"The schooner Puritan successfully defended the America's Cup against the challenger Genesta in 1885. Originally a sloop, she was built by Edward Burgess for a Boston syndicate headed by General Paine and J. Malcolm Forbes and was lengthened in 1891." (R.B. Grassby, Ship, Sea and Sky: The Marine Art of James Edward Buttersworth, New York, 1994, p. 103) The present work most likely depicts a trial race for the America's Cup. Buttersworth has rendered the hull of 'Puritan' parallel to the horizon, underscoring the sense of movement in the scene as the sloop swiftly moves through the crested waves. The artist has further portrayed a schooner and other crafts in the background, painted with exquisite detail, that contribute an overall sense of depth and balance to the scene.