Catalog Archive
Auction 182, Lot 762


"Irish Emigrants Leaving Queenstown Harbour",

Subject: Prints - Irish Emigration

Period: 1874 (published)

Publication: The Illustrated London News

Color: Black & White

19.8 x 13.3 inches
50.3 x 33.8 cm
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"The Irish peasantry are doubtless qualified to meet the agricultural wants of a colony, or of Western America, more readily than the surplus of our town population in England, and we hope the majority of those who depart will both do and fare well, whether or not they continue subjects of our Queen." So opines the anonymous author of a brief article on Irish emigration on the verso of this striking engraving from the September 5, 1874 edition of The Illustrated London News. The engraving presents a sympathetic view of emigrants at Queenstown Harbour as they prepare to cross the Atlantic via steamer. Engraved by Michael Fitzgerald, who cleverly incorporates his signature onto some New York-bound luggage. According to the article on verso, 876,000 people left Ireland from 1863 to 1873. There is evidence that Vincent Van Gogh referred to this engraving as an inspiration in letters to his brother Theo.


Condition: A

A dark impression on a bright sheet with a "McMurray Marker 1874" watermark.

Estimate: $50 - $70

Sold for: $170

Closed on 4/28/2021