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The Steamboat "Enoch Dean"

1852
Origin: America, New York, New York
Unframed: 29" x 49" and Framed: 34 1/4" x 53 3/4"
Oil on canvas
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1963.111.1
Side paddle wheel steamboat seen in profile on choppy water heading from right to left. Four small sailboats are visible in the distance, and the far bank is covered with sponged or dabbed blue-green trees, with rocky cliffs at the water line. Sky is stormy, with both white and black clouds overhead. Eleven black-coated male figures are visible on board the boat, scattered from stem to stern. Most also wear top hats.

The canvas is on its original stretchers and retains its original 3-inch, cove-molded, gold-painted frame with two brass hanging rings on the reverse of the side members.
Label:An example of a side-wheeler steamboat, the Enoch Dean was built by Benjamin C. Terry of Keyport, New Jersey, in 1852. That same year the steamboat was painted by the prolific ship painter James Bard. Prior to the Civil War, the Enoch Dean ran from New York City on the East River to Flushing and College Point on Long Island. Bard’s placement of the steamboat between a threatening sky and stylized waves serves as a reminder of the time when America’s rivers were her great highways.

The Enoch Dean was employed by the Union during the Civil War as a cargo ship. A notice appeared in the New York Herald on May 6th of 1865 which described her final voyage.

“Steamer Enoch Dean, Hallett, from Savannah 19th ult., for the islands lying [south] of Savannah, with freedmen and their families, farming utensils, etc., while passing through a creek emptying into St. Catherine’s Sound, struck a snag and sunk.”
Provenance:Ownership prior to Mary Allis (see "Vendor") is unknown.
Mark(s):See "Inscriptions."
Inscription(s):Flags flying fore and aft, respectively, are lettered "E. D" and "ENOCH DEAN." The latter also appears on the side of the steamboat. Painted in script in the lower left corner of the canvas is "Built Under the Supperindence [sic] of. Captn Wilson Small N. Y 1852" and in the lower right corner is "Picture Drawn & Painted by James Bard. 688 Washington St New York/1852./Oct 11th."
Remnants of a newspaper clipping are glued to the left stretcher on the reverse, and "PREPARED/BY/EDwd DECHAUX/NEW-YORK." is stenciled in oval format on the reverse of the canvas.