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The schooner yacht America has been the subject of more paintings than any other pleasure or commercial vessel, perhaps rivaled only by the frigate Constitution.
Conceived at the instigation of an English businessman, built in one of New York’s foremost shipyards, and sailed by a syndicate of New York yachtsmen, the America was intended to demonstrate the United States’ shipbuilding skill at Prince Albert’s Great Exhibition at London in 1851. For Three Views, the attribution to Lane is strong for reasons of close attention to correct ship handling and details of rigging and sails. A close examination of Three Views reveals discrepancies of detail between the artist’s depiction of America and other reliable pictures and plans of her as fitted out in her first year. Perhaps the most persuasive evidence for an earlier dating is the flag flown at America’s masthead in the right view (Fig. Period documents provide evidence of Brown’s sole ownership of America until the date of her sale on June 20, 1851. Similarly, Steers’ original sail plan for America was little more than outlines of the sails, including the masts and spars superimposed over a simple profile of the hull.
Assuming Lane was commissioned by Brown to paint a portrait of a proposed or partially built yacht, with only a half-model and some incomplete sail plans to study (Fig.
By the summer of 1850, Lane was traveling and sketching in Maine, probably from the beginning in August to early in September.12 We know he worked on several major paintings based on his sketches of New York and other southern ports made earlier in the year. The foregoing considered, it seems possible, even likely, that Lane’s painting, Yacht America from Three Views, was commissioned by William H.
The Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester, Mass., which holds the largest collection of Lane’s paintings, drawings, and related materials, has recently initiated the Fitz Henry Lane Catalogue Raisonne project.
Artists’ renditions of new commercial products tend nowadays to be derided as mere “commercial art.” But in the nineteenth-century, respected artists like Lane engaged in such projects alongside their more serious work, and this reason for painting ship portraits warrants serious consideration as advertising. I searched for information of this interesting 17 century jacht, which served for transportation of captains to their ships and for private use.
A shallop was not a small boat, for shallop types look in Chapelle's American Small Sailing Craft pp 20 onwards, and for the bigger versions The Chatham Directory of Inshore Craft, P208 for a 39 footer, and p218 for Peggy of Castletown Isle of Man at 26 foot.
The alternative name was Irish Sea wherry, not to be confused with the Norfolk or Thames wherry.
I'll recommend checking in with the various boatbuilding shops in the Low Countries that build (or have built) period replica ships and boats. As above, this sort of craft is not an easy or inexpensive thing to build, store, transport and use. I've seen renditions of the speeljacht before, and always thought it would be a great boat for pleasure use. I think this is about the same as I posted at my blog about scottisch fishing boats already. In your research, you might wish to investigate the traditional hooker (hoeker?) boats of southern and southwestern Ireland, some of which, it is theorized, evolved from Dutch prototypes of the late Seventeenth and early Eighteenth Centuries.
I've never seen any other published information that shows how a boat of such size and complexity is build without lofting!


The back bone, stem and sternpost were erected first followed by the midship floor to eastablish the rise of floor. That said, I see very little in common between the Block Island boat and the Dutch jacht except the short gaff, which used to be common. Sailboat Rigging Pulley And Tackle -- Sailboat Rigging Pulley and Tackle is typical sight on a sailboat or yacht in any marina around the world.
Delivery times may vary, especially during peak periods and will depend on when your payment clears - opens in a new window or tab. By clicking Confirm bid you commit to buy this item from the seller if you are the winning bidder. Import charges previously quoted are subject to change if you increase you maximum bid amount. 1: Fitz Henry Lane (1804–1865), The Yacht America Winning the International Race, dated 1851. In 1851, the year of her victorious race off Cowes, England, she was portrayed by many of the most noted American and British marine artists of the day, and remains a favorite subject in paintings by many of today’s marine artists.
The more widely known painting, signed by Lane and dated 1851, is based on the lithograph by Thomas G.
Lane was without peer (after the departure of Robert Salmon) in his attention to wind direction and velocity, making sure that cloud formations, sail trim, wave patterns, and minor details of flags, smoke from steamships, and buoy pennants are in close agreement.
3: Detail of figure 2, broadside (middle) view of America, showing deck arrangement and scrollwork at the bow.
Details were left to the sparmakers, riggers, and sailmakers who drew from their knowledge and experience. 10: Sail plan of New York pilot schooner, Mary Taylor, designed and built by George Steers in 1849.
Among them is the monumental 36 x 60-inch panoramic view of New York harbor, now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
The subtle shading and highlights of the hull in each view leave no doubt that he understood America’s hull form perfectly. Brown in 1850 as an artist’s concept of a proposed schooner yet to represent American shipbuilding at the Great Exposition in 1851. The project will take a number of years to complete and will result in a multi-volume book and digital formats that will go beyond the scope of the purely archival catalogue raisonne.
Painted before the yacht was completed, Fitz Henry Lane’s Yacht America from Three Views would have served William H. This sequence of actions is described in detail in John Rousmaniere, The Low Black Schooner: Yacht America, 1851–1945 (Mystic Seaport, 1986). Yacht America From Three Views is better known to yachtsmen and students of yacht design than it is to most art historians and collectors. America’s trailboards were unique to that vessel at the time of her building, and subsequently used only on Steers-designed ships, notably the clipper ship Sunny South, built in 1854.
To get WoodenBoat delivered to your door or computer, mobile device of choice, etc, click WB Subscriptions. The shallop Thorne posted above is a pretty accurate rendition of a 17th Century Dutch boat. Even at 18' by 6', our shallop (owned by the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation) is extremely stable and can take a load of people and gear. If you reside in an EU member state besides UK, import VAT on this purchase is not recoverable. Dutton (1819–1891), which in turn was copied from an eye-witness drawing by Oswald Brierly (1817–1894) (Figs. Similarly, the play of light on sails shows his thorough understanding of how light reveals sail contours, casts shadows on overlapping sails, and the translucency of canvas when backlit. Model made in 1999, following the deck arrangement in contemporary dockyard surveys and watercolor sketches made on board the yacht by Swedish naval architect Pehr Wilhelm Cedergren in 1851.
7) is a large side-wheel towboat flying the American flag; the small boat in the left foreground (Fig.
The pennants in the middle and left views are blurred, but the house flag with the letter B is clearly delineated, without doubt the owner’s initial. Steers did not get around to drawing a sail plan of America until 1851, and it was sent to the sail maker in whose loft it remained until discovered in the 1930s (Fig.
Travel to New York was likely taken in the late spring in time for the openings of the Dusseldorf School and the American Art Union exhibitions in New York, where several of his most recent paintings were hung to considerable acclaim.11 While in New York, it is quite possible that his presence came to the attention of Brown, by then in search of an artist to create an image of the proposed schooner.


So it is unlikely that he made another trip to New York, and since no correspondence exists between Lane and Brown or Steers for this period, it is most likely that meager plans already described are all with which he had to work.
Lane had to have seen and studied Steers’ half-model very carefully at Brown’s shipyard during his late spring visit to New York, when he certainly would have had the opportunity to see and measure sail plans from other Steers’ designs, making adjustments for size and proportion of the designer’s advice. Brown may have had it in mind for the syndicate that eventually commissioned him to build it, or perhaps to attract other clients.
The finished product will include broader research, critical analysis and imagery from a variety of authors and sources. Brown’s efforts to attract business and funding for the building of future vessels of this type and purpose. With no existing vessel to copy, Lane may well have relied on Steers’ preliminary design sketches for this detail, not realizing that the trailboards as made would be larger and more prominent. Chapelle, The National Watercraft Collection, second edition (Washington and Camden, 1976), 8–12.
Forgive my ignorance on this type, but are there examples of the Block Island boat sailing today? A pair of oxen would be hard put pulling a botter out of the surf as the folks in that picture are getting ready to do with the Block Island boat.
Brown had agreed to build the vessel under a contract that made him its owner unless or until the syndicate decided it had a winner and agreed to purchase it. 1, 1a).2 The other is an undated attribution to Lane, showing the yacht under sail in three views (Fig.
Combining these effects with Lane’s mastery of hull form and proportions of rig, we see a brilliant demonstration of Lane’s mastery of nautical imagery. 8) is an American dory, then widely used in the coastal fisheries from Long Island north to the Canadian maritime provinces. No other person involved with America’s construction or syndicate ownership had a last name with that initial. But presumably he would have gone to New York to inspect and sketch Steer’s half-model and refer to existing sail plans of pilot schooners.
For Brown, with his unerring sense of how to attract business, only a first-rate artist would have done. Having such a painting to show to his clientele was certainly in keeping with his business methods.
The only thing that is missing from this argument is irrefutable evidence in the form of a contract or correspondence between the artist and Brown. Francis Herreshoff (1890–1972), who used it in a serial article (later published in book form) on yachting history (L. The boat was researched and drawn by Thomas Gilmer about 1985 and built by volunteers in Wilmington, Delaware. 2).3 When, in 2009, the latter painting was loaned for public display for the first time at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester, Massachusetts, it raised a number of important questions. These two craft, combined with the low rolling coastal terrain in the background, suggest offshore of western Long Island and not the rugged Cowes coastline as the likely setting. Moreover, as noted above, the contract for building the yacht made Brown the sole owner until the contract terms were met and the vessel was sold. In the tight circle of New York’s yachtsmen, such a painting would have been noticed and its purpose appreciated. In the past he served as curator at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, curatorial advisor at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum, board member of Cape Ann Museum, and editor of Nautical Research Journal. Following her victory at Cowes and a couple of other races, America came under British ownership, not to return to the United States until 1862.5 Her appearance from that date is documented in photographs, ruling out any possibility that this painting depicts her in a later state. A shipbuilder’s house flag (really a business logo in flag form), was certainly appropriate in this circumstance. On Herreshoff’s death, the painting was consigned to a dealer who sold it to the late Glen Foster, a businessman with a stellar background in yacht racing (Alan Granby [ed], A Yachtsman’s Eye, [Philadelphia and New York, 2004], 174, 175). Since these discrepancies do not exist in Lane’s 1851 version of the Dutton lithograph (figs.
1, 1a), it is conceivable that Yacht America in Three Views was executed earlier, and was based not on the actual finished vessel, but on incomplete information provided while the yacht was under construction or even still at the design stage.



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