The S.S. City of Berlin outward bound passing Cape Pine Lighthouse signed lower left "S. Walters/1896" oil on canvas 34-1/2 x 59-1/2 in. (87.6 x 151.1 cm.)
Literature: A.S. Davidson, Samuel Walters Marine Artist - Fifty Years of Sea, Sail, & Steam, Jones-Sands Publishing, Coventry, 1992, pg. 202 for a listing of works for the Inman Line.
The S.S. City of Berlin was a British passenger liner built by Caird & Company in Scotland. She was the Inman Line's premier vessel for thirteen years, and won the Blue Riband for the Inman Line in 1875 as the fastest liner on the Atlantic. She was also the largest passenger ship for six years. The S.S. City of Berlin served the Inman Line until 1893 when Inman was merged into the American Line, and was operated by her new owners on both the American Line and Red Star Line until 1898. In 1895, she and the City of Chester were replaced in the American Line's weekly mail fleet by the new express liners, the St. Louis and the St. Paul. Renamed the S.S. Berlin, she was placed on the Antwerp - New York route for the Red Star Line with occasional sailings for the American Line. In 1898 the S.S. Berlin was sold to the U.S. Government for the Spanish-American War, and was renamed Meade. She trooped to the Philippines until she was damaged by a fire in San Francisco on January 31, 1906. Repaired, she continued service through World War I and was finally scrapped in 1921.
Please note the date of this painting is 1876. In addition, on page 91 of the book Samuel Walters - Marine Artist by A.S. Davidson, Mr. Davidson writes about Mr. Walters painting "a steady succession of at least a dozen commissions for the Inman Line between 1855 and 1881". This work of the S.S. City of Berlin, being such a large and imposing example of Walters' work, it was probably one of the works commissioned by the Inman Line. Further, since the City of Berlin won the Blue Riband in September of 1875, this painting probably commemorates that event.
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