Painting of the Clipper Ship Dreadnaught

Dreadnought was built in 1853 by Currier and Townsend in Newburyport, MA. The ship measured 212 feet in length, 41 feet 6 inches in beam, 26 feet 6 inches in depth of hold, and 1,414 tons. It sailed for the Red Cross Line of New York. The ship was originally intended for the "Racehorse Line" of California Clippers. It made 31 roundtrips between New York and Liverpool between 1853 and 1864. Under the command of Captain Cushing, it sailed between New York and San Francisco in 1864. On July 4, 1869 she drifted ashore and wrecked on Cape Penas, off Tierra del Fuego.
The painting shows the clipper ship with sails unfurled. Two other sailing vessels can be seen before and behind the ship. It is suspected that the painting is a fake. The signature dates the painting 1835 even thought the ship was not built until 1853. In addition, the paint was analyzed and found to be from the 20th century.
Currently not on view
Object Name
painting, oil
date made
ca 1920
Conway, C.W.G.
Physical Description
oil on canvas (overall material)
without frame: 24 1/4 in x 34 1/2 in; 61.595 cm x 87.63 cm
with frame: 26 1/2 in x 34 1/2 in; 67.31 cm x 87.63 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Cigna Maritime Collection
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
Cigna Maritime Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection

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