The Medford, Massachusetts-built LUCY S. WILLS is shown on a northward journey up the Irish Sea to the port of Liverpool. Just under the clipper’s bow is Carmel Head in northwest Anglesey with the Skerries Lighthouse marking the dangerous low lying islets just offshore. A pilot schooner of the Mersey service is on the horizon, most likely putting out from Holyhead Harbor to rendezvous with the inbound vessel.
In a lively sea, the American clipper is portrayed in leeward profile with all sail set except her uppermost royals and the crojack on her mizzen. The American pilot jack is worn on the foremast calling for a pilot. Her identifying name pennant is at the main and the American ensign flies from the mizzen gaff peak. Walter’s trademark accuracy faithfully portrays the smallest details, evidenced by the ship’s prominent figurehead. LUCY S. WILLS made voyages in the Australian trade as well, arriving in Victoria in 1877.
The name of Samuel Walters is synonymous with the highest quality ship portraiture. Walters portraits of the ships of 19th Century Liverpool are considered, both historically and aesthetically, to represent some of the world’s finest examples of narrative marine painting.
Illustrated: “Sailing Ships of New England” Vol.1, #174
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