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Seven and a half years ago I posted on APL President Truman and  even longer ago tugster did this on Bellavia.

Enjoy a few more pics of President Truman before learning its fate.  The photo below was taken in September 2007.


March 2009.


June 2009.  Dimensions on President Truman are 902′ x 129.’  As such, she could not traverse the current Panama Canal.   Teu capacity on Truman is about 4500.


In the foreground in the photo above, of course, that’s Capt. Log, now retired.  The assisting tugs are shown below.  McAllister Brothers nearer and  . . .I can’t identify . . . astern of her.


Here from May 2009 is sister vessel President Polk, assisted by Ellen McAllister and McAllister Sisters.


Both Polk and Truman are no more.  Nor are Adams and Jackson.  All dead.  Click here and scroll to page 41.  They were all renamed President 1, President 2 . . . and taken to Chittagong for scrapping.   I’d love to find photos of these vessels being scrapped.

Which brings us to this past weekend. And this vessel.  Teu capacity is over 8000.  Dimension 1095′ x 138.’  See the crewman standing watching on the bow . . .



Near the salt pile they pass, Zim Monaco 4250 teu.



Now that the process of raising the Bayonne Bridge has become, maybe some folks will imagine widening the KVK.  By the way, if you see little difference between Pacific Link and the Presidents, count the number of containers across the stern.


And an 8000 teu vessel, as appropriate as it may be for some locations, is “compact” compared to what already sails the oceans–20,000 and up–and what is being planned: 25,000 teus and up.

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Related:  MSC Oscar

Size at LA-LB



Where might one locate a lifeboat called President Truman?  In Missouri?


Mais non!  One starboard and one port midships on the APL President Truman, of course, who just happened to pass by as I gallivanted along my favorite waterway.


Notice the crewmen near the bow, the one wearing dark blue and pointing toward Manhattan, where he never made it during this too-short 18 hours or so turn-around in Port Liz.  I wonder about these crew and what their thoughts are of this and other ports they cruise in and back out of on their unnatural schedules.  What are the joys, pains, and community of the global mariner?


The topmost white number on the stern is marked as 13 meters 60.  A dear friend suggested I do more stern fotos.  Hmm!?


More on the orange tug pushing the barge and passing alongside President Truman‘s portside tomorrow.  And after that, more APL.


For now a final thought related to a word I’ve learned through researching my other blog Henry’s Obssesion.  The “Henry” is the one for whom the major sixth boro river is named.  That word is “retourschip,” meaning a large treasure ship that brought the goods to the metropolis from the colony, goods in the VOC’s case being spice.  Here’s some info on “retourschepen” albeit on a numismatic site.  So, my final thought is that these containership are the retourschepen of our society, our key to getting cheap and not-so-cheap goods from abroad.  And yet, large as they are, they enter and leave the port with no fanfare, no ceremony.  No revelry and story-swapping really happens with crew who’ve sailed from the other side of the globe, and all ports are quite similar both in their equipment and their being off-limits. There might be good reasons for all that, but what’s lost is the excitement of our stuff coming in and the prospect of meeting folks with very different experience and unique perspectives to share.

OK, ’nuff said.  But drop by  our Henry site.  Bowsprite and I would like some feedback on our creative non-fiction/illustration project.

Photos, WVD.

Presidents Day.  This might not be what you expect.  See the vessel below.  It’s not the Beagle, not named for a type of dog.


Now that’s an odd name for a tanker, but the fleet has several other “kings.”


So you see where this is going:  Lincoln Sea:  I hadn’t seen this tug in quite a while and then … I couldn’t get to the other side of the KVK to get a better shot.


So here’s a shot of Lincoln Sea near Shooter’s Island from  a few years back, my first view of the tug.  Wow!  was all I could say.


Technically, Presidents Day  is dedicated to the ones born in February, and Truman is from early May, (notice rising sun just portside of bow) but


I can’t imagine a federal holiday for honoring only some U. S.  presidents, so this APL vessel will just have to do, since I don’t expect I’ll ever see a vessel called “February Presidents.”

By the way, Lincoln Sea–8000 hp.  President Truman–57,000 hp.  King Darwin–too evolved to release hp information.

For a whole different take on Darwin, check prolific bowsprite’s “longest titled” post here. Now I’m adding one more sentence to my post  (Check out Henry’s latest letter from Amsterdam here.) so that I could retitle this post as “Darwin, Lincoln, Presidents Day, and Henry Hudson” and eclipse bowsprite’s title word-length.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Vessels from left to right in front of the container ship President Truman include:  small tanker Captain Log, tugs Amy C McAllister, and McAllister Brothers.


I called Captain Log a “mere pup” here almost two years ago. Below, Captain Log meets Patrick Sky in the KVK in December 2008.  Who is the captain named “Log” memorialized by this tanker?


Ron Rice caught this shot in early November.

aaalog2Loaded to capacity, Captain Log leaves the Arthur Kill as the sun rises in this September shot.


Eastbound and



aaaclall around the boro, tirelessly. (If you don’t count the one hanging off port bow.

For a profile of a Captain Log captain,  see Ben Gibberd’s fine book New York Waters.

All fotos, except Ron’s, by Will Van Dorp.

A few words on process: I get myself on or near the water and fotograf what passes by. That’s what happened last Thursday morning on my detour as I headed for work. So, I “caught” the McAllisters, Captain Log (the little tanker on the left) and this APL container ship.


After APL docked, I took a foto of the stern: its namesake was the American president of the late 40s and what was really unusual in the world of “convenience flags,” its post of registery is Oakland, home of Kaiser Shipyards, “Rosie the Riveter” and Jack London.


What makes this vessel historic is APL’s decision to create a class of “post-panamax” size (aka C-10s), of which President Truman is an exemplar. It broke the 4000 TEU limit, a 900+ foot vessel launched in 1988, operated with a crew of 21 compared with the crew of 30 needed way-back-when with a 200-foot one. C-11s have superseded this size for over a decade. I believe the largest ships are now over 7000 TEUs and plans are for much more.

My take on the “flag-of-convenience” question is that when it’s convenient for the shipper-ship to be flagged–say, Liberia or Panama–that’s where it’s registered. When it’s convenient for Jones Act compliance for same to have US flag, that’s where APL comes in. This may be grossly simplified, but it seems to convenience  someone either way.

Anyhow, if the good Prez is Asia-bound, wonder if it’ll see anything at Jabal Al-Tair.

All photos, Will Van Dorp.

was yesterday. I took these fotos before 7 am on that holiday.



Well, I was on my way to work, and not that anyone had the day off around here. Yet, I’m glad to read such a day exists, given how much of the stuff in our lives arrives from across the seas. The last few miles look like this.



Amy (stern) and Brothers McAllister move in. By the way, talking of the holiday of who to recognize, which nation provides 20% of the world’s merchant seafarers? Hint… it has less than 3% of the world’s population.




Amy‘s on the bitt.



Brothers push dockward.

Answer to the 20%–less than 3% question…. here.

Happy M-day.

Tis holiday season: September 30 is Estuary Access Day. Support your local estuary. Also, it’s Chile Pepper fiesta. Hug and savor your favorite chile pepper.

Photos, Will Van Dorp.

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