NATIONAL MARITIME HISTORICAL SOCIETY
THE ART, LITERATURE, ADVENTURE, LORE & LEARNING OF THE SEA 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner Vicar of Bray in the Falklands M/V Salvage Chief (ex LSM-380) USS Wardâ€™s Namesake: James H. Ward
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Offloading the Catch depicts a scene circa 1980 when the skipjack Elsworth has caught a load of oysters on the nearby Choptank River, and now her crew is unloading the day’s catch at Harrison Oyster House—Tilghman Island, MD.
Ofﬂoading the Catch at Tilghman Island By John Morton Barber, Fellow, American Society of Marine Artists Signed & Numbered Giclee Print. Image size 12” x 22”. Edition size of 600 Price: $195 each. (Add $25 s/h in the US.) To order call 1-800-221-NMHS (6647), ext. 0. e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit our website at www.seahistory.org. NYS residents add applicable sales tax.
Tour the Historic Ships of Britain Explore one of the finest collections of preserved ships in the world under the guidance of acclaimed maritime historian Brian Lavery, author of more than 30 books including Nelson’s Navy, Ship of the Line, Churchill’s Navy, and many others. This 7-day tour will visit Henry VIII’s sunken and recovered Mary Rose, Nelson’s Victory, Brunel’s Great Britain, the ironclad warship Warrior, the clipper Cutty Sark and the cruiser Belfast, famous for her role in World War II and the Korean War. There is much more to see besides—visits to museums and galleries, historic sites, boat trips in rivers and estuaries and some of England’s loveliest countryside, as well as the possibility of shopping in London, Portsmouth or Bristol. Dates: 26 August to 2 September 2018. To find out more, contact:
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10 National Maritime Awards Dinner and Washington Invitational Marine Art Exhibition The National Coast Guard Museum Association joins NMHS for the 2018 gala, honoring three individuals whose work has taken them to the top of their field while making lasting contributions to maritime heritage and marine conservation projects. Paintings by more than a dozen of today’s top marine artists will be on display for a one-night special exhibition and sale at the dinner at the historic Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC. Proceeds from art purchases benefit the National Maritime Historical Society and the National Coast Guard Museum Association. 16 Rediscovering USS Ward’s Namesake: James Harmon Ward, USN, by James H. Bruns In December, Paul Allen announced that his expedition had located USS Ward, the destroyer that fired the first shot in anger off Pearl Harbor in World War II. And who was the ship’s namesake? James Harmon Ward was one of the US Navy’s new breed of scholarly sailors; at the outset of the Civil War, he proposed to the new Lincoln administration a “flying flotilla” of small shallow-draft vessels to guard the Potomac and protect the nation’s capital.
22 Salute to M/V Salvage Chief (ex-LSM-380), by Jim Mockford LSM-380 was one of 558 landing craft of her class built between 1944 and 1945 as part of the US Navy’s push to prepare for the invasion of Japan. After the war, she was purchased and converted for salvage work. M/V Salvage Chief went on to rescue, recover, and salvage vessels along the West Coast with consistency and sometimes dramatic success. Now she is embarking on a new career; the ship has been purchased by a non-profit group that plans to make her operational for local disaster response readiness and as an educational and training ship. 30 Diving into the Wreck of Vicar of Bray, by James P. Delgado, Deborah Marx, Matthew Lawrence, and Amy Borgens The remains of a Gold Rush-era wooden square rigger lie in a remote ship’s graveyard at the bottom of the world. Last year, a team of archaeologists visited the Vicar of Bray in the Falkland Islands to document what has survived in this cold and isolated marine environment and what its future might hold.
salvage chief llc
36 Say Again? A Look at Nautical Jargon, by Dick Elam Author and retired journalism professor Dick Elam confronted the highly specific language of seafaring when he was writing his first novel. He shares his lessons learned, seasoned with a little salt and humor.
Cover: On the Waterfront: Washington, DC, in 1899, by Patrick O’Brien (See pages 12–13 for more works by O’Brien and other ASMA artists.)
DEPARTMENTS 42 Ship Notes, Seaport & Museum News 49 Calendar 50 Maritime History on the Internet 51 Reviews 56 Patrons
Sea History and the National Maritime Historical Society Sea History e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; NMHS e-mail: email@example.com; Website: www.seahistory.org. Ph: 914 737-7878; 800 221-NMHS MEMBERSHIP is invited. Afterguard $10,000; Benefactor $5,000; Plankowner $2,500; Sponsor $1,000; Donor $500; Patron $250; Friend $100; Contributor $75; Family $50; Regular $35.
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4 Deck Log 7 Letters 10 NMHS: a Cause in Motion 14 Tall Ships America 38 Sea History for Kids
30 SEA HISTORY (issn 0146-9312) is published quarterly by the National Maritime Historical Society, 5 John Walsh Blvd., POB 68, Peekskill NY 10566 USA. Periodicals postage paid at Peekskill NY 10566 and add’l mailing offices. COPYRIGHT © 2018 by the National Maritime Historical Society. Tel: 914 737-7878. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Sea History, PO Box 68, Peekskill NY 10566.
NATIONAL MARITIME HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Deck Log It’s All About the Ships!
courtesy of the artist
Preserving historic ships is an expensive, time-consuming process, requiring vision, commitment, and know-how. There are famous ships that we, as a country, must save as important icons in our national story; and there are lesser-known vessels that represent whole industries or regional culture. For those fortunate enough to get underway on a historic vessel that is still operational, the lessons learned cannot be taught any other way. They are gut-learned lessons of the trials of our ancestors, in many cases lessons of courage and hardship and hope. In addition to promoting the history these vessels represent, historic ships serve to preserve the skills required to maintain and operate them, whether they be wood or steel, powered by sail or steam. How thrilling it was in 2014 to see the only surviving wooden whaling ship, the 1841 Charles Morgan, sailing for the first time in seventy years, after years of meticulous restoration at Mystic Seaport. How moving it was to tour the iron full-rigged ship Wavertree in 2016 when she returned to South Street Seaport after a complete restoration in nearby Staten Island. The two surviving Liberty ships, John W. Brown in Baltimore and SS Jeremiah O’Brien in San Francisco, are not only preserved, but fully operational, and taking the public out for day trips several times a year. In the pages of this issue, you’ll read about Salvage Chief (ex-LCM-380), originally built for transport in WWII, a veteran of countless salvage and rescue missions, now entering a third career as a museum and training ship. Many other success stories can be found in ports around the country and sailing along the coasts. For those maritime stories whose associated ships have long been gone, the building of accurate and operational replicas like San Salvador at the Maritime Museum of San Diego and Plymouth’s Mayflower are great projects that pay it forward in myriad ways. There are ships that we must not scuttle because of their important role in our history. The cruiser Olympia in Sheeting In, by Charles Raskob Robinson, depicts Philadelphia—Admiral Dewey’s the crew of the Falls of Clyde on the fo’c’slehead flagship during the Battle of hauling on the headsail sheets in a pitching sea. Manila—has been barely hanging on for years. The fate of SS United States, America’s flagship and speed record holder from the great age of transAtlantic passenger travel, is far from settled. A Scotland-based group is working to repatriate and restore the Falls of Clyde, the only surviving full-rigged, four-masted sailing ship afloat. These are just a few examples of important vessels at risk because there is not yet a national consensus to save historic ships. Few public dollars are appropriated to ship restoration projects, and there are yet to be found enough billionaires to underwrite the work. With each passing year, it will become too late for some of them, and long gaps between projects means there may be too few left who know how to do the work. We haven’t given up hope. There are so many who should be thanked for their unwavering dedication to ship preservation, and we couldn’t possibly name them all. We salute the hundreds of heroes of the field who are moving the projects along, holding on, fundraising, scraping, painting, and record-keeping. Let us celebrate the successes and support the hopefuls, while we can.—Burchenal Green, NMHS President 4
NATIONAL MARITIME HISTORICAL SOCIETY PUBLISHER’S CIRCLE: Peter Aron, Guy E. C. Maitland, Ronald L. Oswald OFFICERS & TRUSTEES: Chairman, Ronald L. Oswald; Vice Chairman, Richardo R. Lopes; President, Burchenal Green; Vice Presidents: Deirdre O’Regan, Wendy Paggiotta, Nancy Schnaars; Treasurer, Howard Slotnick; Secretary, Jean Wort; Trustees: Charles B. Anderson; Walter R. Brown; Christopher J. Culver; William S. Dudley; David S. Fowler; William Jackson Green; Karen Helmerson; Richard M. Larrabee; Guy E. C. Maitland; Capt. Brian McAllister; CAPT Sally Chin McElwreath, USN (Ret.); Michael W. Morrow; CAPT James A. Noone, USN (Ret.); Richard Patrick O’Leary; Erik K. Olstein; ADM Robert J. Papp Jr., USCG (Ret.); Timothy J. Runyan; Richard Scarano; Philip J. Shapiro; Capt. Cesare Sorio; William H. White; Chairmen Emeriti: Walter R. Brown, Alan G. Choate, Guy E. C. Maitland, Howard Slotnick FOUNDER: Karl Kortum (1917–1996) PRESIDENT EMERITUS: Peter Stanford (1927–2016) OVERSEERS: Chairman, RADM David C. Brown, USMS (Ret.); RADM Joseph F. Callo, USN (Ret.); George W. Carmany III; James J. Coleman Jr.; Clive Cussler; Richard du Moulin; Alan D. Hutchison; Jakob Isbrandtsen; Gary Jobson; Sir Robin Knox-Johnston; John Lehman; Capt. James J. McNamara; H. C. Bowen Smith; John Stobart; Philip J. Webster; Roberta Weisbrod NMHS ADVISORS: George Bass, Francis Duffy, John Ewald, Timothy Foote, Steven A. Hyman, J. Russell Jinishian, Gunnar Lundeberg, Conrad Milster, William G. Muller, Stuart Parnes, Nancy Hughes Richardson, Bert Rogers, Joyce Huber SEA HISTORY EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: Chairman, Timothy Runyan; Norman Brouwer, Robert Browning, William Dudley, Daniel Finamore, Kevin Foster, John Jensen, Joseph Meany, Lisa Norling, Carla Rahn Phillips, Walter Rybka, Quentin Snediker, William H. White NMHS STAFF: Executive Director, Burchenal Green; Membership Director, Nancy Schnaars; Membership Coordinator, Jean Marie Trick; Marketing Director, Steve Lovass-Nagy; Comptroller, Anjoeline Osuyah; Staff Writer, Shelley Reid; Director of Development, Jessica MacFarlane; Membership Assistant, Irene Eisenfeld SEA HISTORY: Editor, Deirdre O’Regan; Advertising, Wendy Paggiotta Sea History is printed by The Lane Press, South Burlington, Vermont, USA.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
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SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
calvert marine museum
German Liners in the Chesapeake Our recently retired Curator of Maritime History, Richard Dodds, brought to our attention an error in the last issue of Sea History (Winter 2017–18). In Salvatore Mercogliano’s article, “ ‘We Built Her to Bring Them Over There’—The Cruiser and Transport Force in the Great War,” it states “the other two [the Kaiser-class liners Agamemnon and Mount Vernon] remained at anchor off St. Michaels, Maryland, until 1940, when they were recycled.” Also, “America, after being laid up in St. Michaels…” In fact, these vessels were not at St. Michaels but were actually laid up just down the Bay near Solomons Island. The US Shipping Board laid up four former German transAtlantic passenger liners in the Patuxent River south of Point Patience, by and north of Solomons, Maryland. The ships were renamed George Washington, America, Mount Vernon, and Monticello. The Calvert Marine Museum has many photographs of the ships and a few artifacts from the vessels in its collection. The most notable artifact is a converted lifeboat from the Mount Vernon. Our CMM
We Welcome Your Letters! Please send correspondence to:
firstname.lastname@example.org or Editor, Sea History, 7 Timberknoll Rd., Pocasset, MA 02559
calvert marine museum
The fleet of German ocean liners, laid up in the Patuxent River. National Maritime Alliance To Timothy Runyan: Your article (Sea History 161, “The National Maritime Alliance—Advocating for Maritime Heritage”) covered the tumultuous history of the Alliance, which you, a few others, and I formed at a meeting about the Ernestina many years ago, hosted by its skipper, Dan Moreland. You deserve unlimited credit for having persevered against formidable odds to achieve the goals of the Alliance and for staying at it all these years. I remember that day when ex-Secretary of the Navy Bill Middendorf, in the company of Peter Stanford, myself, and others, announced the formation of the Alliance aboard USS Constitution during her annual turnaround. Who could forget how David Brink worked with the staff of the legislators pro-
moting the Alliance and federal funding, indeed his shepherding the resolution to the docket minutes before the deadline for submitting it? But success was shortlived, of course. The program was aborted, for all intents and purposes, when the EPA ruled that the US could not scrap abroad vessels that were environmentally hazardous. Ship scrapping did not generate funds for the grant program for many years, until a domestic ship recycling industry was in place. And then, in the current version, there was the repeated intrusion by the Maritime Administration claiming a large percentage of the funds that were originally designated for historic ship preservation and other maritime heritage projects. Keep up the good work. Henry (Harry) H. Anderson Jr. Mystic, Connecticut
Join Us for a Voyage into History The lifeboat from SS Mount Vernon, converted to a chapel. This structure is now on the campus of the Calvert Marine Museum in Solomons, Maryland.
Press has published separate books on the fleet and the lifeboat. The Patuxent “Ghost Fleet” 1927–1941 by Merle T. Cole (1986; reprinted 2009) recounts the history of the laid-up fleet. The Ark of Hungerford Creek by Richard J. Dodds (2017) documents the history. The lifeboat was converted into a chapel in the 1930s and recently moved to the museum campus. Robert J. Hurry Registrar, Calvert Marine Museum Solomons, Maryland
Our seafaring heritage comes alive in the pages of Sea History, from the ancient mariners of Greece to Portuguese navigators opening up the ocean world to the heroic efforts of sailors in modern-day conflicts. Each issue brings new insights and discoveries. If you love the sea, rivers, lakes, and
bays—if you appreciate the legacy of those who sail in deep water and their workaday craft, then you belong with us.
Mail in the form below, phone 1 800 221-NMHS (6647), or visit us at: www.seahistory.org (e-mail: email@example.com)
Yes, I want to join the Society and receive Sea History quarterly. My contribution is enclosed. ($17.50 is for Sea History; any amount above that is tax deductible.) Sign me up as: $35 Regular Member $50 Family Member $100 Friend 162 $250 Patron $500 Donor Mr./Ms. _____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ZIP_______________ Return to: National Maritime Historical Society, PO Box 68, Peekskill, NY 10566
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 7
From Dr. Runyan, Chair, National Maritime Alliance: Harry—Thanks for your letter and the kind words about my work pressing for federal funding for maritime heritage— a daunting challenge, which required changing the law. But we did it. Your memory is sharp! The early days of the National Maritime Alliance were an exciting time full of disappointments, challenges, and ultimately success in passing the National Maritime Heritage Act (1994). We are still fighting to get more support from the federal government for all areas of maritime heritage—lighthouses, historic ships, maritime museums, educational programs, and more. We have managed to secure $9.5 million over the past four years, but I am still pressing for more funding and new sources. As this issue of Sea History is being prepared for publication, the 11th Maritime Heritage Conference—this year hosted jointly with Tall Ships America—will be getting underway in New Orleans; it provides an unparalleled opportunity to encourage support and engagement among our colleagues. National Maritime Alliance Secretary/Treasurer Capt. Chan Zucker and
I led the effort to restart the conferences in 2001 as another initiative of the Alliance. Harry, you are a great supporter of maritime heritage and your efforts are much appreciated. I was delighted to hear about the grand celebration on the occasion of your 90th birthday and how you chose to use it to raise support for sail training. Well done! Many thanks for your dedication and ongoing support. —Best, Tim Captain Dan Moreland—Preserving Maritime Heritage at Sea and Ashore It was a fine story, as usual, by Capt. Dan Moreland on what it means to sail around the world on a tall ship. As he is about to embark on Picton Castle’s seventh world voyage, all but one under his command, Capt. Moreland has many achievements to his credit. One not mentioned in the article but close to my heart is the restoration of the schooner Ernestina-Morrissey that he led after the newly independent nation of Cape Verde gave the vessel to the people of the United States as a goodwill gift honoring the vessel’s long history in both countries and the strong relationship between them as well. But to the readers of Sea History I
think one fact stands out and it is not one that Capt. Moreland would mention. I don’t believe there is another mariner alive today who has captained one sailing vessel on six circumnavigations. I was mayor of New Bedford during Moreland’s tenure with Ernestina. Having recently retired from NOAA Fisheries, I plan to spend more time assisting the effort to bring Ernestina-Morrissey back to life. John Bullard New Bedford, Massachusetts From the editor: In 1987, the National Trust for Historic Preservation honored Captain Daniel D. Moreland for his “outstanding commitment to excellence in historic preservation” and specifically for “excellence of workmanship and authenticity of the restoration.” Captain Moreland has stated that this upcoming world voyage will be his last. For those waiting to someday make this trip, the time is at hand. Berths are still available for the full voyage and individual legs. Visit Picton Castle online for more information: www.picton-castle.com. For more on Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey: www.ernestina.org.
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A CAUSE IN MOTION
The 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner Mayflower Hotel • Washington, DC • 25 April 2018
Artist’s rendering of the National Coast Guard Museum. The historic Mayflower Hotel will serve as the venue for the 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner.
national coast guard museum association
It is with great pleasure that Dr. Timothy J. Runyan and Denise Krepp, the 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner co-chairs, invite you to join NMHS and the National Coast Guard Museum Association on 25 April to celebrate three distinguished individuals for their unique contributions to the maritime community. This gala event will take place at the historic Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC, with proceeds to benefit the National Maritime Historical Society and the new Coast Guard Museum to be built on the New London, Connecticut, waterfront, homeport of the US Coast Guard Academy and its square-rigged training ship, the barque Eagle. NMHS is also pleased to partner with the Chief Warrant and Warrant Officers Association (CWOA), a nonprofit veteran’s association that produces a quarterly membership newsletter and represents United States Coast Guard warrant and chief warrant officers (active, reserve and retired, and their families and survivors) to Congress, the White House and the Department of Homeland Security. Established in 1929, CWOA also works to educate members on benefits and how the actions of Congress and the Executive Branch will affect them.
Executive chairman and chairman of the board of Marriott International, Inc., J. W. Marriott Jr. will receive the NMHS Distinguished Service Award. Mr. Marriott served as a supply officer aboard the US Navy aircraft carrier USS Randolph (CV-15) from 1954 to 1956, which he calls an important learning experience and one that greatly influenced his management style in the hospitality industry. Marriott International maintains a “Spirit to Serve” philosophy, fostered by J. W. Marriott, to provide extensive corporate support to America’s returning veterans. Mr. Marriott places a great emphasis on people—his staff, communities, and guests. He served 40 years as the world-famous hotel chain’s chief executive officer, before stepping down in March of 2012. His leadership spans more than 60 years building the global hospitality company to what it is today, with 6,500 properties in 127 countries and territories. Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert, USN (Ret.), former Chief of Naval Operations, will present the award. J. W. Marriott is a veteran of the US Navy, having served aboard USS Randolph. 10
courtesy j. w. marriott
J. W. Marriott Jr.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
William C. Baker
courtesy william c. baker
William C. Baker, president and CEO of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, will also receive the NMHS Distinguished Service Award. The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is a fierce advocate that works to protect and restore this national treasure and integral part of America’s maritime heritage through advocacy, education, litigation, and restoration. Mr. Baker is focused on one goal—“Saving the Bay”—by achieving a clean, healthy, and productive estuarine system that will serve as a model for other marine conservation organizations worldwide. As the largest non-profit conservation organization dedicated solely to preserving and restoring the Chesapeake Bay, the Foundation boasts more than 200,000 members. US Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland will present the award. Will Baker takes the helm at the Volvo Spirit Race.
Donald T. Bollinger
courtesy donald t. bollinger
Donald “Boysie” Bollinger will receive the National Coast Guard Museum Association’s Alexander Hamilton Award. Bollinger is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., a family-owned full-service marine construction and ship repair company headquartered in Lockport, Louisiana. Bollinger’s maritime career as a leading provider of quality maritime construction and services to both the US military and the commercial marine industry is well complemented by his generosity and philanthropic giving to maritime heritage preservation and organizations. His influence and dedication have benefited many groups, particularly the United States Coast Guard Foundation and the National World War II Museum. For his unwavering support, the National Coast Guard Museum Association is honored to recognize this maritime industry icon. Tom Ridge, the first United States Secretary of Homeland Security and former Governor of Pennsylvania, will present the award. Mr. Bollinger gives opening remarks for the “rechristening” of a converted diving boat for Epic Divers & Marine Company. The National Maritime Awards Dinner brings together those who love and serve the sea to celebrate, preserve, and promote America’s maritime heritage. With more than 350 maritime leaders, community members, and Washington decision makers in attendance, this event provides a great venue to advocate for funding for the numerous maritime heritage programs around the country. We extend great thanks to J. W. Marriott Jr. and Boysie Bollinger for their support as Fleet Sponsors of this event, and to Howard Slotnick for his support as Underwriter of the 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner.
Gary Jobson, America’s Cup champion and America’s “Ambassador of Sailing,” will serve as master of ceremonies. Video introductions about the recipients will be produced by Richardo Lopes. Entertainment will be provided by the Mariners Chorus of the US Merchant Marine Academy directed by Dr. Katherine Meloan. Philip J. Webster, the event’s founding dinner chairman, recommends that guests visit www.seahistory.org or call 914 7377878, ext. 0, to make their reservations right away, as he predicts this year’s event will sell out. Tickets are priced from $275, with sponsorship opportunities available. The Mayflower Hotel is offering a block of rooms for 24 and 25 April at $359 per night, single or double occupancy, with applicable state and local taxes (currently 14.8%). This special rate is available until 5pm, 3 April, or until the block is sold out. To reserve your room, use passkey link https://aws.passkey.com/e/49584583, (this link is also posted on the NMHS website at www.seahistory.org). If you choose to phone in your reservation (toll free at 877-212-5752), be sure to ask for the block rate under the name “National Maritime Awards Dinner” to take advantage of this special event rate. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 11
National M aritime Awards Dinner
Washington Invitational Marine Art Exhibition The strong ties between the National Maritime Historical Society and the American Society of Marine Artists will be on full display at the 2018 National Maritime Awards Dinner in Washington, DC, on 25 April. The late Peter Stanford, NMHS president emeritus, helped found ASMA back in 1978 to “recognize, encourage, and promote marine art and maritime history.” ASMA artists are an amazingly talented and knowledgeable resource, not just to those who appreciate and collect art, but to those who value the study of maritime history. These artists bring to life seafaring scenes from every age and successfully capture the spirit and character of sailing and ships, Potomac River Reverie: Washington, DC, in 1890 large and small, power and sail, merchant, military, or by Patrick O’Brien, (oil on panel–10 x 20 inches) $4,800 leisure. NMHS is indeed fortunate to have a close relationship with these great artists working today. Through the leadership of acclaimed artist Patrick O’Brien, we have invited a select group of ASMA artists to display their work at the National Maritime Awards Dinner. This is an exhibition of mostly small paintings by contemporary masters of maritime art. A one-night-only event, the exhibition is organized to offer our members and guests a chance to meet some of the artists and see their paintings, and perhaps purchase a favorite and take it home. 25% of the purchase price of each painting goes to the National Maritime Historical Society and the National Coast Guard Museum Association, and is tax deductible for the buyer. You don’t have to be present to purchase a painting. All selections are available for purchase now through NMHS: online at www.seahistory.org, or by calling NMHS headquarters at 914 7377878, ext. 0. Paintings sold in advance will be displayed as “Sold” at the event. You can view more selections online at the NMHS website. Check back as the event date approaches for additional works that will be posted as they become available. —Burchenal Green NMHS President On the Waterfront: Washington, DC, in 1899 by Patrick O’Brien, (oil on panel–24 x 36 inches) $14,000
Amorita off Fishers Island by David Bareford, (oil–12 x 24 inches) $X,YZQ Squall on the Bay by Peter Rindlisbacher, (oil on canvas–8 x 10 inches) $950 “I wondered what a Baltimore Clipper might do with a sudden squall astern, and borrowed a quick sunlight moment from one of my memories of yacht racing on the Great Lakes.”—PR 12
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Volvo Cup, Newport, Rhode Island by Sergio Roffo, (oil on panel–11 x 14 inches) $4,000
Surf Study by Sergio Roffo, (oil on panel–10 x 20 inches) $6,000 Crescent Moon by Len Mizerek (oil on canvas–12 x 24 inches) $3,200
Quiet Dawn by Neal Hughes, (oil on linen–20 x 20 inches) $3,600 This painting was done on location at the Philadelphia Navy Yard during the Wayne Plein Air Festival in 2017.
Mystic by Russ Kramer, (oil on linen–16 x 24 inches) $13,500 “Built by John Alden in 1925 for Philip Mallory, Commodore of the American Yacht Club in Rye, New York, Mystic would win her class in the 285-mile Larchmont to Cape Ann race later that year. She is shown here passing Latimer Reef Lighthouse in Long Island Sound.”—RK Please visit the NMHS website at www.seahistory.org for additional selections of original marine art available for purchase at the upcoming Washington Invitational Art Exhibition—on display for one night only—at the National Maritime Awards Dinner. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 13
Tall Ships ChallengeÂŽ 2018 Gulf Coast and Philadelphia
For the first time, Tall Ships America will bring its Tall Ships ChallengeÂŽ series to the Gulf of Mexico. In April, thousands of visitors will flock to the waterfronts of the three Gulf Coast host ports to tour the magnificent visiting sailing ships and participate in maritime festivals and activities along the waterfront. The series kicks off in Galveston, Texas, home of the historic 1877 iron barque Elissa. The official tall ship of Texas, Elissa will welcome visiting ships, including the three-masted topsail schooner Oosterschelde from the Netherlands, topsail schooner Lynx, full-rigged ship Oliver Hazard Perry, the world voyaging barque Picton Castle, schooner When and If, and others. From there, the ships will race to Pensacola, Florida, and then on to New Orleans in time to join with New Orleans Navy Week 2018 to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the founding of the one-of-a-kind city. The Tall Ships Challenge series will then sail for the East Coast and meet up in Atlantic Coast 2018 Philadelphia at the end of May. 45th annual conference on to sail aboard some of the visiting ships, either for daysails or for legs between ports, visit the For opportunities sail training and tall ships Tall Ships America website at www.sailtraining.org. Tall Ships Galveston information is online at www.galve stonhistory.org; Tall Ships Pensacola: www.visitpensacola.com; Tall Ships New Orleans: www.tallshipsno la2018.org; and for Philadelphia details: www.sailphiladelphia.org.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
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SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 15
Rediscovering USS Ward’s Namesake:
James Harmon Ward, USN by James H. Bruns
An hour after Lieutenant Outerbridge radioed this report to the Fourteenth Naval District headquarters at Pearl Harbor, the first wave of the Japanese attacks began on the “date which will live in infamy.” Three years to the day after USS Ward fired the first shots by the United States in World War II, the destroyer was struck by a kamikaze during the Battle of Surigao Straight—Leyte Gulf, Philippines. The bomber exploded, and fire broke out amidships aboard the destroyer, ultimately leading her commanding officer to order his crew to abandon ship. Other US Navy destroyers stood by to receive her crew, including USS O’Brien (DD-725), commanded by none other than Lt. Commander William Outerbridge. With all survivors safely aboard the other ships, the task group was ordered to sink the ship with gunfire. Although the location of the destroyer’s remains was not in dispute, the depth of the water where she sank made access to the wreck site impractical, and, until a few months ago, no one had seen the ship since she slipped beneath the waves in 1944. It took the development of advanced technology in deep-sea exploration, funding, a dedicated and highly skilled team of scientists and crew, and the determination of the expedition’s sponsor, Paul Allen, to locate the shipwreck and document it. USS Ward was named for another “first” in a major US war, and the re-discovery of the ship named for James Ward affords an opportunity to USS Ward burning in Ormoc Bay, 7 December reflect upon his contribution to American history. 1944, with USS O’Brien standing off to assist.
ames Harmon Ward was the first Union naval officer killed in action during the Civil War. He was born in Hartford, Connecticut, on 25 September 1806. Upon graduation from what would become Norwich University in 1823, he accepted a commission as a midshipman in the United States Navy. During his naval career at sea, Ward served in the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, and off the west coast of Africa as part of the Navy’s anti-slavery patrols. Ashore, he helped establish the United States Naval Academy; but perhaps his greatest accomplishment was saving the Potomac River from Confederate control at the start of the Civil War. The idea for the Potomac Flotilla was like something lifted from the pages of a Vietnam-era navy playbook. The idea was to create a swift, agile, shallow-water riverine force that could be used in interdicting enemy supply lines, conducting reconnaissance of enemy troop movements, threatening enemy strong-points, convoying supplies and merchant ships, conveying military dispatches, engaging with small troop concentrations or light shore batteries, and inserting landing shore parties for 16
limited search-and-destroy missions. This concept, however, came nearly 100 years before its Vietnam brown-water counterpart. Ward possessed impressive academic and naval credentials. He attended the American Literary, Scientific and Military Academy, the precursor of Norwich Uni-
Commander James H. Ward, USN (1806–1861)
all images courtesy us navy, nhhc
“We have attacked, fired upon, and dropped depth charges on a submarine operating in defensive sea areas.” —Lieutenant William Outerbridge, USS Ward, just outside the entrance to Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941.
versity, which Lincoln’s navy secretary, Gideon Welles, also attended; he accepted a commission as a midshipman in the US Navy at age seventeen; and he served in the Mediterranean aboard USS Constitution. After his tour in Constitution, in 1828 he was allowed to return to school, attending Washington College in Connecticut for a year. He completed his studies and was then assigned to the sailing sloops USS Warren and USS Concord, both cruising in the Mediterranean. Ward was promoted to lieutenant in 1831. His assignments during the 1830s to mid-1840s included tours aboard sailing sloops USS Falmouth and USS St. Louis, the side-wheel steamer USS Fulton, and the brig USS Dolphin. In 1845 Lieutenant Ward was tapped to help found the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. He served as its first Commandant of Midshipmen, and was a founder of the Academy’s library. Back at sea during the Mexican-American War, in 1847 Ward commanded the sailing frigate USS Cumberland, Commodore Matthew C. Perry’s flagship in actions off Mexico. In 1849 Ward was promoted SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
to lieutenant commander, and in 1853 he was elevated to the rank of commander. Ward commanded USS Jamestown, a 20gun sailing sloop serving off the West Coast of Africa as part of the Navy’s anti-slavery squadron. In addition to his service at sea, Ward was one of the US Navy’s new breed of academic officers, a scholarly sailor who authored three highly respected treatises on naval tactics, steam power, and naval ordnance and gunnery. In the closing months of his administration, President James Buchanan struggled with what to do with Fort Sumter in South Carolina, which had barely enough provisions to sustain itself until the inauguration of Abraham Lincoln in March. The South wanted the fort evacuated, while sentiments in the North called for it to be resupplied and strengthened. James Ward was of the opinion that he could save the fort using a small flotilla of shallow-draft steamers commandeered from the US Coastal Survey. The plan called for his steamer force to enter the harbor and make a hasty run for the fort. Ward accepted that once his ships reached the fort they would likely not be allowed to escape back to open water, so his sailors would have to become part of the garrison. Buchanan rejected Ward’s idea, believing it would only further antagonize the secessionists in Charleston, resulting in an attack on the fort. Instead, in January 1861 the government secretly leased the Star of the West, an unarmed civilian merchant ship, to transport troops and supplies to the fort, but the ship was forced to turn back when it was fired upon while attempting to enter Charleston Harbor. Upon taking office, President Lincoln was consumed with the same issue. During his first weeks in office, Lincoln conferred with senior military and cabinet officials on the feasibility of supplying the fort. A variety of ideas were proposed, including the possibility of using a non-descript, large commercial merchant ship that could anchor at the mouth of the harbor, where relief supplies would be transferred to a fast flotilla of tugboats that would swiftly dash for the fort under cover of darkness. Having listened to Ward and received the advice of others, Secretary Welles
believed that the Navy could indeed supply the fort, but these notions were again overruled, this time by Lincoln. The new president ultimately did authorize a relief effort, but the rescue expedition arrived too late to do much more than evacuate the garrison. Protecting the Potomac If Ward couldn’t save Fort Sumter, perhaps his idea of creating a small flotilla on the Potomac could help save the capital. Ward envisioned creating a “flying flotilla,” a squadron of relatively small ships, mostly converted tugboats, for use on the Chesapeake Bay and the nation’s gateway river during the Civil War. Ward’s idea was shared with Welles, who this time gave it his blessing. Ward’s proposal came at just the right time. Events in 1861 unfolded quickly. The Confederate States of America was formed on 1 February. Abraham Lincoln was sworn in as the nation’s sixteenth president on 4 March. Fort Sumter was fired upon on 12 April and surrendered the following day. Lincoln called for the mobilization of 75,000 volunteers two days later, and on 19 April he ordered the blockade of much of the southern coast from Texas to the Carolinas. The first state militia troops arrived to defend Washington, DC, on 27 April. Lincoln added the coastline of Virginia to the blockade when that state formally seceded on 23 May. While Maryland officially chose to remain neutral, a large portion of its population living along the Potomac River were southern sympathizers. In the first half of 1861, thoughts of defending the lower Potomac River were largely eclipsed by national events. With most northern leaders distracted by what was going on elsewhere around the country, especially the unsettling talk of secession and of the prospects of hostilities erupting in Charleston Harbor, few were concentrating on the danger to the nation’s capital’s key waterway, sandwiched as it was between Virginia and Maryland, if the war came. Few were focused on the crucial role the Potomac River might play in keeping the federal city open if a sectional war indeed erupted. And, of course, the war began. In retrospect, Admiral David Dixon
Porter characterized the situation at the time by recalling that “the country was too busy watching the black clouds gathering in the South and West to note the ordinary events that were taking place on the Potomac, yet they formed the small links in the chain which, in the end, shackled the arms of the great rebellion.” Contrary to Porter’s recollection, events on the Potomac by mid-1861 had become far from “ordinary,” and luckily someone was mindful of the importance of the Potomac River in the survival of the capital. That person was James H. Ward. Against this backdrop, Ward wasted no time acting. In rapid succession, he assembled his small flotilla and began contesting southern strong points that challenged Union control of the waterway. Just as in Vietnam in the mid-1960s, during the formation of the 1861 brownwater fleet, secondhand or surplus vessels were used initially. During the Civil War, converted tugs and ferryboats assumed the role that leftover World War II craft, such as LCMs (Landing Craft, Mechanized) and LSMs (Landing Ship, Medium), would later fulfill in patrolling Southeast Asia backwaters and deltas. Ward’s little fleet lived up to expectations. It swiftly began neutralizing southern water-borne invasion threats, conducting critical reconnaissance missions, conveying important military dispatches, and enforcing the president’s blockade order of the South. The diminutive flotilla strike force also provided convoy protection for northern merchant traffic on the river. Forming the “Flying Flotilla” On 29 April 1861 President Lincoln wrote Gideon Welles, saying: “You will…have as strong a War Steamer as you can conveniently put on that duty, to cruise upon the Potomac, and to look in upon, and, if practical, examine the Bluff and vicinity, at what is called the White House [named after a white structure located at a landing near what is now Fort Belvoir, Virginia], once or twice per day, and, in case of any attempt to erect a battery there, to drive away the party attempting it, if practical, and, in every event to report daily to your Department, and to me.” This was accompanied by a private note, which observed:
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 17
The Potomac Flotilla in the Potomac between Freestone Point, Virginia, and Indian Head, Maryland, published in Frank Leslie’s “The above order I wrote at the suggestion of General [Winfield] Scott, though the execution of it, I believe is substantially what you are already doing.” Indeed, by then the initial nucleus of Ward’s “flying flotilla” was already being assembled in New York and would soon be fitted out at the Washington Navy Yard. Ward’s swift-boat force would ultimately consist largely of a rag-tag collection of hastily armed tugboats, converted passenger ferry boats, schooners, and small sloops-of-war—vessels that could get in close to the banks of the Potomac and Rappahannock rivers and maneuver up their shallow, backwater creeks, anywhere a determined enemy might hide. Just as in Vietnam a century later, many of the vessels in Ward’s initial hodgepodge, brown-water flotilla weren’t expected to carry a great deal of firepower. None of his smaller ships were expected to act alone in slugging it out with a major enemy force. Instead, his early, tiny and unarmored vessels were expected to hit and run. If confronted by a superior force, they were to retire, gather additional forces, and return in force to fight it out on more equal terms. This same strategy was used a century later in the deltas and rivers of Vietnam. Among the principal warships assembled in New York for Ward’s Potomac flotilla was USS Thomas Freeborn, a side18
wheel tugboat that would be equipped with a pair of 32-pounders mounted on novel gun carriages designed by Ward and would serve as his flagship; USS Reliance, a steamer; and USS Resolute, a tugboat. All three “gunboats” were purchased by the US Navy on 7 May and were commissioned by 13 May. Ward’s flotilla set out from the New York Navy Yard for the Chesapeake on 16 May 1861. Among the common denominators of these vessels were their diminutive size, light armament, and shallow drafts. USS Pawnee was the exception with regards to firepower. The Philadephia-built steam sloop-of-war was added to the flotilla as a temporary measure. While not highly manageable in heavy seas because of her wide beam and shallow ten-foot draft, the inclusion of USS Pawnee was nevertheless a welcome addition because of her fourteen guns, which provided exceptional fire support. With Union victories on land slow to materialize, the Potomac Flotilla quickly began making an impact, and anything Ward did to affect positive change to the outcome of the war was deeply appreciated by Lincoln and Welles, who needed all of the success stories they could get. Securing Alexandria First In this respect, the Potomac Flotilla achieved an outstanding record of suc-
cesses, including conducting the war’s first successful amphibious operation with landings at Alexandria, Virginia, a major Confederate choke point on the river only a few miles south of the nation’s capital. Under the guns of Ward’s flotilla, Alexandria was occupied on 24 May with barely a shot fired. The flotilla was also quick to implement the Union’s blockade of the Southern coast. With President Lincoln’s expansion of the order to blockade southern ports from Virginia and North Carolina on 27 April 1861, some of Virginia’s first blockade runners were interdicted on the Potomac by Ward’s ships, beginning with the seizure of the steamer Thomas Colyer, taken at Alexandria on 25 May. A succession of other 1861 Potomac River seizures quickly followed, including the capture and burning of the schooner Somerset on 8 June, and the sloop Alena, which was taken on 15 June. What is remarkable is that this puny force not only participated in the capture of Alexandria and seizure of blockade runners, but it also successfully attacked Confederate shore batteries and troop concentrations in Virginia at Occoquan Creek, Sewell’s Point, Aquia Creek, and Mathias Point as well. Most of these shore batteries were placed in these locations principally to contest and harass Union navigation of the river. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Illustrated, 1861. (l-r) Tugboat Murray, USS Jacob Bell, USS Yankee, USS Penguin, USS Satellite, and USS Seminole. On 31 May, Ward, in command of USS Freeborn and assisted by gunboats Resolute and Anacostia, attacked the Confederate batteries at Aquia Creek. After a two-hour firefight, Ward’s flotilla succeeded in silencing the batteries along the shore, but could not effectually respond to the heavier Confederate gunfire from the heights overlooking the river, forcing his vessels to withdraw. The following day, however, he returned with a vengeance. With additional support from USS Pawnee and the sidewheel tugboat USS Yankee, Ward again pressed an attack, and this time the cumulative firepower silenced the Confederate batteries and forced a southern retreat. As part of that effort, on 27 June 1861 Ward led a landing party of about forty sailors in an attempt to drive the rebels
away long enough to install a howitzer battery on Mathias Point before the Confederates could place their own guns there. Ward’s men spent nearly five hours creating an earthwork for his battery, but just as his work party was preparing to return to the Freeborn to get the howitzers, they were confronted by the arrival of a large rebel force and forced to make a hasty retreat. The following day Ward directed his sailors to make a second landing, this time under the command of Lieutenant James C. Chaplin from USS Pawnee. Ward remained aboard USS Freeborn to coordinate fire support for the landing party. During Chaplin’s attempted landing, the Freeborn’s bow gunner was shot in the thigh by a southern marksman. Captain Ward jumped in to take the gunner’s place, but, while aiming the bow-gun of USS Freeborn, he
was shot in the stomach by a Confederate sharpshooter. The 54-year-old naval officer died a short time later of blood loss from his injuries. Ward’s body was brought to Washington aboard USS Pawnee for a funeral ceremony. Accompanied by sailors from USS Freeborn, it was then taken to the New York Navy Yard on 1 July for a viewing aboard USS North Carolina, Ward’s previous command. Finally, Ward’s body was transported to Hartford, Connecticut, for burial. Regrettably, his family was not there to greet his body. His wife, Sarah, and several of their children were in Europe at the time; Ward was buried in a family plot at the Old North Cemetery in Hartford. James Harmon Ward became the first Union naval officer killed in action during the Civil War. Between his connections and his outstanding skill and capabilities as a naval commander and strategic planner, he clearly could have become one of the Union Navy’s superstars had he not been killed so early in the war. Death of Captain James H. Ward, 27 June 1861, during an engagement between the gunboat flotilla and a secession force at Mathias Point, Virginia, based on a sketch by an officer of the expedition, published in Frank Leslie’s Illustrated newspaper, 1861. USS Thomas Freeborn, Ward’s flagship, is depicted at left; at right is the tug USS Resolute.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 19
Epilogue The Potomac flotilla would go on to be responsible for detecting and destroying the South’s first known use of marine torpedoes in July 1861. After 1863, the Potomac River and the greater part of the Chesapeake Bay became a largely Uniondominated waterway, especially during the day, with blockade running violations largely eliminated, except for the occasional interdiction of a skiff, oyster boat, or canoe with limited contraband. A bigger challenge after 1863 was the occasional threat of armed incursions from Virginia into Maryland by small Confederate raiding parties or the occasional pop-up hit-and-run-attacks by southern guerrillas principally along the creeks and marshes on the Virginia side of the Potomac watershed. Such micro-engagements were typically quickly dispensed with by the flotilla. As an example, in late August 1861 the flotilla landed 200 Marines to thwart a rumored invasion of Maryland near Port Tobacco. The Marines seized supplies and arms but encountered no real resistance. After 1863 the flotilla also launched a
greater number of expeditions along the shoreline, putting ashore well-armed landing parties equipped with small field howitzers in search of salt works, supply depots, or enemy encampments. While an array of different ships would rotate in and out of service during the course of the war, the Potomac fleet would never number more than about two dozen vessels at any given time. The total number of vessels used during the flotilla’s five-year existence included dozens of ships, including several ironclad monitors towards the end of the war. As with any river force, groundings and mechanical problems proved constant challenges, and the latter could prove fatal. USS Tulip was an example of just how deadly mechanical problems could be. Tulip was limping back to the Washington Navy Yard for repairs to her faulty starboard boiler when it exploded on 11 November 1864. Despite advice not to use the starboard boiler, the crew ignored those instructions and the faulty boiler exploded, sinking the vessel and killing all but eight of her fifty-seven-man crew.
The riverine war on the Potomac began operations with the opening shots on Fort Sumter in 1861 and continued on the river throughout the war, only being disbanded after the last shots were fired in anger in 1865. Among the flotilla’s final acts was assisting in the search for John Wilkes Booth and closing off possible escape routes for the other Lincoln conspirators and fleeing Confederate officials trying to escape the country after the fall of Richmond. The Potomac Flotilla was disbanded on 31 July 1865. James H. Bruns is the executive director of the Navy League of the United States (www. navyleague.org) and is the former director of the National Museum of the United States Navy, located in the Washington Navy Yard. To see video footage of the USS Ward wreck site and learn more about Paul Allen’s expeditions aboard RV Petrel, visit www.paulallen.com. Paul Allen’s team was also the crew that located the shipwreck site of USS Indianapolis in August 2017.
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Historic Ships on a Lee Shore
Salute to M/V Salvage Chief (ex-LSM 380)
storia, Oregon, is the home of the legendary ship M/V Salvage Chief, which carries a history dating back to World War II, when it was built as a Landing Ship Medium (LSM) to sail into the Pacific in the war against Japan. The Salvage Chief has long been connected to Astoria, and to a community of hundreds of people who served onboard as crew and ashore managing operations from her homeport over the span of more than six decades. Salvage Chief has recently embarked on a third career since her maiden voyage seventy-three years ago. After service in the US Navy and years conducting salvage operations on the West Coast, Salvage Chief will serve as a working educational platform honoring and preserving the memory of the ship and those who worked onboard, and as a working vessel, training future generations of mariners, engineers, and salvors. The ship was built as a landing craft for the US Navy at Brown Ship Building Company in Houston, Texas, one of 558 LSMs built by the Navy between 1944 and 1945. Laid down on 23 December 1944, the vessel was launched just three weeks later on 13 January 1945 and commissioned as USS LSM-380 on 10 February, assigned to the Asia-Pacific theater. The LSM-1 class (Landing Ship, Medium) would prove to be vital to the Allies’ success in Iwo Jima and the Japanese home islands. LSM-380 had an overall length of 203’6” and beam of 34’6”, but a light draft of just 6’4” forward and 8’3” aft when fully loaded—that translated to carrying five medium or three heavy tanks, or up to nine DUKW’s, the military amphibious vehicles (popularly known as Duck boats) designed by famed yacht designer Rod Stephens Jr. of Sparkman and Stephens. The ship’s first commander, LT. John K. Ullrich, USNR, sailed with a complement of five officers and fifty-four enlisted sailors. Propelled by two Fairbanks Morse 1,440 horsepower (BHP) diesel engines driving the 720-rpm twin screws, LSM-380 had a range of 4,900 miles (at twelve knots with 928 tons displacement). LSM-380 sailed from San Francisco for its maiden voyage carrying pontoon bridges to join 22
by Jim Mockford
LSM-380 at anchor in San Francisco Bay, 1945/46.
the fleet then assembling in the western Pacific. The ship was staged at MinamiTori-shima (Marcus Island) for the planned invasion of Japan: the pilothouse and conning tower were protected by armored plates, 10-pound STS splinter shields were fitted on the gun mounts, a 40mm gun was mounted on the bow, and four 20mm guns were mounted to defend against attacks during landing operations. It was anticipated that the LSMs would be harassed by Japanese Special Attack Units, kamikaze aircraft, or even shinyo (Japanese motorized suicide boats), as they were landing troops and tanks on the beach.
Just six months after LSM-380 set off from California for the Pacific theater, Emperor Hirohito announced the surrender of Japan in a radio broadcast on 15 August 1945 and the war was over. Instead of battle duty, LSM-380 headed for China with Marines onboard charged with managing the repatriation of thousands of surrendered Japanese military troops and civilians to Japan. LSM-380 left China and sailed to Guam in December 1946, and on to Pearl Harbor in January 1947 before making her final leg across the Pacific to San Francisco, where she would join the mothball fleet at Suisan Bay and await the
In 1949, the first year Salvage Chief began operations after her conversion, Fred Devine and his crew aboard Salvage Chief refloated SS Pine Bluff Victory, which had run aground in the Columbia River. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
all images for this article courtesy of john norgaard at smugmug.com and salvage chief llc
scrapyard, or so it appeared. Just after LSM380 was decommissioned on 19 February 1948, a Portland-based salvage expert named Fred Devine came up with a new idea of how to repurpose an LSM for shallow-water salvage work, and he purchased 380 with plans to convert the wartime vessel for commercial use. George Thomas Frederick Devine was born in 1898 and began working as a gillnet diver at the age of eleven, at a time when steam power and newer technologies in the fisheries began to replace the older saildriven gillnetters that comprised Astoria’s “Butterfly Fleet.” At fifteen years of age, Devine established his own diving company; thirty-four years later, he was ready to develop a new ship for the maritime salvage industry. Fred Devine returned to Portland with LSM-380 and began her transformation by welding shut the bow doors and cutting away part of the stern. He scavenged gear and equipment from other decommissioned ships, including six LST anchor winches with a 60-ton pull, which were installed on deck—three facing forward and three aft. He added four 3,000-pound Danforth anchors and six huge 12,000-pound Eells anchors. He built a helipad on the aft deck. Helicopters had been contracted by the military from Sikorsky in 1939, and the first production R-4 was deployed in April 1944 in Burma, where the rugged terrain made it impossible to land a plane. For marine salvage work, helicopters were ideal for transporting people and equipment between ships or from ship to shore. Devine made a deal with Wes Lematta of Columbia Helicopters to work with Salvage Chief on recovery missions when needed, and the relationship lasted over many years and through many epic salvage operations.1 The ship worked out of Astoria, near the mouth of the Columbia River, ready at all times to get underway when a call for help was received. Rescue and recovery missions were recorded in the ship’s salvage log, and they include all kinds of rescued vessels since operations began in 1949: Liberty ships, bulk freighters, barges, oil tankers, dredges, cruise ships, a Japanese troop ship, a US Coast Guard cutter. A review of Salvage Chief ’s log reveals the names of ships that have become famous
M/V Salvage Chief refloating SS Yorkmar, near the entrance to Grays Harbor on the Washington coast in December 1952. After their first attempt failed, the salvage crew gave it another go. They set three massive anchors seaward, backed their vessel into the breakers, sent three tow lines over to the grounded ship, and succeeded in pulling the 10,000-ton Liberty ship into deeper water. in the history of shipwrecks, strandings, and other maritime misfortunes, including the call to stabilize and eventually assist in the transit of the crippled supertanker Exxon Valdez from Prince William Sound to San Diego in 1989. Salvage Chief was already well known for its work in rescuing large ships in hazardous and dire situations. Back in December 1952, Salvage Chief received a call that the freighter SS Yorkmar, a 10,000-ton Liberty ship, had gone ashore on the beach north of Grays Harbor, now known as Ocean Shores, Washington. Salvage Chief arrived on the scene and began to lay out three of its giant anchors and get its tow lines to the Yorkmar as the surf pounded the stranded vessel. No ship of this size had ever been refloated, but Salvage Chief succeeded. Within view of the shore, where media crews were filming, the rescue was broadcast on the local news; the Universal Newsreel was distributed up and
down the West Coast, bringing Devine and Salvage Chief ’s captain, Vince Miller, national acclaim. The Yorkmar job was also the first mission of a new hire, chief mate Reino Mattila, who would take over as captain after the Yorkmar operation and serve in this position for the next fifty years. Mattila retired in 2002 at the age of eighty, with a record of more than 200 successful salvage missions and just three losses. Mattila died in 2011; his obituary in The Daily Astorian noted that his last salvage mission in Salvage Chief was the 1999 rescue of a barge named Mr. Chips, which had beached at Ocean Shores, the very location where his first mission took place in 1952.2 Today there is a Yorkmar Street in Ocean Shores, Washington. I was interested to find an entry about a Japanese troop transport Nozima Maru, which had been abandoned at Kiska Island during the 1942 Japanese invasion of the
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 23
(left) The Salvage Chief crew celebrating their success after refloating the Yorkmar. (below) Fred Devine and Captain Reino Mattila. It was Devine’s idea to convert a decommissioned WWII naval landing ship to a salvage vessel. He equipped Salvage Chief with six 100-ton winches below deck (out of the weather): the forward three winches led to 8,000-pound or 12,000-pound Eells anchors, while the aft winches provided tow lines to the stranded vessel. Originally designed to land troops and tanks on the beach, the vessel could lay in heavy surf conditions, where other vessels could not maneuver without risk of becoming stranded themselves. Captain Mattila came onboard as chief mate for the Yorkmar job before taking over as captain shortly afterwards. He would go on to serve as Salvage Chief ’s captain for the next fifty years, finally retiring in 2002 at the age of 80. Aleutian Islands and was still beached over a decade later when Salvage Chief was hired to refloat the ship and tow it to Japan for scrapping. It was during this mission that Chief Engineer Dick Floyd suffered a heart attack and died on board. It was the only time in its long history that Salvage Chief lost a man during a salvage operation. The Nozima Maru was in tow when a heavy storm sank it off the coast of Japan and it was lost at sea, while hearts on board felt the loss of Dick Floyd and family at home received the sad news by telegram. Dick Floyd’s legacy lived on in his sons Dave and Don, who later joined the crew of Salvage Chief. There were other voyages that took the ship and her crew to the far side of the Pacific, including a mission at Wake Island and an aircraft carrier tow from Seattle to an Osaka scrapyard. Work in Alaskan waters took the former LSM as far as remote Barter Island on the Arctic Ocean. A little more than a decade after the Yorkmar recovery, Salvage Chief was getting contracts to tow supply barges as far away as Vietnam’s Vung Tau Bay. In 1967 Captain Mattila and a young salvage master, Mick Leitz, worked the rescue of SS Captyannis—Leitz is Devine’s son-in-law, and he would eventually take over the operations from Devine. Salvage Chief successfully pulled the Greek freighter off the Clatsop Spit in an operation described by writer 24
Dick Barney in his December 1971 Popular Mechanics article, “In the Salvage Business You Don’t Go Out to See Men Against the Sea.” Barney quoted Mick Leitz, “You don’t go out there to see if a job can be done. You go out there to do it.”3 It was this kind of can-do attitude and the experience he gained while working for his father-in-law that made Leitz a natural
successor to Devine in the salvage business. Mick’s sister-in-law Marilyn Leitz, who worked in the business for more than two decades, recalled how calls for a salvage project were received, inevitably at late hours, but that Astorians were routinely ready and willing to assist. In the case of the Captyannis rescue, when the call came in, she went out and bought every pump SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
available in Astoria to send out by helicopter to the ship. Salvage Chief was the talk of the town and brought a sense of community beyond just those employed by Salvage Chief. It was Astoria’s ship! Fred Devine died in 1971, and it seems appropriate that the man who had spent so much of his life facing the challenging sea should be returned to the sea. It was Devine’s request that his family sail with him on Salvage Chief one more time for the burial at sea. A granddaughter, Julie Leitz, drove the ship as her father, Mick, oversaw the ceremony on deck. With that, the legacy of the Salvage Chief passed on to another generation with Mick Leitz at the helm, until 1980 when he founded his own salvage contract business under the name J. H. Leitz and Associates, Inc., in association with Salvage Chief for specific projects. Salvage Chief was employed to recover the wreckage after the sensational explosion of the 810-foot Liberian oil tanker SS Sansinena occurred at Berth 46 in San Pedro, Los Angeles, in 1976. About 30,000
Winches in Salvage Chief Haul Wires to Pull Stranded Ship Free
6-Ton Salvage Anchors
barrels of bunker oil had to be pumped from the tanker during a job that lasted 104 working days and included sending divers to cut the ship’s mid-section in pieces before patching and refloating the parts of the hull. Salvage Chief continued with steady work, rescuing and salvaging dozens of
Three Wires: 1 3 ⁄4-inch diameter
vessels. A particularly challenging operation came in 1999, when a 600-foot wood-chip carrier named New Carissa went aground in southern Oregon near Coos Bay. Extremely bad weather exacerbated the physical work at hand, plus the logistics were made more complicated by a new unified command approach taken by the State of
On 17 December 1976, the 810-foot oil tanker Sansinena exploded at the dock at the Port of Los Angeles, Berth 46 in San Pedro, California. Salvage Chief was called in to recover the wreckage, pump the remaining oil from the tanker, and patch sections of the hull. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 25
Oregon, the Coast Guard, and the US Navy, the latter of which dispatched the destroyer USS David R. Ray and the submarine USS Bremerton to the scene. The decision was made for the submarine to fire a Mark 48 torpedo to complete the sinking of a portion of the wrecked ship after it had been declared a total loss by the insurer. Salvage Chief, although mobilized to work on the wreck, had been called off the job following a series of unified command decisions still considered controversial today. Although the New Carissa is not one of the favorite stories to be told among the “Chieftains,” it was the ship’s last mobilization in the public eye. The salvage business had changed over the decades; for today’s readers, it is important to know that Fred Devine had established a reputation that “a man’s word and a handshake” was good enough to secure a multimillion-dollar deal. It was also a time when “No Cure–No Pay” was the business model under Lloyd’s Open Form arbitration of insurance settlement, established by Lloyd’s of London. This business model worked well for Salvage Chief during most of her career, but, as Mick Leitz ex-
Salvage Chief in dry dock. With full lines forward and a relatively shallow draft, the former World War II landing craft is particularly suited for salvage work, which often requires maneuvering in surf zones and other hazardous locations. plained, the case of the New Carissa job made it obvious that complexities of the modern age had changed the model. The vessel is now owned by Salvage Chief, LLC, whose partners are working
to transition the ship to its new role, preparing the ship for training and emergency response, in the latter case specifically to serve as an asset for local disaster response—primarily a predicted Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake, which projects potential for a 9.0-magnitude earthquake resulting in a 22-foot tsunami. When I visited Salvage Chief for her first public tour on 21 February 2016 at the Maritime Environmental Research and Technology Station (MERTS) near Astoria, two veteran Chieftains were on board as guides: Dean Lackey and Don Floyd, a second-generation Chieftain who told stories going back to the mid-1970s when he joined the crew. The organization’s senior partner, Floyd Holcom, met with visitors and talked about the vessel’s future. During the summer of 2017, Tongue Point Job Corps students painted the ship’s helipad and got some preliminary training in the engine room, the kind of experiences and training the Salvage Chief (LSM 380) Salvage Chief was equipped with a large helicopter deck to support flight operations. The helicopter was used to transport salvage equipment and run tow lines to stranded vessels. Portable equipment included: hydraulic-powered oil transfer pumps, dewatering pumps, firefighting equipment, air compressors, high-volume low -pressure blowers, welders, and supplies for the personnel onboard.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Foundation would like to pursue through partnerships with Clatsop Community College’s seamanship program and other institutions looking for instruction and hands-on training opportunities. The Salvage Chief Foundation publications and Facebook site continue to post photos and news of renovations and projects that are bringing the historic vessel to life for a new generation and pay tribute to the ship and her owners and crewmembers for their contribution to American maritime history.4 NOTES 1 “Columbia Helicopters: 50 Years of Excellence,” Rotor Magazine, Winter 2006– 07 (Helicopter Association International). 2 Capt. Reino Mattila obituary in The Daily Astorian, 1 December 2011. 3 Barney, Dick. “In the Salvage Business You Don’t Go Out to See Men Against the Sea,” Popular Mechanics, December 1971, p. 92. 4 The Salvage Chief: Rescue Ship by Those Who Were There, compiled by Sunnie Bell and published by Salvage Chief Foundation 2015.
Salvage Chief alongside Exxon Valdez in Prince William Sound. (below) View from Salvage Chief as Exxon Valdez entered San Diego Harbor, bound for the National Steel and Shipbuilding Company yard, where the tanker was built (launched in 1986).
Jim Mockford is a maritime historian and author specializing in Asian and Pacific Studies. He attended Waseda University in Tokyo and is a graduate of the University of Oregon Honors College. He has worked for more than twenty years in the computer software industry and lives in Portland, Oregon. Jim was inspired to write about M/V Salvage Chief after reading about “The Resurrection of LCT 7074, A D-Day Survivor” by Nick Hewitt in Sea History 150, Spring 2015. You can follow Salvage Chief in her new role through the organization’s Facebook page under “Salvage Chief (LSM380, WWII) Foundation” or on their new website at www.readythechief.com. Salvage Chief LLC Senior Partner Floyd Holcom explains that, in addition to its educational and training mission, Salvage Chief has a valuable contribution to make in local disaster response. “Currently, there is nothing on the West Coast with the Salvage Chief ’s capabilities.” Estimated dry docking and shipyard repairs are projected to cost $1.5 million, for which they are actively seeking donations. All contributions go directly to the ship’s needs.
On 24 March 1989, the 987-foot oil tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Until the BP oil spill, it was the biggest oil spill in American history. Exxon hired Salvage Master Mick Leitz, who requested Fred Devine Diving & Salvage Co. divers and portable salvage equipment be flown to the scene. M/V Salvage Chief was dispatched from Astoria and would serve as the primary salvage support vessel. The crew performed the work to refloat and prepare the vessel for the 2,500-mile voyage (under tow) to a dry dock in San Diego, California. During the transit to San Diego, Salvage Chief served as an escort vessel and provided helicopter support. Salvage Chief divers were part of the riding crew aboard Exxon Valdez during the transit, monitoring and maintaining the proper gas pressures that kept the vessel afloat. When Exxon Valdez entered the harbor on 30 July 1989, Salvage Chief’s third mate, Charlie Hayward, was the helmsman aboard the tanker. (Description provided by Salvage Chief Bosun D. Floyd)
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 27
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by James P. Delgado, Deborah Marx, Matthew Lawrence, and Amy Borgens
courtesy san francisco maritime national historic park
ne of the world’s great ship graveyards lies at the bottom of the world, in the remote Falkland Islands. Known to maritime aficionados since the 1930s, the Falklands, and in particular Stanley Harbor, were home to a well-preserved collection of near-intact wooden ships from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The maritime preservation community began to pay attention with increasing interest in the 1960s to the Falkland hulks. They were featured in a 1980 documentary film, The Ghosts of Cape Horn, and numerous articles, books, and reports by leading figures in American maritime preservation, such as Karl Kortum, Peter Throckmorton, and Peter Stanford. The reports, including a number in early issues of Sea History, spoke of campaigns—both successful and failed—to retrieve some of the hulks for restoration as museum vessels far from the Falklands’ shores. Among the ships that were of high interest was Vicar of Bray. Long desired by the San Francisco Maritime Museum as the last vessel left from the California Gold Rush (above the water and not buried in a landfill), throughout the 1970s and 1980s Kortum sought to bring it to San Francisco for restoration and display. That did not happen, and the stout old barque gradually decayed. In 2016, word came that the hull was in danger of imminent collapse
photo by george belcher
Diving into the Wreck of Vicar of Bray
Vicar of Bray’s hull at the time of George Belcher’s visit in 2012 was still standing above the water, with its planking and deck beams showing signs of major weakening. from friend and fellow shipwreck researcher George Belcher of San Francisco, who had visited the Falklands and seen Vicar in its berth at Goose Green. Hearing this, we approached the National Geographic Society for support, and with a grant from the NGS/Waitt Grants Program, we joined together with George to journey to the Falklands and document how Vicar of Bray was undergoing a protracted, slow “death” in its sub-Antarctic environment. Artifacts don’t really die,
rather, they transition into something else. As archaeologists, we are keenly interested in increasing our knowledge of this transformation process. This exploration of how this happens in an isolated, cold, arid and yet marine environment was something unique. We knew it would add to our understanding of not only how Vicar of Bray was built, but also what its future—and that of other wrecks in such environments—will be. As a former maritime museum director, one of us was particularly interested in what this last look at Vicar of Bray meant in terms of what society may choose to do to save or preserve such sites. While the California Gold Rush context of the vessel is, of course, important, we also sought to place it within the context of its post-sailing career as a hulk, within the confines of the archaeology of abandonment and reuse in the ship graveyard of the Falkland Islands. We examined the ship as part of a larger maritime cultural landscape, incorporated not only in its immediate environment, but also the larger landscape that is the southern tip of South America and its associated islands. (left) The only known portrait of Vicar of Bray, Margaret, William Shand, and Snow Squall together in Stanley Harbor in 1881.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
courtesy john stobart, nmhs collection
Vicar of Bray in Yerba Buena Cove During the Gold Rush, November 1849 by John Stobart Vicar of Bray Vicar of Bray was built in 1841 by Robert Hardy at Whitehaven, Cumbria, England, for the Swansea copper trade as a 281-ton barque-rigged, full-bodied carvelplanked vessel: 121 feet long, with a 24-foot breadth and a 16-foot depth of hold. Built of African iroko, English oak, American elm, and pine, the ship was iron-strapped, copper fastened, and copper sheathed. The barque was built solidly to accommodate the bulk coal and copper ore cargoes it would carry throughout its working life. The Swansea copper trade began as a regional activity in the late seventeenth century and lasted until the early 1900s. With what historian Chris Evans terms the “Swansea trilogy” of “Welsh coal, reverbatories, and seaborne ore,” Swansea rose to global dominance “using ores that travelled a relatively short distance” up the Bristol Channel, so that by 1800 Swansea and other Welsh producers “accounted for more than fifty percent of the world’s output of smelted copper during the Napoleonic Wars.”1 The 287-ton capacity Vicar of 1
Chris Evans, “A World of Copper: Introducing Swansea, Globalization and the Industrial Revolution,” Welsh History Review/Cylchgrawn Hanes Cymru, 27, no. 1 (2014): 112-131.
Bray was built in response to a late 1820s change in British law that dropped tariffs on foreign ore. Key to the role of copper and coal in the emerging global economy of the midnineteenth century were vessels like Vicar of Bray. The barque’s hulk in the Falkland Islands is a rare survivor, even in its deteriorated state. It represents vessels built specifically for that trade’s demands of sufficient capacity to maximize profits in the shipment of copper ore and coal from the other side of the world, balanced by a design with a draft shallow enough to cross the sandbar-choked harbor entrance of Swansea. The barque rig was well suited for long downwind legs across the oceans, but also for navigating in more confined waters, where its fore-and-aft rigged mizzen helped with tacking and sailing upwind. The African hardwoods and iron-reinforcement of Vicar of Bray speaks to the trade: heavy shipments of bulk coal out, and ore-laden chests or bags stowed in the hold on the return required a solidly built hull. The trade’s ships and the men who worked it were described by mariner and author Joseph Conrad, who wrote of a visit to a dying captain in his autobiographical memoir, The Mirror of the Sea:
He had “served his time” in the… famous copper-ore trade of the old days between Swansea and the Chilean coast, coal out and copper in, deep-loaded both ways, as if in wanton defiance of the great Cape Horn seas—a work, this, for staunch ships, and a great school of staunchness of WestCountry seamen. A whole fleet of copper-bottom barques, as strong in rib and planking, as well-found and great as ever was sent upon the seas, manned by hardy crews and commanded by young masters, was engaged in that now long-defunct trade. For all that praise, the trade was hard on the ships and the men. Accidents were common. Given the narrow confines of the Channel, a long and exposed Chilean coast, and potential of missing stays and crashing ashore, the dangers were real and everpresent. The ships faced peril from the threat of combustion of their coal cargoes and often fatal fires at sea, or the shifting of the ore and the capsizing of a poorly loaded barque in heavy seas. Loading copper ore meant carefully calculating the load
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 31
to distribute the weight equally, tightly packed and leveled off to avoid shifting. The known history of Vicar of Bray includes the loss of crew to accidents, such as a man washed overboard in a storm, and the drowning of the steward and a seaman while rowing ashore at Port Wallaroo, South Australia, in a hailstorm in July 1862.2 The captain, also in the boat, nearly drowned too, but managed to grab onto the overturned boat’s keel until he was rescued.3 There were several instances of serious damage to the ship and a rebuilding, which may have been the result of damage or to renew the vessel in the face of wear and tear, or the need to increase cargo capacity. Vicar of Bray remained in service for two more decades. In the winter of 1858–59, it was rebuilt and re-registered in April 1859 as a 347.69-ton barque. In June 1862, the vessel was re-registered at 364.63 tons due to re-measurement, and in May 1877, it was re-registered again at 252.51 tons. It would appear, therefore, that the vessel was typical in build and career, albeit long-lived. The barque’s voyages began with a maiden trip to Liverpool, arriving 16 June 1841, where Vicar of Bray loaded before departing a month later for Lima, Peru, via Rio de Janeiro. The round-trip voyage back to Liverpool took a year, with Vicar of Bray entering the port of London on 1 July 1842. Subsequent voyages took
the ship back to South America. The details of the many passages are, for now, not assembled in one source, but can be found through additional research into records of ship arrivals. Voyages to the west coast of South America occur as well, including both to Valparaiso and Callao, throughout the 1840s and into the 1860s. One seemingly anomalous voyage, albeit the barque’s most famous, brought Vicar of Bray to San Francisco during the Gold Rush. The ship carried a pertinent cargo of iron retorts (furnaces). The choice of cargo was, in fact, not so anomalous and speaks to the network of British capital and interests in the mineral wealth of the New World. The furnaces were for the recently developed mercury mines south of San Francisco at New Almaden. Mercury, extracted from its ore, cinnabar, was needed to extract gold from crushed rock. Vicar of Bray arrived at San Francisco on 3 November 1849, “fm Valparaiso, cargo to order.”4 On 30 November, Alexander Forbes, superintending the mines’ operation, wrote to James A. Forbes, one of the owners (but no relation) that “notwithstanding the many difficulties you must have in transporting the cargo of the Vicar of Bray, yet I hope a part of the apparatus will soon be got up to supply the demand of the placeres as well as to send us some here.”5 What this meant was that not all of the furnaces were being shipped
courtesy san francisco maritime national historic park
Contemporary painting of Vicar of Bray ca. 1875.
Advertisement for Vicar of Bray while in port in San Francisco during the California Gold Rush, printed in the Daily Alta California, 20 February 1850. to New Almaden, and that some had been diverted to the gold mines (placeres) in the interior of California. Nearly trapped by gold fever and the resulting loss of crew in San Francisco, Vicar of Bray’s master managed, after a four-month hiatus when he put out numerous advertisements seeking passengers and cargo, to leave San Francisco on 10 March 1850 with a new crew, bound for Valparaiso, most likely in ballast. Once there, Vicar of Bray re-entered the copper-ore trade. In the 1850s and into the 1860s, the barque worked the copper trade to and from Australia, carrying ore from the mines outside of Adelaide to Swansea. The pattern of voyages now meant Vicar of Bray was continually circumnavigating the globe, heading west from Australia, and thence through the Indian Ocean and round the Cape of Good Hope. Its cargoes diversified to include other bulk freight. An advertisement in the Honolulu Polynesian noted it had arrived with merchandise for sale in March 1862. In March 1870, Vicar of Bray arrived at Bristol with 6,737 bags of sugar from Mauritius. After discharging, the barque headed to Cardiff, loaded 436 tons of coal and 29 tons of “machinery,” and cleared on 25 May 1870 for Valparaiso. Arriving in the Falklands 133 days later, in distress, Vicar of Bray limped into Port Stanley after a loss of sails and boats and damage to the upper works at sea on 8 October 1870. The owners at that time were Thomas Brand Callenan of Sunderland, described as a “master mariner,” and Thomas Gilbert Garrick of Sunderland, described as a “shipowner,” who had bought 2
South Australian Register, 1 January 1863, p. 3. Launceston Examiner, 12 August 1862, p. 2. 4 Daily Alta California, 8 November 1849. 5 The United States vs. Andres Castillero, No. 420, New Almaden Mines. United States District Court, Northern District of California (1862). Printed at the Office of the Daily Herald, San Francisco. 3
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
nicholas dean collection, maine maritime museum
Aerial view of Vicar of Bray in 1979 lying next to its wharf in Goose Green. Rediscovered by Karl Kortum in 1966, Vicar of Bray then became the subject of an extensive campaign to recover it from the Falklands and return it to San Francisco for use as an indoor exhibit. Those plans never came to fruition. Ten years after that, in April 1976, pioneer maritime archaeologist Peter Throckmorton visited the site and conducted a survey on the hulk with shipwright Hilton Matthews and historian Norman Brouwer. “The Vicar lies parallel to the shore,” noted Throckmorton, resting on a bottom of soft mud overlying shingle, and listing to port “at an angle of about 15 degrees.” The interior of the hull,
nicholas dean collection, maine maritime museum
the vessel in January 1868 from Dublin merchant Robert Smyth. Each man owned half of the vessel, with Callenan in command. According to local lore, the battle to bring his ship safely into port so exhausted Callenan that he was carried ashore, insensate. While the barque lay at Stanley being repaired, Callenan died at the age of 58 and was buried in the Stanley Cemetery on 11 December 1870. With Callenan’s death and the cost of repairs, Garrick dropped his ownership by half of his original 32 of 64 shares to 16. The new majority ownership, with 48 of 64 shares, shifted to John Smurthwaite, a “merchant” of Sunderland, according to a bill of sale registered with Lloyds on 18 September 1871. Smurthwaite in turn sold the barque a year later to the Falkland Islands Company. Vicar of Bray made voyages carrying “general cargo” between Stanley and London for another decade under at least four masters, according to shipping register notes. Its final registry with Lloyds of London, dated 12 May 1861, was surrendered on 12 May 1880 with the notation “converted to a hulk at Stanley, Falkland Islands.” Ultimately dismasted, the once-lofty vessel was moored next to four other hulks as a floating warehouse in the harbor. In 1912, Vicar of Bray was shifted to neighboring Goose Green for use as a hulk. A jetty built out to it basically copied the same layout used in Stanley. It has remained there ever since.
The Berryman/Marean team, 1979. Interior view toward the stern.
he noted, was full of “her last cargo of coal,” left because it was “spoiled by the salt and… no good for the stove.”6 Throckmorton attributed the hulk’s stability at its site to being held down by the coal, which continued to ballast the hull. Throckmorton returned to Vicar of Bray in 1978. The following year, an NMHS-supported architectural survey by naval architect Parker E. Marean III of Maine, working with ship preservationist and historian Eric Berryman, Joseph Sawtelle, Jean Sawtelle, Nicholas Dean, and Klara Holmkvist, “tagged and measured the main structural members of the vessel,” while Dean photographed the major details of the Vicar and Sawtelle conducted “an underwater survey of Vicar’s interior and the remains of her cargo of coal.” A local diver, Ken Halliday, together with a volunteer from the Norwegian yacht Copernicus, Arild Tvedt, made an underwater survey of the hull. That survey found that the timbers below the water, while waterlogged, were sound, and that the vessel was holding together. Berryman, Marean, and their team concluded that Throckmorton was correct and that the ship could be successfully salvaged. But there was no money. Since then, other than the occasional tourist, 6 Peter Throckmorton, “ ‘As Good As Can Be Made:’ Report on the Vicar of Bray,” Sea History no. 5 (Autumn 1976).
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 33
photo by deborah marx
Vicar of Bray remains unvisited and undocumented. George Belcher’s visit disclosed significant changes in the vessel since 1979, including the collapse of portions of the hull, and the seeming disappearance of the port hull between the waterline and the main deck. His visit and those observations sparked our recent project. As we made our preparation to go, we received reports that the remaining above-water parts of Vicar of Bray had broken apart during a storm and collapsed into the water. One deck beam floated ashore and was recovered by staff from the Falkland Islands Museum. A few months later, in February 2017, our team from Washington, DC; Duxbury, Massachusetts; Austin, Texas; and San Francisco assembled in Punta Arenas,
Chile. There, we were joined by Robert Delgado, a long-standing supporter of his son’s archaeological endeavors. We then flew to the wind-swept Falklands, where we were joined by local historian and wreck-diver David Eynon. We met with John Smith, former director and historian of the Falkland Islands Museum; with Governor-General Colin Roberts; and with Andrea Barlow, the current director of the Historic Dockyard Museum, (formerly the Stanley Islands Museum) and Alison Barton, museum manager. Our group then journeyed by Land Rover out of Stanley to Goose Green. Gearing up in our dry suits, we waded into the cold waters of the South Atlantic and spent the next few days documenting Vicar of Bray’s toppled upper and lower hull sec-
tions. Vicar of Bray is not dead yet. The vessel has undergone a metamorphosis into what we’d all call an amazingly well-preserved shipwreck. The lower hull is solid, intact above the turn of the bilge and still sheathed. No longer rising above the water, Vicar of Bray has nonetheless survived. The upper structure that had recently collapsed was still all there, lying on top of the lower hull. What is missing are the timbers “between wind and water” that once connected the upper works to the rest of the hull—the decks and the masts. Comparing what we saw with other wooden shipwrecks we’ve examined around the world in more temperate environments, what we can say is that the processes by which Vicar of Bray went from ship to hulk, and from hulk to shipwreck, reflect the influence of both environment and people. When the owners of Vicar of Bray, by then a hulk, moved the ship from Port Stanley to Goose Green, they scuttled the old barque in place. Set into the bottom and with the sea running in and out of the lower hold, Vicar of Bray would have deteriorated quickly in warmer waters rife with wood-eating marine organisms. Thanks to effects of climate change, these worms have since infiltrated Stanley Harbor, but they are not yet at Goose Green, only sixty miles away. Fortunately, the protected cove in which Vicar lies protects the timbers from prevailing wind-driven waves, but wave action from passing vessels still jostles the hull, as do floating debris and boats that bump into it from the occasional use of the adjoining wharf. Additionally, dry rot and generations of birds depositing guano into the upper works weakened Vicar of Bray until, at last, the eroded frames, exposed to the sea, could hold no more. Vicar of Bray’s longevity is also hypothesized to be a result of the extensive wrought-iron hanging, lodging, and other knee components and supports that made it so strong and successful during its working life. In other parts of the world where we have dived on wreck sites of ships similar A portion of Vicar of Bray’s hull planking and frames that once rose above the water line have collapsed onto its lower hull. Bent— yet unbroken—malleable iron frames keep the pieces from drifting away. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Acknowledgments The work done on this project was made possible by National Geographic Waitt Grant WD-42816. We gratefully acknowledge the support of the Society. We also acknowledge the encouragement of the National Maritime Historical Society to inspect and dive Vicar of Bray, as well as that of the Falklands Receiver of Wreck, and the then Governor-General of the islands, Colin Roberts, and the advice and support of Warren Reiss, Norman Brouwer, Eric Berryman, Zibet Dean, the Maine Maritime Museum, Dave and Carol Eynon, Andrea Barlow and Alison Barton of the Dockyard Museum, John Smith, and the remarkable team at Darwin House. Since our expedition, George Belcher has died after a battle with cancer, and we dedicate this article to his memory.
photo by matthew lawrence
Specially designed wrought iron knees have held Vicar of Bray’s deck beams together far longer than comparable wooden scantling.
photo by deborah marx
to Vicar of Bray, we typically find a mound of ballast mixed with largely consumed upper works in the form of rusted fasteners and other artifacts that preserve wormeaten fragments of wood beneath a crust of rust, shell, sand, and mud. That will ultimately happen with Vicar of Bray, but as we saw with the century it took for the half-sunken hull to collapse, it may take another century before this nineteenthcentury sailing workhorse looks more like your typical shipwreck archaeological site. Vicar of Bray’s “death” and decomposition is happening in extreme slow motion, allowing us to monitor that process, and through that, achieve a better understanding of what has happened with other sites we’re examining in waters both shallow and deep. Realizing that it is a tough message for our colleagues in the ship preservation and maritime museum worlds, what happened to Vicar of Bray is not as lovely a process of metamorphosis as a butterfly’s, but the vessel is not gone. As shipwreck sites go, Vicar of Bray has a role yet to play as the subject of further study, as well as the various other hulks, such as Charles Cooper, Egeria, Capricorn, Snow Squall, William Shand, and Jhelum, among others, that have also seemingly undergone the same transition. They are neither forgotten nor gone. The formerly visible “maritime museum” in the open of the Falklands is now a maritime archaeologists’ paradise.
Iron fittings from the windlass reveal significant deterioration of its wooden barrel. James Delgado is currently the Senior Vice President of SEARCH, Inc., the largest cultural resources firm in the United States. He was formerly the Director of Maritime Heritage for NOAA; his decades-long career has also included tenures as president of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA), director of the Maritime Heritage Program of the National Park Service, and director of the Vancouver Maritime Museum. Matthew Lawrence is an archaeologist for NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries based at Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Deborah Marx is a maritime archaeologist living in Key Largo, Florida. Her research interests include the California Gold Rush and the maritime cultural landscape of the Redwood Coast lumber trade. Amy Borgens is the State Marine Archaeologist at the Texas Historical Commission based out of Austin, Texas.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 35
Say Again? A Look at Nautical Jargon
by Dick Elam
“There’s good and just reason for ivry rope aboard, or else ‘twould be overboard.”—Long Jack to
Harvey Cheney in Captains Courageous by Rudyard Kipling. The same could be said for shipboard commands.
When retired journalism professor Dick Elam set out to write his first novel, Anne Bonny’s Wake, which would take his readers to sea aboard a 20th-century sloop, he encountered the same challenge that writers of nautical fiction and seafaring narratives have faced since the genre began: How to balance the desire—and need—to use the highly specific language of the mariner without losing the more lubberly reader. Fiction writers can employ the oft-used tactic of placing a green hand in the company of the master mariner so that a few explanations of the way of a ship are naturally woven in: think Patrick O’Brian’s Stephen Maturin, the surgeon, sailing with Master and Commander Jack Aubrey. Making the protagonist new to the seagoing world could be just as effective. Readers learned along with Harvey Cheney in Captains Courageous after he was plucked from the sea by a dory fisherman of the We’re Here, or when Horatio Hornblower stumbled (and vomited) through his first days as a midshipman aboard HMS Justinian. Those returning from lengthy sea voyages and publishing narratives of their experiences—Richard Henry Dana Jr. and Eric Newby, for example—find their adopted tongue coming through on every page, although they do attempt to describe their discomfort with their introduction to nautical terms in their opening chapters. One thing is certain; salty dialogue heard on the deck of a ship has long had its fans. Patrick O’Brian’s readers took pride in being in an exclusive club of sorts, where learning vocabulary he put forth in his books was accepted as a worthy challenge. As Stephen Maturin’s seagoing knowledge progressed through O’Brian’s 20-book1 bestselling series, so did the readers’. In writing The Last Grain Race (1956), Eric Newby was less confident he could keep the attention of the uninitiated and issued this recommendation in his chapter about the sails of the square-rigged Moshulu: “Readers who are discouraged by technical details about sails and sailmaking should skip the rest of this chapter.” He then shared the sailmaker’s warning that simple terms to landsmen don’t necessarily translate aboard ship. “I’ll tell you something about square sails. First, they’re not square at all…” In Captains Courageous, veteran fisherman/schoonerman Long Jack and his shipmate Tom Platt tried to get young Harvey Cheney—and with him, the reader—up to speed on learning the way of the ship. Long Jack: “Now after all I’ve said, ‘how’d you reef the foresail, Harve? Take your time answerin’.” “Haul that in,” said Harvey, pointing to leeward. “Fwat? The North Atlantuc?” “No, the boom. Then run that rope you showed me back there—“ “That’s no way,” Tom Platt burst in. “Quiet! He’s larnin’, an’ has not the names good yet. Go on Harve.” “Oh, it’s the pennant. I’d hook the tackle on to the reefpennant, and then let down—“Lower the sail, child!
Lower!” said Tom Platt, in a professional agony. “Lower the throat and peak halyards,” Harvey went on. Those names stuck in his head. “Lay your hand on thim,” said Long Jack. “Harvey obeyed. “Lower til that rope-loop—on the afterleach—kris—no, it’s a cringle—till the cringle was down on the boom. Then I’d tie her up the way you said, and then I’d hoist up the peak and throat halyards again.” “You’ve forgot to pass the tack-earing, but wid time and help ye’ll larn.”
And so it was that when Dick Elam anxiously awaited the first reviews of his book that he encountered this dilemma, and here offers his own challenge to readers of Sea History. —Deirdre O’Regan, Editor, Sea History
identified a problem in writing Anne Bonny’s Wake, when a cousin read my manuscript. While she applauded it as “a pageturning mystery adventure,” she then asked: “Dickie. What’s aft?” Undeterred, I went ahead with publication. As the first reviews came in, I read these comments from a review printed in the nautical magazine Good Old Boat: This is Dick Elam’s first in what may become a series…. He is clearly a sailor who knows about good old boats. He doesn’t spend a lot of time explaining to the nonyachtsman among his readers what this is or what that means. I was pleased with this summation, but then I read: A few lubberly expressions such as “Over and Out” as a sign-off on the VHF radio, and “bumpers” for fenders, 36
made me think he had a bit too much help from nonsailor early readers or editors, because all the rest rings true and there is the occasional mention of “lines and fenders.” If you can overlook these trifles, you just might enjoy sailing along in the Anne Bonny’s wake… With that, the reviewer pegged my trifles. As a former airplane pilot (like my novel’s hero), “over and out” is part of my normal speech. And in practice, when landlubber friends cruised with us on our family boat, we acknowledged that they could better understand our request to hang “bumpers” over the rail vs. having them search around for a car fender. Mea Culpa. Dana employed a great deal of nautical jargon in Two Years Before the Mast, but, he noted, understanding every term was hardly a requirement to appreciating the tale: SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
There may be in some parts a good deal that is unintelligible to the general reader…Thousands read the escape of the American frigate through the British Channel, and the chase and wreck of the Bristol trader Red Rover, and follow the minute nautical [maneuvers] with breathless interest, who do not know the name of a rope in the ship; and perhaps with none the less admiration with the professional detail. After reading the Good Old Boat review, one of my editors apologized for having recommended I filter out what he considered arcane phrases. With this in mind, let’s take a look at some “arcane” nautical phrases and see how you make out—Note: Alexa will not help you. Richard Henry Dana Jr. describing the action, when the brig Pilgrim was trying to beat the Ayacucho into port: As the wind was light and fair, we held our own, for some time, when we were both obliged to brace up and come upon a taut bowline, after rounding the point; and here he had us on fair ground, and walked away from us, as you would haul in a line. He afterwards said that we sailed well enough with the wind free, but that, give him a taut bowline, and he would beat us, if we had all the canvas of the Royal George. In Richard Woodman’s A Private Revenge (1989), protagonist Captain Nathaniel Drinkwater, “looked astern…[the] crack frigate dropped her ensign in farewell, hauled her yards, and on a taut bowline, stood to windward….” Can you define: “hauled her yards,” “taut bowline,” or what the “wind free” means?2 Drinkwater continues, “the helm was put down and the men manned the braces, swinging the yards a point or two, easing the sheets, and leading the weather tacks forward.” In this single sentence, most readers would be lost as to what is going on. Most sailors will understand that putting the helm down (also helm’s a-lee) means moving the tiller all the way to leeward to turn the rudder and get the vessel turning into the wind to prepare to come about. Ships with a wheel or helm use the same command, as the effect is the same on the rudder, even if the action is the opposite of that of a tiller. Novice sailors know that you let a sail out by easing its sheet and thus allow it to spill the wind. But manning the braces? And what is a weather tack?3 Woodward’s Captain Drinkwater goes on to discuss sails and rigging: topgallant sails, studding sails—in other texts written Technically, there was a 21st book in the Aubrey-Maturin series, but Patrick O’Brian died before the manuscript was completed. It was published four years after the author’s death. 2 taut bowline: Sailing close-hauled. Taut bowline refers to the line (rope) tied to the weather leech of a square sail to help keep the leading edge of the sail taut, and hence make more progress to windward. wind free: Sailing off the wind, or downwind. hauled her yards: The word halyard comes from the act of hauling a yard aloft when setting a square sail. In this example, however, the crew is hauling on the braces rigged to the yardarm (see next footnote) to adjust the angle of the yard and sail relative to the wind. 1
as t’gallants or, even worse, t‘gans’ls; and stuns’ls. Alan Villiers explained in his 1953 tome, The Way of a Ship, that a seaman of a square rigger found order and symmetry in the hundreds of lines and dozens of sails he was charged with mastering. “With minor variations, all big square-rigged ships were rigged in the same manner…. Every single piece of wire, chain, and rope had its function, its name, and its place.” Nevertheless, he was sympathetic to the newcomer and his/her discomfort in the presence of those who knew the details of a ship as well as, if not better than, the backs of their hands. The great majority [of square-rigger men] had been living aboard such ships since they were children, and many of them knew no other life. The ships were always with them, and the ways of the ships were their ways. … They knew precisely where every piece of running rigging was, what it did and how it led, and they could find it on the blackest, wildest night. What’s a reader to do? A dictionary is a good place to start. From my book, for example, you could easily look up terms like transom, stanchion, jib, genoa, and—for my cousin—aft. But dictionaries only allow you to look up one word at a time and not phrases. You can look up jib and winch, but not jib winch. Likewise, taut and bowline as individual words are easy enough to find, but a reader unfamiliar with squaresails would still have no idea what a sailing on a “taut bowline” would mean. And what about words that have multiple definitions and all mean something different depending on context? Consider all the definitions of the word tack. The best way to learn these terms is to go to sea; there are still a few opportunities to do that under square rig. If this is not possible, consulting a number of reference books defining and discussing nautical terms is best. Some recommended texts include: John Harland’s Seamanship in the Age of Sail (1984), Richard Henry Dana Jr.’s The Seaman’s Friend (1841), Dean King’s Sea of Words (1991), and the more recently published “Glossary of Nautical Terms” at the back of Charles R. Robinson’s The Naval War of 1812–1815, published in 2015. Finally, if you have started to lose your sense of humor or are perhaps more confused than you were before, consider this response when someone asks you what some arcane nautical phrase means: “I haven’t got a clew!” You can learn more about Dick Elam at www.dickelambooks.com. Background photo is courtesy of www.picton-castle.com. 3
manning the braces: Braces are lines (rope) rigged to the port and starboard yardarms on a square-rigged vessel. A crew would be sent to man (standby to haul or ease) the braces when changing course or making adjustments because the wind direction had shifted. weather tack: Refers to the line attached to the bottom corner of a square sail that is hauled to windward when the yards and sails are trimmed for sailing on the wind (or upwind). On a fore-and-aft sail, the forward bottom corner of the sail is the tack. Then there’s the use of tack as a verb or an adjective when describing fresh paint. Can you think of other nautical definitions of the word tack? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 37
SEA HISTORY for kids Careers in the Marine and Maritime Field
Sculptor Scott Penegar
images courtesy of scott penegar
Scott Penegar is a marine artist in Charleston, South Carolina. While he works in all kinds of media, he is best known for his sculptures of marine life, both in stone and in bronze. Scott has spent most of his life around the water. As a first grader, he told his teachers he wanted to be an ichthyologist, which he then had to define for them (an ichthyologist is a zoologist who specializes in the study of fish). As a kid, he was easy to shop for—he always wanted books about fish, and he never missed an episode of The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau on television. “My first sailboat was a styrofoam Sea Snark and I used it every chance I could get.” Later, Scott and two friends sailed in a bigger boat (34 feet) across the Atlantic...twice. Growing up, he was always in, near, or thinking about the water. Sailing and fishing were regular activities. For sports, he joined the swim team. He loved art in school and chose it as his major when he went to college. But he couldn’t give up his passion for the ocean and fish, so after he graduated, he got a job as a commercial fisherman in North Carolina. He later moved to South Carolina and went back to school—this time to study marine biology at the College of Charleston. Finally, he realized he didn’t have to choose between these two career paths— he could combine them. He moved to Puerto Rico for a while and studied under a master artist before moving back to Charleston to launch his career as a full-time professional artist specializing in marine life subjects. “I work out of my studio at my house and, because carving stone can be messy and noisy, I do most of that work in my backyard.” Scott’s most well-known works are in stone carving and cast bronze, but he also paints, and can be found participating in “plein air” events around the country. Fishing for flounder as a kid; creat“My subjects are almost always marine animals. ing one out of alabaster as an artist. I am fascinated by the diversity and beauty of animals that inhabit the ocean. While I aim to make my sculptured animals anatomically correct, as an artist I try to convey the emotion I feel for the subjects in each piece. I consider myself incredibly lucky to be able to take my passion for marine life and combine it with my love of sculpture—and make a living doing it.” When Scott isn’t working in his studio or making dust and noise in his backyard, he can be found at the historic Charleston City Market, where he sells his art out of his booth in Building H to both collectors and tourists. You can’t make a living as an artist if no one buys your art, so Scott makes sure to market himself to potential buyers, through the market in Charleston, through galleries, online, and by participating in art exhibitions and events around the country. You can see more of Scott’s art on his website at www.scottpen egarsculpture.com and at Hagan Fine Art Gallery on 177 King Street in Charleston (www.haganfineart.com).
Fluidity (bronze): “To me, the octopus is one of the most elegant and fascinating creatures. It has an almost limitless range of flexibility and beauty, making it a true pleasure to convey in bronze.” SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
From Stone to Sea Creature— How it’s done...
by Scott Penegar
What do you see in this photo? Most people would say it’s just a rock. Sculptor Scott Penegar looks at this 155-pound chunk of alabaster rock and sees a shark, or an octopus, or....
enjoy stone carving because it is such a pure form of art. I use a variety of different types of stone, but I generally prefer softer stones such as alabaster, soapstone, and onyx. Unlike someone who might work with stone for construction or other more practical uses, as an artist I essentially form a relationship with the stone, where I learn to understand its colors and shapes, strengths and vulnerabilities. The stones I work with come from all over the world and weigh anywhere from 20 to 200 pounds. I usually have a stack of them in my studio. As I walk past them while working on other projects, sooner or later I have an “a-ha!” moment, when one of the rocks speaks to me in a way and I suddenly understand what it should be. Much of what I do after that comes instinctively, but sometimes I will make a rough model
there’s always YouTube. I like my sculptured animals to have a sense of movement, and watching videos of the animal swimming, eating, and moving is extremely helpful. Finally, I keep a lot of preserved crabs, fish, octopuses, etc. in my freezer for reference.
in clay and print out some pictures. Most of the time I just dig in and start carving. That’s not to say that I don’t do research. As much as I know about fish and wildlife, I do a lot of research to make sure I get the details right. I want my marine life sculptures to be anatomically accurate. I have hundreds of books on marine animals, and then
The tools I use first are a hammer and a chisel. If I need to get rid of large pieces of stone quickly, I’ll use an angle grinder with a diamond cutting wheel. Next, I use a sanding wheel, a power tool that allows me to make more refined shapes and smooth them out. I like using Dremel tools (handheld rotary power tools with interchangeable bits) because they come in a lot of
Onyx Hammerhead, 12 x 17 x 11.5 inches
different sizes and varieties that help me finish the details. Once I have all of the shapes and details set, I start sanding. I sand by hand at this stage, working from rough to fine sandpaper, usually starting with 80 grit and finishing with 2,000-grit sandpaper. It is only at this last stage that the true color of the stone starts to emerge.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 39
Animals in Sea History
by Richard King
courtesy new bedford whaling museum
n historic illustrations and comic books, angry sperm whales are constantly crunching up boats and whalemen in their mouths, as if they were pretzel sticks. This has always seemed a bit of a stretch to me. It turns out that, although sperm whales are typically shy and afraid of humans, when individual whales are harpooned—as they were by the thousands in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries—the animals did indeed sometimes use their lower jaws and teeth to grasp and mash boats and men. There are just too many historic examples to dismiss them all, and modern studies of sperm whale behavior suggest it makes sense, too. Here are three of the more reliable accounts. According to historian Margaret Creighton, in 1831 the chief mate of the Good Return, Henry Howland, drowned after he was carried down Detail from a painting by a whaleman, likely aboard the whaleship Young Phoenix. under the surface in the jaws of a whale after the animal smashed his boat. The whale then got hold of another sailor in his mouth, but this man survived. In 1840 Frederick Bennett, a surgeon and naturalist aboard a British whaleship, wrote that sperm whales commonly defended themselves with their jaws. He visited the whaleship Augusta in the South Pacific, where he saw a boat on deck that had recently been “nipped completely asunder by the jaws of a harpooned whale.” Bennett learned that sperm whales would continue to bite a boat into pieces and, when they were finished, would keep their mouths threateningly open for several minutes. A third event took place on 15 August 1841. A mate of the whaleship Coral wrote in his journal that a sperm whale had bitten up their boats when they were just south of the Galápagos Islands. This was an enormous male, likely more than sixty feet long. Two boats had harpooned the bull, which rolled over and “chewed [one up] in many hundred pieces.” The whale was severely injured and blood began to collect in its blowhole, so when it spouted, its exhale was filled with blood. The mate said that the whale “entirely consumed” the boat and swam away, but they still had another boat attached to him with a harpoon. Their next attempt to kill the whale resulted in the death of one of the crew, as described by the mate in his journal: “While the third mate was in the act of lancing him, he turned upon him and eat his boat
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
courtesy natural world safaris
Even in the 1800s whalemen-naturalists knew that sperm whales were extraordinarily shy and skittish, which is still observed today. If attacked by humans or orcas, however, sperm whales will defend themselves. These behaviors include whacks with their enormous tails and lunging at their attackers with their mouths. Now, it seems hard to believe they would actually eat the wood of the boats, but whaleboats in the nineteenth-century were usually planked with very thin, light cedar, and necropsies have revealed a wide range of inanimate objects in A snorkeler swimming with a sperm whale near Dominica in the Caribbean. sperm whale stomachs such as stones, fishing gear, coconuts, and even a human body. For more “Animals in Sea History” go to www.seahistory.org or educators.mysticseaport.org.
“SSEA ea HHISTORY istory for162, K ids ” is sponsored by the Henry L. & Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation SPRING 2018 41
photo by rebecca bakker
up also he not coming off so fortunate as the former boat for Richard B. Saunderson, foremast hand was drowned…on my approaching [the whale] he turned upon his side with his jaw open and pursued me, having avoided him and hove an iron into him I let him go and in a few moments he was in the agonies of death and breathed his last.” From a modern biological perspective, stories of sperm whales using their mouths to defend themselves against human hunters makes sense, although when they eat squid and fish, they really only use their lower teeth for grasping their prey, not for chewing or tearing anything apart. Young sperm whales don’t even have teeth until they begin to enter puberty, at about eight or nine years old. And adult whales with deformed jaws or no teeth at all seem to hunt and eat just fine. If you think about it, most terrestrial mammals act aggressively with their mouths—picture two dogs roughhousing. Some, if not all, of the other toothed whales are known to use their teeth aggressively, such as Risso’s dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, and Cuvier’s beaked whales. Modern biologists have observed female sperm whales using their jaws to defend against killer whales. There’s also ample evidence of rake marks gouged into the heads of older sperm whales, which imply male competition involves engaging in jaw-to-jaw battle, like bucks locking antlers or elephants battling with their tusks. Sperm whales might even use their mouths in play or affectionate behaviors, since one scientistdiver in 1991 described two occasions when sperm whales “were observed swimming belly to belly with their jaws slightly agape and touching,” and more recently a filmmaker-diver working on an episode of Blue Planet 2 was briefly, seemingly playfully, tugged down underwater by a young (toothless) sperm whale after the man had taken a bucket out of its mouth that the animal was chomping like a toy. A piece of warty squid with sperm whale bite marks that was found in January 2018 floating on the surface of Kaikoura Canyon, New Zealand.
courtesy jenny villone
137-foot historic schooner, has spent the last twelve winters in St. Croix, USVI, working with hundreds of public school students each season as part of the World Ocean School’s mission-driven programming. This year, the island is struggling to recover from back-to-back devastating
hurricanes. Eight of the public schools on the island were condemned after the storms passed. As a result, students rotate through the remaining buildings for only four hours of school each day. Before this season, Roseway was serving as a floating classroom for local students. This winter, its role is more important than ever, allowing the island’s educational system to extend the school day by sending students to the ship, providing opportunity and inspiration in a season of heartache and devastation. Students on board learn math, science, history and literature through the experience of working the sails and rig, being on the water, and learning about the ship itself. Physics, navigation, marine biology, wind and weather, poetry of the sea, and maritime history are brought to life through hands-on work and lessons aboard the ship. A climb up the rig allows students to see their island home from a new perspective—as well as themselves— as they conquer fear in the feat itself. In St. Croix, this 93-year-old former fishing schooner and harbor pilot vessel has
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Despite hurricanes Irma and Maria ripping through the Virgin Islands in September, the schooner Roseway committed to another winter season in St. Croix, and brought hope for the recovering island along with her. Roseway, a
St. Croix school children learning math and science in navigation class. become much more than her wood and sails. She is a classroom and a refuge, and a point of pride for locals. World Ocean School and the schooner Roseway are happy to be back in the Caribbean, inspiring children and adults any way they can while the island recovers from the devastating hurricanes of 2017.—Eden Leonard, executive director, World Ocean School aboard Roseway (www.worldoceanschool. org) ... As the bicentennial period for the Erie Canal enters its second year, the New York State Canal Corporation has announced it is waiving fees for recreational boaters for the 2018 season. While this sounds like great news, many who use the waterways are distressed because the Canal Corporation also reduced the duration of the recreational boating season, down from 201 days in 2016 to just 145 days in 2017 and 2018. The Canal Corporation oversees the NYS Canal System, which includes the Erie, Champlain, Oswego, and Cayuga-Seneca canals. Spanning 524 miles, the waterways link the Hudson River with the Great Lakes, the Finger Lakes, and Lake Champlain. In 2017, the Canal Corporation celebrated the 200th anniversary of the groundbreaking for the Erie Canal, which occurred in Rome, NY, on 4 July 1817. Completed in 1825, the canal links the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean, passing through New York Harbor. An engineering marvel when it was built, the canal is considered by some to be the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Within 15 years of the canal’s opening, New York City had become the busiest port in America, and the growth and development of many upstate New York towns and cities can be linked directly to the trade and transportation network created by SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
the canal. Between 2017 and 2025, cities and communities throughout the canal corridor are celebrating with historical society exhibits and local events, plus opportunities for boating (including kayaking), hiking, and biking along the canal towpaths. The 2018 season will open on 18 May and run until 10 October; locks and bridges will be open for operation between 7am–5pm each day, with individual facilities operating until 10pm through 12
For 50 years, the South Street Seaport Museum has brought to life the rise of New York as a world port city offering visitors a chance to engage like no other museum can. Climb aboard an historic ship, grab a halyard to raise sail on a schooner, set type to print your own broadside at our historic print shop, or visit our exhibitions and ring an 800 lbs bell recovered from a sunken lightship.
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www.southstreetseaportmuseum.org September. Those advocating for a longer recreational boating season recommend boaters get out on the canal as much as possible; records from boat traffic through the locks will be used to determine future schedules. Earlier in 2017, the New York Power Authority (NYPA) assumed control of the Canal System from the New York State Thruway Authority. NYPA is the nation’s largest public power authority and runs 16 power-generating plants, including three hydroelectric facilities on the Erie Canal. (See www.canals.ny.gov for details on access, events, regulations, and more.) ... The citizens of Burnham-on-Crouch hope to save one of its “Little Ships” [of Dunkirk]. Vanguard, a 45-foot oyster dredger, was one of three boats from this small Essex town to join the fleet of 800plus small craft that sailed from England to evacuate British and French troops from Dunkirk in World War II. Allied troops
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had been pushed back to French port towns along the English Channel; the British government appealed to the owners of small craft capable of navigating the shallow waters where troops would be waiting to be transported to larger naval ships at sea. It is estimated that 338,000 troops were rescued in the action, code named Operation Dynamo, between 27 May and 4 June 1940. Vanguard had been languishing at a boatyard in Canveys Island; some of her timbers had been ripped away for use as firewood. Teacher Alan Bellchambers researched the boat’s
Oyster dredger Vanguard in 2017
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Pride of Baltimore II
to 2008, and now is both owned and operated by Pride of Baltimore, Inc., a nonprofit entity funded through grants, donations, corporate support, and income from festival appearances and other sources. Over the years, Pride II has been able to generate less than half of its budget in operating revenues, such as appearance fees, souvenir sales, and day sails—requiring the organization to raise a significant amount of money each year. The organization is exploring legislation to allocate state funding for Pride II during this year’s General Assembly session. Although the ship received $1.5 million from the state spread over the past three fiscal years, it does not have a “firm commitment” for fiscal 2019 and beyond, according to Rick Scott, the organization’s executive director. The original Pride of Baltimore was built in 1977 as a re-creation of the famous Baltimore clippers of the early 19th century and to serve as a goodwill ambassador
Stad Amsterdam and Star of India, together in San Diego, February 2018.
for the city and state. She sailed for nearly a decade before being lost at sea in 1986. Pride of Baltimore II was launched in 1988 and has logged more than 250,000 miles and visited more than 200 ports in 40 countries. Pride II also serves in an educational role for Marylanders. Visitors to Pride II learn about the pivotal role Maryland privateers played in the War of 1812. The ship and crew also run dockside programs for fourth graders that feature lessons in simple machines, navigation, and the life of a sailor. Outreach programs take these lessons from the ship into classrooms across the state. (2700 Lighthouse Point East, Suite 330, Baltimore, MD 21224; Ph. 410 539-1151; email: pride2@pride2. org; www.pride2.org) ... The Dutch clipper ship Stad Amsterdam is touring the West Coast of the United States this spring, and recently shared the dock with the 1863 Star of India in San Diego, giving visitors the rare sight of two 200-feet-plus square riggers side by side. Stad Amsterdam was launched in 2000 at the Damen Shipyard in the Netherlands. A full-rigged ship, she is a modern luxury cruise ship in a vessel designed along the lines of 19th-century Dutch frigate. She has a steel hull, the latest technological navigational equipment, modern amenities,
and a fully functional sailing rig. On 8 February, Stad Amsterdam pulled into San Diego and was welcomed by the Maritime Museum of San Diego crew. According to Ray Ashley, president/CEO of the museum, “Stad Amsterdam has a great likeness to the 1863 iron-hulled Star of India, 212 feet overall, the world’s oldest active sailing vessel. To witness the two vessels side by side on San Diego’s waterfront is quite a treat.” Launched as Euterpe from the Ramsey Shipyard in the Isle of Man 154 years ago, Star of India made San Diego her home port in 1927, and since then the
SOUTHPORT SILVER Handcrafted Silver and Copper Jewelry
Southport Island, Maine www.southportsilver.com courtesy mmsd
money to rebuild the vessel. (You can see photos and learn more about the efforts to save Vanguard through the group’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/vanguarddunkirklittleship/) ... After marking 40 years of sailing the Chesapeake and around the world representing the city of Baltimore and state of Maryland, the administrators of the topsail schooner Pride of Baltimore II are urgently seeking new funding from government, the business sector, and the public to keep the ship operating. Pride II is undergoing maintenance early in the year as part of a 30-year refit of the vessel. Without significant new funding, it is unlikely that the ship will be able to maintain an active sailing schedule in 2018. Pride II was owned by the state of Maryland from 1988
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 45
courtesy battleship new jersey
USS New Jersey
and the Korean war; the 66-feet-long, 237,000-pound weapons are the largest naval guns manufactured by the US Navy. They had been stored outside at Norfolk Naval Shipyard’s Saint Juliens Creek Annex in Chesapeake, Virginia, but individuals in the naval heritage community raised concerns that they would eventually be cut up for scrap. The guns are being moved by crane and transported by truck and railroad cars: one will go to the former Philadelphia Naval Shipyard where the battleship was built, another will go back to the New Jersey in care of the Battleship New Jersey Museum & Memorial across the river in Camden, and the third will go to the Mahan Collection Foundation in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. USS New Jersey earned the Navy Unit Commendation for Vietnam service. She received nine battle stars for World War II; four for the Korean conflict; and three for Vietnam, and three Campaign Stars for service off Beirut, Lebanon, and service in the Persian Gulf prior to Operation Desert Storm. With a total of 19 Battle and Campaign Stars, New Jersey is America’s most decorated battleship and surviving warship. The ship is open for
us defense imagery
vessel has been on display along the San Diego waterfront, along with a fleet of other historic and replica museum vessels. Stad Amsterdam heads north to San Francisco and then back down to Panama in March. She will be back in the Atlantic by the end of April. Cruises are available for individuals and corporate events throughout the year. (Check www.stadamsterdam. com for details on the ship and its upcoming itinerary. MMSD, 1492 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA; Ph. 619 234-9153; www. sdmaritime.org) ... Three 16-inch gun barrels, originally from the battleship USS New Jersey (BB-62), are on their way to new homes in Philadelphia and New Jersey. In 1954 nine gun barrels were removed from the battleship due to excessive wear from heavy use in World War II
USS New Jersey gun salvo, 1953. tours and events at its dock in Camden, New Jersey. (62 Battleship Place, Camden, NJ; Ph. 856 966-1652; www.battle shipnewjersey.org) ... Sea Education Association (SEA) alumnus Michael Jacobson has been named as the recipient of the 2018 Armin E. Elsaesser III Fellowship award, which funds projects exploring a marine or maritime subject. Jacobson will use his award to travel to Orchid Island, southeast of Taiwan, to document the indigenous Tao people’s traditional boatbuilding and flying fish fisheries. His photos and videos will later
Books with sea spray between the lines A Genius at His Trade .
C. Raymond Hunt and His Remarkable Boats Stan Grayson Foreword by Llewellyn Howland III
A Genius at His Trade
C. Raymond Hunt and His Remarkable Boats Stan Grayson Foreword by Llewellyn Howland III
C. Raymond Hunt and His Remarkable Boats By Stan Grayson
This is the story of a supremely gifted sailor who became one of the th century’s most innovative designers of both sail and powerboats. Today, the name C. Raymond Hunt remains synonymous with some of the most popular boats ever created. They include the classic Concordia yawls and sloops, the original Boston Whaler, the pioneering Miami-Nassau race-winner Moppie, and the production Bertram and Sportfisherman, among others. Those who sailed with Ray Hunt never forgot his special touch on the helm or his uncanny ability to predict wind behavior. Designers still marvel at his new ideas for sailboats in a variety of competitive classes, and for powerboats. While the original foot Boston Whaler pioneered a new market clamoring for versatile, safe, small boats, the deep-V hull revolutionized expectations of speed and seaworthiness.
A Genius at His Trade not only presents the story of Hunt’s boats but also explores the man himself. This biography gives readers a moving portrait of Ray Hunt as son, husband, and father. It’s a book that any lover of boats, whether sail or power, will find fascinating.
First book-length biography of the legendary yacht designer and racing sailor
a man. He saw things, dreamed of things, drew things, built things ontemporaries ever did. Woven into Ray Hunt’s every fiber was a sign sense that relied not at all on formal training or study. It grew from his particular genius.”
A Genius at His Trade
Concordia Yawl and sloops to the pioneering / one-designs, n Whaler, and development of deep-V cruisers and sportfishermen, Ray Hunt left an enduring legacy of unmatched innovation.
A Genius at His Trade
—from A Genius at His Trade Published by: Old Dartmouth Historical Society/ New Bedford Whaling Museum Johnny Cake Hill New Bedford, MA www.whalingmuseum.org Sports/Boating/Biography
“O’er the Wide and Tractless Sea”
Old Dartmouth Historical Society / New Bedford Whaling Museum ISBN 978-0-9975161-3-5
Michael P. Dyer
store.whalingmuseum.org 508-997-0046 ext.127
original art of the yankee whale hunt
Rarely seen maritime paintings, drawings, and whaling artworks
“O’er the Wide and Tractless Sea”
Original Art of the Yankee Whale Hunt By Michael P. Dyer
“O’er the Wide and Tractless Sea”
k original art of the yankee whale hunt By Michael P. Dyer
Model Ships by Ray Guinta P.O. Box 74 Leonia, NJ 07605 201-461-5729
www.modelshipsbyrayguinta.com e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Experienced ship model maker, who has been commissioned by the National Maritime Historical Society and the USS Intrepid Museum in New York City. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Tatala be used to augment an exhibit at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture in Seattle, Washington. Jacobson, an expert in strategic planning and organizational management, first became interested in the Tao’s seagoing fishing canoe, called a tatala, on a visit to Taiwan in 1987. Upon return to his home in Seattle, he recognized two such vessels in a local restaurant being used as lighting fixtures. Eventually, he was able to rescue the boats, one of which he donated to the Burke Museum. The Elsaesser Fellowship was established in 1987 in memory of Armin E. Elsaesser III, who taught Maritime Studies at SEA and was captain of the program’s research sailing ship, SSV Westward. The fellowship is intended to help one individual each year investigate a marine or maritime subject of personal interest, and follow a dream that has been elusive because of the demands of work or study. Projects must be unrelated to their current professional activities and reflect a creative and independent approach to the pursuit of knowledge. Awards range from $8,000 to $10,000. SEA faculty, staff, former employees, and alumni are eligible. SEA is an internationally recognized leader in undergraduate ocean education. For 45 years and more than one million nautical miles sailed, SEA has educated students about the world’s oceans through SEA Semester, a study-at-sea program accredited through Boston University. SEA is based on Cape Cod within the world-renown oceanographic research community of Woods Hole, Massachusetts. It operates two research vessels: SSV Corwith Cramer, operating in the Atlantic Ocean; and SSV Robert C. Seamans, sailing in the Pacific. In 2016, SEA was honored with the National Science Board’s Public Service Award for its role in promoting the public
understanding of science and engineering. (171 Woods Hole Rd, Falmouth, MA; www.sea.edu) ... The Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia has been awarded a $2.6 million grant from the William Penn Foundation to open River Alive!— an exhibition focusing on the Delaware River and its watershed as a living, ever-changing system whose health and sustainability is vital to our lives. The River Alive! exhibition will have multiple interactive and hands-on exhibition elements including watershed SeaHistory.qxp_Layout 1 a11/20/17 9:52map am
and a citizen science lab and “fisharium” to help audiences to understand the real threats to the Delaware and its watershed. As well as being an economic driver through its port facilities, the river provides drinking water, food, and recreation to millions of people living across 13,500 square miles in the region. Construction on the exhibit will begin in early 2018 with an anticipated opening in November 2018. (211 S. Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia, PA; www.phillyseaport.org) 1 Page The quarterly magazine devoted to traditional sailing vessels, sailors, and sail training! One year $25 * Two years $40 Call (978) 594-6510 or send your check / money order to: MARLINSPIKE 98 Washington Square #1 Salem, MA 01970 Visit MarlinspikeMagazine.com and check out our facebook page!
Join Today And Support The Mission Of The
AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MARINE ARTISTS INVITING ALL ARTISTS • GALLERIES • COLLECTORS • ACADEMICS • ENTHUSIASTS
Artists can apply through our website for Signature Membership March 1 through April 3 Join online at www.americansociety ofmarineartists.com
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 47
CLASSIFIED ADS SHIP MODEL BROKER: I will help you BUY, SELL, REPAIR, APPRAISE or COMMISSION a model ship or boat. www.FiddlersGreenModelShips.com. CUSTOM SHIP MODELS, HALF HULLS. Free Catalog. Spencer, Box 1034, Quakertown, PA 18951. MUSEUM-QUALITY REPLICA SHIP MODELS: Tall Ships, Ocean Liners, Naval Warships, Personal and Commercial Vessels. Made to order. Any size or scale. www.SDModelMak ers.com or call 760 525-4341. PRESIDENTS PLAYING CARDS. All 45 US presidents are represented on these playing cards with interesting facts and quotes. www.presidentsplayingcards.com. NMHS SHIP’S STORE AT W W W.SEAHISTORY.ORG: shop for unique nautical gifts, books, prints.
BOOKS RED JACKET: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF A MAINE CLIPPER SHIP by Stephen D. Hopkins. Take a step back in time to the mid-1800s exploring the Red Jacket’s life and times. Original sources document her building, maiden voyage, immigrant trade, cargo voyages, lumber trade and loss. $60 to Rockland Historical Society, PO Box 1331, Rockland, Maine 04841; includes shipping. THE LOST HERO OF CAPE COD by Vincent Miles. The story of an elite mariner, Captain Asa Eldridge, and the 19th -century battle for commercial supremacy on the Atlantic. Reviews, availability at www.lostherocapedcod.com and Amazon. THE AUTHORITY TO SAIL by Commodore Robert Stanley Bates. The fully illustrated authoritative history of US Merchant Marine licenses and documents issued since 1852. Coffee-table size, 12” x 14.” Order direct: The Parcel Centre, Ph. 860 739-2492; www.theauthoritytosail.com. KEEPING THE TRADITION ALIVE by Capt. Ray Williamson. The remarkable story of Maine Windjammer Cruises,TM founder of the windjammer industry. 172 page, 11 x 14 hardcover book with over 100 full-page images from the days of cargo to the present. Price–$48. Call 800 736-7981; email email@example.com. OUT-OF-PRINT NAUTICAL BOOKS. SEA FEVER BOOKS. Thousands of titles. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; 860-663-1888 (EST); www.seafeverbookstore.com. Advertise in Sea History ! Call 914 737-7878, ext. 235, or e-mail: email@example.com. 48
NMHS Seminar Series: Events for Spring 2018 Join us for our monthly seminars, Saturday mornings at the Hendrick Hudson Free Library in Montrose, New York. Since the series began in 1992, NMHS has organized more than 300 regional field trips and seminars, featuring noted authors, historians, film producers, and artists to share the latest in maritime heritage research, book releases, and preservation projects. There is no charge to attend, but a modest ($5-10) donation at the door is appreciated to support our educational mission. Sign up online, call 914 737-7878 ext. 0, or email NMHS@seahistory.org. Registration starts at 10:30am; the presentations begin at 11:00am. Visit the NMHS website, www.seahistory.org, for the full 2018 seminar schedule. Here’s what’s lined up for this spring: 10 March: Heaven’s Ditch—God, Gold, and Murder on the Erie Canal. Presentation and book signing with author Jack Kelly. As the nation celebrates the bicentennial of the building of the 360-mile Erie Canal (1817–1825), Jack Kelly offers a fresh look at this critical moment in American history. A technological marvel of its age, the Erie Canal was the epitome of the can-do attitude of the age of the common man. The canal made New York the financial capital of America, brought the modern world crashing into the frontier, and stimulated the nation’s commerce for decades to come. Kelly explores this history, and, along the way, encounters the very first “crime of the century,” a treasure hunt, searing acts of violence, a visionary cross-dresser, and a panoply of fanatics, mystics, and hoaxers. 19 May: Blackbeard’s Last Battle: the Conflicting Interpretations of his Origins and Motivations—Presentation and book signing with Kevin Duffus, author of The Last Days of Blackbeard the Pirate. Blackbeard stands among the most popular figures of early colonial American history, yet, to this day, no one can say for certain who he really was. Did he hail from England, Jamaica, or the Carolinas? Was his surname Teach or Thatch, or something else entirely? Was he an undistinguished common sailor suddenly thrust into command of a pirate ship? Or was he, as some have claimed, a former Royal Navy sailor and an aristocratic, Anglican slave-owning planter who inexplicably turned Jacobite and pirate? These conflicting interpretations have provoked rancorous debate among archaeologists and historians. For more than 45 years, award-winning author and documentary filmmaker, Kevin Duffus, has followed the wake of the notorious pirate’s journey through history, discovering clues and pivotal waypoints in Blackbeard’s odyssey that point to a startling conclusion—one that many scholars do not want the public to know. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
CALENDAR Conferences & Symposiums •Council of American Maritime Museums Annual Conference, 4–6 April, hosted by the National Museum of Bermuda. (www.councilofamericanmaritime museums.org) •New Researchers in Maritime History Conference, 6–7 April at the Great Western Dockyard in Bristol, England. Conference is organized by the British Commission for Maritime History and is hosted by SS Great Britain Trust. (www.maritimehis tory.org.uk; www.ssgreatbritain.org) •2018 National Council on Public History Annual Meeting, 18–21 April in Las Vegas, NV. (www.ncph.org) •North American Society for Oceanic History (NASOH) Annual Conference, 21–24 May in St. Charles, MO. (www. nasoh.org) •Canadian Nautical Research Society Annual Conference, 21–23 June in Toronto, Ontario. Conference theme is “Lower Lakes, Upper Lakes: Connecting Maritime Heritage.” (www.cnrs-scrn.org) E xhibits •Women Who Changed Maritime History, throughout March at the San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park Visitors Center. (499 Jefferson Street, San Francisco, CA; Ph. 415 447-5000; www. nps.gov/safr/) •Millions: Migrants and Millionaires aboard the Great Liners, 1900–1914, a new exhibit at South Street Seaport Museum. (12 Fulton St., New York, NY; www.southstreetseaportmuseum.org) •Wind & Water: Sailing in San Diego, opens 1 March at the Maritime Museum of San Diego in California. (1492 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA; Ph. 619 234-9153; www.sdmaritime.org) •Murmur: Arctic Realities, through 22 April at Mystic Seaport. Also, The Vikings Begin: Treasures from Uppsala University, Sweden, 19 May–30 September. (47 Greenmanville Ave., Mystic, CT; Ph. 860 572-5388; www.mysticseaport.org) •Thomas Paquette: America’s River Re-Explored, Paintings of the Mississippi from Source to Gulf, 20 April–26 August at the Minnesota Marine Art Museum. (800 Riverview Dr., Winona, MN; Ph. 507 474-6626; www.mmam.org)
•After Ryder—Photographs by Nicholas Whitman, opens 16 March at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. Also at the museum this summer: A Spectacle in Motion: The Grand Panorama of a Whaling Voyage ’Round the World. (18 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford, MA; Ph. 508 997-0046; www.whalingmuseum.org) •Unfolding Histories: Cape Ann Before 1900, 31 March–9 September at the Cape Ann Museum in MA. (27 Pleasant St., Gloucester, MA; Ph. 978 283-0455; www. capeannmuseum.org) •You Sank My Battleship: Maritime Games and Pop Culture, 10 March–7 October at the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. Also at the museum: Pull Together: Maritime Maine in the 1914– 1918 Great War, through 6 May. (43 Washington St., Bath, ME; Ph. 207 4431316; www.mainemaritimemuseum.org) •Ports of Call, at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. (Pier 86, W. 46th St. & 12th Ave., New York, NY; www.intrepid museum.org) •Sailor Made, recently opened at the Mariners’ Museum. Also at the museum after 19 May, Answering America’s Call: Newport News in World War I. (100 Museum Dr., Newport News, VA; Ph. 757 596-2222; www.marinersmuseum.org) Festivals, Events, Lectures, Etc. •300th Anniversary of New Orleans, a series of events held throughout 2018, including Tall Ships New Orleans and Navy Week, 19–22 April. (See page 14 for details: www.2018nola.com) •Battle of Hampton Roads Weekend, 9–11 March at the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, VA, in partnership with NOAA, York County Historical Museum, Tidewater Civil War Partnership, Hampton History Museum, American Civil War Museum, Williamsburg Battlefield Association, Pamplin Historical Park, and the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. Theme is “Modern Marvels: Technology in the Civil War.” (www.battleofhampton roads.com; www.marinersmuseum.org) •“Maritime Navigation,” part of the “On Deck” lecture series, 13 March at the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. (43 Washington St., Bath, ME; Ph. 207 443-1316; www. mainemaritimemuseum.org)
•“Loving a Sailor, Past and Present,” a lecture by Michelle Schmidt, 21 March at the National Museum of the Great Lakes in Toledo. (1701 Front Street, Toledo, OH; Ph. 419 214-5000; www.inlandseas.org) •Mariners’ Museum Lecture Series: “Still Water Bending,” 22 March by Wendy Mitman Clarke; “The Prince Who Would Be King,” 12 April by Sarah Fraser; “In the Kingdom of Ice,” 19 April by Hampton Sides; “African Americans and the War for Democracy,” 24 May by Adriane Lentz-Smith. (100 Museum Drive, Newport News, VA; Ph. 757 596-2222; www. marinersmuseum.org) •Tall Ships Challenge Series, 5–8 April in Galveston, TX; 12–15 April in Pensacola, FL; 19–22 April in New Orleans, LA; and 24–28 May in Philadelphia, PA. The series is organized by Tall Ships America in Newport, RI. See page 14 for more information. (www.sailtraining.org) •America’s Schooner Cup Regatta, 7 April in San Diego Bay, organized by the Silver Gate Yacht Club Foundation. Proceeds benefit the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society. Topsail schooner Californian of the Maritime Museum of San Diego is participating; berths are available through the museum. (www.americasschoonercup.com; www.sdmaritime.org) •“Behind the Canvas,” a series of artists’ presentations at the Mystic Seaport Maritime Art Gallery: 7 April—William D. Hobbs, “Exploring the Dynamics of Moving Surf in Oils: Inspirations from Nature and the Historic Traditions of the Hudson River School;” 14 April—Russ Kramer, “Inspirations, Adventures and Methods.”(47 Greenmanville Ave., Mystic, CT; Ph. 860 572-5331; www.mysticseaport.org) •Annapolis Spring Sailboat Show, 20–22 April, City Dock, Annapolis, MD. (www. annapolisboatshows.com) •30th Annual Scrimshaw Weekend, 4–6 May at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. (18 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford, MA; Ph. 508 997-0046; www.whalingmu seum.org) •Hausmann Quartet Concert aboard the 1898 Steam Ferryboat Berkeley, 6 May at the Maritime Museum of San Diego in California. (1492 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA; Ph. 619 234-9153; www.sdmari time.org)
SEA SEAHISTORY HISTORY162, 162,SPRING SPRING2018 49 2018 49
MARITIME HISTORY ON THE INTERNET
by Peter McCracken
Researching the Poles
his winter’s recent “bomb cyclone,” which froze much of the continental United States, makes this seem as good a time as any to look at sources for doing polar research. Polar research could, of course, include a wide range of topics—all of which would likely have some maritime connection—but here we’ll look at a few that seem more emphatically maritime, such as scientific research and exploration. Given the manner in which polar regions bring nations’ borders together in often-confusing ways, it’s not surprising that many different countries sponsor polar research programs. The Norwegian Polar Institute, at http://www.npolar.no/ en/, for instance, focuses on both poles; this is not a surprise, given the proximity of the North Pole, and their history of exploration of the South Pole by Roald Amundsen and others. Norwegian polar exploration continues today, with a brandnew purpose-built icebreaker and research ship, RV Kronprins Haakon, that will serve as a valuable tool for continued access and research in the Antarctic and Arctic. Like the Norwegians, the British have spent a good deal of time exploring both poles. The UK’s National Maritime Museum has actively collected records and artifacts from many polar explorers, and most are recorded at http://www.rmg. co.uk/discover/explore/exploration-endeavour/polar-exploration. Cambridge University’s Scott Polar Research Institute (https://www.spri.cam.ac.uk/library/), part of the university’s Department of Geography, contains extensive collections on polar research, from artifacts to manuscripts to online resources. Finally, the British government maintains two sites about polar discovery: Discovering the Arctic (http://www.discoveringthearctic.org. uk/) and Discovering Antarctica (http:// discoveringantarctica.org.uk/), each with interesting public-facing information about the very different—but equally harsh—environments. The National Maritime Museum recently hosted an impressive exhibit titled “Death in the Ice” about Sir John Franklin’s explorations of the Arctic in the 1840s, and the loss of his two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror. Both were rediscovered in the 50
last several years, in Canadian waters. That exhibit is now at the Canadian Museum of History through September 2018 (http://www.historymuseum.ca/event/ the-franklin-expedition/), and then will be at Mystic Seaport after November 2018. A fairly basic site at http://www. south-pole.com/ describes many aspects of Antarctic exploration, with a particular focus on letters, telegrams, documents, and especially stamps, to tell these stories. Russell Potter maintains an overview of many Arctic expeditions and explorers at http:// visionsnorth.blogspot.com/p/arcticexploration-brief-history-of.html, and has a variety of interesting additional content about Arctic exploration and literature. Myriad pages honor the memory of Sir Ernest Shackleton, particularly surrounding the epic struggle and eventual rescue of the crew of his ship Endurance. The Scott Polar Research Institute (mentioned above), has a set of pages called “Virtual Shackleton” at https://www.spri. cam.ac.uk/archives/shackleton/ that highlight each of his voyages. The same department also hosts a collection of nearly 25,000 polar images at https://www. spri.cam.ac.uk/picturelibrary/, in several different formats and interfaces. The Dundee-built Royal Research Ship Discovery, now on display in Dundee, Scotland, carried both Robert Scott and Shackleton to the Antarctic, and the website at https://www.rrsdiscovery.com/ records a bit about them and the ship itself. Most of the people who travel to the poles today do so for scientific research. The Arctic Institute of North America, based at the University of Calgary (http:// arctic.ucalgary.ca/), publishes the Arctic Science and Technology Information System database (http://www.aina.ucalgary.ca/astis/), containing extensive research on Arctic science. The Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research coordinates numerous scientific research projects taking place in Antarctica at https://www.scar.org. The American Geosciences Institute continues to make two bibliographic databases about polar regions available at http:// www.coldregions.org/. The databases cover 1950 to 2011, so while you will not
find the most recent literature, they do have earlier content and they are still available online. The databases are bibliographies, so they just provide citations to existing articles; the articles and books are generally not available through this interface. A major challenge in these regions is law and jurisdiction. Iceland’s University of Akureyri offers a masters and law degree in the subject, and has been sponsoring the Polar Law Symposia for the last decade (http://www.polarlaw.is/en/previoussymposiums). Jurisdiction has been a concern since a 1970 case (“the T-3 case”) in which an American citizen killed another American on a large iceberg that was floating in the Arctic—if the victim or perpetrator had been of another nationality, determining appropriate jurisdiction would have been a very difficult question. In the Antarctic, the situation is a bit different, since there’s actual ground under the pole. The Antarctic Treaty Secretariat provides extensive information about the legal aspects of the continent, at http://www.ats. aq/index_e.htm, including a database of information about the Antarctic Treaty, a database of protected and historic sites, and plenty of other information about how the land is managed. Suggestions for other sites worth mentioning are welcome at peter@shipindex. org. See https://www.shipindex.org for a free compilation of over 150,000 ship names from indexes to dozens of books and journals. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Off the Deep End: A History of Madness at Sea by Nic Compton (Bloomsbury, New York, 2017, 288pp, illus, notes, index, isbn 978-1-4729-4112-1; $24hc) “The wonder is always new that any sane man can be a sailor.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson. So opens Nic Compton’s latest work, looking at the history of mental illness among seafarers who spent long periods at sea in the confines of a crowded ship or boat, or all alone in a lifeboat. In the 18th century, a British Royal Navy physician’s research found that sailors were seven times more likely to suffer from severe mental illness than the general population. It was speculated that mariners away at sea for long periods of time living in crowded confined spaces, often subjected to harsh discipline, and sustained on limited food supplies, were subjected to enormous mental stress. In this seagoing environment, the knowledge that a single error in judgment could have fatal consequences resulted in an omnipresent dread among mariners. This became a driving force, turning men to affirm their faith in God, meander into wild superstitions, or metamorphose into insanity; not unlike the fate of some prisoners held in solitary confinement for long periods of time. In his investigation into the long history of madness at sea, author and journalist Compton examined a number of aspects of the sea’s physical and metaphysical characteristics. He learned that its perils, vastness and monotony can play tricks on a person’s senses and at times make a rational thought a challenge. In examining case studies of those who lost their minds at sea or whose behavior is hard for the sane to reconcile, he looked at the often-marginal behavior of sailors living both figuratively and literally outside society’s customary rules. He found record after record of sailors who had experienced disturbing hallucinations—seeing elephants floating in the sea and strangers taking the helm, for example. More than one seafarer suffered a complete mental breakdown, becoming hypnotized by the sea and jumping overboard to his death. Off The Deep End is a maritime historical review of the men and women— both famous stories you have heard and some obscure cases you have not—who lost
their sanity while on a variety of ocean Arctic by various expeditions that sought experiences. A compendium of case studies, first to rescue, and later to discover the fate the book spans centuries in a chronological of the last expedition of Captain Sir John order, bringing the reader up to the twen- Franklin. ty-first century at the book’s end. Detailed In 1845, Franklin set sail from Britain accounts of shipwrecks yielded plenty of with two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS fodder for this study. There are tales of Terror, on what the Lords of the Admimariners who cannibalized their dead to ralty and a number of “old Arctic hands” survive, of inexplicable murders and sui- thought would be the culmination of the cides (perhaps the result of neurosis and Royal Navy’s quest to find and navigate paranoia), and all manner of terrors derived the Northwest Passage across the top of the from long periods of time at sea. This is an world. In those ships went 129 men with atypical study of maritime history explor- provisions for three years (including the ing the psychology, behavioral science, and latest innovation: canned, or “tinned” sociology of sailors dealing with the effects food), scientific instruments, naval stores of a cruel sea upon the mind. and equipment, and an extensive library, Off the Deep End is an engrossing read, plus a pet monkey named Jacko, Neptune a collection of maritime horror stories that the dog, and an unnamed cat. After a brief touch on occupational hardships: sailing encounter with whalers in Baffin Bay, the The Glencannon Press crews plagued by disorientation, scurvy, ships sailed through Lancaster Inlet and 4 col. inches (2.25 x 4.5 inches) suicide, and the phenomenon of calenture, entered the Northwest Passage. There, they Prefer page,perished bottominright. “a type of heat stroke thatright turnedhand men dea drawn-out ordeal witnessed lirious and compelled them to jump over in part by the indigenous Inuit inhabitants the side, usually to their deaths.” Compton of the Arctic, “disappearing” to the outside also presents fascinating evidence of psy- world. chosis at sea and suggests it may have When Erebus and Terror failed to manifested in suppressed bipolar symptoms emerge from the Arctic by 1848, the Roydocumented in the lives of both Christo- al Navy mounted the first of what would pher Columbus and William Bligh. That said, one might question whether Compton The Glencannon has the academic credentials to reach some Press of his conclusions about the causes of what he calls “sea-induced frenzies.” Still, this is Maritime Books an appealing book for readers who are intrigued by body-mind connections and psychiatric matters having to do with isoWhalers, Wharves and lation, even though the conclusions are Warfare, PeoPle and events speculative. Louis Arthur Norton that shaPed Pigeon Point West Simsbury, Connecticut
Relics of the Franklin Expedition: Discovering Artifacts from the Doomed Arctic Voyage of 1845 by Garth Walpole and edited by Russell Potter (McFarland, Jefferson, NC, 2017, 240pp, illus, appen, notes, biblio, index, isbn 978-1-4766-67188; $39.95pb) This book is a delight, a detailed treat that requires many encounters with its pages, and an archaeologist’s dream. If I had not been asked to review it, I would have asked for it for Christmas. This is an intelligent, well-organized analysis of nearly every artifact found in the Canadian
Not merely a tower of brick, this lighthouse is filled with tales of people who lived and worked within. Their human experiences offer a glimpse into a vanished way of life. Hardcover, 7x10, 192 pp. 83+ photos. $29.95 + $5 shipping. Free Catalog 1-510-455-9027 Online catalog at www.glencannon.com
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 51
GREAT READS from our SHIP’S STORE John Paul Jones: America’s First Sea Warrior by Rear Admiral Joseph Callo, USN (Ret.)
Callo examines Jones’s extraordinary career by going beyond his legendary naval achievements to establish him as a key player in the American Revolution. In this biography, Jones is shown to be not only a highly skilled and relentless commander, but also the first serving American naval officer to emphasize the role the Navy could play in the rise of the United States as a global power. SRP $19.95 SALE $17.00 + $5.00 s/h (softcover)
The French Prize by James L. Nelson
Historical novel by award-winning author James L. Nelson. Jack Biddlecomb has much to live up to, being as he is the eldest son of the esteemed Captain Isaac Biddlecomb (newly-minted congressman). Jack is given command of the merchant vessel Abigail. He is saddled with two passengers, one as unpleasant as he is highborn, the other a confidant of the Abigail’s owner. What’s more, with the French making prizes of American merchantmen, Abigail’s owner has armed the ship and instructed Jack to fight if need be, thrusting the first-time captain and his small crew into a naval war for which they are totally unprepared. What Jack does not know is that he is being used as part of a bigger plot, one that will have repercussions on an international scale. SRP $26.99 SALE $21.00 + $5.00 s/h (hardcover)
Joe Rochefort’s War: The Odyssey of the Codebreaker Who Outwitted Yamamoto at Midway by Elliot Carlson
Award-winning biography of Capt. Joe Rochefort, who headed the US Navy’s signals monitoring and cryptographic intelligence unit at Pearl Harbor and broke the Japanese navy’s code before the Battle of Midway. Readers share Rochefort’s frustrations as he searches in vain for Yamamoto’s fleet prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but share his joy when he succeeds in tracking the fleet in early 1942 and breaks the code that leads Rochefort to believe Yamamoto’s invasion target is Midway. Carlson traces Rochefort’s career from his enlistment in 1918 to his posting in Washington as head of the Navy’s codebreaking desk at age twenty-five, and beyond. SRP $26.95 SALE $21.00 + $5.00 s/h (softcover)
The Skipper & the Eagle by Captain Gordon McGowan, USCG
The year was 1946, the place was bomb-shattered Bremerhaven. Amid the confusion of bombed cities, displaced persons, and food shortages, Commander Gordon McGowan, US Coast Guard, found himself the master of a three-masted barque, a battered prize of war which he had to transform into a well-found Coast Guard training ship able to make a transatlantic voyage under sail. With her carry-over crew of German seamen and neophyte Coast Guard personnel, the barque found new life and a great adventure under the calm and gentle leadership of a Coast Guard officer. This new 3rd edition features an introduction by Admiral Robert J. Papp Jr., USCG (Ret.), former Commandant, US Coast Guard. SRP $25.00 SALE $10.00 + $5.00 s/h (hardcover)
In Hostile Waters—The Cruise of USS Argus by William H. White
This Oliver Baldwin novel relates the story of the American brig-of-war Argus during the summer of 1813. Under Captain W. Henry Allen, a historical figure known for his daring and courageous actions, Argus boldly attacks shipping off the British Isles, angering the English and drawing out the Royal Navy. White’s lively and graphic narrative, punctuated with cannon fire and the clash of steel, realistically portrays America’s young navy pitted against the storied Royal Navy. In Hostile Waters is a captivating addition to the author’s fine naval fiction. SRP $14.95 SALE $12.00 + $5.00 s/h (softcover)
To order by phone, call with your credit card 1-800-221-NMHS (6647), x 0 Or visit our web site at www.seahistory.org. NYS residents add applicable sales tax. Shipping within USA only.
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
total more than thirty expeditions to offer relief or rescue and, in time, to find out what had gone wrong, and recover whatever expedition records that may have survived. What searchers found instead were scraps and discards from abandoned campsites, graves, and finally, a long trail of discarded equipment and bones where men had lain down and died. Apart from a few books and scraps of paper, the only written record was a standard Admiralty form, twice annotated, that Lt. William Hobson pulled from a rock cairn on the desolate shores of King William Island. It recorded the survey of a party in 1847, and the 25 April 1848 abandonment of Erebus and Terror, news of the deaths of Franklin and other men, and of a march about to start southward. The late Garth Walpole (1961–2015), archaeologist and Franklin scholar from Hobart, Tasmania, wrote his undergraduate thesis on the Franklin relics held at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. This initial effort led to a lifetime of work that culminated in this book, which he had largely completed before his death. His wife, Alison, turned the manuscript over to Russell Potter, another Franklin and Arctic exploration scholar. A professor of English and Media Studies at Rhode Island College, Russell was completing his edits on Garth’s manuscript when Alison suffered a relapse of cancer and also died. To read this and think that editing and publishing Relics of the Franklin Expedition is a noble and right thing to do for a colleague and friend is only partly correct. What Russell Potter has done in bringing the book forward for Garth and Alison is to also provide the world with something rare—another book on Franklin, but one that actually makes a contribution and adds new dimensions. As an editor, Russell did an exceptional job with his informed, respectful hand not overwashing Garth’s work. Drawing on his education as an archaeologist, Walpole assessed every artifact recovered by 19th- and 20th-century searchers from Franklin sites as material culture, but also as artifacts that in most cases had a story to tell. The stories speak to the people who made, used, cherished, lost, died with the artifacts, and later found them. This rich context provides not only a comprehensive contextualized catalogue, it offers testimony about the men, the expedition,
the uses and failures of technology, of desperation, and of an obsessive quest to sort this evidence, starting in 1850, to learn what had happened, and how. The book is divided into two introductions—Russell’s and Garth’s—and five chapters that provide a “material biography,” the historical context and timeline for the discovery and recovery of the items, a detailed examination of their various contexts, and their value, both scientifically and intrinsically, as relics. The work is something I recommend to any archaeologist studying material culture, and especially how artifacts move through space and time. The discussion on the transmutation of artifacts from government and personal property to discarded things, or precious items kept close or on one’s body at the time of death, to material recovered by the Inuit in their resource-deprived environment, to the various spiritual associations placed upon them by Victorian thinkers, is powerful. Whether you are fascinated with naval and maritime history, the Arctic and the saga of the Northwest Passage, Franklin, material culture, or archaeology, this is the book for you. Thoughtfully and comprehensively illustrated in all the right places with contemporary drawings, maps and photographs, appendices that catalogue the various holdings, extensive notes, a bibliography, and an index, this book will also satisfy the serious scholar and academic. Not believing book reviews should air minor quibbles, my only note is that I know of a few relics in obscure holdings that could be added to the mix, but they would be but additional polish on an already gleaming apple. James P. Delgado Jacksonville, Florida The Outer Beach: A Thousand-Mile Walk on Cape Cod’s Atlantic Shore by Robert Finch (W. W. Norton & Company, New York, 2017, map, isbn 978-0-393-08130-5; $26.95hc) Who doesn’t love a good jaunt on the beach? Now envision a half century of exploring a remarkable stretch of natural coastline with your fun, mischievous, inquisitive, poetic friend, and you get a sense of reading The Outer Beach by Robert Finch.
This collection of essays spans the author’s fifty-odd years exploring and writing about Cape Cod’s forty-mile-long Outer Beach, during which he estimates he’s walked about one thousand miles. Fourteen chapters cover different sections of the coast, and each contains chronologically arranged essays. The book is not intended to be a complete scientific or cultural study, nor is it a running narrative; it is a collection of decades of essays, observations, and reflections on the wildlife, history, and geology of this dramatic, famous, and significant coastline. In one essay Finch explains why he doesn’t meditate at the beach—so that he can soak it all in and “pay it the attention it deserves.” This is evident in the curiosity and sophistication of his observations of the wildlife. For example: “I have begun to notice that birdsong, like the flowering schedule of plants, seems to be affected by the exposed environment here. The song sparrows, for instance, all have thin, scratchy, attenuated voices here, as though all the sap had been dried out of their notes by the salt air.” This dynamic physical landscape deserves brilliant writing, and Finch does not disappoint. On seeing cliffs erode in real time: “It was like watching something frozen and rusted come alive, with stiff but powerful movements of its limbs and torso, destroying itself in the effort. The beach and the cliff were once more on the move, in a symphony of form and motion.” And on watching a fog bank: “The fog, it seems, has not left for good, but has retreated north and lies, just offshore there, like some low, snarling, purplish-brown, snakelike presence—treading air, indecisive, advancing hesitantly and retreating again like some cowardly dragon, kept at bay by the offshore wind.” More than mere stories of beach walks, birds, and storms, The Outer Beach explores the human need for primal encounters at the coast, their impact on our lives, and what they reveal about our inner selves. For example, on his unacted-upon instinct to scavenge from an ancient shipwreck temporarily exposed on the beach: “And why not? If the wreck is going to be reclaimed by the sea anyway, why not let us grab some piece of it before it goes, something that will give us some tactile connection, if only in our imaginations, with a more
SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018 53
by Kurt D. Voss All proceeds from this pictorial history benefit the ELISSA preservation fund.
Published by Arcadia Publishing and Galveston Historical Foundation $21.99. 128 pages, 200 photographs Autographed copies available at (409) 763-1877, or online at:
w w w. t s m - e l i s s a . o r g Anne T. Converse Photography
Neith, 1996, Cover photograph
Wood, Wind and Water
A Story of the Opera House Cup Race of Nantucket Photographs by Anne T. Converse Text by Carolyn M. Ford Live vicariously through the pictures and tales of classic wooden yacht owners who lovingly restore and race these gems of the sea. “An outstanding presentation deserves ongoing recommendation for both art and nautical collections.” 10”x12” Hardbound book; 132 pages, 85 full page color photographs; Price $45.00 For more information contact: Anne T. Converse Phone: 508-728-6210 firstname.lastname@example.org www.annetconverse.com
adventurous and earnest past… In our increasingly digital and virtual world, we seem to crave, more than ever, some contact with something solid, something fashioned by hand from oak beams and iron spikes, something that could last so long at the bottom of the sea, and be thrown up, as if in rebuke, to our wondering eyes.” The author’s reflections offer insights on how to make the most of one’s relationship with the coast: “The beach refuses to be a preview. Nature does not offer itself to one who would slip it in between trivial events, between gluttony and lust. It will not hold counsel with us when we are already going someplace else as we arrive.” And: “The beach is not a place for reassurance or affirmation, but for revelation and correction. It is the easy juxtaposition of beauty and violation that strikes us, that draws us to these narrow strands.” Throughout the book, metaphors for major topics of our lives—mortality, life’s purpose (or lack thereof), enduring change, and finding satisfaction in life—are drawn from the rhythms of the landscape and the ephemeral nature of the coast. “How lucky are we who live in proximity to a landscape that has such easy powers to lift us out of our narrow lives and self-made blinders, and to seduce us into seeing who we really are.” This part of the world has been written about countless times before, most notably by Thoreau and Beston. Readers of their works will appreciate the fresh eyes, modern perspective, and insight of noted writer and natural historian Robert Finch. He has explored this coast in great depth and reveals a fascinating universe far beyond the sterile sand and water that many people only see from parking lots and beach towels. Even experienced beachcombers and native Cape Codders, perhaps especially these readers, will find in this book an invitation to reshape what the coast means to them and why it is vital to stay connected to it. Christopher P. Hamilton Provincetown, Massachusetts Paradise in Chains: The Bounty Mutiny and the Founding of Australia by Diana Preston (Bloomsbury, New York, 2017, 352pp, illus, notes, biblio, index, isbn 9781-63286-610-3; $30hc) On the surface, one might be inclined to think that the settlement of Australia as
a prison colony and the mutiny by Fletcher Christian in HMAV Bounty might not be connected other than by being chronologically and geographically contemporaneous; both happened in the latter part of the eighteenth century and both happened in the Pacific Ocean. And both, at some point, involved a lengthy, difficult, and dangerous journey in an open boat. Ms. Preston, an excellent writer and a most thorough researcher, would disagree. Paradise in Chains, her newest offering, makes the claim that the two events are indeed related, and her extremely well-researched book switches back and forth between the two with sometimes head-spinning speed. Perhaps the fact that William Bligh (yes, that one, of Bounty fame) became governor of Australia in the 19th century could be considered the connecting link in the chain, but in my opinion, that is tenuous at best. The escape from Botany Bay by transported convicts in an open boat that more or less coincided with the open-boat voyages of both Bligh and Captain Edward Edwards (HMS Pandora) perhaps adds a further link, but, again a link insufficient to tie the settlement of Australia with the mutiny in Bounty. The foregoing notwithstanding, this book is one of the best-researched and besttold stories of both events: the settlement of Australia and the mutiny of Bounty’s crew. If any criticism could be offered, it might be that Ms. Preston offers too much detail—some of it unnecessarily salacious— on the Bounty story. Either accounting, Australia or the mutiny, would make a fine story in and of itself; I think combining them detracts from the impact of either. Her detailed accounting of previous exploration in the Pacific, mostly by James Cook, could have been handled in a more abbreviated style. It was interesting, but not as germane as the author would like her reader to believe. Since a goodly portion of the Bounty story takes place at sea on ships of the Royal Navy, I might have thought Ms. Preston could have more completely familiarized herself with naval ranks (1st lieutenant is a position on a ship, not a rank). These are relatively minor complaints, which detract only slightly from the enjoyment of these two stories. To her credit, she does not make Bligh out to be the oft-depicted stereotypical tyrant who constantly whipped his men. SEA HISTORY 162, SPRING 2018
Rather she correctly identifies him as a brilliant seaman and navigator who, like many “pint-sized” characters in history, most likely was paranoid. Compounded by his being really bad at administration and management, both of which he proved repeatedly in Bounty and later as governor general of Australia, it is no wonder he failed miserably in his career. His constant need for perfection rendered him unable to cope with any who fell short—and most did. The foregoing relatively minor criticism aside, I would most surely recommend this book to any with an interest in early Pacific history or in Australia. It is certainly a worthy addition to any library and a most enjoyable read. William H. White Rumson, New Jersey American Amphibious Warfare: The Roots of Tradition to 1865 by Col. Gary J. Ohls, USMC (Ret.) (Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD, 2017, 274pp, biblio, illus, notes, index, isbn 978-1-6824-7088-6; $39.95hc) A definition of amphibious warfare is an organized landing from watercraft of armed forces ashore to accomplish an assigned mission ashore. This type of action was not a novel twentieth century military tactic. Famously performed during World War II, it was nonetheless an important element of the ancient conflicts between Athens and Sparta during the Peloponnesian Wars. Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar went on to effectively invade enemy strongholds by landing troops from ships in some of their successful conquests. Historian and retired US Marine Corps officer Gary Ohls brings this tactic more up-to-date by documenting examples of amphibious warfare found in early American army and naval history through the Civil War period. He then examines and analyzes several major battles and a few related minor ancillary skirmishes to demonstrate how the strategy evolved through generations of warfare. Dr. Ohls writes that success in this endeavor requires an agreement of command, operational unity, an element of surprise, integration of naval and land assault forces in cooperation, naval gunfire support, a dependable and maneuverable troop delivery system, task organized forces, and operational coherence followed by
timely logistical support. Adding to this complex formula, commanders must overcome problems between inter-service officers with outsized egos in search of glory, difficult battle terrain, unpredictable and sometimes adverse weather, faulty intelligence, and unanticipated demanding defenses. As a result, amphibious warfare is among the most difficult of combat tactics to conduct with success. Ohls delves into the amphibious assaults in the pre-revolutionary North American theater of operations and later those occurring during the Revolutionary War. The earliest of these forays was when the British landed American troops to fight for the crown at the successful battles at Louisbourg, on Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Next came a series of Revolutionary War battles in which troops were transported by water to engage in battle or evacuate before a devastating defeat. These latter amphibious operations, somewhat in reverse, were the strategic retreat by the British from Boston and the series of evacuations of American forces from New York. In Ohls’s examination, they are enumerated and compared against tactical principles or the ideal model for amphibious warfare. This detailed narrative of a series of military events, followed by thoughtful studious critiques, is repeated in each subsequent chapter. These include the Battle at Yorktown, the Barbary Wars in North Africa, the Chesapeake incursion during the War of 1812, the Mexican-American campaigns, and finally the conquest of Fort Fisher in 1865. In a postscript, Dr. Ohls puts the preceding chapters into perspective, describing the post-Civil War uses of amphibious warfare up to the twenty-first century and projecting into the future. The author presents a host of specifics of the encounters listed above that are rarely addressed from a unique amphibious warfare academic perspective. The narrative is skillfully handled, transporting the reader to each battleground and outlining the problems that each landing faced. This fascinating survey of American amphibious warfare serves as an outstanding resource for armed services historians and is highly recommended for both military and maritime historians. Louis Arthur Norton West Simsbury, Connecticut
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NATIONAL MARITIME HISTORICAL SOCIETY AFTERGUARD J. Aron Charitable Foundation, Inc. The Artina Group Donald T. “Boysie” Bollinger CACI International George W. Carmany III James J. Coleman Jr. James O. Coleman Condé Nast Crawford Taylor Foundation Christopher J. Culver Edward A. Delman Brian D’Isernia & Eastern Shipbuilding Group Henry L. & Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation In Memory of Ignatius Galgan C. Duff Hughes & The Vane Brothers Company Arthur M. Kimberly Trust Dr. J. Phillip London Richardo R. Lopes Guy E. C. Maitland McAllister Towing & Transportation Company, Inc. Ronald L. Oswald Estate of Walter J. Pettit, Sr. In Memory of Capt. Joseph Ramsey, USMM Charles A. Robertson Howard Slotnick Capt. Cesare Sorio John Stobart Andrew C. Taylor Charles H. Townsend Weeks Marine Inc. William H. White BENEFACTORS Robert C. Ballard VADM Dirk Debbink, USNR (Ret.) Richard T. du Moulin Elite Island Resorts EMR Southern Recycling David S. 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Runyan Peter A. Seligmann Star Clipper Cruises Alix Thorne US Navy Memorial Foundation Chris Walker Adam Wronowski SPONSORS American Bureau of Shipping Paul M. Aldrich In Memory of William Burchenal Stephen & Carol Burke Douglas Campbell Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum Conservation International C.W. Craycroft VADM Peter H. Daly, USN The Edgar & Geraldine Feder Foundation, Inc. Mrs. D. L. Fleischmann D. Harry W. Garschagen Burchenal Green ADM Jonathan Greenert, USN (Ret.) Robert S. Hagge Jr. Marius Halvorsen Independence Seaport Museum J F Lehman & Company Neil E. Jones William Kahane Cyrus C. Lauriat Hon. John Lehman Norman Liss Panaghis Lykiardopulo The MacPherson Fund, Inc. Marine Society of the City of New York Ann Peters Marvin Mark Mashburn Buckley McAllister David J. & Carolyn D. McBride McCarter & English, LLC CAPT Sally Chin McElwreath, USN (Ret.) Dr. Joseph F. Meany Jr. RADM John T. Mitchell Jr., USN (Ret.) Carolyn & Leonard Mizerek Robert E. Morris Jr. William G. 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Paolino, Jr. Philip B. Persinger Paul C. Perez Nathaniel Philbrick Mr. & Mrs. William P. Rice Charles Raskob Robinson Capt. Bert Rogers Levent Kemal Sadikoglu Lee H. Sandwen Scholarship America James Edward Spurr Gerould R. Stange Philip E. Stolp Daniel R. Sukis Mr. & Mrs. William Swearingin Alfred Tyler II Erin Urban Roy Vander Putten Thomas Wayne Gerald Weinstein & Mary Habstritt Richard C. Wolfe PATRONS CDR Everett Alvarez Jr., USN (Ret.) John Appleton Carter S. Bacon Jr. William Baker Robert M. Baly Ernest T. Bartol Steve B. Batterman Charles R. Beaudrot Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Vincent Bellafiore Theodore Bernstein Arthur A. Birney W Frank Bohlen CAPT R. A. Bowling, USN (Ret.) James H. Brandi RADM David C. Brown, USMS (Ret.) Jerry M. Brown Robert P. Burke Judith L. Carmany James W. Cheevers Russell P. Chubb Louis Clairmont James M. Clark Jr. Dr. Gerard J. Clifford Jr. J. Barclay Collins Sean Crahan Jack Creighton Morgan Daly James M. D’Angelo Ian Danic Joan M. Davenport Dr. Jacob Deegan Anthony Delellis James P. Delgado C. Henry Depew Capt. John W. Dorozynski Steven Draper Michael F. Dugan Richard H. Dumas Reynolds duPont Jr. Egan Maritime Institute Leonard J. Eaton Jr. Theodore Eckberg, M. D. Bruce K. Farr OBE James J. Foley Jr. Peter P. Gerquest Capt. Dwight Gertz Mary Lee Giblon-Sheahan John F. Gradel Arthur Graham Edwin H. Grant Jr. Tom Green Marc Grisham Ray Guinta Capt. Peter Hartsock J. Callender Heminway William L. Henry Steven A. Hyman Andrew MacAoidh Jergens Gary Jobson RADM Eric C. Jones, USCG Jane Sundelof Jones Richard Julian John Kapteyn Ken Keeler The Kelton Foundation James L. Kerr James & Barbara Kerr Omie & Laurence Kerr Mr. & Mrs. Chester W. Kitchings Jr. R. Joyce Kodis Mr. & Mrs. Richard W. Kurts John L. Langill Chris Lautz F. W. Lee W. Peter Lind Robert Lindmark In Memory of John B. Lyon Babcock MacLean Davis Margold Mr. & Mrs. Alan McKie Kevin McLaughlin Richard S. Merrell Richard A. & Lois Meyer Charles H. Miller Michael G. Moore Jack & Marcia Moore CAPT R. G. Moore, USCG (Ret.) Thomas A. Moran Vance Morrison Michael Moss & Ellen Chapman James A. Neel Randy Nichols Eric A. Oesterle Roger Ottenbach William L. Palmer, Jr. Col. Bruce E. Patterson, USA Paul C. Pennington Peter B. Poulsen David Prohaska Dr. G. Michael Purdy Mr. & Mrs. Andrew A. Radel Michael J. Rauworth George Raymond Demetra Reichart John Reuter William E. Richardson Christopher Richmond, AAI, AINS In Memory of Richard E. Riegel Jr. RADM Donald P. Roane, USN (Ret.) Reed Robertson William M. Rosen James G. Sargent Robert W. Scott Mr. & Mrs. John R. Sherwood III RADM & Mrs. Bob Shumaker, USN (Ret.) CDR William H. Skidmore Edmund Sommer Patricia Steele Rob Surprenant A. E. & Diana Szambecki F. Davis Terry Jr. R ADM Cindy Thebaud Charles Tobin Capt. John Torjusen Russell R. Tripp Robert J. Tyd William Van Loo Carol Vinall Terry Walton Dr. John Dix Wayman Roberta E. Weisbrod, PhD Thomas S. Whiteman Jack Wiberg Capt. Eric T. Wiberg Bill Wissel James R. Williamson David Winkler
iscover a new age of sailing aboard the Star Clipper authentic tall ships—Royal Clipper, Star Clipper and Star Flyer. These sailing ships boast state-of-the-art navigation systems, superb service, amenities and stately accommodations while offering the ultimate sea-going experience.
The Royal Clipper, inspired by the legendary tall ship Preussen, is the largest and only five-masted, fully-rigged sailing ship since the beginning of the 20th century. The 439-foot Royal Clipper has 19,000 square feet of open deck space, plus 56,000 square feet of billowing sails and three swimming pools that create a wonderfully spacious and expansive outdoor environment. Onboard Royal Clipper, you’ll find 114 cabins accommodating up to 227 guests. The twin ships, Star Clipper and Star Flyer are magnificent Clipper Ships reflecting their proud heritage in every inch
of their polished brass and gleaming charm. These vessels are both 379 feet long with 16 sails and four-masts with over 36,000 square feet of flowing sails. There are 85 cabins that accommodate 170 guests on each ship. A modern cruise ship in every way; these vessels are created for passengers who love the tradition and romance of the legendary era of sailing ships. They sail to destinations across the globe.
MAKE YOUR NEXT SAILING ADVENTURE ONBOARD A STAR CLIPPER SHIP! CONTACT YOUR TRAVEL PROFESSIONAL TODAY OR CALL US AT 1.800.442.0551 www.starclippers.com • email@example.com Terms & Conditions: Star Clipper GSA, Inc. dba Star Clippers America acts only as a sales and marketing agent for Star Clippers, Ltd. for purpose of booking travel arrangements
on StarSPRING Clippers vessels. Star Clippers, Ltd. operates the vessels on which you will be sailing. © Star Clippers 2018. Ship’s Registry: Malta. ST# 37231. SEA HISTORY 162, 2018 3
“Cruise Critic’s editors were really impressed with Fred. Olsen...” Cruise Critic’s editors were really impressed with Fred. Olsen. Cruise Lines for waiving single supplements on selected voyages, and providing cabin upgrades, as well as unique ‘Single Cruises’ on a wide selection of sailings.” From arranging solo events with like-minded fellow cruisers, to providing dance hosts and dance couples, and offering a great range of solo deals throughout the year, Fred. Olsen is the ideal choice for the discerning solo traveler!” The relatively small size of Fred. Olsen’s four ocean ships – Balmoral, Braemar, Boudicca and Black Watch – along with new river cruise addition, Brabant – and the warm, relaxed atmosphere on board make Fred. Olsen cruises especially attractive for those traveling solo. With 10% of all rooms in the Fred. Olsen fleet being dedicated to solo travelers, it has one of the highest proportions of dedicated accommodation for solos with-in the industry. Overall, the Fred. Olsen fleet has 190 dedicated rooms for solo guests: Braemar offers 40, Black Watch and Boudicca each have 43, and Balmoral has 64.
“Cruise Critic’s editors were really impressed with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ wide variety of sailing lengths, plus no-fly cruises, departing from UK ports. Its program also features exciting European river itineraries, including 30 new sailings from 2018, so we felt it was the obvious choice for the ‘Best Itineraries’ award.
Toll Free: 877.318.6228
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Best for Solo Travellers
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Best Itineraries
10 National Maritime Awards Dinner and Washington Invitational Marine Art Exhibition • 16 Rediscovering USS Ward’s Namesake: James Harmon Wa...
Published on Mar 1, 2018
10 National Maritime Awards Dinner and Washington Invitational Marine Art Exhibition • 16 Rediscovering USS Ward’s Namesake: James Harmon Wa...