The focus of this painting is not these large land holdings, however, it’s the small sloop and its occupants sailing up the Port Tobacco River at dusk. A historic event is occurring at Brent’s Landing. On the evening of July 10, 1790, a sloop, captained by a Captain Gibson, out of Norfolk, Virginia arrived off shore. Too late to land, they hailed a nearby fisherman and asked him to carry messages Mr. Brent and Mr. Matthews announcing their arrival. Finally, a trip long years in planning and requiring three months at sea was complete.
In this painting, Mother Bernadina Matthews in the straw hat, together with Mother Clare Joseph Dickenson, Sister Mary Aloysia (Ann Teresa Matthews), Sister Mary Eleanora (Susanna Matthews) and Father Charles Neale are shown lining the portside of the vessel looking toward the shore. Brent’s Landing is still a speck against the distant trees. It would be October before these Carmelites had their first home in America, but they were on they on the soils of Port Tobacco where everyone except Mother Clare Joseph had been born. Oil on canvas 24x48 inches