Philadelphia: Benjamin Tanner, 1816. An impressive print of Macdonough’s victory on Lake Champlain, the last great American naval victory of the War of 1812.
This view shows Plattsburgh Bay as seen looking south from Cumberland Head, which divides the bay from the main body of Lake Champlain. The battle is in full swing, with the Confiance in the center being battered by the USS Eagle and Macdonough’s flagship the Saratoga, the latter mostly hidden by the Confiance and cannon smoke. To the right the HMS Linnett attempts to support the Confiance while itself taking fire. At left British gunboats flee the fire of the USS Ticonderoga and Preble. On shore in the right background parts of Plattsburgh are alight, while American batteries provide artillery support for the battle on the bay.
For much of the War of 1812 the British had this conflict as a sideshow, vastly less significant than the war against Napoleon in Europe. After Napoleon’s abdication and exile to Elba in early 1814, the British were free to concentrate on the war in America. They put the United States on the defensive with major thrusts in the Chesapeake Bay against Baltimore and Washington, and up the Mississippi against New Orleans, and—our present concern—down the Lake Champlain corridor. The offensive ultimately failed, safeguarding independence and ensuring that the war would end in a draw.
Painter Hugh Reinagle was born in Philadelphia around 1790, studied under John J. Holland the theatrical scene painter, and died in New Orleans in 1834.
A very good impression, slt. toned, with a few minor marginal repairs. Engraved on wove paper, image 17 1/8”h x 24 5/8”w plus title and margins, uncolored. Magnificently framed (original? but very early) in a burl walnut veneered frame with gold filet. Frame measures 32" h x 38 1/2"w. Very good condition. Item #24393