This item from the Popular Graphic Arts collection recently caught the eye of Phil Michel, Digital Conversion Coordinator in the Prints & Photographs Division.
Phil commented, “Early engineering marvels often catch my eye. Some of the ships, buildings, bridges, tunnels, etc., that were built in the industrial age were just phenomenal in their scale. I also like the combination of technologies…sailing masts and sidewheels.”
- View some of the other feats of engineering represented in the Popular Graphic Arts Collection, which consists of prints created ca. 1700-1900 that were sometimes used for advertising and educational purposes: bridges, railroads, ships, and tunnels (cartoons are also found in the Popular Graphic Arts Collection, see if you spot the image that offers an “insiders” perspective on a tunnel!).
- Explore some of the other Prints & Photographs Division collections that feature wonders of the built environment:
Thanks for the nifty pointer to this print! Worth saying that the engineer (not just ships!) Isambard Kingdom Brunel is a major figure in the English industrial revolution; see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isambard_Kingdom_Brunel. And speaking of photographs, the Wikipedia article reproduces Robert Howlett’s marvelous 1857 portrait of Brunel standing in front of a massive anchor chain. This image turns up in a number of books on the history of photography and (I learn from another Wikipedia article) “was part of a commission by The Times (or Illustrated Times) to document the construction of the world’s largest steamship, the SS Great Eastern. So this fact brings us neatly back to this very blog!