Cutty Sark was built to be
the fastest clipper on the China tea route
and was launched in 1869. She was recorded to have reached speeds
of 17 and a half knots, her best day's run is recorded at 363 miles,
averaging 15 knots, and on one occasion she sailed 2,164 miles
in six days and on another 3,457 in eleven days.
She worked the China tea routes from 1870 until 1877, then for
the next five years she carried general cargo. In 1883 she began
the Australian wool trade, and it was on this hard route that she
proved she was the fastest ship of her time, with a passage from
Newcastle in New South Wales to Deal in Kent in only 82 days.
In 1895, she was sold to the Portuguese and 27 years later was
purchased, returning again to the British flag.
In June 1957 she was
formally opened to the public.
Cutty Sark web site