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Photo from Nate Lopez.  Name that tug?  Here are some previous photos by Nate.


Technically Ellsea is a freight ship.  The location for the next set of photos is the Acushnet River between New Bedford (background) and Fairhaven, where I spent the past week mostly incommunicado.  That’s the Palmers Island Light.  New Bedford, former whaling port and more and now the US top fish port?




I don’t know the name of this vessel . . . might it be R. Marcel Roy?


Here’s a profile shot.  Beyond her you see a portion of Tucker Roy’s tug named by subtraction as Co.


And here, as seen from the Route 6 Bridge, it’s those two along with another mystery tug, which might be Pleon?


Here, with interesting stern fendering, it’s Sea Fuels Marine’s Emma Nicole.


Here’s a close up of the unusual fendering, and


a clue to previous ownership.


Now, in keeping with the colors of the unconfirmed Pleon above, let’s move way down east to Belfast, where I’ve also touched base recently.  It’s Capt. Mackintire.



And rounding out this set, here’s the identification of Nate’s photo above, it’s Buckley McAllister fueling in New Bedford.


I’m happy to be home . . . in time for the tugboat race tomorrow.   Don’t be late because the race runs at 10 . . .  with a parade before that.  Be there by 9.   I’ll be there.



Belfast probably has fewer people than does my block in Queens, but it jam packed with character.  In fact, I wanted to move there after spending a single weekend there two years ago.  Here and here are some posts I did from there.

Many thanks to Tom Mann for these photos, taken in July 2015. Notable among vessels in port, the exquisite Cangarda.  Here’s a post I did on it five years ago. Click here for the truly unique Cangarda, built in 1901 and almost lost several times.


This is their 400-ton crane.


From l. to r., it’s Fournier Tractor and Taurus.  In case you didn’t click on all the links above, click here to see a photo I took of the Fournier Tractor a few years back, as well as a warning sign in case anyone thinks about usurping a parking spot in front of the Fournier Towing and Ship Service office.



Notice that the blue here matches the blue on the tug below, which happens to be the 1944 Capt. Mackintire of Eastport Port Authority.


I’m not sure who the current owner of Fort Point is.  She’s the 1970 YTB-809.


Cape Race is a frequent fixture of Atlantic Basin in Brooklyn.  Does anyone know what’s current with Wanderbird, which came into Long Island Sound about two weeks ago.  Wanderbird is a similar repurposed North Sea trawler . . . as an expedition yacht.


I can’t sign off without another photo of the steam yacht Cangarda, built at Pusey & Jones in 1901, originally for a lumber magnate in Manistee, Michigan, named Charles J. Canfield.


Again, many thanks to Tom Mann for these photos.


Summertime . . . and today I’m lazy after finishing two projects that’ve been transfixing me all month.

So how about some sail . . . in the evening, like Aquidneck,


Long Island built?

a moth . . .

a Fathead (?),


a classic catboat,


I’m wondering if Meow man has ever tagged one of these?

Aurora (1949) with tanbark sails,


Adirondack II,


launched 1999

The Blue Peter  . . . unfortunately AFTER she had dropped her parachute spinnaker.


and finally Black Watch . . . built in the Bronx and a veteran of World War Two.


Note the different materials of each mast.

I’ve been to the Narragansett Bay before, but I need to spend more time there in summer.

But first, I hear there’s some big sail coming to the sixth boro.  Last but not least, all photos by Will Van Dorp

On cold days, “picturing” warmer months helps stave off the cold . .  for a while.  But this post is about vessels with this name, one of which is a 1957 passenger vessel that has recently been chosen for some high-and-dry maintenance work.  Actually it’s called Mayflower II, which I’ve alluded to once in this 2010 post. Rick at Old Salt blog recently did a post about Mayflower II in which he refers to the illustrious captain of the vessel on her maiden voyage from Europe to the sixth boro.  Does anyone know whereabouts of photos of her in our fair harbor?  of the ticker tape parade?  But I digress.

Currently you’d have to go to Mystic–not Plimoth–to see this replica vessel.  See the haul out here.











The second photo here comes from Louise on tug Jaguar.  Thanks for photos 1 and 3–7 to Benjamin Moll, pictured on Louise’s photo and whose “photos and musings” you may follow here.  Photos 8 and 9 of Mayflower high and dry in Mystic should be credited to Norman Brouwer, whose most recent book is Steamboats on Long Island Sound, which I need to read soon.   The last photo, which I took in the Savannah River,  shows one of 23 other vessels–according to the USCG registry–named Mayflower.



The season comes to the east coast in late summer.  New York’s 2013 sixth boro race is 12 days away, but you can get tickets to watch it from a boat already by clicking here.  Be patient  . . . it may load slowly.

This is NOT a foto from NYC.  Can you guess where you’d see this original OSV design?  OSV here means “offshore (lobster) supplying vessel,”  which I confess are my first love in workboat design, dating from back when I lived in New Hampshire.  All fotos in this post come thanks to Birk Thomas, a force behind this site and its Facebook version, which generates a lot of pics  of workboats from all over.


If you guessed Portland, Maine . . . this is the pre-race lineup for the MS Harborfest.



I’m pretty sure this foto was taken from Andrew McAllister.



And it’s push-off time.



So in New York on September 1, whether you ride the boat or watch from the pier . . . I hope to see you there.


Although the September 1 race in NYC is the 21st annual in the current series, the races date back to before I was born.  See fotos of the vessels from the 1952 race here.  Back then, an international lifeboat race–rowers came from whatever cargo ships were in port at that time–was part of the festivities.

Again, many thanks to Birk Thomas for these fotos.  And if you do Facebook, check out tugboatinformation there.

Almost two years ago, Chris did this guest post about an experience he had sailing in the Mediterranean in this ride.  The vessel below, now threatened, was on the hook off Palma, Mallorca, in one of her last years of service.


On that same deployment, he caught this foto of SS France, speeding past his vessel toward the Straits of Gibraltar.


Here’s another of Chris’ fotos, Sac Badalona (see #113)  . . . at that time  not long to be afloat and intact.


Here’s Chris’ ride low and dry and cold in Boston Naval Shipyard’s Drydock 4, winter 1969-70.  What shrinks ASR-16 Tringa once accommodated Leviathan.


During that drydocking, Chris had a chance to get fotos along the Boston waterfront.  You can read the restaurant sign as Anthony’s Pier 4.  Can you identify the steamer and the schooner?  Answer follows . . .


This foto taken some time between December 1969 and March 1970 shows two tugs afloat and one sunk at the dock near Rowes Wharf in Boston . . . now a very different place.   Can anyone identify?  Chris has no clues other than the time and places info.   I’m grateful to Chris for sending along these scans, although both he and I will rely on some group-sourcing to know more about these vessels.   Enjoy.


Disintegrating in Noank in the 69-70 time frame, it’s the remains of once-four-masted schooner Alice L. Pendleton.


Moving south to New London, it’s W. H. Welch.


Also in New London . .  does that say Spaigo Carroll?


Also in New London . . . it’s ferry Martha’s Vineyard.


And this is the Thames River boneyard a,




and c.


And finally, identification on the vessels at Anthony’s Pier 4 . . . steamer Peter Stuyvesant (victim of the Blizzard of 1978) and –a real coup in terms on an identification by eastriver and his “new englander” shipmate”–it’s 1863 Alice S. Wentworth, who went victim to a storm in 1974.

Many thanks to Chris for sending along these fotos, which belong to him.

Looking at this set of fotos, words beginning with “w” came to mind.  Like wind-swept, an apt way to describe this land’s end called Halibut Point in Rockport, here looking toward Maine.  That’s “halibut” as in “haul about,” because as you sail round the point, you’ll encounter different winds.  The rockpile is quarried chunks never loaded onto to ships, never built into construction sites.


Wind again comes to mind in this assemblage of traditional and new-fangled means of harnessing it.  One is up, and two will follow. Schooners are Highlander Sea and Adventure.


Wavemaster is NOT the familiar name for the 47′ MLB like these, but it should be.


Wake . . . follows codzilla


OK . .  this one’s a stretch, but whenever I see a small RIB like this of the Massachusetts Environmental Police, I think sirens . . . not whistles, but then


there’s a Rupert, a 50′ RIB, and if the previous was whistles, then this is whistles and bells.   If anyone’s thinking to give tugster a gift for Christmas, this is tops on my wishlist.


Viking Starliner wandered through the sixth boro the other day, possibly in for some work, but then it headed south . . . Florida-bound?


And finally this, a winter-cold sunrise, taken a week ago with  a hint that December is not far off, a year winds down, waning hours of light.


And just apropos of absolutely nothing, had we had a few more hurricanes, we’d have gotten to hurricane William this year.

Three years ago I did posts about wooden vessels and names while in the greater Cape Ann area.  This time what struck me was the variety of vessels in this small but intensely important peninsula.  Essex Shipbuilding Museum is always “must stop there” . . . and make a donation if you wish.  Essex has fewer than 4000 people.   Treat yourself to beautiful lines fleshed out in old  . . .

and new like these.

Speak of random tugs, it’s YTL-438, built on City Island, NY,  in 1944, Nicholas T today.

I can’t hear the word “Gloucester” without thinking of fish and lobsters and other sea life.  Read what Capt Joey has to say about Western Venture, here with Osprey. Joey’s GMG does “citizen journalism” par excellence on many aspect of Gloucester life, and a more historically focused website on Gloucester industry can be found here.

Vessels old and

new–like these three midwater trawlers of Western Sea Fishing— line the piers when they’re not at sea.   It no secret that fishing brings risks:  a vessel I featured here three years ago–Plan B-sank earlier this year.

Small and newish like Cat Eyes or

or classic, versatile, and large like 1924 Highlander Sea (for sale)  and 1926 Adventure both Essex built . . .  they all lie in the few dozen acres of water in Gloucester’s Inner Harbor.   See Adventure‘ s site here and some fun fotos here.

Treats appear at every glance, near and far.

Can anyone tell me more about Traveler . .  and all her lives?  Here’s what I learned from Good Morning Gloucester:  follow the comments and you’ll learn that she was launched in “1942 by Cambridge Ship Builder, Inc. based in MD, for the US Army. She is 79.9 ft. long, was a rescue boat serving in WWII picking up downed fighter pilots and had full infirmary facilities aboard.”

More Gloucester tomorrow.  All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who realizes he should come back here more often.   And if you’ve never been to Cape Ann, sooner is better.

Actually this is Kristin 3, counting the mystery vessel post.  Let’s start in the wheelhouse, aka ship’s office, looking to port.  Notice the gauging equipment, sound-activated telephone, all the manuals.

Over on the starboard side below the controls, here’s a closeup of the pushbutton engine order telegraph, which corresponds to

this twin in the engine compartment, the engineer’s station looking forward.  The light down here is provided by portholes above.

Here’s a closeup of the starboard EMD 16-645-E2–if I recall–12-567

I’m guessing that Schoonmaker was a parts/service company?


Looking down/forward from the fiddley at port engine

After getting this foto of Kristin Poling just north of the Tappan Zee in May 2008, I wondered what I’d see through the portholes above the stern, and now

I know it’s a naturally-lit out-of-the-weather access area to the rudder machinery.

Note the folding joint on the mast.  What lies below these portholes is

the galley.  Again, the natural lighting is remarkable.    A note about these fotos . . . Kristin has been idle for several months now, and no attempt was made during this foto shoot to “spruce-up” any of the areas.

Large wooden door leads to the freezer, and the smaller door beside it  opens a defacto fridge.

Any guesses what lies beyond these portholes on the port side?

One of the crew’s quarters with sink, locker, and

bunk.  Is this color an off-white, yellowed with age, or was this “institutional buff”?

And these covered portholes on the forward port side of the “stern island” leads to

the engineer’s cabin.  The two recessed “bookshelves” are the interior of the portholes above.  I wonder the vintage of the desk and

(as seen from the portside porthole) the bunk with shelving beneath?    Excuse the blurry foto.

Corresponding portholes on the starboard side lead to the captain’s cabin.

I hope you enjoyed the tour of Kristin as much as I did.

A near-twin of KristinChester A. Poling–was my introduction to the name Poling, although it was another company.  I heard about Chester A. in the 1990s from a diver in Cape Ann, MA.  Like Kristin, Chester A. was launched in 1934 from the shipyard in Mariner’s Harbor.  Originally 251′, both were lengthened by a 30-foot midsection in 1956.   From this foto, it appears the bow bulwarks on Chester were less protected.  Click on the image to get to Auke Visser’s fabulous site, from which the foto is taken.  Take your pic here from a wealth of video by folks diving on Chester.

Again, many thanks to Ed Poling and Jim Ash for the opportunity to see/foto Kristin in her dotage.    Thanks to you all for reading and commenting.  Special thanks to Johannah for the info on all-welded construction article and to Sachem1907  on the identification of the locks, which confirms operation by these vessels onto the Great Lakes.  I welcome more info and further history on these vessels of past era.

My all-time favorite fotos of Kristin were taken here less than a year ago by Paul Strubeck and “lightened-up” by  tugster.

8 was here.    In the foto below, note the name in raised metal.

Doubleclick enlarges, and then notice the same raised letters here.

Originally called John E. Matton,  built in 1958 near the confluence of the Erie Canal and the Hudson, the foto below [of Mischief] was taken in June 2010, and

the foto below of Thornton Bros was taken today, under the Bayonne Bridge, where

this foto was taken today as well . . . of the 1961  Caitlin Ann, as

was this foto in summer 2009 . ..  as Caribbean Sea.

This “colander” bow of  tanker Dispatch (ex-Texaco 147, Richmond, Nepco Dispatch) was taken in August 2011.  Dispatch was one of three identical ( I suppose) tankers built by Texas Steamship in Bath, Maine, in 1919.  Texaco 147 sank off Cape Ann in February 1957, and has therefore weathered underwater and differently.  Click here to see  a recent foto of Texaco 145 aka Chelsea.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.  Thanks to Jeff Schurr for info on Dispatch.

As the sixth boro holds its tugboat race this weekend, Cape Ann has its schooner race.  Wish I could be in two places at once!  And speaking of the tugboat races, see who has really caught the illustration bug and might be another “sketchy” spectator!  Bravo!

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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.


October 2016
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