The Boston was a brigantine, which in the industry is defined as a two-masted square-rigged vessel. This drawing shows us exactly what that means.
The last true brigantine in the world still sailing, is the Eye of the Wind. You can see a collection of videos of the ship in action here.
It now operates as a charter vessel for passengers to enjoy a hands-on vacation/education experience. In some of the videos you can see how immensely labor-intensive sailing such a vessel could be with all of its complicated rigging, the heights scaled and the constant maintenance involved. Along with giving a vivid picture of the sailing ship itself, some of the videos are almost comical in the sense of showing us exactly what it was NOT like on this voyage.... no clean functioning toilets or gleaming state-of-the-art galley facilities... no fancy navigation electronics and no one serving hors d'oeuvres on the deck at sunset! But other than that it is the last glimpse we have of this particular kind of ship and it gives us a vivid picture of what it might have been like for John R Jewitt.
The brigantine was larger than a sloop, which was generally the more popular ship design of the time, but the brigantine could handle more cargo and was more easily maneuvered even with the added weight. This design was the result of advancements in the intensely competitve technology that enabled faster more efficient transportation of goods around the world, and meant untold wealth for those who achieved success. Not unlike the entrepreneurs of today's tech industry, these adventurers were disrupting the merchants of the slow Old World and creating new, and daring ways to "push the envelope," bypassing the old limitations in order to make everything in the world more quickly and easily connected. Then as today, there were many benefits and many consequences to follow.
It is interesting that this model of ship with its utility, along with speed and flexibility, was popular with both the merchants and pirates of the day... which begs the question: was there a difference? We will have to save that debate for some other time should we ever get around to discusssing the effects of the 19th century merchant trade industry on the environment and indigeneous populations -- among other things... but let's not put a moralistic damper on the excitement of this particular moment in time when indeed for John R. Jewitt and his fellow voyagers to the New World, everything seemed possible.
Links to Related Sites
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
Rod Collins - Lincolnshire Thro' History, Life, Lens and Words
The Old Palace Lincoln - Elegant Bed and Breakfast
National Portrait Gallery - London
College of Arms
The Jewett Family of America
History and Geneaology of the Jewitts of America
Marvinas Bay Lodge
First Peoples of Canada