This is a fine example of Jacobsen's open sea ship portraits. It is a standard portside profile from a leeward perspective. The bark has all of her jibs and squares set as well as a gaff-topsail on the jigger mast.
Launched in 1891 as Pyrenees, this vessel acquired a solid reputation as a profitable carrier over the first nine years of her career. In November 1900, while on a passage from Tacoma, Washington to Leith, Scotland, her cargo of wheat caught fire due to spontaneous combustion. Her commander, Captain Robert Bryce, made for Pitcairn Island. Upon finding no suitable place to beach the vessel at Pitcairn, Bryce took on local pilot James 'Big Hunty' McCoy, great grandson of Bounty Mutineer William McCoy, and sailed another 300 miles to Manga Reva in the Tuamotu Islands. There Pyrenees was beached and abandoned on December 2. This incident was the subject of Jack London's popular short story 'The Seed of McCoy'.
Captain J.E. Thayer of San Francisco purchased the hulk and, after making temporary repairs at Tahiti, coaxed Pyrenees into San Francisco where she underwent a complete refit.
Relaunched in 1903; she was re-named Manga Reva and registered as an American Flag vessel. Under American ownership; her second career also proved a great success. She sailed primarily in the Pacific sugar trade carrying Hawaiian sugar around Cape Horn to East Coast ports and returning with coal to stock Pacific coaling stations.
Home ported in San Francisco she regularly turned in fast passages; her best being in 1909; the year this painting was made; when she ran from San Francisco to Philadelphia in 102 days. Also in 1909 she was chartered by the Alaska Packers Association to deliver a record cargo of 105,107 cases of salmon from Bristol Bay Alaska to San Francisco.
Manga Reva continued to carry general cargo between San Francisco and the East Coast until 1914 when she was laid up in Sausalito. In 1915, at the outbreak of World War I, she was returned to service carrying wartime cargoes of grain and case oil to ports in Europe and Africa.
On November 19; 1916, on a voyage from London to Hampton Roads, Virginia, Manga Reva reported by wireless that she was sinking at position 47 degrees North, 14 degrees West. Although never confirmed, the official report indicates she was sunk by a German submarine.
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