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In fall 2010, deepening dredging was happening in the sixth boro to prepare for the ULCVs now so commonplace here,  after Panama Canal enlargement and Bayonne Bridge raising. These operations afforded me the chance to see a cutterhead close up.  The crewman wielding the hammer was trying to loosen a worn tooth.   By the way, those teeth weigh 35 pounds each.  Teeth . . .  dentist?

Then as now, Layla Renee was in the dredge support trade.  Right now she’s in Charleston.  She was only two years old at the time of the photo.

It looks that way, but W. O. Decker is NOT a dredge tender in this photo.  Here five people on Decker are catching the stare of the one dredge worker in work vest.

The entire K-Sea fleet has disappeared.  As of 2020, Falcon has become Carol and I’ve not yet seen her latest livery.  Houma was scrapped in 2017 in Baltimore.

Here are two of the McAllister tugs involved in easing MSC’s USNS Sisler (T-AKR 311)into Bayonne drydock as then-John P. Brown manages the door.  For many more photos of the event, check out “floating the door,” where you also see Allied’s Sea Raven, unlabelled.

I caught Growler at Mystic Seaport that fall.  Rumor has it that Growler has returned to the sixth boro under a new name and sans teeth, but is under wraps.

Also in Mystic at that time, 1885 steam/sail vessel Amazon (has nothing to do with Bezos), the 2000 Amistad, and the 1908 steamer Sabino.  Does anyone know the whereabouts of Amazon today?

My reason to be in Mystic that October was to work on Pegasus, seen here with Araminta and Cangarda.  What works of beauty all three are!

Deborah Quinn here is docked near where Jakobson Shipyard used to be located.  I believe that’s her location as of this writing.

Under the old Bayonne bridge, Maurania III assumes position to ease the 1997 Maersk Kokura around Bergen Point.  Maurania III is currently in Wilmington NC.

Back a decade ago, Day Peckinpaugh had some good paint on her, and Frances was like a cocoon in Turecamo livery.  There’s scuttlebutt of a new lease on life for Day Peckinpaugh.

Let’s end with dredging, as we began.  Terrapin Island was one of the regulars in the navigation dredging effort.  Terrapin Island is currently in Norfolk.

All photos, October 2010, by WVD.

Big announcement soon.


Let’s do 2013 and 2014, or redo them, same conditions as I stated yesterday. But first let’s look at the 2013 crowd, packing in like you wouldn’t with covid.  Here was the crowd at 1010 and

by 1035 they had grown significantly.

The compulsory muster takes place, irrigated by fireboat John J. Harvey.

Once the race begins, a front-runner like Decker

might soon get left in the wake.

The fire boat slices up from behind and

propels itself between two Miller boats.

Pushoffs happen next, sometimes quite equally matched like here, with 3900 hp countering 4200.

Let’s jump ahead to 2014, with the arrivals on the watery carpet,

the processing to the starting line,

and get straight to racing without all the preening and posturing.

Someone seems a bit oversize in that gray livery.

This is a fairly mis-matched pair:  Wayne at 5100 hp, and Ellen at 4000.  Maybe a re-match is in order Wayne v. Ava.

Thanks to Jeff Anzevino for this shot, the Media Boat has military background in common with Wayne.

After Wayne has strutted its stuff in the push-offs, some of the boats lined up for the roping the bollard.

Let’s hold it up here.  All photos, WVD.


I’ll devote a whole post once again to the 2012 races, since I have a  lot of photos.  What I did was look for the most dramatic or interesting photos and, in some cases, re-edited them.  What I didn’t do is go back through the 2012 posts, but you can here if you want.

Again, you can identify these, or I’ll help you if you can’t.  I call this the pre-race cluster, with some even pointing upstream, as if Yonkers would be the finish line.

The cluster continues as more boats arrive.

And then there’s the burn-out, or in this case . . .  froth-out as two Cat D-399s crank out over 2200 hp.

The pack spreads out quickly.  This was almost 60 seconds into the race.  If this were a terrestrial drag race, the contest would already be over and the smoke clearer.

I’m not sure I’d want to be in a kayak, particularly a double, as all this wake translates into wave motion.

A full five minutes into the race, Quantico Creek‘s two Cat 3512 3000 hp power plants take her past the finish line with sturm und drang . . .

Seven minutes into the race . . . they’re still coming.

At the 19-minute mark, the race is over, but the bulls appear to have scores to settle . . .

and next thing you know . . . it’s tugboat rugby!

Tomorrow . . .  how about returning to 2013.

All photos, WVD.



We watch, and take pictures.  This is a portion of the same shot.

Haul out your stashed $2 bill, and look at the back.  If you have inclination for one link today, check out this one . . . “things you may not know about the Declaration.”  I certainly didn’t. And here’s more than you ever wanted to know about that image.

And if you’re wondering what the King thought, to Parliament he declared:  “daring and desperate is the spirit of those [signers], whose object has always been dominion and power….”  For the rest of context, click here.

Now read some or several versions of the declaration:  here or here.  It’s less than 1500 words.

Happy Fourth.  Be safe.  Listen to and enjoy a civil conversation with someone whose political leaning is different from your own.

And if you wish, here are 10 of the hardest questions on the citizenship test.  I got 80%, so I’m entitled to keep my citizenship.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, taken on July 4, 2012 between 2045 and 2100.  Thanks Capt. Pam Hepburn for the opportunity aboard Peg.


I hope you all are enjoying these glances back a decade as much as I enjoy putting them together.  If you weren’t paying attention back then, this hints at how much the traffic in the harbor has changed, just as it has on the roads.  If you were watching back in spring 2009, you might have this same appreciation at the changes;  In addition, you might be amazed how quickly time has passed.  Maybe you’ve forgotten about some of these boats.

Pegasus, quo vadis?  I’ve heard some ominous scuttlebutt, the kind you’d hear about any 112-year-old vessel. Your project site is still up.  Here she was in front of the Hoboken Terminal, which opened the same year–1907–as Peg was launched.


Starboard view and port .  . it’s the 1968 McAllister Girls . . . if she’s still around, I’ve not seen her in quite some time. In the background over near the Jersey City river’s edge, Clipper City and Pioneer sail toward each other.

Ditto the 1977 Sisters.

Ellen (1967) and Amy C (1976) are still active in the harbor, but it’s been years since APL Cyprine has called here.

The 1978 Mary Gellatly has been sold up down east, and last I knew, working as Alice Winslow for Winslow Marine Inc.  out of Southport Maine.

The K-Sea fleet in the sixth boro in 2009 was quite large.  Norwegian Sea was a workhorse on the Hudson;  now she’s Miss Rui operating for Smith Maritime. 

Houma (1970) has been scrapped.

Taurus (1979) recently reappeared here as Joker.

Onrust was launched into the Mohawk River in May 2009, and I believe she will again be sailing out of Essex CT.  Her splash up and over the riverbank trees was quite spectacular.

All photos a short 10 years ago by Will Van Dorp.


It thrills me that use of fireworks to celebrate our Independence dates to this note by John Adams to his wife Abigail:  ” … the occasion should be commemorated ‘with Pomp and Parade, with [Shows], Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.’ ”  The first commemorative Independence Day fireworks were set off on July 4, 1777; they were all orange.

My best shots of boats and “illuminations” were here in September 2014, and

even better here in July 2012.

Since I quote Adams, here’s an engraving of him, Franklin and Admiral Lord Richard Howe meeting at the Conference House on Staten Island in September 1776. The house was built in 1680, and Christopher Billop, the resident at the time of the Revolution, was a Loyalist who fled to Canada after he was captured and imprisoned in 1779.

But I digress, thanks to Adams, we use fireworks to celebrate today.

Photos and sentiments by Will Van Dorp.  Engraving by Alonzo Chappel. 


I was reading the NYTimes Magazine on January 10, 2016 and on pages 4 and 5 saw this advertising spread . . . . It’s clear that 70 Vestry is selling a view, and what is that view?


It’s Pegasus and


Lilac.  Great.  Maybe I could call it Pegasus/Lilac Real Estate.


But look at where the prices start for this real estate?  No problem either, but it seems there


could be a contribution to those projects that make up the view that was advertised?

To see the spread, check the NYTimes Magazine of January 10, 2016.

In the seldom-seen category, let’s start with Pegasus and Delta Fox.


Ditto Vulcan III.


Amy Moran light.


How often do you see Bergen Point pushing a crane barge?


Or Sarah Ann pushing a scow past the Hospital for Special Surgery?


or a stern-on Larry J. Hebert from the Port of LaRose, town of the crossroads?


James William southbound at the Statue as Indy photobombs  . . .


and finally . . . first view for me of Sea Fox, ex-Kathleen, Doyle, Cherokee Eagle, Chris B. Boudreaux, Ledger, and Ann L.


All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Below is one of my all time favorite photos of Pegasus, taken July 4, 2012.   In fact, a print of this hangs over my dining room table.  The boat that night was in her 105th year.  Click here if you don’t remember life in 1907, when her keel was laid.   If you are unfamiliar with her long and storied life, click here on the Pegasus Preservation Project site.


The Erie Lackawanna terminal in Hoboken also dates from 1907.


She received a visit from an even older Urger in July 2012.


Pegasus (1907) with Urger (1901) at Pier 25

An important announcement follows at the end of this post, so for now, enjoy these looks back.


Sizing up Lincoln Sea in September 2012


The tug and barge campaign, August 2011


She had a major dry-docking five years ago.


At Caddell Dry Dock in March 2010



Meanwhile over the years, lots of people have fulfilled their dreams of “riding on a tugboat” aboard Pegasus.


Some will remember this trip for the rest of their lives.



“Tug Pegasus Moving On

The tug Pegasus is looking for new leadership, new ideas and ultimately a new home. After many years of hard work and hundreds of thousands of funding raised for capital improvements, the 1907 Tugboat Pegasus has been lovingly restored to a ship shape condition and is no longer in debt. Since 2001, under the care of the Tug Pegasus Preservation Project, the popular vessel has educated tens of thousands about the importance of the NY Harbor as a vital water highway. Tug trips and work programs taught youth about maritime jobs. Tug & Barge ports-of-call included tour visits to Hoboken, NJ and Brooklyn Bridge Park, Hudson River Park, Poughkeepsie, Kingston, Cold Spring and Hudson in New York.

However, after being awarded a berth at Hudson River Park’s Pier 25 in 2011, the organization continually experienced difficulty obtaining the necessary funds required to operate a historic boat as well as keep up with the high costs of insurance associated with getting the public onto the water. Regrettably, we are no longer able to sustain our operations.

Tug Pegasus Preservation Project is looking for exciting and creative ideas that will help transition the boat to a new leader or another organization that will continue the mission of getting the public out onto the water and informing them about vitality of New York Harbor’s maritime activity and it rich culture.

One thought we have is what the City of Baltimore has in a historic ships maritime alliance. Instead of each vessel having the arduous tasks of writing grants, raising administrative funds, insurance, etc., an umbrella organization spreads the costs and time requirements between a host of historic vessels.

As a positive solution is sought, the Board of Trustees of the Tugboat Pegasus Preservation Project welcomes serious individuals to present their ideas and proposals by contacting them at And while our hope had been to continue operations this summer, without funding, we will not be able to do so. We thank those who have supported our project over the years.”

While you contemplate that announcement, enjoy one more Pegasus photo.   I’d be happy if this blog could serve as a discussion board of Pegasus‘ future.


All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Click here for previous “whitherward” posts.

Here was my post two years ago, and here are some photos I took on and around the first CoWD.     Peter Stanford, several decades back, organized an annual Sea Day, which I think is a better name.  Squint your eyes looking at the photo below and you almost imagine a planet of water.   Almost, right?


I’m happy that summer and winter brings sightseers onto the water using these vessels.


Squint again and from this perspective the boro of Manhattan looks a bit like the bow of a vessel, WTC1 being the stem post.  Fireboat Harvey and the rowboat are much near New Jersey, though, than the city of NYC.


It’s the city of Hoboken water day?



It’s actually the sixth boro water day . . . with land activities on boros, islands, and cities in a neighboring state.   Below, it’s Village Community Boathouse rowers past Pier A.



Meanwhile, in the midst of it all, work goes on along the front of the inimitable Manhattan skyline, Sassafras here with DoubleSkin 39.


And here as the day starts, the iconic Pegasus  . . . and crew  . . . reporting for duty, getting those who signed up for free tours on


the primordial boro.


All photos by Will Van Dorp, who leaves with his red passport tomorrow for the north country.  Posting will happen when possible.


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February 2021