Merchant Service Fireman
This image portrays a merchant stoker working at the open door of a boiler. A fireman, known as a stoker in the Navy, needed to feed five tons of coal a day into the ship's furnace. The space is confined, dark and hot, emphasized by the sleeveless top of the sailor. The heat of the boiler is conveyed by the glow from the furnace, which illuminates the man's arm and front, and the large bell behind the ladder. The only light shines from the bulkhead to the right. The artist has emphasized the feeling of being in the depths of the ship by the use of a vertical ladder, down which another sailor descends, and the rope ladder hanging to the right.
Henry Marvell Carr
- Image reference: BHC1558
- National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
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