Where: The NeedlesWhen: A long time agoWhat: A bunch of yachts racing (but what picture of the Needles doesn't have a bunch of yachts racing?)The artist: Not a clue, but it is very attractive with lots of action. A nice find!
Hmm... upstart, black-hulled yankee schooner facing an English fleet off the Isle of Wight - what could this event possibly be?I'll guess the opening of the 1851 crabbing season.
But they must be 5" from tip to tip to be keepers, or Fish and Game will be all over your butt.O Docker, I remember you mentioning a restaurant at Berkeley Marina with the "world's best crabcakes". You have not had them in L'ville, NJ. Just let me know next time you're back east.JP, nice painting BTW. No freakin idea where it is. Maybe Gay Head, Martha's Vineyard, with Ted Kennedy sailing "Mya" in the Figawi regatta? 1895?
Baydog, you're on! Thanks for the offer.A closer look at this painting has me starting to think the crabbing season pictured wasn't in 1851, but a much more recent one, and that this schooner is a replica of an earlier crabbing boat.
Interesting comments, O'Docker.My understanding was the date was indeed 1851 and the clues to the event are the flag on the schooner (yankee) and the location (Needles) hence the first suggestion is right.What makes you think this is a replica?
There was a replica made after the original was destroyed in 1942. The replica was the flagship of the 150th anniversary celebration of the original crabbing festival, held at Cowes in 2001. I wonder if this is the scene depicted in the painting.There are a number of smaller, more modern looking yachts in the background, with brightly colored sails that seem out of place in a 19th century scene, to my eye, at any rate.Also, the tower at the the needles looks a lot like the one in place today. I wonder if it or anything similar was there in 1851.
The Needles light was built in 1859, according to Wikipedia (which is never wrong).I guess it's possible the artist didn't know that.
Pretty sure its not the 150th anniversary as there were all sorts of hot modern yachts there (as remember it) that can't see in the painting. Also brown and off yellow sail colours are quite traditional. Interesting research about that light house: would have expected some form of light by the needles - maybe there was earlier light house or a light ship?
The first lighthouse was built in 1785 but it was on top of the downs.
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