Catalog Archive
Auction 181, Lot 708

"Alabama 24 December 1871",

Subject: Prints - Ships

Period: 1875 (circa)


Color: Printed Color

14.4 x 10.3 inches
36.6 x 26.2 cm

This stunning lithographic print presents a horrific fire aboard a paddle steamer, identified as the Alabama, on Christmas Eve, 1871. Several passengers leap from the ship to escape the flames, while in the foreground others struggle to stay above water while awaiting rescue. According to a post from researcher David Hepper on the Society for Nautical Research forum, the ship here is actually the America, likely an Italian-owned steamer serving as a ferry between Buenos Aires and Montevideo. Contemporary reports indicate the 80-100 lives were lost in the shipwreck, many of them German passengers. Published by F. Sala & Co. in Berlin.


Condition: B+

A crisp impression with a small abrasion at bottom left, a couple tiny holes that are only visible when held up to light, and a chip in the top left blank margin. Remnants of hinge tape on verso.

Estimate: $140 - $170

Sold for: $90

Closed on 2/10/2021