Model of Three-masted Ship Kate

This model is of the unrigged three-masted cargo ship Kate. It is in the style of a builder’s model, with open framing and decking. The rigging, lines, sails, upper masts and hardware are not attached, indicating that the model was unfinished. A capstan or horizontal winch is mounted on a planked section in the center of the deck framing, and a work bar supports one at the front. These served to raise or lower sail or haul up the anchor. The bow is carved with foliage, scrolls and the name. A bowsprit extends beyond the bow, and there are chain plates for rigging in three channels on both sides.
The minutes of the Board of the Insurance Company of North America (INA) indicate that on 7 October 1851, the INA President was authorized to purchase the model for $50 from F. W. Hubbell, Esq. This model was used in the INA office or in court cases to indicate where insurance claim-related damage occurred, as in a collision with another vessel or a grounding. There were several three-masted ships named Kate in the Lloyd’s Register of Shipping for the period, and it is not known which one this model represents.
Currently not on view
Object Name
ship model
date made
ca 1850
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
overall: 33 in x 64 1/2 in x 14 in; 83.82 cm x 163.83 cm x 35.56 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
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Work and Industry: Maritime
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection
Additional Media

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