You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘USACE’ category.

Continuing with a record of random towing vessels encountered along the “go west” route, let’s pick up with HR Pike, another low air draft tug formerly associated with the GE cleanup.

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I’m not sure what the cargo here is, but this vessel lacks any hint of sheer.

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Here’s what I believe is a fleet mate of HR Otter . . . Helen Laraway.

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See how much has changed about the operation in Coeymans, if my claim of 18 months ago here was correct then.

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Otter and Laraway both operate out of the port of Coeymans, a former brickyard that has become a booming hub for staging shipment of construction materials. Pun intended.

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I’m guessing that it won’t be long before Otter gets painted to match Pike, its older sibling by one year.

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Just north of the port of Coeymans Coral Coast is standing by at the loading facility for the quarries at Ravenna.

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And in this Hudson River shoreline setting that bears resemblance to a jungle, south of Albany, it’s a USACE spud barge and

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pushboat Sentinel II.  Sorry I don’t know any more about its project.

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The banks up north of Catskill are magical, as seen here with morning fog and Olana, the Persian palace of Frederic Church.

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All photos by Will Van Dorp, who hopes to get back this way again later this summer.

Chicago in the haze ahead means this is the last of this series; we’ve gotten as far west as this gallivant will go.  The link in the previous sentence shows a map of the trajectory, with all of its legs.

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That’s Navy Pier.

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Squinting, I see this as a man doing a tire repair on a flipped over bicycle, but of course my eyes have their issues.

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A surprise was the use of tug-barge excursion trips with the likes of

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City View.

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Not all tug-barge traffic transported passengers, however.

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I’ll have to find out more about Kiowa after journey’s end.

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Riverview is part of the people-scow fleet and it just squeezes under the bridges.

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USACE Racine has a scow beside the Chicago Harbor Lock.

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All photos here by Will Van Dorp, who has now begun other gallivants while on the way home.

Barrel comes up with unusual photos . . . and this one below,  Merritt,  shows a side-cast dredge with a draft of less than 5′.

bbd1USACE DREDGE MERRITT-1

It appears she’s still in use.

bbd2USACE DREDGE MERRITT-2

 

bbd3USACE DREDGE MERRITT-3

Here’s the info.

bb1USACE DREDGE MERRITT FACT SHEET-2

I wish that tree was not obscuring the tug, but the real star here is the ship, an oddity that began life in the last years of the nineteenth century as a battleship, BB-5.   The first in her class was USS Indiana, BB-1. 

bb1USS Kearsarge as crane ship AB-1 transiting Panama canal

After 20 years as a battleship, she was idled for 20 years, at which point she was converted into arcane ship, Crane Ship No. 1, with lifting capacity of 250 tons, a weight more impressive then than now.  It does qualify this as a “second lives” post, though.  Finally, in 1955, she was sold as scrap.

bb2USS Kearsarge FORMER BATTLE AHIP CONVERTE4D TO CRANE SHIP PHILA NAVY YARD 1923

Click here for navsource’s great photo documentation–including the dramatic graving dock view below– of her entire half century career.

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Here’s a 1936 derrick boat, with a sign over the stern house that would get my attention.

bb3USACE DERRICKBOAT BABCOCK - FIXED

I’m not sure when she went out of service.

bb4USACE DERRICKBOAT BABCOCK FACT SHEET

Many thanks to barrel for these glimpses into the archives.

The sixth boro includes a portion of Raritan Bay, and once there was a USACE dredge called Raritan, built in 1908 in Sparrows Point, as seen below.  She was scrapped in 1956 after having been sold out of the USACE and renamed Sandmate.

br8USACE DREDGE RARITAN BUILT 1908-2

The next series shows a life raft of the era being tested off Fort Mifflin back in 1925.

br8aaUSACE DREDGE RARITAN LIFE RAFT TESTS FORT MIFFLIN 1925-1

 

rd3USACE DREDGE RARITAN LIFE RAFT TEST FORT MIFFLIN 1925-3

To me it looks more like a camel than a life raft.

br8dUSACE DREDGE RARITAN LIFE RAFT TEST FORT MIFFLIN 1925-5

 

Would this type of life raft ever be used in rough seas?

Thanks to barrel for this glimpse of the past.

Quick post here . . . since barrel has sent me way up into catfish territory with this boat, Tom Stallings.  Although the photo says it was built in 1919 in Charleston WV, the Charles Ward Shipyard records here do not list the boat. The 1929 records of the Chief of Engineers say that Tom Stallings replaced an earlier snag boat called Quapaw, a photo of which I located here.   Although the Tenn-Tom exhibit is off my near-future itineraries for now, there’s a stern-wheeler snag boat saved and open to tours still out there, here. Has anyone been there?

bt6Corps of Engineers Snag Boat Tom Stalling 5- 15- 1919

Here’s another oldie that seems to have disintegrated into history, pipeline dredge Gillespie.

USACE PIPE LINE DREDGE GILLESPIE BUILT 1915

 

USACE PIPE LINE DREDGE GILLESPIE FACT SHEET

 

Many thanks to barrel for sending along these yellowed records.

I am in fact in catfish territory for a week, attending to family business.

If I read the nameplate right, this is the number Uno!  According to barrel, it was built by the Corps Design Center.  Was that then in Neponset MA at the Lawley yard?   See June 1943.  Anyone know the details of its loss?

bt3DPC TUG BUILT BY CORPS DESIGN CTR. 1

DPC 66 was built in Decatur AL, and later was briefly a Pauline L. Moran before sold to Portugal where she was Mafra or Mafro.

bt2DPC TUG # 66 - FIXED

DPC 70 and 71 were also produced in Decatur in 1944.

bt4DPC TWO TUGS # 70 & 71 BUILT BY MARINE DESIGN CENTER PILA.

General Humphreys was a product of the Charles Ward Engineering.  She was sold in 1946 and became Sarah R, but no further info.

bt5CORPS OF ENGINEERS 85ft INSPECTION BOAT GENERAL HUMPHREYS 3- 19- 1928

Here’s another photo of Mateur, which appeared here about a month ago. At that point, Dan Owen’s comment refreshed my memory of these vessels and the vital “Catfish Navy.”

bt7DPC PUSH BOAT MATER BUILT 1944

In spite of all the specific dates and numbers here, I have no clue . . . except that Tulagi appears to be on the namebaord.  The date suggests that the vessel now known as Bloxon would have been here at this time as well.

bt8DPC PUSH BOAT NO NAME JUST A CONTRACT # 5651 BUILT MARIETTA MFG - Copy

Tunis was DPC 617, and

bt9DPC PUSH BOAT TUNIS 1944 ST LOUIS SHIP BUILDING DESIGN CENTER U SACE FIXED

Casablanca was DPC 616, both more catfish navy.

bt10DPC PUSHBOAT CASABLANCA DESIGNED IN MARINE DESIGN CTR PHILA

Midway Islands was a DPC towboat built for the catfish navy and later picked up by the private sector.    I’m not sure how long she worked for American Commercial Barge Lines.  I can’t find her DPC #.

bt11180 FOOT PUSH BOAT MIDWAY ISLANDS BUILT BY DPC PICTURE STATES RUNNING AT 120 RPM

And let’s end on something contemporary . . . George C. Grugett, near Memphis this very morning.

bt12MV GEORGE C. GRUGETT was built and classed in 2013 for the USACE Memphis District

Many thanks to barrel for giving me something to work on over coffee this morning.

Unrelated but very interesting, a 49′ x 12′ boat is found under a house in Highlands NJ.  But I was appalled that it appears to have been cut up.

 

 

Many thanks to barrel for this continuing series of old USACE vessels.  Chester below was built in the mid-1930s at a yard where this set of vessels was also built.

bt1aUSACE TENDER TUG CHESTER (2)

The above shipyard link says that later she became Elizabeth, but that leads me nowhere.  Anyone help?

bt1bUSACE TUG TENDER CHESTER FACT SHEET (2)

Frankford is older . . . 1924, built in the same yard as Wilhelm Baum, 1923.

bt1dUSACE TENDER TUG FRANKFORD BUILT 1924 - FIXED

 

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Here’s Escort . . . Wisconsin built.  A 2001 photo of Escort appears at the end of this post:  prepare yourself to gasp.

bt1fUSACE TUG ESCORT 1041 -

 

bt1gUSACE EVCORT FACT SHEET

And finally, for the oldie photos today, it’s Woodbury, about which I have no info.

bt1cmotor tender woodbury

About the Baum . . . I know it sank two years ago, at the dock, and was raised. But since then, no updates.  I took this photo and the next one back in 2008 while spending an enjoyable time at the Michigan Maritime Museum.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

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And here, thanks to John Curdy, is a photo of Escort taken in 2001.  I believe that since 2005, it has been part of a reef near Sea Isle City, NJ.    Has anyone dived on it?

escort2001

Many thanks to barrel to his archives.  And thanks to John Curdy–with whom I took these photos and more– for his poignant last look–that I know of– at Escort.

For some similar vessels, see tugster posts here and here.

And for a clue where I’ll be tomorrow morning, click here.

 

 

Back to the Caloosahatchee Canal and a few miles east of Cowgirl Way . . .

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more traffic, like MV Sea Star and

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Summer Star pushing a Gator Dredging’s Jesse Marie Ellicott 670 dredge and a deck barge and

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the USACE’s Leitner.  And is that a bovine up on the ridge?

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Many thanks to the Caloosahatchee Canal office for these photos.

Barrel is the pseudonym (nom de blog?) of a gentleman who worked with the USACE for many years in the Philadelphia area.  Click here for the RTC yard history.

1bRTS YARD 1

Click here for info on the tugboat Interstate.  Can anyone add any info to that?

2bRTS SHIP YARD CAMDEN

According to barrel, the YTB here is functioning as a fender between USACE Comber and another vessel. Comber was built in Pascagoula in 1947. 

4bArmy dredge COMBER working close in to starboard side MISSOURI using a YTB as a fender. Pipe alongside MISSOURI is the starboard amidships draft gauge.

Any guesses on the Moran tug here?  It’s standing by after a collision between passenger vessel Santa Rosa and tanker Valchem, whose stack is perched on Santa Rosa‘s bow.

5bPartsofValchem

Below is a photo of Valchem sans stack and displaying impact point. Click here for some info on the collision.

6bValchem

Now these next three boats leave me somewhat confused.

7bMILINE AT MEMPHIS TENN 1944

Were they sold foreign?  Here’s a reference to a hull #504 and 505 built at Marietta Mfc. in Pt. Pleasant, WV.

8bPUSH BOAT

 

9bPUSH BOAT 2

And the last of the push boats for today, it’s Mateur.  Well, it was called that, before it became push boat Effie Afton and then a restaurant called Jumers.  Is she still there and serving food and fun?  Maybe I need to schedule a gallivant to Rock Island.

PUSH BOAT Mateur

So let’s end with a vessel I’m more familiar with . . . Pilot, currently up the Hudson a ways from the sixth boro.

0abTug Pilot

And here’s Pilot, showing her to scale with her workmates.

99bUSACE DREDGE GOETHALS AND NEW ORLEANS WITH TUG PILOT ASSIST

Many thanks to barrel, who sends me these and other puzzles, stumpers, and conundrums.

Click here for previous photos that come here by way of barrel.  The September 1944 tug Wilmington

1USACE TUG WILMINGTON - FIXED

is now Kathy Lynn.

2USACE TUG WILMINGTON FACT SHEEET

Dredge Hoffman was built in 1942 and

3USACE DREDGE HOFFMAN - Copy

retired in 1983 . . . I guess that means scrapped.

4USACE HOFFMAN

Clatsop was launched in 1908, then called

5USACE DREDGE CLATSOP ABREST OF FORT MIFFLIN 1943 - FIXED

Sandpilot, and was scrapped in 1950, before I was born.

6USACE DREDGE CLATSOP

Delano Deland was 1919 built, but was transferred to

7USACE TUG DELAND PHILADELPHIA DISTRICT TRAVELING THRU THE C&D - FIXED

the USAT and I’ve found no further trace.  Anyone have any ideas?

8USACE TUG DELAND FACT SHEET

Many thanks to barrel, who’s sent me more photos like this, and I’ll get around to posting them.

 

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