This painting depicts five lumber ships at anchor in San Diego harbor, circa 1890, with Point Loma in the background. Four of the ships are the more typical lumber schooners and the HESPER is a bark.
HESPER carries a full deck load of lumber and is in the process of unloading onto a raft secured along her starboard side amidships. Floating between the vessels are several other rafts and a steam tug is preparing to hook up and tow them to the dock.
Transport of lumber from the Northern California and Pacific Northwest mills to West Coast and foreign ports was a major maritime activity and well suited to low operating cost sailing vessels. The lumber these ships carried was essential for building in areas where lumber was scarce.
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