Captain Kidd in New York Harbor
Where are the people standing in this painting? Notice the ropes and pulleys. What event is happening at this moment? What is the mood Ferris is conveying with his use of colors and light? Notice the different faces and their expressions. How do you suppose each person feels at this moment in time?
What do you see in this painting that is similar to his painting, The First Thanksgiving?
Captain Kidd is the man in red. Look at how he is dressed. Look at how he is behaving. What do you suppose his personality is like?
Picture Study Game
Examine the picture very carefully with a family or friend. Both of you should choose something to count. You could choose any thing small or big. After you have chosen your item to count and have examined the picture very carefully, perhaps counting different items, take the picture away and ask your friend or family member how many they counted of your item. They will ask the same of you. Were either of you close? Did you choose the same item?
History of this Painting
Captain Kidd was a wealthy merchant from New York. He was commissioned by the King of England to become a privateer to deal with the problem of pirates. This was during the “Golden Age of Pirating” when merchant ships would often lose all their goods and the ship itself to pirates. Captain Kidd made the mistake of hiring mostly pirates or former pirates for his crew. After a year of not spotting any pirate ships to plunder, the crew decided to plunder any ship they saw—whether friend or foe. The question remains, “Did Captain Kidd turn pirate willingly or was he forced by his pirate crew?” He insisted he was innocent. But he was sent to the gallows for piracy.