The Gloucester Marine Railway is a busy place these days. Everyone is busy getting their boats ready now that
we have some warm weather. The tug Towline is being painted. The Ardelle came out on Monday and was
powerwashed, Harold Burnham expects her to go back in Wed morning at high tide, about 5 a.m. The Adventure’s crew are
very busy painting, caulking, and replacing the outer section of the stem. Geoff Deckenbach expects her to go
back in on Wed evenings high tide, about 5 p.m. The Adventure will motor over to the Harbor Loop which she will make
her new home by the Maritime Museum. Meanwhile, the Phyllis A’s team is raring to go with her restoration, we are awaiting
word on when she can come up into dry dock. Workers pictured include Geoff, Manny from GMR, John Miles, Tony Finnociarro,
Sarah Tuvim, Katherine Richmond of KR Painting all on the Adventure, and Doug Parson’s with the Phyllis A. Michael Bergman
stopped by. He is very anxious to get back onboard to continue working on making the rat’s rails (ladder like structure up to the
top of the masts).
The Fish on Fridays series is a collaboration between Gloucester photographers Kathy Chapman and Marty Luster. Look for various aspects of Gloucester’s centuries-old fishing industry highlighted here on Fridays.
Kathy and Marty were back at the Gloucester Marine Railways this week to check out the Schooner Adventure with Restoration Coordinator Geoff Deckebach. Caulking and other repairs and improvements are underway as the restoration of Gloucester’s flagship continues.
Schooner Adventure fished for cod, haddock and halibut in Georges and Browns Banks from the year she was built, 1926, until 1953. Carrying a sailing rig, diesel engine, and 14 dories, Adventure was an exceptionally fast and able vessel, the ultimate evolution of the fishing schooner. She was a “highliner,” the biggest moneymaker of all time, landing nearly $4 million worth of cod and halibut during her fishing career. When retired in 1953, Schooner Adventure was the last American dory fishing trawler left in the Atlantic.
In 1954, Schooner Adventure was retired from fishing and converted into a windjammer for passenger cruising, removing the engine, propeller, and prop shaft. Adventure carried passengers along the coast of Maine until 1987. Her grace, beauty, and prowess as a sailing vessel earned her the nickname “Queen of the Windjammers.” National Historic Landmark (1988-present)
Captain Jim Sharp donated Adventure in 1988 to the people of Gloucester to be preserved as Gloucester’s historic tall ship and to be used to inform and educate the public about the important role of fishing in American history.
B+W photos © Marty Luster 2014
Color photos © Kathy Chapman 2014
Mary Barker Submits-
The Schooner Adventure welcomes her new captain, Stefan Edick (on the right in the blue cap), shown here planning for pipe installation with ship keeper, Geoff Deckebach.
The Adventure has a newly constructed temporary cover over the stern to allow her crew and volunteers to do caulking on deck. April 22, 2014 had John Miles, Sarah Tuvim,
Anders von Ashwege, Richard Smith and Tony Finnociarro removing the old and installing new caulking on deck. Prepping for a fresh coat of paint has also been started.
Meanwhile below deck, Capt. Stefan Edick, Geoff Deckebach,and engineer Bill Whitney collaborated on the location for some new plumbing for re-installation of the fore head.
Geoff assures me that anyone who would like to volunteer to help with some of the upkeep of the Adventure would be very welcome. There is plenty of work available for people
of any skill level.
In my travels this week I found lots happening down at the Gloucester Marine Railway despite the cold weather. The crews have been busy doing winter work
like sanding hulls,and repairing bilge pumps. On Saturday, the Adventure had a crew on board to clean the bilge and salt water wash the forecastle to prepare for
the installation of bunks. The Adventure will have people on board most days from 9 to 3 doing the carpentry world. The Phyllis A’s crew were also taking advantage
of the ‘warm’ (30 degree) weather and dis some salt water washing of her decks. I’m sure anyone who wanted to volunteer to help with any of the maintenance and
restorative projects for these historic boats would be most welcomed.
Cape Ann TV’s Lisa Smith sent this video by Josef Hnulik, filmed aboard Schooner Adventure during this year’s Schooner Festival featuring Daisy Nell & Captain Stan on the soundtrack.
Come aboard the Schooner Adventure for a sail in Gloucester Schooner Festival’s Mayor’s Race. It is the Adventure’s first race after she underwent a restoration project lasting two decades. The crew is proud of this historic fishing vessel, as they are the ones who restored her to her former grandeur.
Sunday afternoon was a spectacular day for a sail. The Adventure took full advantage with the first of hopefully many Thank You Sails. We sailed with 52 people who have/had been volunteers, donors, crew and board members at various times in the last 25 years.
It was so much fun to have the various ‘generations’ of the Adventure’s restoration team aboard. There were so many stories shared, friendships renewed, and new friendships started. We plan to continue our Thank You Sails with intention of including as many of the people as possible who have participated in making this dream a reality.
Fred Bodin Submits-
Schooner Adventure came home to Gloucester in 1988, twenty five years ago. The arrival was a grand event, and included the USCG, many private boats, and a blimp. Celebrations continued after she docked. The honoring of Adventure will commence again this weekend. She is the host and star of the visiting schooners.
No, that’s not the Hindenburg in the sky, it’s the Goodyear Blimp! This photo got me started on schooner photography. They are so graceful and beautiful. That’s John McNiff’s Whaler behind Adventure. This was a significant moment in Gloucester schooner history. What a day! A few years later, she was painted in her original “fisherman’s black.”
Hi Joey, Here rare photos from the Adventures first 2 shakedown sails. Captain Graham McKay was at the helm for both trips. Ryan Graham was the mate. The people hauling on the lines are hoisting the main sail, which sits atop a 65 ft boom, is 2100 square feet. The 4 sails total 5,500 square feet. Many thanks to Donny King who welcomed me aboard the Scotia Girl to capture the shots of the Adventure under way. The final shot was taken from Stage Fort Park with the Adventure taking down her sails. Mary Barker
Thanks to a kind invitation by FOB Greg Bover and the good folks at Gloucester Adventure, I had the opportunity to film Adventure’s second sea trial prior to her participation in the Schooner Festival on Labor Day weekend.
In the opinion of all on board, she is a sound vessel with an outstanding captain and crew. All Gloucester should be proud of Adventure as she embarks upon her career as our flagship and latest (and oldest) member of the growing Gloucester schooner fleet.
Looked like 28 plus people onboard as it took off from Rocky Neck.
If you click on the photo and zoom in Norman’s Woe to the right and Boston skyline off the stern shot on an iPhone from the end of the Dogbar Breakwater.
While watching the Adventure sail off from Gloucester Marine Railways I started chatting with Jeff Thomas. His grandfather Jeff Thomas was the first captain of the Adventure and took it fishing on the banks from 1926 to 1934. It was in 1934 at the age of 59 that Jeff Thomas had a myocardial infarction (heart attack) while on the bow of his boat chopping ice that was building up on the gear. He made it back to the wheel before he died. They iced him with the fish and he made his way back to Gloucester from Nova Scotia by rail.
The names on the cenotaph (Man at the Wheel) are all real people of course. I see Peter Prybot’s name and know that. Those names are real all the way back for a lot of people of Gloucester.
Cape Ann and Gloucester is knee deep in history. You can’t turn around without tripping over it. It’s also walking around amongst us. All you have to do is listen.
A little history: Schooner Adventure.org
The Adventure has had a very exciting couple of weeks. The Amistad sailed to Gloucester the weekend of August 2, 2013, to assist the Adventure with her rigging and sail installation.
They were amazing. Unfortunately, prior commitments caused them to leave before the Adventure could have her first trial sail.
Ryan Graham, who was directing the efforts in this stage, pulled together an amazingly experienced crew (in only 4 days) to ensure the Adventures first sail trial went smoothly.
With 32 crew aboard, the Adventure left the pier at the Gloucester Marine Railway about 10:20 on Saturday morning, August 8, 2013. Captain Greg was at the helm with Ryan as his
mate. The crew brought up the sails when the Adventure was in the outer harbor, and the Adventure was sailing for the first time in 20 years. What a magnificent accomplishment!
Congratulations to the Adventure, the City of Gloucester, and to all of Adventure’s supporters who never gave up the belief that she would sail again!
Here are some photos of the past few weeks in the Adventure’s life.
Listen, you can put all that talk around town that The Schooner Adventure was Gloucester’s Big Dig to rest. You can also put to rest the talk that it could have been rebuilt five times over brand new with the money they spent by saving a little corner of the hull and rebuilding around it like they’ve done with the Bluenose up in Nova Scotia.
None of that matters now. She took her first Sail With All Sails Up Today!
A GLORIOUS DAY!
Congratulations to all those that have put in the time, effort and cheddar to make this day happen. Huge accomplishment.
Look for the Adventure to Sail In This Year’s Schooner Festival which To Me Is THE STORY of this year’s Schooner Festival (along with the first annual lobster bake on Harriett Webster Pier)
Len Burgess writes-
Hi Joey, I didn’t get to sail on Adventure’s great day but arrived in time for the crew’s celebration. -Len Burgess
Katherine Richmond submits-
Hi Joey, Here’s a couple of picks of my little dog Greta ( long haired mini dachshund 8 lbs and 12 years old) I’m a local painting contractor who has decided to volunteer my painting skills to the Schooner Adventure. From time to time Greta comes with me to the Adventure. On this sunny hot day she sought out shelter from the sun in a space on the bow near to me while I painted. She enjoyed the view of the harbor out the hawser hole and fit in it standing up. I took these shots with my iPhone. I thought people would enjoy seeing the unique photos of Greta. In addition FYI the crew of the Amsted is helping the crew of the Adventure get her all rigged up. The sails will be up in a couple of days and will go for a Test sail this week possibly! The rigging is a big event. There is a guy named mike who has been volunteering for 14 years! He would be a good interview. Bill Holmes is in charge and a good contact for the goings on in the next few days of rare events of rigging a schooner.
Thanks best regards
Spars and sails on deck, rigging in progress, engine room looking good, bulk heads completed except for finish work.
Greg Bover submits-
Perhaps our readers would be interested in the video Joanne Souza shot of making mast hoops for Schooner Adventure at C. B. Fisk.
Geoff Deckebach, Bill Holmes and I started by sawing strips of ash 10 feet long, 1-1/8” thick and 1-3/4” wide, tapered at both ends. We steamed them for about an hour and a half and then went ahead as shown to make the two foot diameter hoops. These hoops go around the masts, about 20 on each one. The new sails will be tied on to the rings, or “bent on” as we schoonerheads say, and that allows them to be raised or lowered.
We are one step closer to actually sailing Adventure for the first time in almost two decades. It is a privilege and an honor for me to be able to help with the effort to return this icon of Gloucester to the sea.
The Schooner Adventures is having water tight bulkheads installed to meet Coast Guard specifications.
They started by using a fiberoptic system to look between the ceiling and the hull to find the best locations for the bulkheads…
They had to insert dowels into strategic spots where water could flow between the ceiling and bulkhead. Then the construction
began. It is a very time consuming process as there are ne straight lines for the boards to attach. The guys are custom fitting
each board to snuggly fit the curves of the vessel. They are not being nailed into place but rather are precisely measuring,
cutting, and chiseling.
POSTPONED due to pending blizzard!!!
Rescheduled for MARCH 8th
Listen To Ron Tell It Just The Way It Went Down