The loss of HMS 'Conqueror'
Signed lower left 'G.P.M' and inscribed along the bottom 'The loss of H.M.S. Conqueror 100 guns on Rum Cay, Bahamas, West Indies'. The ' Conqueror' was a 101-gun screw-assisted 1st-rate, of 3225 tons, built at Devonport in 1855. Under Captain Edward Sotheby she was carrying troops to assist French intervention in Mexico when wrecked on Rum Cay due to a navigational error, on 13 December 1861. All 1400 people on board got off safely. Mends would only just have arrived on the North American and West Indies station (as flag-captain of the 'Edgar') at the time of 'Conqueror's' loss, and the fact this drawing is dated two weeks after the wreck suggests he saw salvage work in progress that day, even though this is probably a composed drawing rather than an on-the-spot scketch. The remains of the ship are known and now designated as an underwater museum site, popular with divers.
George Pechell Mends
Original size: 179 mm x 225 mm
- Image reference: PU9409
- National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
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