The Tea Clipper Sea Witch
The Sea Witch was a a Tea Clipper built by the firm Smith & Dimon of New York for owners
Aspinwall, in 1846, and placed under the command of the infamous
Captain Robert Bully Waterman. She was among the tallest masted ships in the world at
that time, and probably the fastest too.
The year before, the same builders and owners had created the clipper ship Rainbow, the first of the Yankee Tea Clippers, with the so called Baltimore bow that gave it concave bows that some thought couldn‘t sail.
These sailing ships where built to carry the high value cargo of China tea very quickly so speed, not capacity was the main influence in their design.
In 1849 Sea Witch sailed from Canton in China to New York in just 79 days. *
This voyage is better known for it's pilot to pilot time of 74 days
from Hong Kong to New York.
On March 26th 1856 Sea Witch was wrecked off Cuba in a declined condition carrying Chinese coolies ….a sad end for such a beautiful
* Basil Lubbock, in his book 'The China
as good night
and as an
24 x 18 inch Acrylic on canvas