American Decorative Arts
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Photo credit: Yale University Art Gallery
PrevNext2 of 2
Photo credit: Yale University Art Gallery
Manufacturer: Enoch Wood and Sons, British, 1820–1846

Plate with a View of the Chief Justice Marshall


Blue transfer-printed earthenware

8 1/2 in. (21.6 cm)
other: 8 1/2 in. (21.6 cm)
Mabel Brady Garvan Collection

The Chief Justice Marshall became the favorite packet of the Troy Line between New York and Albany after her launch in 1826, and was known as “The Race Horse of the North River.” She was later relocated to the Connecticut River and was stranded in a storm off the coast of New Haven in 1835.

To save time on busy routes, passenger steamships such as this one merely slowed down their paddle wheel and released a small launch tethered to a rope. The launch would ferry passengers and luggage to the shore and pick up new ones before the steamer cranked it back in. This plate depicts this activity, with some recently disembarked passengers on the bank in the foreground. An almost identical composition, featuring a Union Line steamboat was also produced by Wood (inv. no. 1930.3139). The view was most likely taken from an advertisement. The transfer-printed shell border was one of the firm’s stock designs and could be reused to decorate many different pieces.

Manufactured in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England
Depicted Troy, New York, United States
On view
19th century
Containers - Ceramics

Helen A. Cooper et al., Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2008), 277–78, no. 169, ill.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.