"The trial of speed. "America" sails against "Maria" on New York Harbor, 1851."

Copyright, A.D.Blake, 2005. All rights reserved.

Soon after her launching, "America" had three trial sails against the Stevens brother's racing sloop, "Maria".

"America" is shown in the foreground with "Maria" to windward. Castle Williams on Governors Island is on the right hand side of the painting and Castle Garden, at the bottom of Manhattan, is in the left hand background. A Hudson River sloop is passing astern of "America" and other shipping can be seen at anchor or under sail in the background.

"America" was not as fast as "Maria" and this allowed George Schulyer, of the "America" syndicate, to offer William Brown, "America's" builder, a discount price of $20,000. "America" was suppossed to have been the fastest yacht of that time. However it must be realised that "Maria" was a 97 foot harbor racing machine with a main boom of 95 feet and a huge sail area of 7890 sq. ft., which was 2500 sq. ft. larger than "America's". "Maria" was totally unsuited to an Atlantic crossing. "America", designed by George Steers was 95 ft. length on deck, with a beam of 23 ft. and draft of 11 ft.

Dimensions14" x 24"
Mediaoil on canvas


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