that some of our fishermen intend trying the merits of their "crack" schooners this fall, after the fishing season is done. Why not! . . .Such a fleet under full press of sail, would be worth going many a mile to witness; then for the witchery of Lane's matchless pencil to fix the scene upon canvass. . ."

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
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PDF
view ]
publication
1865 Cape Ann Advertiser 7.7.1865
Article about new masthead, designed by Lane.
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photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 114 Gloucester Harbor from Rocky Neck
John S. E. Rogers
c.1870
Stereograph card
Procter Brothers, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Gloucester Harbor from Rocky Neck, Looking Southwest. This gives a portion of the Harbor lying between Ten Pound Island and Eastern Point. At the time of taking this picture the wind was from the northeast, and a large fleet of fishing and other vessels were in the harbor. In the range of the picture about one hundred vessels were at anchor. In the small Cove in the foreground quite a number of dories are moored. Eastern Point appears on the left in the background."

Southeast Harbor was known for being a safe harbor.

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photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 82 View of Sch. "E. A. Horton"
Procter Brothers, Publisher
1870s
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

"Said schooner was captured about the first of September, 1871, by Capt. Torry, of the Dominion Cutter 'Sweepstakes,' for alleged violation of the Fishery Treaty. She was gallantly recaptured from the harbor of Guysboro, N.S., by Capt. Harvey Knowlton., Jr., (one of her owners,) assisted by six brave seamen, on Sunday night, Oct. 8th. The Dominion Government never asked for her return, and the United States Government very readily granted her a new set of papers."

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photo (historical)
Head of the Harbor, Gloucester
William A. Elwell
1876
Photograph
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
Image: Cape Ann Museum
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photo (historical)
Inner Harbor, Gloucester
c.1870
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive (2013.068)

Schooner fleet anchored in the inner harbor. Looking east from Rocky Neck, Duncan's Point wharves and Lane house (at far left), Sawyer School cupola on Friend Street.

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illustration
Precursor to Gaff Rig of Schooners
Fitz H. Lane
In John J. Babson, History of the Town Gloucester (Gloucester, MA: Procter Brothers, 1860)

See p. 254.

As Erik Ronnberg has noted, Lane's engraving follows closely the French publication, Jal's "Glossaire Nautique" of 1848.

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model
Shadow box model of Burnham Marine Railway
Erik Ronnberg
1997
Wood, cordage, acrylic paste, metal
~40 in. x 30 in.
Erik Ronnberg

Model shows mast of fishing vessel being unstepped.

Image: Erik Ronnberg
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artwork
Silhouettes of vessel types
Charles G. Davis
Book illustrations from "Shipping and Craft in Silhouette" by Charles G. Davis, Salem, Mass. Marine Research Society, 1929. Selected images
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artwork
Untitled (Ships Anchored in Gloucester Harbor)
D. Jerome Elwell
1892
Watercolor on paper
8 3/4 x 19 3/4 in.
Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester, Mass., Gift of Rev. and Mrs. A. A. Madsen, 1950
Accession # 1468

Fishing schooners in Gloucester's outer harbor, probably riding out bad weather.

Image: Cape Ann Museum
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photo (historical)
View from Belmont House, of a fishing wharf, with the Old Fort of 1812 opposite
William A. Elwell
1876
Photograph
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Ignatius Weber's windmill (now defunct) is shown.

Image: Cape Ann Museum
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photo (historical)
Vincent's Cove
William Augustus Elwell
1876
Print from bound volume of Gloucester scenes sent to the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition.
11 x 14 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archives

Schooner "Grace L. Fears" at David A. Story Yard in Vincent's Cove.

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The term "ship," as used by nineteenth-century merchants and seamen, referred to a large three-masted sailing vessel which was square-rigged on all three masts. (1) In that same period, sailing warships of the largest classes were also called ships, or more formally, ships of the line, their size qualifying them to engage the enemy in a line of battle. (2) In the second half of the nineteenth century, as sailing vessels were replaced by engine-powered vessels, the term ship was applied to any large vessel, regardless of propulsion or use. (3)

Ships were often further defined by their specialized uses or modifications, clipper ships and packet ships being the most noted examples. Built for speed, clipper ships were employed in carrying high-value or perishable goods over long distances. (4) Lane painted formal portraits of clipper ships for their owners, as well as generic examples for his port paintings. (5)

Packet ships were designed for carrying capacity which required some sacrifice in speed while still being able to make scheduled passages within a reasonable time frame between regular destinations. In the packet trade with European ports, mail, passengers, and bulk cargos such as cotton, textiles, and farm produce made the eastward passages. Mail, passengers (usually in much larger numbers), and finished wares were the usual cargos for return trips. (6) Lane depicted these vessels in portraits for their owners, and in his port scenes of Boston and New York Harbors.

Ships in specific trades were often identified by their cargos: salt ships which brought salt to Gloucester for curing dried fish; tea clippers in the China Trade; coffee ships in the West Indies and South American trades, and  cotton ships bringing cotton to mills in New England or to European ports.  Some trades were identified by the special destination of a ship’s regular voyages; hence Gloucester vessels in the trade with Surinam were identified as Surinam ships (or barks, or brigs, depending on their rigs). In Lane’s Gloucester Harbor scenes, there are likely (though not identifiable) examples of Surinam ships, but only the ship "California" in his depiction of the Burnham marine railway in Gloucester (see Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29)) is so identified. (7)

– Erik Ronnberg

References:

1. R[ichard)] H[enry] Dana, Jr., The Seaman’s Friend, 13th ed. (Boston: Thomas Groom & Co., 1873), p. 121 and Plate IV with captions.

2. A Naval Encyclopaedia (Philadelphia: L. R. Hamersly & Co., 1884), 739, 741.

3.  M.H. Parry, et al., Aak to Zumbra: A Dictionary of the World’s Watercraft (Newport News, VA: The Mariners’ Museum, 2000), 536.

4. Howard I. Chapelle, The History of American Sailing Ships (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1935), 281–87.

5. Ibid.

6. Howard I. Chapelle, The National Watercraft Collection (Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1960), 26–30.

7. Alfred Mansfield Brooks, Gloucester Recollected: A Familiar History (Gloucester, MA: Peter Smith, 1974), 67–69.

Golden State
1884
Photograph
From American Clipper Ships 1833–1858, by Octavius T. Howe and Frederick C. Matthews, vol. 1 (Salem, MA: Marine Research Society, 1926).

Photo caption reads: "'Golden State' 1363 tons, built at New York, in 1852. From a photograph showing her in dock at Quebec in 1884."

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photo (current)
"Friendship of Salem"
Built in 1998

A replica of an early nineteenth-century full-rigged ship.

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artwork
Homeward Bound
c.1865
Hand-colored lithograph
Published by N. Currier, New York
Library of Congress (2002695891)
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illustration
Ship
1885
Engraving from Merchant Vessels of the United States (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office)

Engraving of ship.

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artwork
Packet "Nonantum" Riding out a Gale
Samuel Walters
1842
Oil on canvas
24 x 35 in.
Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.

Walters' painting depicts the "Nonantum" homeward bound for Boston from Liverpool in 1842. The paddle-steamer is one of the four Clyde-built Britannia-class vessels, of which one is visible crossing in the opposite direction.

Image: Peabody Essex Museum
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illustration
Ship
Engraving in R. H. Dana, The Seaman's Friend, 13th ed. (Thomas Groom & Co. Publisher, 1873)

A ship is square-rigged throughout; that is, she has tops, and carries square sails on all three of her masts.

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artwork
Silhouettes of vessel types
Charles G. Davis
Book illustrations from "Shipping and Craft in Silhouette" by Charles G. Davis, Salem, Mass. Marine Research Society, 1929. Selected images
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Maritime & Other Industries & Facilities: Marine Railways

A marine railway is a service facility for hauling ships out of the water to repair and clean the hulls. They are not used for shipbuilding, although some of the work done on them may call for the services of skilled ship carpenters.

Every marine railway in Gloucester had the following basic features:

1. The hauling ways – a straight, gently-inclined slope to convey a ship from deep water to dry ground.

2. Iron rails in pairs – two pairs of rails on the rail beams and two corresponding pairs on the underside of the hauling cradle.

3. A hauling cradle which carries and supports the ship.

4. Two racks of rollers which travel on the rails as the cradle travels over them. The principle is that of roller bearings.

5. A hauling chain and machinery to pull the cradle up the ways. Prior to steam-powered hauling winches, capstans with reduction gears, turned by horses, were used. This may have been the case with the first of the two railways built by Parker Burnham & Bros.

The lengths of the Burnham hauling ways were approximately 250 feet (first railway) to 350 feet (second railway) with an average rise of one foot in fifteen feet. Ideally, the slope should be perfectly straight, but the Gloucester ways usually had some unwanted “crown” which made hauling more difficult. While the railways in Rocky Neck were built on a jutting rise of land, the railways at Duncan’s point were built in hollows, as those locations offered the straightest inclines.

As a foundation for the rails, pairs of heavy spiles (wood pilings), set twelve feet apart, were driven every twelve feet down to bedrock. They were capped with cross-timbers which resembled railroad ties, but were much heavier. Over the cross-timbers, a pair of bed timbers was laid the length of the ways. Cross-timbers were fastened to the spiles with long iron spikes. The bed timbers were spiked down to the cross timbers in the same fashion.

Pairs of iron rails were spiked down to the bed timbers, with great care taken that they were spaced uniformly and that no spikes protruded to interfere with the rollers. The rails were plain iron bar stock, two inches by three inches in cross-section, and bored to take the spikes. Locomotive rails were not used. 

Riding on each pair of rails was a rack made of fourteen oak frames, each sixteen feet long and fitted with eighteen cast iron rollers. For a railway 350 feet long,a 224-foot rack (fourteen frame units long, totaling 28 frames and 504 rollers) was needed to allow a 100-foot cradle to travel from the low end of the way to the upper end. Although cumbersome, rollers were durable and the racks were easy to repair.

The cradle was a wooden frame with iron rails on its underside which corresponded to those on the rail bed timbers. Its dual purpose was to raise the ship by traversing the racks and to support the hull safely while the repair crews were working on it.

The base of the cradle consisted of two “fore-and-afters” with the rails on their bottom sides. Over them were heavy cross-pieces of alternating 14-foot and 24-foot lengths, spaced every five feet. On the centers of the cross-pieces were the keel blocks – short lengths of hardwood which supported the hull along the keel. On the outboard ends of three long cross-pieces were adjustable bilge blocks which moved laterally on wooden tracks. They supported the hull at its bilges so it could not tip over.

Each vessel to be hauled had a different shape to its keel and bilges, so for each hauling the keel blocks and bilge blocks were specially built up so the hull would rest on all of them, distributing its weight as evenly as possible. Hull bottom plans or tables of bottom dimensions were kept on file in the railway office for future reference.

Hauling a Ship 

To get a ship on a cradle, the cradle had to be hauled out to the lower end of the hauling ways so the hull could be positioned over it. The cradle, being made of wood, had to be ballasted so it would not float off the rails. Stone blocks were the usual ballast in that period. All keel and bilge blocks were securely nailed to the cradle frame or to the sliding bases of the bilge blocks.

The vessel was carefully positioned and centered over the submerged cradle, then both were hauled in together, the cradle rising until the keel rested firmly on it. The bilge blocks were then hauled inboard (toward the keel), using ropes, until they rested firmly under the bilges. The cradle could then be hauled out with the vessel safely on it.

Hauling a ship was not without risks, and if the hull was not correctly centered over the cradle, or of the keel- or bilge blocks were not properly in place, there was danger of accidents or damage. In the worst case, a ship could “fall down” on the cradle, or sometimes off it, causing great damage to the vessel, the rails and cradle, and adjoining wharves. Then there was the expense of pulling the vessel off the ways so it could be hauled again.

Hauling the cradle was done with chain, which was taken around a type of iron capstan called a “wildcat”, turned by reduction gears connected to the power source. In its earliest years, the Burnham railway probably used horses, harnessed to a second capstan which turned the wildcat. This soon gave way to steam power, as evidenced in Lane’s 1857 painting of the Burnham railway and his 1859 lithograph of Gloucester Harbor. The inhaul chain was made of long, heavy links shackled to an iron towing bar at the “bow end” of the cradle. A smaller outhaul chain, shackled to the cradle’s “stern end”, ran out to an iron capstan at the deep end of the railway and back to the hauling machinery, where it was connected to the inhaul chain. A wooden trough was laid over the cross timbers to reduce chafing from the chains as they traveled over them.

Since the early 1850s, steam engines powered the marine railways in Gloucester, and were not replaced by gasoline or diesel engines until the 1920s or ‘30s. A machinery building at the head of the larger of Burnham’s railways in Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29) is obscured by the ship on the cradle, but the conspicuous smokestack leaves no doubt about the presence of steam power.

The ground level of the machinery building was occupied by a steam boiler, an engine, and reduction gears linked to the capstan. An attached workshop was equipped with a power saw, lathe, and hand tools for most types of vessel repair work and engine maintenance. On one side of the foundation would be a roofed coal bin, while on another side would be a wooden steam box for the steam-bending of replacement planking for vessels under repair.

Over the machinery level was a floor used for offices and repair records. The roof was fitted with a skylight aligned exactly with the center line of the hauling way. An observer from this level could tell very accurately if a vessel being hauled was positioned over the cradle’s center line.

Erik Ronnberg

Reference: This information was compiled in 1991 from interviews by the author with the late Joseph Santapaola of Gloucester, who was employed by, and later managed, the marine railways in Gloucester over sixty years, starting early in the 20th century. The data was used for a reconstruction of the marine railways in the diorama exhibited at the Columbian Exposition at Chicago in 1893, now on exhibit at the Cape Ann Museum. The resulting diorama agrees closely in detail with photographs of the actual facilities dating from the 1880s, as well as many details in Lane’s painting of 1857 (Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29)). 

object
1892 Gloucester Harbor Diorama (detail of marine railway)
Lawrence Jensen, Erik. A.R. Ronnberg, Jr.
Detail views: marine railway and hauling cradle for vessel
Wood rails, metal rollers, chain; wood cradle. Scale: ½" = 1' (1:24)
Original diorama components made, 1892; replacements made, 1993.
Cape Ann Museum, from Gloucester Chamber of Commerce, 1925 (2014.071)

A schooner is shown hauled out on a cradle which travels over racks of rollers on a wood and metal track.

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model
1892 Gloucester Harbor Diorama (detail of Marine railway)
Lawrence Jensen, Erik. A.R. Ronnberg, Jr.
Detail views: marine railway and hauling cradle for vessel
Wood rails, metal rollers, chain; wood cradle. Scale: ½" = 1' (1:24)
Original diorama components made, 1892; replacements made, 1993.
Cape Ann Museum, from Gloucester Chamber of Commerce, 1925 (2014.071)

Close up showing detail of rollers and hauling chain.

Image: Erik Ronnberg
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map
Chart showing key buildings
Erik Ronnberg / H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
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artwork
Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (detail)
Fitz Henry Lane
1857
Oil on canvas
39 1/4 x 59 1/4 in.
Detail showing construction of marine railway. Details of the rollers and chain are obscured due to past cleaning efforts.
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Vessel ornamentation assumed two forms: carvings and color schemes. Carvings, or "ship carvings," as they are called by maritime scholars, are usually crafted in wood and painted or gilt. Many vessels were too small or their owners too frugal to permit carved embellishments, in which cases the enhancement of the vessel's color scheme was a practical alternative. This can be seen in many of the coastal vessels along the new England coast. Pinkies and Chebacco boats had handsome color schemes using only black and green with white sheer lines and limited use of red and yellow. Other combinations of inexpensive pigments were used to improve the simple looks of sloops and schooners in the packet trade, while small pleasure craft and pilot schooners enhanced their appearance in similar ways. Clipper ship owners, finding their vessels' appearance impressive without adding color, settled for unrelieved black hulls. Naval vessels as well preserved their formidable looks with black, relieved only with a white belt in way of the gunports. 

The more elaborate ship carvings can be classified in the following categories:

Billetheads: mounted on the bow, at the end of a simple gammon knee, or on the forward end of an elaborate stem-head, they can be scrolls of less or greater intricacy, or sometimes the heads of animals, eagles being the most common. Examples of a sea serpent's head, a pointing hand, and other animal heads have been found. (See Brig "Cadet" in Gloucester Harbor, late 1840s (inv. 13); Brig "Antelope" in Boston Harbor, 1863 (inv. 43); and Brig Off the Maine Coast, 1851 (inv. 241))

Figureheads: mounted on bows of larger vessels, often with elaborate stem joinerwork (trailboards and headboards with associated knees and rails). Usually these were full-length figures representing the ship's owner, a famous citizen, a mythological person or animal, or an eagle. (See Portrait of the "National Eagle", 1853 (inv. 35) (eagle); New York Harbor, c.1855 (inv. 46); The "Britannia" Entering Boston Harbor, 1848 (inv. 49) (female figures); The Ships "Winged Arrow" and "Southern Cross" in Boston Harbor, 1853 (inv. 54) (dragon and eagle); "Starlight" in Harbor, c.1855 (inv. 249) (dragon); and Steam demi bark Antelope, 615 tons, c.1855 (inv. 375) (antelope))

Trailboards: carved vines or scrollwork abaft the figurehead which trail aft along the stem head in a graceful descending arc, terminating at the hawse pipes. They are usually gilt and frequently ornamented with carved rosettes and other devices. (See Brig "Cadet" in Gloucester Harbor, late 1840s (inv. 13); Portrait of the "National Eagle", 1853 (inv. 35); Brig "Antelope" in Boston Harbor, 1863 (inv. 43);  New York Harbor, c.1855 (inv. 46); and The Ships "Winged Arrow" and "Southern Cross" in Boston Harbor, 1853 (inv. 54))

Headboards: boards mounted to headrails connecting the figurehead to the ship's mainrail at the catheads. While seldom given any decorative carvings, the vessel's nameboards were often mounted to them. (See Brig "Cadet" in Gloucester Harbor, late 1840s (inv. 13); Portrait of the "National Eagle", 1853 (inv. 35); Brig "Antelope" in Boston Harbor, 1863 (inv. 43); The Ships "Winged Arrow" and "Southern Cross" in Boston Harbor, 1853 (inv. 54); Clipper Ship "Southern Cross" in Boston Harbor, 1851 (inv. 253); and Mary Ann, 1846 (not published))

Catheads: Carved lion heads mounted on the outboard ends of the cathead knees. This term is so archaic that the knees and carvings are treated as one and the same, as in their use, i.e. "catting the anchor" (securing the anchor ring to the cathead). (See Brig "Antelope" in Boston Harbor, 1863 (inv. 43); and An American Frigate Hove-to Off the New England Coast (not published))

Quarterboards: Name boards mounted to the vessel's side near the stern, they usually had ornamental edge moldings and sometimes stars or simple scrollwork at each end of the name. (See Portrait of the "National Eagle", 1853 (inv. 35); Mary Ann, 1846 (not published); and Spitfire Entering Boston Harbor (not published))

Transom arches: arch-form panels fitted to the transom, often over gallery lights (windows) or other carvings. They usually have edge moldings, decorative scrollwork, and sometimes a bust or other carved figure at the center.

Other transom carvings: carved eagles, busts, scrollwork and coats of arms can occupy the space between the transom arch and the sternboard. If galleries are present, carved scrollwork may be fitted between the frames of the gallery lights. (See Boston Harbor, c. 1850 (inv. 48); Topsail Schooner, 1846 (not published) (eagle); Baltimore Harbor, 1850 (not published) (eagle); and Rough Sea, Schooners, c.1856 (not published) (eagle and flags))

Sternboard: often the bottom plank of the transom on which the vessel's name is carved or painted, seldom with decoration (stars or scrollwork). There is usually simple protective molding above and below the lettering.

Sideboards, or gangway boards: boards on either side of an entry way at main rail level on a large ship, usually between the main and mizen masts. They are carved and painted or (if of fine hardwood) varnished. Most commonly seen on larger vaval vessels, packet ships, and clipper ships.

– Erik Ronnberg

References:

1. Brewington, M. V., Shipcarvers of North America, (Barre, MA: Barre Publishing Co., 1962).

2. The American Neptune, Pictorial Supplement XIX, "The Art of the Shipcarver" (Salem, MA: The Peabody Museum, 1977).

3. Ship Figureheads (Boston: State Street Trust Co., n.d.).

4. Edouard A. Stackpole, Figureheads & Carvings at Mystic Seaport (Mystic, CT: The Marine Historical Association, Inc., 1964).  

Billet head
Unknown
1855
Carved wood with paint and gilt
12 x 22 x 8 in.
Cape Ann Museum. Gift of George W. Woodbury, 1936 (747)

This sea serpent billet head came from the schooner "Diadem" which was built in Essex, Massachusetts, in 1855 and owned by D. Elwell Woodbury and John H. Welsh of Gloucester.

Sea serpents were reportedly sighted here on Cape Ann from colonial times through the mid-nineteenth century. In 1817, more than 50 people, many of them prominent members of the community, reported seeing a serpent in the waters of Gloucester Harbor just off Pavilion Beach. So credible were the reports that the Linnaean Society of New England collected depositions from witnesses and published their findings in a small pamphlet entitled Report of a Committee of the Linnaean Society of New England relative to a Large Marine Animal Supposed to be A Serpent, seen Near Cape Ann, Massachusetts, in August 1817.

Also filed under: Objects »   //  Pavilion (Publick) Beach »

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publication
Ship Carvers of North America
M. V. Brewington
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People Contemporary Artists: Center, Addison

Captain Addison Center (1830–92) was born in Gloucester. He was an artist of some skill and was listed in the local newspaper in 1858 as one of the three artists then resident in town. (1) He collaborated with Fitz Henry Lane on at least one piece of public art—a tableau for the Library Festival in 1858. (2) In 1872 he designed a new Town Seal, the center of which was “a fishing schooner anchored on the banks, copied from a picture painted by that talented artist, the late Mr. Fitz H. Lane.” (3)

In 1887, the newspaper reported that a copy made by Capt. Center—of Fitz H. Lane’s painting showing Fort Point in 1842—was on display in the window of John C. Calef’s store on Main Street. (4) Center was known for his portraits, especially of popular war heroes, but he also painted landscapes, and there is evidence of at least one marine painting. (5) He was a deputy collector of customs, businessman, artist, and captain in the Union Army. Before his appointment as Deputy Collector, he gave his occupation as ‘artist’ on all censuses, and his obituary stated: “it cannot but be a matter of regret that he did not give himself wholly to Art.” (6)

Addison Center lived most of his life in houses on Washington Street near the railroad crossing. As a young man he worked in a stationery store on Front (now Main) Street run by his cousin Henry Center. His title of Captain came from his military service, not from any maritime activity. He was a member of the Volunteer Militia, and at the outbreak of the Civil War was elected Captain of Co. G, 8th Regiment. In October 1861, he took command of Co. C, 23rd Regiment, the so-called Essex Guard, and led them through campaigns at Roanoke, New Bern, Bermuda Hundred (where he accidentally shot himself in the foot), Petersburg and elsewhere. He served as Republican Representative in the Massachusetts House in 1866, and became Deputy Collector of Customs for the Port of Gloucester in 1868.

Center was an excellent draftsman whose penmanship was so exquisite that the School Department and the Masonic Tyrian Lodge—of which he was a member—often called upon him to write testimonials and diplomas.
He was married three times and had six children, five of whom survived him. (7)

– Stephanie Buck

(1) The other two were Fitz H. Lane and Alfred J. Wiggin, Cape Ann Advertiser, January 2, 1858.

(2) Gloucester Telegraph and News, March 3, 1858.

(3) Cape Ann Advertiser, February 9, 1872.  Center's design was not used.

(4) Cape Ann Advertiser, April 15, 1887.

(5) The schooner "Electric Spark," dated 1869 and signed A. Center. Cape Ann Museum Artist Files.

(6) Gloucester Daily Times, January 2, 1892.

(7) He married Elizabeth Story Gaffney (1833–59) in 1858; Mary Forbes Phelps (1836–76) in 1861; and her younger sister Eliza Phelps (1842–1929) in 1878.

publication
1858 Cape Ann Advertiser 2.27.1858
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

"A CARD. – The Ladies of Gloucester who are interested in the Lyceum Library, and who projected the recent Festival in its behalf, take this method of returning their sincere acknowledgements; 

To Messrs. F. H. Lane, Addison Center and John Trask for their arduous and truly artistic labors in the preparation of Tableaux; . . .

To Robert Fears, Esq., who gratuitously opened his large and commodious Sail Loft for their use and exerted himself to make their occupancy of it agreeable;...

To Samuel Sawyer, Esq. of Boston, for his generous and unexpected donation of fifty dollars, thereby laying the Library under still another obligation to him;...

 

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
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publication
1855 Procter's Able Sheet 9.1855
9.1855
Newspaper

"Business Directory Listings"

Artists – Fitz H. Lane, residence on Duncan Street

             Addison Center, residence on Washington St.

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publication
1858 Gloucester Telegraph & News 3.3.1858
3.3.1858
Newsprint
Gloucester Telegraph & News

Fitz H. Lane, Addison Center, and John Trask created a tableau for the Library festival.

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photo (historical)
Captain Addison Center
William Augustus Elwell, Gloucester
c. 1864
Carte de visite
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

Also filed under: Historic Photographs »

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illustration
Gloucester Town Seal
Addison Center
designed 1872
1873 Gloucester City Directory (1)

"The design is very pretty and appropriate . . .In the centre of the seal is a representation of a fishing schooner anchored on the banks, copied from a picture painted by that talented artist, the late Mr. Fitz H. Lane." (2)

References:

1. Gloucester City Directory. (Gloucester, MA: Sampson, Davenport, & Co., 1873), front page.

2. "The Town Seal": designed by Capt. Addison Center," Cape Ann Weekly Advertiser, February 9, 1872. 

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photo (historical)
Home of Capt. Addison Center, 155 Washington St., Gloucester
Corliss and Ryan
1882
Cabinet card photograph
4" x "6"
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
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artwork
Schooner "Electric Spark" of Gloucester
Addison Center
1864
Oil on paper based board
Cape Ann Museum Collection

Handwritten on back:  

Sch. Electric Spark of Gloucester.  Commanded by Samuel V. Colby.  At anchor at Port Mulgrave, N.S. (Nova Scotia)

July 1859

Bound on a mackerel trip to Bay of Chaleur.

Painted by Capt. Addison Center from an ambrotype.

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artwork
Self-Portrait as a Union Officer
Addison Center
c.1891
oil on canvas
Cape Ann Museum, Gift of Mrs. Eleanor Dexter, 1979 (2200)
Image: Cape Ann Museum
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John Trask of Gloucester was a man of several trades, employed at various times as butcher, salesman, ship painter, and cigar store owner. He was also a Universalist and a Mason. He was friends with Lane, and in 1857, Lane painted the sign for Trask's ship-painting business—the painting now known as Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29). Trask's shop was at the foot of Duncan Street below Fitz H. Lane’s House, near the Burnham Railways. His 'store' was his office and work space. He did not sell artist's paints, or any other kind of paint that we know of.

In 1858, Lane and Trask designed a tableau for a Gloucester Lyceum fundraiser. The newspapers reported that Trask owned a picture of Georges Bank, presumabaly the picture given by his daughter to the Cape Ann Museum, A Smart Blow, c.1856 (inv. 9).

John Trask was born in Gloucester on November 19, 1822, one of thirteen children of Israel Trask and Elizabeth H. Day. (Israel Trask, having volunteered at the age of ten, was a famous participant in the Revolutionary War). John Trask was an early Civil War volunteer in Company K. 12th Massachusetts Regiment. He served as a nurse in the Campbell Hospital in Washington, D.C. before being transferred to the Invalid Corps. While at Fort Warren, Trask began a series of War Letters home describing a soldier’s life that were published in the Cape Ann Advertiser under the pseudonym “Corporal Trim.”

After the war, Trask travelled for a number of years as an agent for Tarr & Wonson’s Copper Paint, including a year spent in South America, which he enjoyed except for the “confounded earthquakes.” (1) In 1875, he purchased  a cigar and tobacco store on Front (now Main) Street and advertised, “John Trask Manufacturer and Dealer in Foreign and Domestic cigars, tobacco, Meerschaum Pipes, Snuff, & etc.” 

Trask was married twice, first in 1844 to Martha T. Knowlton (1825–52), and second in 1856 to Caroline E. Bray (1827–82). He was survived by one daughter, Carrie W. Trask, who became a teacher in the Gloucester School system. He died in 1887. 

– Stephanie Buck

(1) Sarah Dunlap and Stephanie Buck, Fitz Henry Lane: Family and Friends (Gloucester, MAChurch & Mason Publishing; in association with the Cape Ann Historical Museum2007), 122.

publication
1858 Cape Ann Advertiser 2.27.1858
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

"A CARD. – The Ladies of Gloucester who are interested in the Lyceum Library, and who projected the recent Festival in its behalf, take this method of returning their sincere acknowledgements; 

To Messrs. F. H. Lane, Addison Center and John Trask for their arduous and truly artistic labors in the preparation of Tableaux; . . .

To Robert Fears, Esq., who gratuitously opened his large and commodious Sail Loft for their use and exerted himself to make their occupancy of it agreeable;...

To Samuel Sawyer, Esq. of Boston, for his generous and unexpected donation of fifty dollars, thereby laying the Library under still another obligation to him;...

 

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
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publication
1857 Cape Ann Advertiser 8.1.1857
Procter Brothers
Various dates
Newsprint
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

“PRETTY SIGN. – If our readers wish to see something pretty, let them walk down to Burnham Bros. Railway, and take a peep at the new sign recently hung out over the paint shop of Mr. John Trask. It is a painting on canvass 4 1-2 feet by 5, executed by Fitz H. Lane, Esq., representing a view of Burnham Bros. Railways, the wharf and stores adjoining. The front view represents the ‘way’s’ with a ship and schooner receiving a coat of paint. The workshop and counting-room of Burnham Bros., and the buildings of Mr. Joseph Shepherd, together with the old Parrot and Caswell houses are plainly visible. In the background a partial view of the residence of Capt. F. Norwood, on Spring street, the Universalist Church, on Elm St., Capt. Isaac Somes’ residence on Pleasant St., and several other buildings on Prospect St. The view was taken from Rocky Neck and makes a very pretty picture.”

Image: Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
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publication
1858 Gloucester Telegraph & News 3.3.1858
3.3.1858
Newsprint
Gloucester Telegraph & News

Fitz H. Lane, Addison Center, and John Trask created a tableau for the Library festival.

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publication
1859 Cape Ann Weekly Advertiser 9.30.1859
1859
Newspaper
Scene on George's Bank, p. 2, col. 1
American Antiquarian Society

"Scene on George's Bank. Yesterday afternoon we had the pleasure of seeing an oil painting executed by F.H. Lane, Esq., representing two vessels on Georges. One of them is at anchor, the sea making a complete breach over her, forward, while the rollers pass along midships seemingly lifting the vessel almost out of the water. Notwithstanding the apparent roughness of the sea, the crew are [sic] busily engaged hauling in codfish. The other vessel is under sail, flying over the billows like a thing of life, while the angry waves seem as though they would swallow her up. It is a wild looking scene, and said to be perfectly correct by those who have experienced themselves to the hardships and dangers attending George's fishing. The picture is now in the possession of Mr. John Trask."

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publication
1859 Gloucester Telegraph 6.3.1859
6.3.1859
Newspaper

Fire in the steam planing mill of Parker Burnham & Bros, foot of Water St. It spread through the block that included Ignatius Winter's sash-and-blind factory and John Trask's paint shop.

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publication
1859 Gloucester Telegraph 9.30.1859
9.30.1859
Newspaper

"Scene on George's Bank- Yesterday afternoon we had the pleasure of seeing an oil painting, executed by F.H. Lane, Esq., representing two vessels on Georges. One of them is at anchor, the sea making a complete breach over her forward, while the rollers pass along midships, seemingly lifting the vessel almost out of water. Notwithstanding the apparent roughness of the sea, the crew are busily engaged hauling in codfish. The other vessel is under sail, flying over the billows like a thing of life, while the angry waves seem as if they would swallow her up. It is a wild looking scene, and said to be perfectly correct by those who have exposed themselves to the hardships and dangers attending Georges fishing. The picture is now in the possession of Mr. John Trask."

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photo (historical)
John Trask House
Corliss & Ryan
1882
3 x 5 in. cabinet card
Collection of the Cape Ann Museum Library & Archives (#20088)

Home of John Trask at 19 Liberty Street, Gloucester.  Two women on the stairs are wife and daughter or daughter and housekeeper? 

Also filed under: Historic Photographs »

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photo (historical)
John Trask Store
Corliss & Ryan
1882
Cabinet card photograph
3 x 5 in.
Collection of the Cape Ann Museum Library & Archives (#20133)

Photo of the business of John Trask, tobacconist and cigar maker, at 146 Main Street, Gloucester. Trask is on the left and the older man is not identified.

Also filed under: Historic Photographs »

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Exhibition History

1988 National Gallery of Art: National Gallery of Art, Washington, District of Columbia, Paintings by Fitz Hugh Lane, no. 39, ill. in color, p. 94.
1993–94 Cape Ann Museum: Cape Ann Historical Association, Gloucester, Massachusetts, Training the Eye and Hand: Fitz Hugh Lane and Nineteenth Century American Drawing Books.

Published References

Wilmerding 1964: Fitz Hugh Lane, 1804–1865: American Marine Painter, fig. 5, p. 23, text, p. 22.
American Neptune 1965: The American Neptune, Pictorial Supplement VII: A Selection of Marine Paintings by Fitz Hugh Lane, 1804–1865, plate XXIII, no. 88. ⇒ includes text
Wilmerding 1971a: Fitz Hugh Lane.
Stoltenberg 1979: Drawing and Painting the Built Environment.
Hoffman 1983: "The Art of Fitz Hugh Lane," p. 33.
Wilmerding 1988a: Paintings by Fitz Hugh Lane, no. 39, ill. in color, p. 94.
Worley 2004: "Fitz Hugh Lane and the Legacy of the Codfish Aristocracy," p. 72. ⇒ includes text
Wilmerding 2005: Fitz Henry Lane, ill. 71, text, pp. 69-70, as Three Master on the Gloucester Railways.
Craig 2006a: Fitz H. Lane: An Artist's Voyage through Nineteenth-Century America, pl. 9, text, pp. 86, 108.
Craig 2006b: "Fitz Henry Lane: An Affinity for the Sea," ill., p. 27, text, p. 30.
Lovell 2011: ""Fitz Henry Lane, Spectateur de l'Histoire" ("Watching History—Fitz Henry Lane and the Revolutionary Past in Antebellum New England")," fig. 6, p. 59, as Three Master on the Gloucester Railways. ⇒ includes text
view all »

Interactive feature

Citation: "Three Master on the Gloucester Railways, 1857 (inv. 29)." Fitz Henry Lane Online. Cape Ann Museum. http://fitzhenrylaneonline.org/catalog/entry.php?id=29 (accessed June 27, 2017).
Record last updated May 8, 2017. Please note that the information on this and all pages is periodically reviewed and subject to change.
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