VERY FINE. A UNIQUE “ILLUSTRATED COVER” FROM THE 1839 MAIDEN VOYAGE OF THE BRITISH QUEEN.
The British Queen was owned by the British and American Steam Navigation Co. This letter was carried on her maiden voyage, which departed Portsmouth on July 12, 1839. This company chartered the Sirius for two voyages in 1838, in order to beat the Great Western Steamship Company as the first steamship company to make the transatlantic crossing. The British Queen was substantially larger than other transatlantic steamers used at the time, earning the company a profit. They built a second sister ship, the President, which was double the size of Cunard’s Britannia, but both ships were considered underpowered. The President was lost in 1841 and caused the collapse of the company. The British Queen was sold to the Belgian government.
Ex Hahn. With 2013 P.F. certificate.