The New York Yacht Club Regatta: The Start from the Stake Boat in the Narrows, off the New Club House and Grounds, Staten Island, New York Harbor

Drawn on stone by Charles Parsons American
Drawn on stone Lyman Wetmore Atwater American
Publisher Currier & Ives American

Not on view

Marine views and pictures of ships have long appealed to collectors and popular taste. Undoubtedly, however, this print was made with the well-to-do members of the New York Yacht Club as the intended prospective purchasers.The New York Yacht Club was founded in 1844 by nine prominent sportsmen, who elected James Cox Stevens as the private club's first Commodore. Stevens also provided the new organization with a site for its first club house on his estate in Hoboken, New Jersey. On June 6, 1848, the Club's first annual regatta took place, thereby launching a tradition of yacht racing and an annual regatta that has occurred almost every year since (except during wartime).

In 1868, the New York Yacht Club moved to its second club house on Staten Island. This print presents a crowd of fashionably dressed spectators who have gathered on the club's grounds to watch the start of the yacht race on such a splendid, fair day. A few rowboats filled with more spectators are just off shore. The graceful line of fully rigged sailing schooners extends from the left of the image to the distance at right. A tall flagpole (with U.S. flag and three banners), set at the water's edge in near left foreground, visually divides the composition. A key with the names of ten yachts appears beneath the image, from left to right, "VESTA. HENRIETTA. DAUNTLESS. PHANTOM. FLEETWING. PALMER. ADDIE V. WHITE WING. GERALDINE. ANNIE."

Nathaniel Currier, whose successful New York-based lithography firm began in 1835, produced more than 7,000 hand-colored prints in various sizes that together create a vivid panorama of mid-to-late nineteenth century American life and its history. People eagerly acquired such lithographs featuring picturesque scenery, rural and city views, ships, railroads, portraits, hunting and fishing scenes, domestic life and numerous other subjects, as an inexpensive way to decorate their homes or business establishments. As the firm expanded, Nathaniel included his younger brother Charles in the business. In 1857, James Merritt Ives (the firm's accountant since 1852 and Charles's brother-in-law) was made a business partner; subsequently renamed Currier & Ives, the firm continued until 1907.

No image available

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.