From the preface of "Famous Clyde Yachts":
For many years now Clyde Yachts and Clyde Yachting have been world-famous, yet, somewhat strange to relate, comparatively few books, dealing with the subject, have been written, and Famous Clyde Yachts is the outcome of a desire, on the part of the Publishers, to add a pleasant volume to the number. In it an attempt has been made, by means of picture and story, to present to the reader, in convenient and attractive form, a few of the salient features in the history of some of the more notable yachts of recent days, connected in one way or another with the Clyde.
It will be seen that (for the most part) the period dealt with is that lying between the beginning of 1880 and the end of 1887. Four boats built prior to 1880 have been given a place in our book – namely the "Cyprus," "Madge," "Neva," and "Viril" – because they were amongst the most notable of the boasts which ushered in the type so popular in after years.
The years traversed by Famous Clyde Yachts have been witness to a most gratifying increase of yachting on the Clyde — an increase which would seem to indicate a wider distribution of wealth and a laudable desire to spend a portion of it on a worth pastime. These years have been further rendered noteworthy by the gallant (though unsuccessful) attempts of the "Genesta," "Galatea," and "Thistle" to win the America Cup, and by the great and ever increasing popularity of the steam yacht. Although our book deals solely with "white wings," we may be allowed to make some allusion to the steam yacht, which now occupies such a conspicuous place in our pleasure navy.
In these days, when "time is money," more essentially than ever it was, it is perhaps only natural that men should wish to make their pleasures subservient to their business arrangements, and undoubtedly the steam yacht lends itself more readily to the furtherance of the desideratum than the sailing vessel possibly can, consequently we are likely to see the goodly fleet of steam yachts, which the Clyde boasts at present, augmented from year to year. At the same time we hope the love of yachting will always be strong enough, and the tastes of the yachtsmen varied enough, to keep the Clyde well found in both classes of boats.
It will be seen that no attempt whatever has been made to impart anything of a technical or scientific character to the book, the aim having been rather to make it a pleasant repository of a little of that which has contributed to make the yachting of the last few years so interesting.
An earnest endeavour has been made to have the work as accurate as possible, and in this connection we desire to tender our thanks to many owners of yachts, and other gentlemen skilled in yachting matters, for kindkly looking over proof sheets, and to express our indebtedness to many books and journals, most of which are named in the text.
The artist also desires to express his thanks to several gentlemen for kindly assisting him in his part of the work.
In conclusion, the book is sent forth accompanied by the sincere hope that it may be found a not altogether unworthy memorial of a stirring era in the history of a pastime which is mainly, life-giving, pure, and of good report.