'Great Britain' cutting a trench in the sand, Rathmullan, Ireland, 1847.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Plate taken from the 'Illustrated London News'. The ship's propellor is used to plough a trench through the sand, which is removed in wheelbarrows. The s 'Great Britain' was the first screw-propelled, and the first iron-built vesel, to cros the Atlantic. She sailed from Liverpool to New York in 1845, taking 14 days to make the crosing. She was completed in Bristol in 1843 for the Great Western Steamship Company to the plans of Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Accommodation was provided for about 360 pasengers. The ship was employed in the Australian trade from 1852, and converted into a sailing vesel in 1882.