It’s blowing hard enough for the little lug-rigged boat on the right to be deeply reefed with her mizzen furled. She may be a small pilot boat of the type common in the Thames estuary. The main subject, a ship-rigged vessel, has single-reefed her topsails. Her crew is furling the mainsail, while others sheet home the jib.
Percy Sanborn shows two three-masted schooners, one headed up Penobscot bay, the other down on a breezy day. In the foreground two fishermen hand line from a dory while Blue Hill shows up in the background.
The Belle of Bath was launched in May, 1877 in Bath, Maine, by Goss & Sawyer; 1418 tons; length 203.9 ft, beam 39 ft., depth 24.3 ft. She was built for Parker M. Whitmore et al. and sold to Searsport parties in 1883 for $47,500. She was destroyed by fire in June, 1897, while bound from New York to Hong Kong loaded with case oil (kerosene). The Belle of Bath was captained by William G. Nichols and Henry G. Curtis of Searsport. This painting, done by an unknown Chinese artist, was given to Penobscot Marine Museum by the Nichols family.
Under the command of Capt. Daniel C.Nichols of Searsport, in Hong Kong Harbor, near the end of her sailing life. The painting originally had one mast placed incorrectly. The captain had the artist correct it, but the reflection in the water was not painted out. The picture shows four reflections for three masts.
Chinese painting of the Hongs of Canton and a view of Canton Harbor, c. 1850. These painting were produced in quantities to sell to the western merchants. There are six Chinese junks and an American steamboat in the foreground. Flags of America, France, Britain and Denmark fly. A massive fire destroyed these buildings in 1856. Hongs served as residences, trading headquarters, and warehouses for western merchants in Canton. Westerners were restricted to the Hongs.
Painting, "Shipyard," by Carroll Thayer Berry, possibly based on the artist's work at Bath Iron Works during World War II, although the vessel being built is a merchant ship, not the warships that were built at Bath.
Barkentine Mary Jenness by Luigi Renault, signed, 1876
Captain George Harrison Oakes took Mary Jenness on her first voyage down to New York, and there loaded and sailed her to Livorno. He was proud of the new ship, the 505 ton, 132’ product of his father Joseph’s yard in Brewer. He hired Renault to paint her. Renault was a good choice for he would be appointed marine artist to the King of Italy.