Dock Scene at a British Port

1673 Painting by Jacob Knyff With Explanation and Sources

Highly possible this is the ship "Martha" that sailed immigrant William Bobbet to Virginia, USA



Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500's - 1900's
Name: Wm. Bobett
Year: 1674
Place: Virginia
Source: Cavaliers and Pioneers, Abstracts of Virginia Land Patients
and Grants, Vol. 2: 1666-1695. Indexed by Claudia B. Grundman.
Richmond, VA: Virginia State Library, 1977, 609 p,, Nell Marion
Nugent.
Page: 146

Late 1673 and 1674 Immigration: Ship "Martha" sail to Virginia from
London, England, stop in Wales.
Wm Bobett
Voyage Origin: Felixstowe, Suffolk, England to London, England
Voyage: London, England to Virginia


Abraham Wheelock filed a Will Aug 1673, "Being now
outwards bound on a voyage to the seas and with all considering
the dangers hazards..." Documents are found in the Public
Records Office in London stating that Abraham Wheelock was
the shipmaster of the Martha and the Good Hope. Will probated
11/372, Public Records Office, London, Documents E190/59/01
and E190/72/1, Public Records Office, London.

Abraham Wheelock - shipmaster of ships "Martha" and
"Good Hope"

Only passengers on the flyboat "Martha" 1673:
Wm Bobet
Abraham Estes
Arthur Skinner

Artist Jacob Knyff painted what he saw at the England port in late
1673. The ship, an English flyboat, loaded with guns, and a few
passengers, less than 5, was the ship "Martha."

Jacob Knyff: 1638 - 1681
Dock Scene at a British Port by Knyff
Date 1673
Materials: Oil on canvas
Measurements: Painting 965.2 x 1270 mm

Description
England and Dutch ships taking on stores or cargo at a port. The
activities relating to the loading has been closely observed. It has
been set in a harbor, with the tower of a gate and a quay visible on
the right, and the coast in the distance on the left. An England
flagship is on the right, firing a salute and flying the ensign from
the stern carved with the royal coat of arms. Beside the quay is
an English flyboat that, from her shape, was probably Dutch-built.
A royal yacht is arriving on the left and this has prompted the firing
of the salute. On the extreme left is the stern of a Dutch ship. On
the quay two bales of stores or goods with clear markings have
been positioned in the foreground. Men are involved in loading up
small craft. a horse dragging a barrel on skids to the water's edge
and there are several groups of gentlemen and women observing
the activities. A guard stands outside a sentry box in the gate-way.

From 1673 Knyff's output appears to have been mostly British
coastal or river scenes, with increasing emphasis on accurate and
colourful depiction of the great ships of the Stuart navy. Although
Dutch-born Knyff came to England when Charles II issued a general
invitation to Dutch artists and craftsmen to work in England in 1672.
Although the two countries were at war, patronage for artists in
Holland had diminished and a number took advantage of this offer,
including the van de Veldes and Knyff.

Source: National Maritime Museum, London, England

Cockett's chapter on Jacob Wouterazoon Knyff in "Early Sea Painters"
contains a list of Knyff's 37 paintings, some colour illustrations and a
short sketch of Knyff's life and background. Jacob Knyff worked and
died in England. As Charles II ordered, Knyff's paintings must be
what he personally witnessed.