The blue hulls of this speedy catamaran may appear foamy white as it shuttles between Sandy Hook and Manhattan.

And the crew in this blue hull is kindly referred to as “harbor charlie” by folk I know. This label comes with utmost respect. Thanks to Gabe, I recently located this fabulous website devoted to all the history and lore of NYPD’s harbor unit. For example, in what year did the harbor unit retire its last steam-powered vessel? When was the harbor unit founded and for what mission? Answers below, but  enjoy the “Bent Wheel” website, “wheel” as in prop.

Answers: The last steamer retired in 1926. The unit was created in 1858 to combat harbor pirates!  Much more info and foto essays in the Bent Wheel site.

Photos, WVD.