Manasquan, Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey, USA., February 1900.
From the Original Oil on Canvas

(Danish / American 1850-1921)

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Blessed with great technical skill, Antonio Jacobsen was a prolific painter of ships visiting or based in New York. He is thought to have produced over 6,000 works of which County of Edinburgh is emphatically his finest.

He typically painted vessels in profile, placed in the exact centre of the frame surrounded, by large areas of sky and ocean. Na´ve really, but this appealed to his customers who were mostly the owners and masters of the vessels he painted.  He was, however, meticulous in his detailing of the vessels themselves, as can be seen above, presumably because his customers knew the subjects intimately and demanded precise renditions. Everything else in his work was subordinated to the main subject often being reduced to an impressionistic sketch, but here this just happens to enhance the image, the waves and the roughly crafted line of carriages serving to draw the eye to the main subject. The carriages counterbalance the angle of the vessel without themselves being a distraction. Combined with the dramatic and very unusual view of the vessel from behind and below, these details create an image of outstanding impact

Unusually for Jacobsen, the original is on canvas rather than his more typical academy board, so he knew he was going to be doing something special before he started. Our restored image has been cropped from the original painting to emphasize the vessel's lean to the right and position it in the frame so as to add tension to the image, strongly suggesting the desire of the vessel to free itself and move back out to sea. The result is also more balanced and very much more pleasing to the eye. The image was also given a comprehensive restoration to remove stretcher bruising, vast amounts of grime and a surprising number of residual drafting lines that confused and blurred the rigging.

The question is, for whom was this painted? Certainly not the master who would rather forget his serious error of seamanship, and the owners definitely would not wish potential customers to see a painting of one of their vessels in such danger. Maybe an evil-minded, competing ship-owner would have treasured this image.  Whoever it was, we can thank them for one of the finest marine images ever produced.


The  County of Edinburgh was built for Robert J. Craig by Barclay Curle & Company at Whiteinch, Edinburgh and launched June, 1885. The 285 feet long, iron hulled, four-masted vessel of 2,159 tons gross had been in trouble before. On the eve of departure for her third voyage on 21st December 1887 she was detained in Alfred Dock, Liverpool having been reported as being over-loaded with 3,150 tons of salt bound for Calcutta, causing her freeboard to be just 5 feet. She was forbidden from sailing pending a Board of Trade enquiry. After much argument over fractions of an inch, her owner was ordered to reduce the load until her freeboard increased to 5 feet 9 inches. It is interesting to note that her first two voyages took a total of 18 months - Cardiff to Bombay (coal), to Calcutta (salt), to Dundee (jute) and Penarth, Wales to Bombay (coal), to Calcutta (salt), to London (jute & grain). She sailed under the same owners until 1904 when she was renamed "Frieda" by her new German owners. She was sold again in 1914 to Swedish owners, ending her days wrecked at South Rock, County Down, Ireland on 7th November 1917.


The image shows County of Edinburgh stranded on the beach at Manasquan close to Point Pleasant, New Jersey, USA,  having run aground on the evening of 12th February 1900 whilst en route from Cape Town to New York. She was driven ashore at high tide by strong winds that then turned her broadside. Fortunately the winds shifted to off-shore so that she was in no immediate danger of destruction. She was re-floated on the especially high-tide of 14th February having suffered no ill effects apart from the acute embarrassment of her master, Captain I. Webster. Jacobsen probably drafted the later painted image from a contemporary press photograph of the event.

Also by Antonio Jacobsen: City of Paris at Sea.

FINE ART PAPER EDITION -  Limited Edition of 100.
Image:                  18 x 27 inches (457 x 687mm)
Printed Sheet:        24 x 36 inches (610 x 914mm

US.$ 295.00 - including postage and packing.              


FINE ART CANVAS EDITION -  Limited Edition of 100.   
Image:                   18 x 27 inches (457 x 687mm) - nominal.
Printed on canvas:   24 x 36 inches (610 x 914mm).

 US.$ 495.00  -   including insured postage and packing.    

Please allow an additional 3 days for delivery for the Canvas Edition

(1)  The paper edition image size can be adjusted to fit your specific framing requirement.
(2)  The original painting's faulty stern lettering has been corrected (without modification to the script itself).
(3)  The water, dust and abrasion resistant canvas should be put on a stretcher or laid on backing board before framing. It will not need to be under glass.
(4)  Canvas is a natural product that can shrink slightly and unpredictably after printing.  Do not order a stretcher or frame until you have measured your delivered print.
(5)  If you wish and at no extra cost, the canvas print will be finished with a satin varnish to make it suitable for unprotected exhibition.
(6)  Canvas prints may be subject to import duty and local sales tax.


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