Antique Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Depicting the Whaling Ship “Roscius” and Capt. Nathaniel Palmer, Late 19th Century

Antique Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Depicting the Whaling Ship “Roscius” and Capt. Nathaniel Palmer, Late 19th Century

$3,200.00

Antique Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Depicting the Whaling Ship “Roscius” and Capt. Nathaniel Palmer, mid to late 19th Century, a Sperm Whale tooth engraved with a shoulder length portrait of Whaling Captain Nathaniel Palmer of Stonington, CT (active: 1820 – 1829) within an oval reserve above a scroll inscribed “Capt. Nathaniel Palmer”; the reverse with an engraved larboard side view of the Whaling Ship “Roscius” of New Bedford, sailing under partially reefed sails beneath billowing clouds, with a reserve with rope border, beneath a scrolled banner inscribed “Roscius.”

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Antique Scrimshaw Sperm Whale Tooth Depicting the Whaling Ship “Roscius” and Capt. Nathaniel Palmer, Late 19th Century, a Sperm Whale tooth engraved with a shoulder length portrait of Whaling Captain Nathaniel Palmer of Stonington, CT (active: 1820 – 1829) within an oval reserve above a scroll inscribed “Capt. Nathaniel Palmer”; the reverse with an engraved larboard side view of the Whaling Ship “Roscius” sailing under partially reefed sails beneath billowing clouds, with a reserve with rope border, beneath a scrolled banner inscribed “Roscius.”

The tooth is in very good condition.

Captain Nathaniel Palmer sailed out of Stonington, Connecticut, master of the Sloop “Hero” (1820 – 1821), the Sloop “James Monroe” (1821 – 1822, and the Brig “Annasquam” (1829 – ?).

The Sloop “Roscius” was built in Duxbury in 1828, and sailed on ten whaling voyages out of New Bedford between 1843 and 1858; in only two voyages was she rigged as a ship, her final two voyages from 1850 to 1854 and from 1854 to 1858. There is no known connection between Captain Palmer and the “Roscius.” This tooth very likely scrimshanded later in the 19th Century, but could be earlier. Scrimshaw bearing the name of a specific whaling vessel is scarce, and that bearing an image of an identified whaling captain is quite rare. This is a well done, attractive and very desirable piece of antique scrimshaw.

This antique piece of sailor’s scrimshaw was etched on a tooth from a Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus), dates from the late 19th Century, and is fully compliant with the provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act and is legal under Federal Law for trade within the United States (except in those few states that have enacted prohibitions contrary to national law).

Measure: 4-1/2 in L x 2-1/4 in W x 1-1/4 in Thick

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