This recorded illustrated talk by Museum Director Pierce Rafferty chronicles the dramatic story of Fishers Island’s most deadly and consequential shipwreck, the wreck of the Steamer Atlantic in November 1846. This tragic wreck caught the attention of the nation, and was commemorated by mournful ballads, popular poems, and two Currier lithographs. The fate of the ship’s legendary bell, and the erection of a lighthouse on nearby North Dumpling, are just two of the side stories also covered in this fascinating tale of woe.
This illustrated talk was first presented by Pierce during a Senior Luncheon at Union Chapel in November 2022, then live at the Museum July 9th, 2023 and was re-recorded July 14th 2023.
Awful Wreck of the Magnificent Steamer ATLANTIC on Fishers Island Lithograph by N. Currier 1846 Courtesy of George F. Bass
Drawing copied from daguerreotype showing wreck of the Steamer Atlantic, North Hill, Fishers Island, N.Y. Museum Collection. Donated by Harry & Susie Ferguson