Circa 1769

Spanish frigate La Ventura in the ice at Cape Horn.

A drawing in two sections, side by side, each section within a square border of alternating filled and open lines. Left panel with a compass rose in the upper left corner and a bird's-eye view of the sequential movement of the frigate La Ventura through the ice field from west to east in the perilous waters off Cape Horn during a voyage from Callao to Rio de Janeiro. The right panel has a detailed front-view of the sequence, depicting the ship entering the strait and its encirclement by icebergs.
Pen, ink and watercolor on vellum, 15.75" x 13.75" sight. Framed 22" x 20.75".
Condition: Slight staining, fold lines, drawing is trimmed in lower left corner.

The absence of a condition report does not imply an object is free of defects. All items may have normal signs of age and wear commensurate with their age; these issues will likely not be mentioned in the condition report. Please contact Eldred's before the auction with any condition questions. Questions about condition will not be answered after purchase. Condition reports are provided as a courtesy, and we are not responsible for any errors or omissions. Important note on frames: Frames are not guaranteed to be in the same condition as they are in the item photograph. Due to handling and shipping, many frames, especially antique ones, are prone to losses. If you have questions about the condition of a frame, please contact us prior to the auction. 

  • Provenance:
    Douglas Stewart Fine Books, Armadale, Australia, 2015.
    The Kelton Collection of Marine Art & Artifacts.

    This document provides valuable information about navigation in the Strait of Magellan and the climate of Cape Horn during the Third Quarter of the 18th Century. Without question, the rounding of Cape Horn constituted one of the most dangerous and risk-filled missions in navigation around the coasts of the Americas. The frigate
    La Ventura departed from Callao (the port of Lima) on August 16, 1769, and arrived at Rio de Janeiro on November 19. After a stopover of almost three months, she left the Brazilian port February 13, 1770 and returned to Spain, reaching Cadiz on May 3.

    The manuscript explanation of the legend in the drawings gives a precise account of the rounding of Cape Horn and the dramatic accident that befell the ship in the ice field. On October 8, 1769, at 3 o'clock in the morning,
    La Ventura entered the Strait of Magellan. The crew carried out soundings, then at half past ten the ship entered much deeper waters in an attempt to avoid a collision with any one of the numerous massive icebergs that surrounded her. At midday, unable to escape the situation, the frigate struck an iceberg, completely breaking its bowsprit. After managing to retreat from immediate danger by navigating through a narrow channel in the ice, the Andes Cordillera was sighted at 2 o'clock. Still in the menacing presence of huge icebergs, the crew were ordered to man the oars in order to more closely control the ship's direction and speed. Finally, at around 7 o'clock, La Ventura began to round the Cape and distance herself from the icebergs, and by 9 o'clock she had completed her exit from the ice field.

    Spanish records show that in 1768 the
    La Ventura , also known as La Amisted , was a part of this Cape route and transported a cargo of 350 tons divided into 360 registries, of which 165 (46%) belonged to those who resided in Peru. This cargo had been shipped from Cadiz. This and other records show that the local Peruvians participated in the transatlantic trade equally with that of the residents of Spain.

Accepted Forms of Payment:

American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Money Order / Cashiers Check, Personal Check, Visa, Wire Transfer


We require prompt payment and removal of your purchases as stated in Paragraph 12 of the Conditions of Sale. If you plan to pick up your purchases, please call ahead and we'll make every effort to have your items ready. Our physical address is 1483 Route 6A, East Dennis, MA. Pick up of smaller items at our Mystic, CT location is also available with advance notice.
Unfortunately, it is not possible to provide shipping quotes until the invoice had been paid in full.
In house shipping is offered exclusively though UPS. All items are shipped with UPS insurance (max. $50,000). UPS insurance is billed at $2.70 for the first $100 and at $0.90 per hundred afterwards. Eldred's charges a minium $15 handling fee per package plus actual UPS shipping charges.
COLLECTION OF PURCHASES: Delivery or shipping arrangements must be made within seven (7) days from the close of the auction for all purchases. All items must be removed from Eldred's facilities within fourteen (14) days of the end of the auction. All items remaining after fourteen days may be subject to a $15/per item/per day storage fee. No items will be released unless storage fees are paid in full. Items remaining over thirty (30) days from the close of the auction may be sold for the buyer's account minus auction and storage fees.

March 1, 2023 9:30 AM EST
East Dennis, MA, US


You agree to pay a buyer's premium of up to 25% and any applicable taxes and shipping.

View full terms and conditions

Bid Increments
From: To: Increments:
$0 $99 $10
$100 $499 $25
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $2,999 $100
$3,000 $4,999 $250
$5,000 $9,999 $500
$10,000 $29,999 $1,000
$30,000 $49,999 $2,500
$50,000 $99,999 $5,000
$100,000 + $10,000