I agree, fascinating!
Could someone with more knowledge of these things give a further explanation.
To me it seems that she may be entering harbour against the tide, looks like some tidal activity off the wharf, and may be going to berth alongside the wharf to the right.
JB , to the right is the breakwater , if you view my pictures , the lay out of the entrance can be viewed , i think the leader may have been a safety guide made fast to the other side of the entrance ,as there was no harbour tug to assist a sailing vessel .
It's strange, those sails appear to be pulling well, she has a line ahead, and yet she has little or no bow wave or wake. My guess is that she has gone aground at the entrance, they have rigged a shore line to try to pull her over the bar, and set the sails to heel her to reduce her draft.
If she does come free, they will have to let fly the sails mighty quick to prevent her from sailing up Burghead harbour at a rate of knots!
The mizzen is no longer set, the mainsail, as the natural next one, is coming in. The jibs are curved, but they always are, as the stays they are set on just can't be pulled that tight, the topsails are just filling - and the sea has not enough agitation to indicate it is blowing with much force. A bow wave differs in size according to whether the ship scends or pitches. Maybe the theory of her being aground is correct, I don't see the need for that explanation - I'd expect the timber laden vessel to use the sails as long as possible, and the crew well able to get the rest off her pretty fast.
Just my ha'penny's worth.
If it is as late as 1938 she should be identifiable...
For what it might be worth, I would agree with the "on the bottom" theory. It would seem, also, that wind and tide are from approximately the same direction. Whether that would mean flood or ebb at Burghead, I do not know.