‘Welcome Home’ – Topsail Schooner of Stornoway

This vessel gets a mention in my previous piece on Seafarers From Harris for, in 1891, she was in Leith North where her Master was the 35 year-old Hearach Kenneth Macleod.

I have today received a copy of Robert Simper’s ‘Scottish Sail – The Forgotten Era’ and on p60 is a picture, almost a silhouette, of her approaching harbour in the Dornoch firth. Apparently this topsail schooner was built in 1881 in Stornoway so a quick perusal of the Ship Builders of Stornoway reveals the most likely builder to have been young Donald Mackay Mackenzie.

She is a truly beautiful ship with a sensuous, sinuous clipper-bow and a slender bowsprit that curls like the bill of a Curlew. Her octet of sails hint at the power and speed of this most attractive vessel.


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