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Here were post 1 and post 2 with this name, both focusing on WW2 torpedo boats. PT-728 used to be based on the Rondout in Kingston and would make visits to NYC’s sixth boro, but now you’d have to go to Lake Huron for an outing.
The vessel below is PT-305 and “diminished” version of itself spent from 1947 until 1988 in the sixth boro as Captain David Jones. Does anyone remember it? Have photos of it?
I say “diminished” because to bypass certain crewing requirements, four yards plus was chopped off the stern. Click here and scroll through to see a photo of this chopped hull and NYC paint scheme.
If you’ve never visited Nola, you have to; and if you visit Nola, the World War II museum–easy to get to–is a must-do. And in one of many buildings–the Kushner Restoration Pavilion–PT-309 is returning to its former glory. Parts have been rebuilt or returned from scrap heaps and river bottoms–like these exhaust ports salvaged from a wreck in a river in Connecticut.
The plan is for a return to the water, a possible trip all the way to Boston with a stopover in the sixth boro.
PT-305–like many torpedo boats–is a Higgins product, made right in New Orleans.
And before you go, read Jerry E. Strahan’s biography of the Andrew Jackson Higgins. Click here for a Richard Campanella Times Picayune article with photos on Higgins. Here’s an excerpt, showing Higgins’ methods when he needed to get fifty small boats built and shipped to the Navy in two weeks: ”
Low on steel, he “chartered a fleet of trucks and armed plant guards,” wrote Strahan, “to persuade [a Baton Rouge] consignee to release the metal to Higgins Industries.”
Requiring bronze shafting, he sent his men to raid a Texas depot and arranged for complicit Louisiana police to placate livid Texas law enforcement as his trucks crossed the state line heading back to New Orleans. Needing more steel, Higgins begged and borrowed from a Birmingham plant, then sweet-talked Southern Railway officials into bending the rules to deliver the metal to New Orleans. “Never before or since,” wrote Strahan, “has a Southern Railway passenger train pulled freight cars.”
All photos by Will Van Dorp.
Despite the distance and the fog covering the escutcheon, I could immediately identify this tug–once a regular on the Hudson and in the sixth boro– on the Mississippi.
Let me end out this series with tugboats and other vessels: Sydney Ann
Mary Parker and
David J. Cooper and
Bulk Guatemala with selfie-shooting watch stander,
Sonny Ivey and
Jena Marie C,
Capt CJ, and
fireboat Gen. Roy S. Kelley,
Jo Provel with the 9th steamboat named Natchez.
All photos by Will Van Dorp, who’s even now in the cold NYC air plotting a return to
You might conclude that in this city I do nothing except sit on the riverbank, but the better conclusion is that Nola river traffic volume is phenomenal. So here’s a sampling of another–say–two hours total traffic, beginning with a vessel that would look entirely at home in NYC’s sixth boro . . . it’s J. George Betz.
Next something you’ll not see except in the inland big river, O. H. Ingram, 185′ loa x 54′ 9200 hp and triple screw, pushing
at least eight barges heading into a turn with at least two oncoming tows:
Joe B. Wyatt, 170′ loa x 45′ 6120 hp twin screw, pushing 18 barges and Mr. Pete with a single, but they all squeeze around the turn.
The range of vessels is interesting, considering the likes of Lil Susan S
and Josephine Anne of Bisso Offshore, with Wise One in the distance.
Natalie S . . . and
Blessed Trinity . . . and
and Natures Way Commander . . .
Moose . . and
CSS Savannah . . . and less than two hours have elapsed and I haven’t included all the traffic!
and let me conclude with a photo taken the previous afternoon, another that would NOT look out of place in NYC’s waters, Greg Turecamo.
More soon. All photos by Will Van Dorp.
I’ll start with the greatest looking tug of all I saw. It has a name, but I cropped it out and will reveal it as this post goes on. But isn’t this a beaut?!! It also has an evocative previous name. Can you guess her vintage?
I’m in the mood for puzzling today, so what’s this? I know there’s no tug in this photo, but . . .
So here’s a closer up of the tug Bunker King passing the tanker Bow Trajectory, heading for Plaquemine.
See the Algiers “gift boxes” over the stern of Cecilia B. Slatten? See where she fits in her fleet here. Can anyone explain what if any connections there are between Bisso Towing and Bisso Marine, who recently have had a project in NYC’s sixth boro?
Freedom . . . there’s nothing in the sixth boro with these colors and artwork.
M/V Magnolia . . . as night falls.
Night falls on James Dale Robin and Kimberly Hidalgo. Less than an hour earlier, prayers had been offered and champagne spilled over these two vessels and another, Dale Artigue.
And nightfall means I should return to the beaut in the first photo . . . here it is with name restored, formerly called Havana Zephyr. Check out this fabulous line drawing of her by Barry Griffin.
Here’s the whole vessel as I saw it last week. Such lines! I’d really love to see a bowsprite rendering of those curves!
Merlin Banta, which my defective eyes first read as ‘merlin santa,” came out of the St. Louis Boats yard in 1946, not long after the yard delivered a fleet of icebreaking tugs to the US Navy and then to the USSR! If you click on no other links in this post, you have to see these icebreakers . . . last photo in a post I did a year ago here.
All photos by Will Van Dorp.
My sincere Merry Christmas/Happy 2014 wishes to all of you. Actually, I hit the road Monday morning for the now-annual road trip to see family in greater Atlanta.
Consider this my Christmas card. Any ideas what this is? These three fotos come courtesy of Nancy Donskoj.
It’s the tugboat Gowanus Bay delivering Sinterklaas and his entourage up the rondout to Kingston, NY’s annual Sinterklaas festival. Sinterklaas is the red-clad legend I was first made aware of, and he would supposedly arrive on December 5. Click here for more pics. Kingston was the third oldest settlement in New Netherland.
Believe it or not, Sinterklaas stories are clouded in some controversy because of the guy standing to his left. Actually not this guy per se at all. In the Dutch tradition, this man is Zwarte Piet . . or Black Pete. The Americanization in the foto below is interesting.
As the Dutch say, prettige kerstfest.
The next two pics come thanks to Jen Muma currently of New Orleans, and it’s fuel for the
Here are two East Coast traditions, but I’m thinking the sixth boro really doesn’t have much PUBLIC Christmas tradition spectacle related to the water at all. Four years ago, I floated an idea about a harbor tree inspired by what folks do in New England, but I’ve moved on. For myself, I like the idea below, the nautical clutter tree in my friend Ed Fanuzzi’s backyard.
Have a festive day with your loved ones. I will repost again in a few days.
Thanks again to Nancy and Jen for use of their photos.
Quick and succinct: the way to enter Nola from the east and north is Rte 90. About 30 miles east of Nola I passed this mystery vessel Poseidon, which looked like a house-forward bulk carrier with a quonset hut over the hold now blown away by a storm. Anyone know the history?
As sun rose somewhere in a cloudy drizzly day, the first vessel to pass–upbound–was BBC Brazil.
Then a steady stream of traffic moved on the great river . . . some of them included Amalienborg,
B. John Yeager (?) with at least 13 barges, which round Algiers Point in the most
curious way, which involved backing down, sliding over to the Nola side, and what must have been lots of nail-biting.
Big Sam and a small tow.
From the Algiers side, I checked out Barbara E. Bouchard‘s new pins.
Also on the drydocks at Bollinger’s was Mully and Admiral Jackson.
Alice‘s sister Caroline Oldendorff passed . . . upriver.
And Alley Cat headed downstream herding more barges than would seem possible.
Nola is so much more than all that, and Checkpoint Charlie is a start of that other so-long list, but do check in at Charlie’s when next you’re here.
More soon. All foto by Will Van Dorp.
From the air you can see the traffic . . . the sinuous lines it scribes into the legendary river.
From the bank, you can see sometimes three tugs abreast (l. to r. Bobby Jones-1966, David G. Sehrt-1965, and Born Again-1974) pushing more than a dozen barges slipping around the turn between Algiers and the 9th Ward. And when I say slipping, I mean even big vessels seem to slide through this crescent. That erosion in the foreground bespeaks higher water.
Uh . . . a variation on seasnake?
Close-up of McLean.
I’m back at work in environs of the sixth boro, and this is the last set about Nola strictly defined. Tomorrow I hope to put up some fotos from a jaunt-within-a-gallivant southwest from the Crescent City, a truly magical place to which I really must return soon because there’s much I’ve yet to understand . . . like why
And is it true there’s a nun driving a tugboat somewhere on the Lower Mississippi? Here’s a ghost story, and if you have a chance to find it, listen to Austin Lounge Lizard’s “Boudreaux was a Nutcase.”
All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who also has tons of fotos from Panama to put up.
This foto in no way conveys the intensity of this moment: that car crept down Iberville Street at dusk blasting out a shock wave of engine roar that rivaled the scream of 747 engines.
The shadow of Christ emerges on this end of St. Louis Cathedral as night falls.
Tugster dips his toe in the Mississippi near where Capt. John hugs the wharf just northeast of JacksonSquare.
This statue is called Old Man River, and I’m intrigued though
I’m deep in the “fog of travel,” a phrase I learned from David Hindin. So only the facts, here:
If you didn’t see it yesterday, check out bowsprite’s nola.
Muddy water fast and wide separates St. Louis Cathedral from
Tugboat New Orleans assists Power Steel make
Capt. Jimmy T. Moran, developed for the Panama Canal but never used there, heads downriver for an assist while
It would be easy to stay here longer, but . . .
Many more Louisiana fotos to come though.