James E. Buttersworth, signed, c.1850. The NEBRASKA was one of hundreds of packets (ships operating on schedule) sailing the Atlantic before the Civil War. She was built in Newburyport, Massachusetts in 1845, for New York owners, and sailed to Liverpool that year and to Marseilles in 1847. She made at least one trip to China (1850), and like many packets, she switched to the southern cotton trade and was lost off Texas in 1857. Buttersworth shows her sailing in a gale, normal weather for the winter North Atlantic. She is carrying a snug, well-reefed main and fore topsails, a reefed foresail and inner jib. The jib has broken free or is being reset. The long cabin filling the space between main and mizzen masts, common in the North Atlantic trade, provides plenty of space for passengers who could afford it.