Treasured Artworks at the Texas Capitol
Congress Avenue at Eleventh Street
Julius Stockfleth, Chas. Clarke
Julius Stockfleth, Chas. Clarke, 1900, oil on canvas, 20 x 32 inches, 1998.20. Donations provided by various sponsors. Collection of the State Preservation Board, Austin, Texas.
Chas. Clarke was an ocean-going towboat and fireboat out of Galveston, Texas. Built in 1889 at Camden, New Jersey, she had a crew of 12 and is depicted here with an anchor on the smokestack indicating ownership by the Anchor Towing Company, ca. 1900. This painting probably was commissioned for its owner or captain, possibly Capt. G. Hamilton, whose name is inscribed on the painting. A later version of the painting is featured in McGuire's book about Stockfleth (No. 29, page 76). By that time, the boat was owned by the Bay Towing Company and decorated differently.
Julius Stockfleth began his career as a marine and landscape painter with an apprenticeship to a local painter in his hometown of Wyk auf Föhr, Schleswig-Holstein (Germany). He immigrated to the United States in 1883 and settled in Galveston, Texas two later. Before his return to Germany in 1907 and his death there many years later, Stockfleth chronicled two decades of the history of Galveston and western Gulf Coast shipping including the 1900 hurricane, ship portraits, the Galveston wharves and island landscapes including the Galveston Seawall.
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