|Artist||William Simpson after Lieut. Samuel Gurney Creswell|
|Published||Printed in Colours by Day & Son, Lithrs. to the Queen. / London. Published 15th May 1854, by Day & Son, Gate St. Linc. Inn Fds.& Ackermann & Co. Strand.|
|Dimensions||Image 307 x 420 mm, Sheet 433 x 577 mm|
A fantastically dramatic illustration of the HMS Investigator trapped in sea-ice during its attempted navigation of the Northwest Passage, Plate IV from a series published by Day & Son entitled: 'A Series of Eight Sketches in Colour: together with a Coloured Map of the Route; By Lieut. S. G. Cresswell, of the Voyages of H. M. S. Investigator, Capt. M'Clure, during the Discovery of the North-West Passage' (1854).
The McClure expedition was one of the greatest feats in the history of Arctic navigation and exploration. McClure's stated intention was the discovery and hopeful rescue of the Franklin expedition, which had disappeared in the late 1840s. In this, the expedition was a failure, as the Franklin party had perished to a man after their ships had become frozen in near King William Island. McClure's team likewise lost their vessel, the HMS Investigator, which became trapped in ice near Viscount Melville Sound and was eventually abandoned after three bitter winters. The ship was rediscovered, preserved, in 2010. McClure and his men were fortunate to be rescued by a sledge team from Belcher's expedition, and returned, nearly dead from starvation, to England. Although not truly a navigation, because of the short distance travelled by sledge, McClure and his party are the first known to have discovered and traversed the Northwest Passage.
William Simpson (1823-1899) was a British draughtsman, early lithographer, watercolour painter, journalist and antiquarian. He covered the Crimean war on behalf of Colnaghi's but later joined the 'Illustrated London News'. He covered the Abyssinian campaign (1868), Franco-Prussian war (1870-71), Modoc war (1873) and Second Anglo-Afghan war (1878-1880).
Captain Samuel Gurney Cresswell (1827-1867), was a Royal Navy officer. He was technically the first naval officer to cross the entire Northwest Passage. Robert McClure was in charge of the expedition but Cresswell reached England first.
Condition: Excellent clean impression. No tears or repairs.