By: Bobb Tomsett
The Chesapeake Bay pilot boat schooner, designed to meet local needs in about 1730, gradually developed into a national and international type that was uniquely fast and weatherly, and may be considered the most original and important design developed during the last age of commercial sail. French naval authorities in 1812 appointed Jean Baptiste Marestier to design the French Navy's La Gazelle class of schooners after such a pilot boat; hence the existence of the plans from which this model was created. The model's hull is constructed from agba, and has individual sycamore deck planking. It is trimmed with some pear wood and its masts and spars are of ramin wood. Authentically rigged with miniature rope-walk twisted threads to proper diameters. It is mounted on brass rods and set onto a mirrored base surrounded by a lightly stained mahogany base; glazed cover trimmed in brass.