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Destruction of the Whaling Fleet in the Arctic


Martha's Vineyard Museum

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About this artifact

This wood engraving depicts the drama of the Arctic whaling disaster of 1871, when most of the whaling fleet was caught and crushed in the ice off Point Belcher, Alaska. The top panel shows a general view of the fleet in the ice. The vessels are identified below the picture. The three smaller panels on the bottom show the crews loading into whaleboats, sailing and rowing through rough seas to rendezvous on shore, and finally the whaleboats and their passengers being received by the few vessels not caught in the ice. All 1200 hundred people from the stricken vessels were saved and brought to Honolulu.

c. 1872
Width: 20.75" Height: 13.5"
Captain William H. Kelley
Edwin Dews, New Bedford, MA

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