Two great postcard shots – but can anyone identify the yachts?

Laura Haggarty Katydids Cards postcards of yachts

Laura Haggarty Katydids Cards postcards of yachts

Click on the thumbnails for much larger images

These magnificent shots come from postcard dealer Laura Haggarty who would be grateful for some help identifying the vessels in these shots.

Does anyone know which 19th century yachts these might be please? Let me know at and I’ll pass the message along. They may well be well known racers if someone has gone to the trouble of producing postcards, and it’s been suggested that the yachts in the lower photo might the J Class.

The cards will be available for purchase from Laura – if you’re interested, contact her at

PS – I have noticed the trailing line in the upper image. These embarrassing things can happen to professionals too, but it doesn’t seem to be slowing them down!

PPS – reader Donan Raven has written in with some information relating tothe lower image of three cutters racing. Here’s what he says:

‘This was definitely shot between 1892 and 1906, and are most likely either 40-raters (for example Queen Mab if the photo is before 1893) OR 52-footers from the Linear Rating Rule such as  like Penitent, Gauntlet and a few more.

‘I think it’s too early for 15 Meters yet, and they are certainly not J-Class.

‘If they are 52-footers, they could be any of the following:

  • Penitent, designed by Arthur Edward Philip Payne, Jr, 1896
  • Gauntlet, designed by Arthur Edward Philip Payne, Jr, 1901
  • Lucida, designed by William Fife III, 1902
  • Britomart, designed by Alfred Mylne, 1905
  • Sonya, designed by Nathanael Greene Herreshoff, 1905

‘Or they might be any of the earlier 40-raters, including Mohawk, Deerhound, Castanet, Reverie, Creole, Thalia, Corsair, White Slave, Lais, Vendetta, Queen Mab or Varuna. But I am quite sure you can omit the ones designed before 1891-1892, as they would have had clipper bows, not spoon bows as shown in the picture. Queen Mab, Lais
and Vendetta are the best candidates if this picture predates 1896.

‘See the table in the book Yachting in the Badminton Library of Sports and Pastimes edited by His Grace the Duke of Beaufort KG and Alfred ET Watson for more on these boats.’

Thanks Donan – I’m sure Laura will be delighted.

4 thoughts on “Two great postcard shots – but can anyone identify the yachts?”

  1. I wonder if the disc of my yacting pics might help. Lias ringas a bell somehow as does Varuna. They certainly look like one designers of some sort.

  2. Magnificant! These boats look like proper boats, not like yoghurt beakers. There's a Chinese phrase" We are living in honourless times" That's the point, seeing modern times yachts.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.