The American Clipper Ship, 1845–1920

A Comprehensive History, with a Listing of Builders and Their Ships

Limited Hardcover Edition


In stock

SKU: 9780786471126 Categories: , , ,

About the Book

This work offers a new and comprehensive account of the fastest and most beautiful sailing ships ever built. It explores the quest for speed on the seas from the early 1800s through the fast-paced times of the 1850s spurred on by the California Gold Rush of 1849. Not only are the career details of such noted ships as the Flying Cloud and Challenge discussed in detail, but they are also put in context with the times in which they operated. Their builders in East Coast states from Maine to Florida are discussed in detail, as are the men, and a woman in one instance, who commanded and manned these ships. The book documents the roles that owners and shipping agents played, what kinds of cargo the ships carried worldwide and the unusual trades in which they participated.

About the Author(s)

Historian Glenn A. Knoblock is the author of many works of New England, New Hampshire, and transportation history. A lecturer for the New Hampshire Humanities, he lives in Wolfeboro Falls, New Hampshire.

Bibliographic Details

Glenn A. Knoblock

Format: hardcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 376
Bibliographic Info: 100 photos, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7112-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0284-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments  viii
Introduction  1
Part One: The History of the Clipper
I. Westward Ho: The Coming of the Clipper  6
II. Challenge: The Design of a Clipper Ship  17
III. Young Mechanic: The Building of a Clipper Ship  39
IV. Architect: The Clipper Ship Builders  70
V. Intrepid: Clipper Ship Commanders, Crew and Passengers 80
VI. Wild Rover: Clipper Ship Voyages and Trade  129
VII. Titan: Clipper Ship Owners and Agents  159
VIII. Sweepstakes: Fast Passages and Record Setting Voyages 193
IX. Hurricane: Shipwrecks and Other Noteworthy Clipper Events 206
X. Twilight: The End of the American Clipper Ship Era  232
Part Two: Clipper Builders and Their Ships by State  255
Bibliography  355
Index  359

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Solid…detail of the work is impressive…recommended”—Choice
  • “Comprehensive history…extraordinarily rich detail…a valuable contribution to American maritime history”—The International Journal of Maritime History
  • “This substantial book is exactly what it says it is in the subtitle. Extensively researched and well put together, it has a very useful index and a most impressive bibliography. There are more than 360 pages of extremely detailed descriptions of most the world’s significant clippers and their builders. There are also numerous excellent engravings to illustrate the text…a very useful presentation of very important and interesting history”—Work Boat World
  • “Substantial…extensively researched and well put together…a very useful presentation of very important and interesting history”—Ausmarine; “worthy inclusion for any library collection…most useful”—ARBA
  • “An enjoyable and fulfilling read….Knoblock has applied thorough research and a deep personal interest in the subject to put together a credible, well-written volume…an excellent volume”—The Northern Mariner/Le marin du nord