1986.10 | Albion
Thomas Dove, British
1836, 19th century
71 x 102 cm
Gift of Woolford G. Scott
This artefact belongs to: © New Brunswick Museum
Keys to History
A ship was powered by its sails, and making sails is one of the world's oldest marine trades. Rigging was a complex arrangement of ropes, wires, chains and blocks, or pulleys used to operate a sailing vessel. Every piece of rigging had a specific function, which ranged from providing fixed support for masts to hoisting and trimming sails. The rigging allowed a skilled crew to manipulate a ship's sails, spars and lines to take full advantage of the wind.
Sailmakers produced two main types: square rig, and fore-and-aft rig. Square-rigged sails, shown in the painting of the Albion, were designed to hang from horizontal yards across the width of a ship. They produced greater driving force when the prevailing winds blew from the rear, and were vital for long ocean passages. Fore-and-aft rigged sails were designed to hang along the length of a ship, making it more manoeuverable and effective in coastal waters.
Source : The Golden Age of Sail [Web tour], by New Brunswick Museum (see Links)
Even though there were several ships named Albion in the 1830s and 1840s, the houseflags identify this as the one owned by John Hammond of Saint John.
The Albion was wrecked at Richibucto, New Brunswick, in 1853.
Ownership was transferred to Robert Shute, Liverpool, in 1848.
An inscription stamped on the reverse of the canvas reads: T. Dove Marine Painter 1836, for British artist Thomas Dove.