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First the specifics . . . 70 Henry Street Brooklyn Heights Cinema tonight at 7 for reception with showing starting at 8.    After the show, stop by at Park Plaza Bar about .1 mile nearby.

So it’s appropriate to lead these NYC Municipal Archives photos off with tugboat Brooklyn.

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Next  in an icy North River  (?) . . . . . . Richmond.

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Launches  Bronx and

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Queens.

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Passenger steamer Little Silver, which ran between the Battery and Long Branch, NJ in the first decade of the 20th century.

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And finally . . . John Scully, a very classy Dialogue (Use the “find” feature to search) built built tug

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And the connection . . . here’s what boats of this vintage look like today in “disintegration experiments” in waters everywhere.  I took these in August 2011 while Gary and I filmed Graves of Arthur Kill.

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Some boats of this time, of course, still operate like Pegasus (1907) and Urger (1901)

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while others try to stave off time so that they might once again like New York Central No. 13 (1887).

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More from the archives . . .  aerial of Pier 40 and the Holland Tunnel vent . . . photo said to be taken in 1955.

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Photo said to be “three-masted schooner” in 1937.  Clearly that’s not a schooner there with the GW Bridge in the background.  Anyone know what sailing ship that might have been?

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Photo by Sam Brody February 1938.  Ferry Hackensack foreground with Jack Frost Sugars over on the Edgewater, NJ side.

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Todd Shipyard, 1935-41 . .  .  Here’s a list of what was built there and an aerial view (you may have to scroll horizontally) of what it today is occupied by IKEA.

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SS Normandie . . . headed for the North River piers.

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City of Chattanooga December 1937.

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Brooklyn docks as seen from Brooklyn Heights, November 1937.  Here’s a Munson Lines flyer.

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Here’s the schedule–sorry for all the repetition–for Wednesday evening’s documentary portion of the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival, where Graves of Arthur Kill will be shown.  Gary and I will hang for a while at Park Plaza Bar after the show. It may be mobbed?

I didn’t want to call this post “something different 19” because clearly it wouldn’t be different from the previous days.  A pattern has emerged, and then I realized that part of the pattern is that these photos depict some of the unidentifiable vessels lost in boneyard or ship graveyards like the one focused upon in the documentary Graves of Arthur Kill.   Here they are, in their prime or at least working although forgotten.

All the photos in this post were taken during the Great Depression, by photographers who were funded through the WPA, Works Progress Administration.  I am grateful this documentation happened.  And my caption are based on the captioning–specific or general–accompanying the photos in the archives.

Below . . . US Gypsum tug.   notice the Bayonne Bridge on the horizon near the left edge of the shot.

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Photographer Ralph de Sola took this shot of tug Sarah and much smaller one without a name I can find.

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Caption says SS Brennen May 1937.  But I believe the vessel passing Pier A is actually SS Bremen.  Assorted small boats here I can’t identify.

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I’m intrigued here by the “car float” marked “Brooklyn Jay Street Terminal . . .”  shifting rail cars from right to left.  Is that a McAllister tug on the far side?  And is that how the Staten Island ferry terminal looked in the late 1930s and what is the building on the water left side of photo where the Coast Guard Building is now located?

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Here’s an intriguing E. M. Bofinger photo dated June 1938, taken from  . . . foot of Wall Street?  If Bennett Air Service is at all related to Floyd Bennett and the now unused Floyd Bennett Field, it’s noteworthy that Floyd Bennett himself had died–age 37– in April 1938.  Click here for many more Bofinger photos.

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Another photographer of water scenes in the archives is James Suydam.  Here are piers 13 through 15, the area currently just south of South Street Seaport.  Prominent against the sky then was 70 Pine, just to the left of stepped back 120 Wall.  The other two are 40 Wall (with antenna) and 20 Exchange, south of 120 Wall.

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Here’s a photo attributed to Treistman, said to be taken from the top of Seamen’s Institute and looking over the same piers as shown in the previous photo.

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Moving back over to the other side of Manhattan, it’s SS Conte di Savoia at the pier with an unidentified steam tug to the left.  For a photo of the liner with more color, click here.

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Again, the context here . . .  Wednesday night, come see the Graves of Arthur Kill, our documentary screened at the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival on tugboats and other vessels of this era and older and what became of them.

And if you’re free the night before, check out this program on salvage sponsored by Working Harbor Committee.

 

Here just over a year ago was the release information about the documentary.

And here’s the BIG announcement:  the world premiere of the documentary will happen Wednesday, May 7 at 7 pm at the Brooklyn Heights Cinema and tickets for that evening’s fare . . . including ours are now on sale.  Click here for directions to Brooklyn Heights Cinema on Henry Street.   If you haven’t seen the documentary, we DO turn back the clock on some of the skeletons in the yard.

Just over a week ago, I stopped to look at the yard from outside, from the muddy margins.  Some photos are below.  In 2011, Gary Kane and I had permission to film inside the yard from a leaky rowboat, and the footage of “beautiful ruins” comes to you directly from the leaky rowboat.  By the way, I had a hand-powered bilge pump that kept our equipment dry.

Fragments with a wading bird,

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disintegration with graffiti,

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commingled wreckage,

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terminally rusted disrepair,

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debris still morphing but identifiable,

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ravaged whole machines juxtaposed with live ones.

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Here was the 2010 end of the “graveyard” series . . . all photos shot in the ship graveyard.  Use the search window to see  segments 1 through 3.  And here is the end of the “ghost puzzles” series, all photos I shot while we were filming the scrapyard portion of the documentary.

I hope to see you at the May 7 showing at the Brooklyn Heights Cinema; here again is the link for details.  Also, if you do Facebook, please go to the Graves of Arthur Kill page and click like.

Unrelated to some degree, click here for my latest photos in Professional Mariner magazine.

 

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Graves of Arthur Kill

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