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Danmark, a 90-year-old full-rigged ship, is in town again.  She first came here in 1939 for the World’s Fair.

South Street waterfront of Manhattan then was a very different place, as of course was the whole city and world.

I’m not sure where she berthed back then.  A year later, after her homeland was invaded, she stayed in the US (Jacksonville FL for starters) because she had no homeport to return to.  In 1942, she was temporarily commissioned as a USCG vessel.

The brightwork is impeccable, as

is the gilt work.

Rigging like this is dense as a jungle, yet it’s all functional. 

And many of the current crew of Danish cadets, four of whom are mostly hidden but busy in the image below, 

were busy polishing the brass.

I’d love to see how the figurehead is polished. This figurehead has appeared on this blog once before back in 2007.  To see Danmark underway sail-powered, click here.   For a guided tour of the ship, click here

Meanwhile, I recently spotted another sailing vessel, one I’d not seen before, S/V Red Sea.  Thanks to Michele McMurrow and Jaap Van Dorp for the identification, although they called it by different names, they were both right.  For some backstory on this well-traveled schooner, click here

She’s arrived in the sixth boro from the Wisconsin side of Lake Michigan.

 

Some Danmark photos, thanks to Tony A;  all others, WVD.  Enjoy the last day of summer 2022.

 

Tugboats don’t have them although it’s interesting to imagine what part of the human anatomy they’d project forward if they did: one open hand or two, butt, shoulder, chin, etc. Figureheads have mostly disappeared from the seas now after living there for millenia. My favorite figureheads have to be those on Viking ships, but a regret is that I’ve not seen any lately.

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This golden man who rides the bow of Danmark may have Viking ancestors. The intensity of his forward scanning eyes dazzles me. Does he have a name? Recall this post? Would a close-up of the man on the Harrier show similarly dazzling eyes?

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Leave it to my Dutch cousins to place this on the Stad Amsterdam. But if she rides the bow at 17 knots, her clingy deshabille is understandable. Isn’t she chilly? The Amsterdammer “belt” is precious; I’m getting one. Echt mooi klaboutermannikintje!

 

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A very different attitude is projected by “Joe,” I assume, figurehead of the Joseph Conrad at Mystic Seaport. I love Joe’s stories, but his pallor always leaves me feeling seasick.

 

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Last one for now, Amistad‘s eagle is certainly more impressive than the one borne by the Coast Guard Eagle I wrote about a month ago.

To me, figureheads are about inspiration. I’m writing about them because I’m looking to be inspired. Any inspirational figureheads you know or motivational images or thoughts you would share?

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

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