You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Urger’ tag.

Stewart calls this “museum tugs of the Great Lakes.”

“We start in Lake Superior, specifically Two Harbors, with  Edna G., built in 1896 and assisted freighters for 80 years.  [You can find previous appearances of this tug on this blog here. ]

Next we go to Sturgeon Bay with  John Purves. She was built in 1919 [at Beth Steel in Elizabeth NJ, I might add] and during World War 2 found herself armed with machine guns on her deck and out in Alaska protecting the shipping channels….

A short ways away in Kewaunee is our next tug,  Ludington. She was also a war veteran. Originally built as LT-4 in 1943, she helped moved barges to Normandy on D-Day.

All the way down in Lake Erie, at the bow of the museum freighter Col. James M. Schoonmaker, is our next tug,  Ohio. She was built in 1903 as a fireboat, and stayed this way until she was bought in 1948 by the Great Lakes Towing Company, and converted into a tug. She served this job until 2015, and in 2018 was converted and restored with the purpose of being a museum ship.

Finally, we end in Lake Ontario in Oswego New York, where yet another war veteran has retired. This tug is USAT LT-5, which is a sister ship of Ludington. [In fact, Ludington is hull# 297, and Nash is hull# 298, from Jakobson in Oyster Bay NY.]  She was launched in 1943, had 50 caliber machine guns on her deck, and also helped haul barges to Normandy on D-Day.  [Her dimensions are 114′ x 25′ x 14′.  And on June 9, 1944, her Norwegian crew shot down a German fighter aircraft.]

Thank you for reading this post.  All pictures from museumships.us, which is remembering history one ship at a time.”

Thank much, Stewart.

And I could leave well done alone, but this is an opportunity to mention one more . . . Urger.  Here she is less than 10 miles from Lake Ontario, pulled over above lock O-3 by a state employee on a mission. He wanted to look the 1901 tug over and lamented his son wasn’t there to get the tour with him.  Hats off, officer.   The info on museumships here is, unfortunately, three years out of date.

June 2014

And why not another . . . Urger here in 2018 alongside The Chancellor.

Last two photos,WVD.

 

Coastline Girls and many other names including Gage Paul Thornton and  ST-497, the 1944-build now sleeps deep in Davy Jones locker,  and was not an intentional reefing.

It’s been a while since I last saw Mcallister Sisters, shown here passing the Esopus Meadows light.  If I’m not mistaken, she’s currently based in Baltimore.

Ten years ago, this boat had already been painted blue over orange, but she still carried the June K name board.

Socrates, classic lines and a classic name, has since gone off to Nigeria, riding over in mid-2012 on a heavy lift ship called Swan.

Urger on blocks in Lyons . . . one would have thought then that she’d run forever.  These days she’s back on blocks at the eastern end of the Canal.

And February 2010 was the time of prime iceboating, and that’s Bonnie of frogma.

James Turecamo, with its wheelhouse down as I rarely saw it, works these days upriver as far north as Albany.  Photo by Allen Baker.

Brandywine and Odin these days spend most of their time on Gulf of Mexico waters.

Gramma Lee T Moran straining here as she pulled the tanker off the dock.  She now works in Baltimore.

In the foreground, East Coast departs the Kills;  I can’t say I recall seeing her recently,but AIS says she’s currently northbound north of the GW.    In the distance and approaching, June K, now Sarah Ann, and she regularly works in the sixth boro.

All photos, except Allen’s, WVD, from February 2010.

I have to share back story about getting that top photo.  I was on foot on Richmond Terrace walking east toward Jersey Street when I saw the Coastline tug and Hughes barge.  I didn’t recognize the profile and realized I could get the photo ONLY if I ran.  At the same time, I noticed an NYPD car had pulled over another car, and you know, it’s never a good idea to run for no apparent reason when the police are nearby.  But . . . you understand my dilemma:  walk and miss the shot, or run and maybe attract the curiosity of the police officer.  I ran, got the shot, and sure enough, the police called me over and wanted to know what I was doing.  Since I knew I’d done nothing wrong except appear suspicious, I gave him my business card and launched full tilt into my “new yorkers are so lucky because they are witness to so much marine business traffic, and why didn’t he too have a camera and join me watching and taking photos of the variety of vessels . . . .”  You can imagine the stare I got.  My enthusiasm failed to move him.  No handcuffs, no taser, not even a ticket, but an impassive gaze from a weary officer of the law possibly wondering  if I’d escaped from an institution or a time warp.  He wrote up a report and left me with this advice:  don’t run when you see a police officer nearby.  “Yessir,” I said, thinking . . . well sure, but I’d likely do it again if I again noticed something unusual transiting the waterway.  Since then, though, I’ve not had any further encounters with the LEOs, at least not on the banks of the sixth boro.

November 2009 saw the USS New York (LPD-21) arrive in her namesake city for christening commissioning. Just faintly, the name is visible on the stern.

I also went up to the Lyons NY dry dock in November 2009 and caught Urger, then in seasonal layup. Five years were to go by before I did my season on this Barge Canal tugboat.  May she return!

Firefighter was still working in the sixth boro.

Stephen was working then too, and she’s still working today.

Cape Ann’s Essex Creek is hardly the sixth boro, but you can get there from here . . . . and Essex MA is one of my favorite places, although –truth be told–I’ve been there only once since 2009.

Some miles north of Essex Creek is the Piscataqua River, and back then these were the horses in Moran’s stable on Ceres Street:  Carly A. Turecamo, Mary M. Coppedge, and Eugenia Moran.  Carly‘s now in Maine with Winslow, Eugenia is maybe laid up, and Mary M. is still working there . . . but again I’ve not been there in almost two years.

And finally . . .  she who need not be named alongside a dock in Philly.

Any since we’re on the retired undefeated speed champion, let’s zoom in on the “crow’s nest” in these next two photos . . .

Not my photo although I felt like talent that day . . .   Here and here are more photos from that day, in 2014.

This last photo is by Chris Ware.  All others by Will Van Dorp.

 

Let’s go back to September 2009.  CMA CGM Marlin, launched 2007,  was the standard size back then . . .  The 5092-teu vessel has since been scrapped, after only nine years of service!!

Over a dozen sailing barges came to NYC to sail in New York waters in commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the Half Moon arriving here all those years ago.  Here are more posts from back then. Groenevecht, below, is a 2000-built replica of a lemsteraak.

Also in town to celebrate were Onrust and HNLMS Tromp. Here’s more on Tromp.

Old and new came.  On one end of the spectrum was Day Peck, 

her great hold still waiting to be transformed into museum.

Urger still operated, here sidling up to Lehigh Valley 79.

A different Rosemary McAllister worked here.

Irish Sea (1969) was still at work.

Yessir, stuff changes.  All photos in September 2009 by Will Van Dorp.

 

If you’re new to the blog, I’ve done lots of blog posts on a NYS Canals tug called Urger.

For the past 5+ years, I’ve freelanced for a great publication called ProfessionalMariner, and this month have my first cover story.  I didn’t know my photo was on the cover until it came out!!  You can read my Urger article here.

Another piece of Urger news I have not reported elsewhere is below.  At the 2018 Waterford Tugboat Roundup, the 1901 built tug was voted “People’s Choice Favorite Tugboat,” winner of a dark horse write in campaign!  Below is the trophy.  Too bad the trophy has no boat to display it in for the public to see.

Now for big news on the political though primarily ceremonial end of things, Assembly member John McDonald III, District 108, has sponsored a bill to designate Urger as “official tugboat of the State of New York.  Read it here.

You can leave a note of thanks and support for Assembly member McDonald here.  If you vote in NYS and want to leave a note for your own rep to encourage him or her to join with McDonald in supporting this bill, you can start the connection here.

You can also write the Preservation League of New York and encourage them to continue their efforts to save this boat as a moving, floating ambassador from our state’s history.  Click here for more on their efforts.

And here’s yet another idea . . .   a 1/12 expired Urger fundraiser calendar. 

And finally, consider attending the Canal Society of New York Winter Symposium in Rochester NY on March 2.  I’ll be there.   Urger will surely come up.

And SCOW (State Council on Waterways) . . .  too bad you’ve dissolved!  There’s a reference of their Urger role at the end of this post. 

Here’s a calendar fundraiser you might consider.

It’s a fundraiser to benefit efforts to save Urger as a boat afloat:  “Update on our Urger campaign – we are talking to the New York Power Authority and waiting on a response from them on a few things. Everything is in a holding pattern right now for the winter, while the Urger is in Waterford. NYPA is commissioning an update to the 2014 Urger condition report. We asked for but have not seen (nor do I anticipate seeing) the scope of services for that report. I know they have taken metal samples, which is to be expected.

We’re working with Assemblyman John McDonald, who will introduce legislation to make the Urger the NYS Tug once session begins. We’re waiting for the final 2019 committee lists to come out before approaching someone in the Senate.

We’ve already spent several thousand dollars on the Urger campaign. Any funds raised (THANK YOU!) would go towards making us whole for those costs, as well as future expenses. It’s somewhat of a waiting game right now, but we may want to push NYPA to allow for a second opinion on the condition report, which would be pretty expensive and require its own fundraising effort. ”

Click here to see the interior pages and make your order.

Thanks to Jeff and the Preservation League.

 

And let’s start with the more . . . more photos and info on previous posts.    CCGS Samuel Risley appeared here.  She’s currently approaching the Soo.  What I didn’t know when I posted a photo of her on Lake Ontario is that she was returning from her first trip to Greenland (!!), where she was providing icebreaking support for a supply mission to Qaanaaq aka Thule.

Madison R–and I’ll do a whole post about her soon–now calls Detroit her base, I’m told.

Summer fog veils a Canadian cat and an Erie Canal buoy boat above E11.

How many folks pass by Day Peckinpaugh each summer and have no clue what she is (ILI 101… launched in May 1921!!), how long her work history  (1921–1995) has been, how wide a range of waters  (Duluth to Havana, I’m told) she covered, where her sister  (ILI 105) languishes . . . . .

She gets attention.

Here’s the blue-and-gold yard above E3!!

Yup that’s Urger among them.  And yes, the pause button on scuttling has been activated.

In the legends of Ford, a sign once marked this power plant adjacent to the Federal Lock in Troy as a Ford facility.   Could this have become the location of Ford’s imagined electric car plant?

And this brings us to Troy, these walls where construction workers have staged their equipment.

Scaffold, ladders, floats, and Jackcyn

 

 

and Lisa Ann.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who’s been working his way back to the sixth boro from the heartland.

If you’re local and would like to learn more about the New York State Canals, consider joining the Canal Society and coming to their fall conference . . .  on Staten Island.  I’ll be involved in two events . . .

 

The photo below may seem an unlikely choice on tugster, especially as lead photo.  I post it here because this is where Urger in 1901 was designed, built, and launched at 300 Pine, on a finger of the Grand River and not far from Dornbos Island.  I mention that because Urger was initially called Henry J. Dornbos.

Another odd photo lies below, until you recall some posts almost two years ago . . . Mariners to Muskegon.  Here behind the chainlink,  Colleen and Katie G await matched barges.

Trieste used to be called Vegsund.

I was fooled here:  although the stern looked bald, I thought it was a laker

but wondered why the bridge windows were covered.

I was making no sense of the lines near the stern, until I remembered that this “laker” was a barge.  No stack existed because the power plant was removed and turned into a notch.  Her matched tug is Invincible;  see them paired in this post (and scroll). 

Sarah-B is a 1953 Roamer built tug, that went from USACE to a museum and back into service.

Is this a one-off?

And finally, I took a tour of this 1904 car ferry, now called Milwaukee Clipper, named like the PanAm flying boats. 

For the first decades of her existence, the Clipper was SS Juniata.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who needed to get back on the boat and continue the loop.

DeWitt Clinton was built in the 1920s, delivered before the crash. She came out of a shipyard in East Boothbay, I’m told, but I can find no record of this.   Here she was in Lockport in early October 2014.

Here is a view from the wheelhouse, and

another from a slightly different vantage point. That’s tug Urger (1901) on the wall up ahead.

Fast forward to this year, here’s one of the latest additions to the Canal tug fleet, and

here’s the view from the wheelhouse.  And yes . . . again, that’s tug Urger on the wall ahead. this time in Fonda NY, where she may or may not be today.

How about some more pics of Dewitt Clinton, all from October 2014.

Here she rounds a bend on the western Canal.

And since we’ve seen Urger from Dewitt, how about ending with Dewitt as seen from Urger.

Photos 4 and 5 by Jake van Reenen;  the others by Will Van Dorp.

 

It thrills me that use of fireworks to celebrate our Independence dates to this note by John Adams to his wife Abigail:  ” … the occasion should be commemorated ‘with Pomp and Parade, with [Shows], Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.’ ”  The first commemorative Independence Day fireworks were set off on July 4, 1777; they were all orange.

My best shots of boats and “illuminations” were here in September 2014, and

even better here in July 2012.

Since I quote Adams, here’s an engraving of him, Franklin and Admiral Lord Richard Howe meeting at the Conference House on Staten Island in September 1776. The house was built in 1680, and Christopher Billop, the resident at the time of the Revolution, was a Loyalist who fled to Canada after he was captured and imprisoned in 1779.

But I digress, thanks to Adams, we use fireworks to celebrate today.

Photos and sentiments by Will Van Dorp.  Engraving by Alonzo Chappel. 

 

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