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I have just seen this picture and description. It is not as described. The vessel has the appearance of, perhaps, a small coastal trader, often referred to as Hoys. The vessel could even be a fishing vessel: her rig is as per late 19th century smack types. The vessel beyond could be a smack on the Blackwater today. Her hull form appears to be of a rounded nature with flatish sections to her bottom, clearly without a chine. She has no leeboards and is not spritsail rigged - the characteristics of the Thames and Medway barges from early times (1700s and before). The artist does depict her, we have to assume, loading or discharging - whilst airing sails at the same time. Barge books by March and Carr are of no help - but March did write a book about other coastal vessels. Nick Ardley.

By Nick Ardley
On 15/03/2011