You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘ferry Binghamton’ tag.

What attracted my attention was the gull, shrieking with anger.  Click here (and follow) to see all the previous posts I’ve done about this once-proud ferry.

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“How could you allow this prolonged death?”  said the gull.

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And as much evidence as you may have that I’m fascinated by ruins, I’m with the gull on this one.

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It’s painful to watch this agony, especially as the sequence of links following from the first one above shows how spectacular this one once was.

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Get it over already.

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I’ve taken the following photos from the following books, which I own.  If you’re interested in the sixth boro past, you should own them too.

Thomas R. Flagg  . . . New York Harbor Railroads, vol 2

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Here was the interior before it was converted to a restaurant.

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And the engine room.

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Raymond J. Baxter and Arthur G. Adams . . . Railroad Ferries of the Hudson

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The two books I cite are certainly a worthwhile purchase for anyone who looks at today’s sixth boro watersides and imagines the past.

Here was the first post by this title.  I’ve been back for a few days, but it’s been hard to transition from my jaunt in Utah areas of wilderness back to the densely settled areas in and around the sixth boro of NYC.  I didn’t take the foto below of Binghamton, but her time is clearly running out.  If you notice human/mechanical demolition (as opposed to destruction by natural erosion . . . as in the desert) happening, please get in touch or  send me fotos? This was taken Friday during the rain by Allan and Sally, whose sweet vessel you’ll see later.   I did three posts early October 2011 about Binghamton, then ravaged by Hurricane Irene.

I caught this foto of Miller Boys yesterday when it seemed the winds were blowing more rain in.

Ellen McAllister was moving this “unmarked” McAllister tug (anyone recognize it?) around the yard. Info follows, thanks to Birk Thomas.  That’s Cashman’s Lynx in the background.

Also in Mariner’s Harbor, it’s Mark McAllister, not typically a sixth boro boat.

And slightly west, lined up from left to right are Barents Sea, Yankee, NaHoku, and Taurus.

Potomac stands off with Lower Manhattan in the background after an assist.

Over in North Cove, expedition yacht Copasetic costs more than twice any of the tugs appearing in this post; that bow is inspired by much larger ships.

And finally, my host vessel for a jaunt and great conversation . . .   the Lord Nelson Victory tug Sally W, operated by

Allan and Sally, who’ve kept this blog during their recent jaunt up to Ottawa.  By the way, has anyone seen Chase, the long distance padleboarder?

Binghamton fotos by Sally.  All others by Will Van Dorp.

In case you were not able (like me) to identify the tug alongside Ellen McAllister, it’s none other than Winslow C. Kelsey.

I gather from this article sent along by Jim McCrea that the death knell has rung for ferry Binghamton.  See my posts here, here, and here.  Alas, and all while being listed on the NJ and US Register of Historic Places . . . so much for that.    Thanks, Jim.

An end comes for everything.  Of course, false ends can be confusing.  When Binghamton reached the end of its ferry life, she turned night spot.  Here’s a 1926 Buick turned locomotive to run mail and passengers up into the mountains.

locomotive to run mail and passengers up into the mountains

along the Utah/Colorado border.

Note the people off to the left.  Water, wind, and time scour away softer parts, making strange shapes with the more resistant, and  scouring

the rest.  That’s the Colorado in the distance looking

to continue its sculpting of the Canyonlands into buttes and mesas.

Click here on more of the surviving galloping geese.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Some of you asked what became of the faux sidewheeler that had been beside Binghamton.  Here’s a foto I took in June.  In July it was still this way.

Behold the hideousness of its facade.

And the dirty secret that it had not only a faux but also a single sidewheel.    Well, call this . . . going, going . . .

Gone.  The “deckhouse” of Neo-Binghamton is no more, as evident from this foto taken on October 4.  It was removed some time since early August.

Note the row of clerestory windows above the coverings on the top deck of the real Binghamton.  They serve to backlight

the beautiful yellow-red stained glass on both sides of the saloon.

My prediction is that with this Newport News vessel . . . there will come no miracle nor will nature nibble away at her for years.

A large mechanical monster will devour her, leaving only memories and

the above ovoid on some old google maps and lots of shoreside constructs with (to newcomers) an implusible Binghamton in the name:  Binghamton Raquetball, Binghaton Deli, Binghamton Plaza, Binghamton Estates . . . .

Fotos by Will Van Dorp, and satellite images from googlemaps.

No phantasmagoria today, just the cold hard facts, or in this case . . . the wet, crumbling ones:  exploring Binghamton felt like visiting a hospice.   Hopes to see what remained in the engine room were dashed halfway down the companionway below the main deck.  Nasty cafe au lait post-Irene river water, at least five feet of it at this point, barred the way.  It didn’t seem a heathy or productive place to snorkel.

The southernmost wheelhouse–here with a view of a southbound Vane unit in front of Manhattan–is stripped and relegated to attic status.

In this section of the menu, I love the last sentence of the fifth paragraph:  “She took the population of the eastern United States eight times around the world,” and she did so without leaving that section of the river between Barclay Street pier (now no more) and Hoboken.  Fotos of Binghamton at work can be found in Railroad Ferries of the Hudson: and stories of a deckhand by Baxter and Adams, which I highly recommend.

The craziness of the internet where nothing dies is illustrated by this restaurant review of Binghamton.  Wonder what would happen if you called that number to make a reservation.

I tried to take this foto so as to give the illusion of being on a vessel about to depart for Manhattan.

The wheelhouse at the north end is equally stripped although

the joinery–alluding to wooden wheel spoke days– dazzles.  Imagine looking up at this in your workspace, sans paint chips of course.  Let your fancy add braided cords leading to steam whistles.

Atop the wheelhouses are these lanterns, and

a running light system.

From the wheelhouses, here is the view of passenger and vehicle ingress and egress.  I love the folding gates, and although I know they have a technical

name I’ve heard, I can’t recall it.  (Note:  thanks to Les, pantograph gates, they are.)

Shoreside south end of the the ferry shows greatest recent damage to the deck;  in fact, as tide flooded, the river poured in here.

Like all crumblings and ruins, here is a depressing metaphor of mortality and transience.  Oh to have a jolly drink here, a meal with trimmings and revelry, a time spent

in good company, a celebration that takes you to the heights.

On the floor of the main deck . . . lay this 3′ x 4′ foto of an unidentified happy couple from maybe not even that long ago who chose this vehicle to take them to “that other side . . ,”   a foto soon to be obliterated by . . . the river and time.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who needs to get to work now to hold back melancholy.

I walk into this bar . . . on the river across from Manhattan.  It’s to be a day of revelry with the veiled but elegant woman on my arm.  I don’t know her myself, but this happens to be that kind of day.

The ceiling is wood and festooned with pine boughs, the finest plastic to be sure, but I fancy greenery of any carbon form.  The refined joinery is so palpable . . . I feel light-headed . .  a good thing because the wine

selection must be in the cellar, where daylight cannot destroy the rare vintage, maybe.

The liquors, too, remain hidden.  While waiting for a waiter or maitre’d, we

could look at the menu.

Then I see a man at the far end of the bar.  He sees the beveiled one and I, and comes over.

(Hear the quoted section with a French accent)  “Monsieur et madame . . . we are currently hoping to refurbish our establishment.  Maybe I can

find a table with a view of the bridge, the George Washington Bridge.

 By the way, madame et monsieur, this is a somewhat unusual restaurant . . .  may I ask what I might call you?  William, ok . . . and Irene.  Irene?!”

At this very moment, my lunch partner begins to remove her veil.  Then she stands and walks toward the river side of the restaurant.

The waiter, by now trembling, shouts, “Madame . . . do not go through that door!  Stop!

Really no! no! You must leave.  Haven’t you done enough damage already!

I recognize you now . . . a month ago you came through here and blew out

the river side of the boat!  The main deck wall has come off its support and the saloon deck has sagged.  The vessel no longer floats.  And we are doomed, as she is.”

Then the phantasmagoria dissipated.  I was on ferry Binghamton in its last days, its 105-year-old structure gored by Irene.    More fotos tomorrow.

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Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

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