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Yesterday’s post requires a complement, so here it is.  The flight out was less turbulent but equally rewarding for folks looking out the window.  Behold the Tappan Zee.  This stretch of the river–from Piermont “pier” (created by the Erie RR) on the west side of the Hudson to Croton Point on the east and a little margin on either side represents approximately 10 statute miles, by my estimate.  Rockland Lake,  directly across the river from Croton Point and usually obscured by Hook Mountain just south of Haverstraw, can clearly be seen here.

Here’s the next stretch of river from Croton Point north and almost to Poughkeepsie.  That’s about 40 statute miles, as the crow flies.  By slow boat, that’s the better part of a winter’s day.  Note the long skinny reservoir,  DeForest Lake, at the 4 o’clock point of the photo.

From my seat on the starboard side, I was hoping for a glimpse of Lake Ontario, but this is way beyond my hopes:  despite the clouds, a clear view of the 27-mile Welland Canal from Port Colbourne on Lake Erie below to Port Weller on Lake Ontario above.

Last summer we exited here, near the MRC scrapyard at Port Colbourne just after 1600 after having entered the Welland Canal

here at Port Weller, just before 0900 that day . . . so the aerial above represents a day’s traverse through the Welland locks, with no delays.

By this time, I was starting to think the pilot of this aircraft must have wanted to be credited on this blog, for as we headed into Detroit airport, he gave me this final treat:  a view of the 740′  Algoma Harvester upbound through the cutoff leaving marshy Walpole Island to starboard and the more substantial Seaway Island, ON to its port. The natural flow of the St Clair River–and the international border– is along the far side of Seaway and Miller, MI.

My week away involved another flight, a long drive, and then the flight with my camera–not my phone.  Since I’m on an aerial fling, I’ll share some of those tomorrow.  Below is a sample, for you to savor if you want to guess my destination.

 

 

This glossy is not great in itself, but it’s in color and is time stamped, which makes it fantastic.

Here are more of these great photos.  I’m not sure what the ship below is, but the others

are Eugene P. Thomas,

Lebanon, built 1907 and scrapped 1967 . . .

and Diamond Alkali, 1917 to ??

Now this person looks like he had a clear vision and a firm hand on that tiller.

 

Many thanks to Harley R for sending these photos along.  And let’s hope this is a rejuvenating year for the old faded red tug in Lyons.

On a weekend with the theme of rebirth and such, how can Grouper not come up.  She certainly needs someone with a clear vision to hold a steady hand on the tiller…

I took these photos about two months ago, and winter looked like it’d hold everything in place forever then,

 

Here she was hibernating on the Great Lakes several decades ago …

 

But go back even farther . . . she had an illustrious past working with classic vessels . . .

that she outlived.  Click here for a 9-minute video that starts on SS South American’s last day of service in October 1967.

 

What a smart boat!  Triage catches up with everything eventually, but for for the 1912 boat originally called Gary, it’s not time yet, I hope.

Thanks to Harley R for the vintage photos.  There are more to come.

With apologies all around . ..  I am tardy in posting some of the photos I enjoy getting from you all readers. Tardiness . . . my only argument is that I am very busy with projects that will come out at some point.

Like this one that Ted M sent in response to my Turmoil post some weeks ago.  Jason Reinauer is towing Turmoil–an older iteration– astern.  I believe I saw Acadian Freedom in Chelsea last year, but don’t have a photo to prove it.  Here’s what I did put up from that reconnoitre.

And thanks to Jed, here’s Pearl Coast, taken recently, and

photo 4 MARCH 2017

Pati R Moran, taken not so recently.

photo date 16 OCT 2008

I once had photos of the green boat below and below, but I think I deleted them out of frustration of NOT being able to determine its history.  It stood here in the Brooklyn Navy Yard for a while, but scuttlebutt is that it has been scrapped. These next four photos come thanks to Paul Strubeck, busy with projects of his own.

Can anyone fill in any of the blanks as related to this green boat?

Paul also made a trip around part of Lake Michigan recently and took these photos in Green Bay–GL Texas and North Dakota

and below the bow of Stewart J. Cort, my guess is Minnesota and Oklahoma.  The GL tugs are really amazing, with combined thousands of years of work.  As to Cort, she’s back at work, bow that the Great Lakes has reawakened.

 

The Maraki crew is underway again also, in the Bahamas, but before leaving panther land, which generated these and these unusual photos, they got these photos of Rikki S and

Jane.

 

Thanks again to Ted, Jed, Paul, and the Maraki crew for these photos.  how does the French saying . . . (mien vast hard due jambs.   eh?)   Wow, that’s what autocorrect did with my foreign language.  I’ll try again:  Mieux vaut tard que jamais.

Many thanks to Ken Deeley for sending along these photos of the port of Oswego in 1890.  I’ll take the panorama below and divide it into three parts, left to right.

oswego-panorama

Yachts shown gathered below in Oswego for an event of the Lake Yachts Racing Association are (l to r) Oriole, Bison, Lotus, Lolantha, Yama*, Merle, Maud B, (unknown identified launch), Vreda*,

left

Nadia*, Cinderella, Loona, Gen. Garfield, Aileen*, Samoa,

Version 2

Nancy, Bennett, Erma, Berve II, Kelpie*, and Alert.

Version 3

* (from Royal Hamilton Yacht Club)

Ken writes:  “In 1884 Canadian and American yacht clubs on Lake Ontario formed a yacht racing association that consisted of four Canadian and American clubs.

They held what was called cruise circuit regattas and in 1890 Oswego was their destination, where my photo comes from  some unknown photographer who  took the assembled fleet American and Canadian assembled in the outer harbour  of Oswego.  The photo is about 14 inches long 4.5 high from a glass plate. The amazing thing is across the top of the page was glued diagonally the name of every yacht with the exception of the stern of the tug in the lower left.  HA, HA, you tug enthusiasts [are out of ] luck again unless you could name it for me.

The list of yachts has enabled me to name a lot of sailing yachts from other photographic  collections around the Great Lakes.   The American clubs were Oswego, Rochester, Buffalo, Crescent, and Sodus Bay.  Some of these clubs were not members of the LYRA but their yachts  raced anyway. Canadian  clubs were Royal Canadian, Kingston, Royal Hamilton, Queen City, and Toronto Yacht Club.”

The tugboat whose stern is shown above is likely Charley Ferris, built 1884 at the Goble Shipyard in Oswego and (?) abandoned in Duluth in 1932.

For more photos from the same collection, click here.

cferris

And finally, there was once a lighthouse, dismantled in 1932,  in the inner harbor of Oswego.   This photo would have been taken from the high ground over near Fort Oswego looking southwest.

1900-oswego-harbour-entrance

For previous tugster posts featuring Oswego, click here, here and here.  There are others also if you type Oswego into the search window on the left side of the blog.

For more 1890s history of LYRA clubs, click here.

 

A news story I read this morning prompts this continuing of the critters series.  I link to the story at the end of this post.  All the following photos I’ve taken since September, and filed away until I feel there’s a story.   Let’s start here in a New Jersey marsh creek,

cr4

go to the North Fork,

cr3

the KVK,

cr2

more of the KVK,

cr1

still more there,

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and finally to the freshwater in the Erie Canal.

cr99

 

cr99b

 

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So here’s the story about a laker captain and his floating forests  . . . .  Click here for more info on part of Pittsburgh Steamship Division fleet.

All critter photos by Will Van Dorp.

. . . and in case you’re rummaging through your change drawer for some cash to buy something for yourself or someone else special, here are some ideas.  Buy a raffle ticket for an opportunity next summer to ride an Interlake Steamship vessel on the Great Lakes . . .  Here’s a post I did a few months back on the classic Interlake Oberstar.   And from International Shipmasters’:  The funds from sales keep our lodge financially secure and we donate every year to other various maritime related non-profits. Sea Cadets, Whistles on the Water, and Shipmaster Grand Lodge Scholarship Fund.  Our own scholarship fund is endowed and gives 3 scholarship awards each year of $500 to each, 1 Canadian, 1 US, 1 hawse piper.   Click on the image below for information on purchasing a raffle ticket.  I have mine . . . and I imagine these would make a great gift for lots of folks you want to give a gift to.

lotterytix

If you win and need something to do when you’re not just mesmerized by Great Lakes scenery, here are some books to consider.  Of course, you can read them any time . . . real books, not device books. Here’s what the Icelanders say about giving books.

bks

Here are some of the books I’ve read this past year.  I’d recommend all of them.

bks1

The Big Book of Real Boats and Ships was an impulse buy after someone mentioned it on FB.  George J. Zaffo did a whole series of these books back in the 1950s and 1960s.  Here’s more on his and similar books. What makes it interesting for me is that real means real;  here’s the info on C. Hayward Meseck, the vessel in the illustration below.

bks2

Also from Zaffo, here’s info on the tug in the foreground below, Barbara Moran (1948), scuttled in 1990 and sits upright about 70′ below the surface. 

bks2b

This past year I’ve met lots of folks whom I’ve encouraged to write their stories or have someone else write them.  Bob Mattsson did that a few years ago, and I finally read it this year.

bks4

Here’s part of page 1.

bks3b

Up River is another one I read this year, one that helps you see what you can’t see from the river.  The cover photo below shows Tomkins Cove Quarry, one of many quarries whose scale you get no sense from the river.  Recently on a trip from NYC to Waterford on the river with some folks who had never done the trip, I brought this along and noticed they paged through during the entire trip as a way to “see” what they otherwise couldn’t.  Thanks to Capt. Thalassic for introducing me to this book.  You can “page” through the entire book here!

bks3

All those books . . . this time of year, it all reminds me of a post I did here 10 years ago about the circumstances around the first Christmas presents I ever got .  .  .

 

By the time you read this, I should already be in Quebec, and once we get under way, we’ll reverse the trip I began six weeks ago in NYC’s sixth boro here. From Quebec City we travel up the Saint Lawrence, up as in upstream.  The waterway is truly beautiful, and although I have defined tasks on the ship, I get to spend a lot of time watching .

gl1

 

gl2

 

gl3

 

gl4

The photo below I took from the NE corner of Lake Ontario looking toward the port of Oswego.

gl5

From the Lake, we cut in at Oswego via the Canal, bypass all the fishing, and

gv1

make our way via the grand canal back to saltwater.

gv2

Here’s the 1899 Buffalo-built steam tug Geo E. Lattimer (loa 59′ x 16′ x 4.5′) exiting the low side of Lock 17.

gv3

Given the pain of finding enough of a signal to post, I can’t tell you when and what you’ll see next.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, including the photos of photos from Canal signage.

I’ve done so many Grouper posts over the years that I should  recap.  The photos you see below show a tugboat called Green Bay, which was built in Cleveland OH in 1912 as Gary.    Here are the subsequent renamings of Gary:  Green Bay 1934, Oneida 1981, Iroquois 1987, Alaska 1990, and finally Grouper 1998.  Today, Grouper languishes in the Erie Canal near Lock E-28A, a good 325 miles from the sixth boro.   Many folks would love to see it resurrect with the name Grouper or some other one.

I’ve gotten lots of email about Grouper, but I really like messages like this one I got last weekend from Jeff Gylland:

“I rode Grouper as a kid all the time.  My Grandfather, Lester Gamble,  was the captain of then tug Green Bay out of Manitowoc, WI.  Have many memories of strong coffee and even stronger language.  The boat was converted from coal to diesel in the 1950s.  I have many pictures if you are interested.  Would love to come to Lyons with 50 gallons of paint and put the old Green, White and Red in the correct places.”

So I wrote Jeff, told him what I knew, and a bit later got another email, this one from Jeff’s aunt, Deborah Wiegand:

“I see my nephew Jeff contacted you and already sent some of our photos.  I have a collection ( maybe 20+) of professionally taken photos of the Green Bay taken during the years 1953-69 when my dad Lester R. Gamble was her captain.

The family had thought the tug had been scrapped until a historical blog based in Manitowoc came up with the information on her decline and current situation and brought it to my attention. It is heart-breaking to us.  Both Jeff and I regularly rode along with Dad on tows and have many stories & good memories to share of her.  Please let us know how we can help. Don’t hesitate to call me is you want to chat.”
grpcrew
I believe City of Midland 41, below, was converted into a barge which began operating as Pere Marquette 41 in 1998.  Ah, the circle of life.
grp4

grp1

Here Green Bay moves the Great Lakes steamer SS South American, built 1913, which some readers may recall seeing in the Delaware River as late as 1992.

grp2

Edward L. Ryerson is a beautiful bulk carrier, launched in 1960,  still operating on the Great Lakes.

grp3

Note the ice on the harbor here.

gr1winter

Here Green Bay fights a fire in 1952.

green-bay-fire-fighting-1952-soo-line-fir

Many thanks to Deborah and Jeff for these fabulous photos.  It is my hope that Green Bay, Grouper, et al  .  . is brought out of its stupor in Lyons and finds yet another life.

 

July 13 saw my first sighting of this intrepid anachronism, here juxtaposed with a 21st century realm of Logi.

drk1

She was then probing the inland seas, seeing how far she could voyage, possibly looking for a passage to the Mississippi and the Gulf via Lake Michigan.  OK, indulge me on that speculation.

drk2

 

drk3

Our paths next crossed on September 1, as she made her way through the Erie Canal,

drk91a

with all the modifications that entailed and the use of sunstones to

drk91b

avoid getting lost in the meandering rivers.

drk91c

And late last week, Bjoern Kils of the New York Media Boat got this fabulous shot of her scoping out the sixth boro before

mb

she slipped into a Manhattan cove for a spell.

drk918a

 

I missed the display in the Winter Garden and hope I can get there again before the boat moves on.

draken

Many thanks to Bjoern for use of that photo. For more of Bjoern’s photos, click here.  All others by Will Van Dorp.  And following up on some info from Conrad Milster, here’s a video on a Viking ship that traveled to Chicago in 1893.  Yes, 1893!!   And the crossing from Bergen NO to New Haven CT with Captain Magnus Andersen and 11 crew took 30 days.  Then the vessel, dubbed Viking, traveled up the Hudson and through the pre-Barge Canal on its way to Chicago with stops in Albany, Syracuse, Rochester, and Cleveland.  The vessel is still there in Geneva IL.  Here’s another video on the ship.

To pick up on the NY canals’ connection, as we approach the bicentennial of the start of the Erie Canal, it would be great to seek out and archive any photos–still languishing in local photo troves–of the 1893 passage there of Viking, as well as of any other outstanding vessels that have traversed the Canal throughout its history.

And since my focus these days is on chrononauts, there is this fleet that comes through the sixth boro every few years.  I caught up with them in Newburgh in 2012 and Oswego in 2014.

 

 

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Graves of Arthur Kill

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

Seth Tane American Painting

Read my Iraq Hostage memoir online.

My Babylonian Captivity

Reflections of an American hostage in Iraq, 20 years later.

Tale of Two Marlins

Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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