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The Schooner Yacht, "Nancy Dawson," R.T.Y.C. 160 Tons. Built by Mr. Camper of Gosport, For the Late Robt Shedden, Esq.
Named collection: Arthur H. Clark Collection
Object type: lithograph
Maker: Dutton, Thomas Goldsworth; Fores; Day & Son Ltd.; Sargent, H.
Place made: United Kingdom, Greater London, London
Date made: 1851
Materials: ink; color; paper
Measurements: 17 in x 22 in
Nomenclature: schooner yachts
Classification: ship portraits
A colored, port-broadside view of the 120-ton schooner yacht 'Nancy Dawson' built in 1848. She was most notable for taking part in the search for John Franklin, and in the process became the first yacht to round Point Barrow and circumnavigate the world as one of the earliest and most daring of the Arctic yachting voyages. The retired Royal Navy mate and owner, Mr. Robert Shedden, heard about the search expedition for the missing Sir John Franklin and crew who lost contact after setting sail to traverse an unnavigated section of the Northwest Passage while he was in China. He had made his way there in the summer of 1848 by the way of Good Hope. In the 'Narrative of the Voyage of H. M. S. Herald,' Berthold Seeman, who was part of the official search expedition, writes of his fleet's encounter with the 'Nancy Dawson' off Petropavloski: "Off Petropavlovski we found the Royal Thames Club schooner Nancy Dawson, owned and commanded by Mr. Robert Shedden, formerly a mate in the Royal Navy. He informed us that his object was to go through Behring Strait, and as far North as possible, in search of Sir John Franklin's expedition. The schooner was last from Hong Kong, having touched at the Loo Choo Islands, and was well stocked with provisions and instruments. Her crew, the greater part of them Americans, were entered at Hong Kong. They were a most disorganized set of men, and Mr. Shedden offered to place his vessel at Captain Kellett's disposal and appeared anxious that he should send an officer on board." See Thomas Fleming Day, ed., "The Yacht in the Arctic," The Rudder 23, no. 6 (June 1910): 481-3.