“USA 🇺🇸 ~Mystic, Connecticut ~The Amazing Historic Shipbuilding Village”

My main reason for getting us based near Mystic was, in fact, to visit this amazing Historic Shipbuilding Village, called Mystic.
If we saw nothing else while in Connecticut, this would have been enough to fill us up, as it was truly that good! My expectations were exceeded!

I’ve dedicated a whole blog to just this sea port, because it so impressive and incredibly well done. To top it off, we were not even charged an entrance fee, though donation boxes can be found around. I felt like this a was a real gift, in trade for boarding multiple ships and entering historic museums and homes. The entire village is a walk-through museum. I’ve never seen anything like it.
Well done, Connecticut!

MYSTIC VILLAGE ⬇️
Mystic is a village and census-designated place in Groton and Stonington, Connecticut. Historically, Mystic was a significant Connecticut seaport with more than 600 ships built over 135 years, starting in 1784.


More than a museum, Mystic Seaport is a re-creation of an entire New England whaling village, spread out over 17 acres of the former George Greenman & Co Shipyard.
To re-create the past, 60 historic buildings, four tall ships and almost 500 smaller vessels are gathered along the Mystic River.
Interpreters staff the site and are glad to discuss traditional crafts and trades. Most illuminating are the demonstrations on such topics as ship rescue, oystering and whaleboat launching.
Visitors can board the Charles W Morgan (1841), the last surviving wooden whaling ship in the world; the LA Dunton (1921), a three-masted fishing schooner; and the Joseph Conrad (1882), a square-rigged training ship. The museum’s exhibits also include a replica of the 77ft schooner Amistad; the slave ship on which 55 Africans cast off their chains and sailed to freedom. (In the Steven Spielberg movie Amistad, the museum was used to stage many of the scenes that actually took place in Colonial New London).
At the Henry B DuPont Preservation Shipyard, you can watch large wooden boats being restored.
The Wendell Building, which houses a fascinating collection of ships’ figureheads and carvings is also not to be missed. Close by, is a small “museum,” (more like a playroom) for children aged seven years and under.
The seaport also includes a small boat shop, general store, chapel, school, pharmacy, sail loft, shipsmith and ship chandlery


⬆️ Mystic Seaport’s beloved tugboat Kingston II was among the earliest all-welded vessels.
Built to train apprentice welders before they qualified to work on U.S. Navy submarines, she was made of scrap steel in just four months. Today, she is stationed at the main entrance as a proud ambassador of the Museum’s watercraft collection, and a symbol of this region’s important maritime contributions.

⬆️⬇️ Sabino is the oldest wooden, coal-fired steamboat, still in operation. (Seasonally)
More than 100-years-old, the steamboat Sabino was built in Maine in 1908 for passenger service on the Damariscotta River located in Maine.
The vessel was formally designated a National Historic Landmark in 1992 and now glides along the scenic Mystic River.

******

⬆️ Noank, Connecticut was a principal port of the prolific New England lobster fishery, in the 19th century.
Between 1875 and 1900, her 40 lobstermen set their traps throughout Southeastern New England waters. Many of them used seaworthy Noank sloops, like the Museum’s Breeze, for setting and hauling their traps.
During the height of the season in August and September, the fleet often landed 500 lobsters a day, kept alive in wet wells built into the sloops.
Many lobstermen had floating “cars” in which they stored up to 600 lobsters before sending them to market in New London and New York, often aboard smacks like the Emma C. Berry.
With gasoline power added after 1900, the fishery continued until the fleet and the lobster shacks were devastated in the 1938 hurricane. Thus, no original Noank lobster shacks survive.

******

⬆️ Research, carried out in 1967, revealed the Thomas Oyster House is one of the few remaining buildings that could be classified as a typical small northern oyster house. The Thomas Oyster House was constructed about 1874 at City Point, New Haven, Connecticut, by Thomas Thomas.
New Haven once was the largest oyster distribution center in New England; now there is only one oyster-opening shop left in this state, that of the Bloom Brothers in South Norwalk.
Initially, Mr. Thomas used the building as a culling shop, where oysters were sorted by size and shipped in their shells, by the barrel, to markets in New York City and as far away as California. Following Mr. Thomas’s death, his son John took over the business and converted it to an shucking house. This involved opening the oysters upon delivery by the oyster boats. They were then packed in iced wooden kegs ready for delivery to various markets. The building was used in the oystering business until John Thomas’ retirement in 1956.

⬆️ The L.A. Dunton (right) which stands 123 feet, 3 inches over all, is one of the few remaining vessels of her type in the country.
Sailing schooners were forced from the Grand Banks off Newfoundland and Georges Bank outside of Cape Cod more than 50 years ago, despite the fact that their design made them the fastest and ablest fishing vessels in the world.
Designed by Thomas F. McManus, the L.A. Dunton was built by Arthur D. Story and launched from his well-known yard at Essex, Massachusetts, in 1921.
Built after auxiliary gasoline power had become common in schooners, the Dunton was probably the last large engine-less fishing schooner (a few later ones were built primarily for racing). The Dunton was used in the haddock and halibut fisheries, landing her catches in Boston.


⬆️ In 1839, Mende captives from Sierra Leone took control of the ship transporting them to slavery, the Amistad. Unable to navigate back to Africa, the ship was captured and towed into the port of New London in Connecticut.
The Mende were faced with slavery or execution, and their cause was taken up by many residents throughout Connecticut. U.S. Circuit and District courts ruled in favor of the Mende. This case was then appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court and in 1841 this court agreed with the lower court decisions and the Mende captives were ordered freed. The vessel on display is a reproduction of that ship. It was built at the Mystic Seaport Museum Shipyard and launched in 2000.
*******


⬆️ The veteran training ship Joseph Conrad sailed under three flags before mooring permanently at Mystic Seaport Museum, in 1947. Built in Copenhagen in 1882 and named Georg Stage, as a memorial to the young son of Frederik Stage, a prominent ship owner, the 111-foot vessel, one of the smallest full-rigged ships built in modern times, was designed to accommodate eighty boys in training for the Danish merchant service.
From her launching, until her sale in 1934, more than 4,000 cadets sailed in her for six-month training courses in the Baltic and North seas.
Run down by a British freighter in 1905, the Georg Stage sank, taking 22 young men with her. However, she was raised and repaired and soon resumed her career. Retired after 52 years, the vessel was about to be broken up, when Alan Villiers bought her in 1934. Under the British flag, and renamed the Joseph Conrad. Captain Villiers took her on a 58,000-mile voyage around the world that lasted more than two years. Once again boys were her crew–a nucleus of older teenagers from big four-masted barks, officers from the Cape Horn trade, eight American cadets and eight British, with a sprinkling of Australians and New Zealanders.
*******

⬆️ Located on a point in the middle of the museum grounds, the Brant Point Lighthouse is a replica of the Brant Point Lighthouse that marks the entrance to Nantucket Harbor.
The original was the second lighthouse in the colonies, built in 1746.

********

⬆️ Middle Wharf is an example of a wooden pier, which was easy to build, but far less durable than a stone structure like the Museum’s Chubb’s Wharf.
A pier like this is subject to the effects of the same wood-consuming creatures that deteriorate wooden vessels, as a display panel on the wharf makes clear. Wood-eating gribbles eat away wood around the waterline, giving an hourglass shape to the pilings. Now that the Mystic River is so clean, boring shipworms (actually related to clams) burrow into our ships and pilings, gradually destroying them.
Middle Wharf is a good place to observe the birds of the Mystic River. Some, including the mallard, double-crested cormorant, herring gull, and osprey, are native to the area and are an important part of the larger marine environment. Others, including the rock dove (pigeon), introduced in the 1600s; house sparrow, introduced in the 1850s; starling, introduced in the 1890s; and mute swan, also introduced in the 1890s, were carried across the ocean as immigrants and have flourished in their new environment, sometimes displacing native species.
*******

⬆️ The United States Life-Saving Service, formally instituted by Act of Congress in 1871 and incorporated into the Coast Guard in 1915, was justifiably proud of its tradition of hazardous duty and outstanding heroism. Vested with the responsibility of maintaining a constant vigil along the most desolate and dangerous stretches of the American coast, the surfmen were frequently called upon to rescue the crewmen, passengers and cargoes of vessels that had collided, stranded, capsized, foundered, caught on fire, etc.
In addition, they regularly assisted the Lighthouse Service (now also part of the Coast Guard) in rendering aid and installing signals and warnings to shipping along the coast, saved innumerable swimmers and boatmen from drowning, and participated in the shore patrol during wartime.
Constructed in 1874, the New Shoreham Life-Saving Station is one of the last survivors of the many Atlantic seaboard stations, built to government specifications, from Maine to Florida.
It was in use for about 16 years in Old Harbor on Block Island, Rhode Island. Before the turn of the century it was auctioned off, moved several hundred feet, and used as a stable and blacksmith shop.
In July 1968, it was brought to Mystic Seaport by barge in exchange for a reproduction.
The history of the New Shoreham Life-Saving Station is one of the most complete of any at the Museum.
Nicholas Ball, a Block Islander and U.S. Congressman, was instrumental in having it built in 1874 and became its first keeper. Later he was assistant superintendent of the Third Life-Saving District. His great-granddaughter, Mrs. Weldon Dodge, librarian on Block Island, has made meticulous records of the station available to the Museum.
******

⬆️⬇️ Built about 1850 as a house, this building was originally located in nearby Pawcatuck, Connecticut, and was given to the Museum in 1954.
The creation of this exhibit was in large part the vision of George H. Stone, a retired merchant and resident of North Stonington, who personally stocked the shelves with his own collection of historic items.
Rich in ambiance and nostalgia, the store is filled with reminders of community life and foodways of the mid-19th century.


*******

⬆️⬇️ The Boardman School is typical of the many rural district schools in 19th-century New England.
Pupils attending this school were required to study reading, writing, grammar, arithmetic, and geography. Depending on the school, more advanced pupils might be taught algebra, Latin, or French.
By the middle of the 19th century, one-room schoolhouses like this one were coming under attack for being inefficient and outmoded.
In 1882 this school was described as “A backward one, and the house poor. The blackboard is too small to be of much use.” Another Connecticut town official commented: “Many of our school houses are in a miserable condition, possessing less attraction outwardly than our 
prisons, while within they are dark, gloomy and comfortless. They are all destitute of an appearance of any outhouse.”
The Boardman School, named for the family whose land adjoined the school property, may have been built as early as 1765 in the town of Preston, Connecticut. When the North School Society of Preston, which included Boardman School, split off to form the town of Griswold in 1815, Boardman School became Griswold’s District Seven School and the building served as a classroom for six generations of Connecticut children.
A number of the desks, the wood stove, and the blackboard came with the school when it was moved to its present location here at Mystic Seaport in 1949.

******

⬆️⬇️ The average Mystic family of 1850 would never have used this bank. This was a commercial bank, and checking and savings accounts as we know them were not available. Instead, dependable businessmen could secure loans and mortgages here, to support solid ventures like shipbuilding or farming.
No bank would finance such a risky venture as a whaling voyage. Though the Mystic Bank was founded through the investments of a number of  “directors,” the bank actually had only two employees; the President and the Cashier.
Elias Brown and George W. Noyes were the first two gentlemen to hold these positions.
Businesses need money to grow. Mystic’s shipbuilding and coasting trades were growing fast in the early 1800s, and soon needed a bank.
In 1833, local businessmen opened this small bank at the head of the Mystic River, two miles north of here in Old Mystic. By 1856, they were ready to move into a new, larger building, nearby.
In 1951, this Greek Revival building was dismantled, brought down river from its original site, and rebuilt here. The original portico, which was missing, was replaced with an exact reproduction, a new floor was installed and the walls were re-plastered.
Vaults like the one in this bank were not built of granite to prevent burglaries. The real fear of the day was fire, and the bank’s vault was the most fireproof place in a mid-19th-century town.
The bank held its reserves of gold, silver, and banknotes inside the vault, alongside strongboxes containing customers’ most valuable, legal documents and business records.
In seaports like Mystic, local ship owners kept a separate strongbox for each vessel, containing accounts, registry papers, logbooks, and ledgers. The box marked Acushnet contained the papers of the Fairhaven, Massachusetts, whaleship on which Herman Melville shipped out as an ordinary seaman in 1841; the voyage which inspired his masterpiece Moby-Dick.
The Shipping Office on the second floor contains furniture and records of an office dating from the last half of the 19th century.

 *******

⬆️⬇️ The cooperage was a shop where round wooden containers, which we generally call barrels, were manufactured.
These casks were an essential element in life both at sea and ashore, and wooden containers made from staves and hoops served many storage purposes. Aboard ship they held provisions, various kinds of cargo and, on certain fishing and whaling vessels, the catch.
Casks intended for spirits, molasses, whale oil, or other liquids had to be tight; that is, water-tight and the cooper who made these types of containers was a “tight cooper.”
Slack casks were used for flour, potatoes, apples, crockery and just about anything else that might have to be shipped from one location to another.
A cooper was a regular member of a whaleship’s crew. His responsibility was to assemble pre-made casks as they were needed to hold the valuable whale oil, and he was held responsible for leakage as well as accuracy of measure.
The building in which the exhibit is housed, once a barn on the Thomas Greenman property, has been modified to include typical features of a cooperage: a hearth large enough to work in while firing casks, a crane with a block and tackle and chine hooks, and a loft for storage.

********

     ⬆️⬇️ Spouters Tavern
Though named for the tavern in Melville’s Moby-Dick, Schaefer’s Spouter Tavern is a re-created exhibit, built by the Museum in 1956.
However, the woodwork in its main room, including doors, windows, floor, wainscoting, bar, benches and fireplace, comes from the Central House Inn in Stoddard, New Hampshire, built in 1833.
The hideaway bed in the corner was for a hired barman, who slept there to admit late travelers, and also to keep an eye on the supplies.
Nineteenth-century seaport taverns were the homes to an ever-changing population of sailors who spent a few days of freedom ashore before shipping for another voyage.
Seaport taverns varied in size and refinement. More elegant establishments, such as the coffee houses of the early 19th century and fine hotels of the later years, catered to the influential members of the community like ships’ captains, merchants and politicians. Thus, these inns often served as the seat of local business and politics.
Lower on the scale was the cheap dive or grog shop. Often attached to sailors’ boarding houses, they saw many a shore-side spree during which “Jack Tar” might well be bilked out of his money by crimps, boarding house masters and other “landsharks.”

******

⬆️⬇️ The Charles W. Morgan is the last of an American whaling fleet that numbered more than 2,700 vessels.
Built and launched in 1841, the Morgan is now America’s oldest commercial ship still afloat. Only the USS Constitution is older.
The Morgan was launched on July 21, 1841, from the yard of Jethro and Zachariah Hillman in New Bedford, Massachusetts. It typically sailed with a crew of about 35, representing sailors from around the world.
The whaleship measures 106 feet, 11 inches in length on deck, with a beam measuring 27 feet, 9 inches. Its main truck on the mainmast is 110 feet above the deck; fully-rigged, and the ship carries 7,134 square feet of sail.
The huge try-pots used for converting blubber into whale oil are on deck; below are the cramped quarters in which the officers and men lived.
Over an 80-year whaling career, the Morgan embarked on 37 voyages with most lasting three years or more. Built for durability, not speed, it roamed every corner of the globe in pursuit of whales. The Morgan is known as a “lucky ship,” having successfully navigated crushing Arctic ice, hostile natives, countless storms, Cape Horn roundings and, after finishing its whaling career, even the Hurricane of 1938.
After its whaling days ended in 1921, the Morgan was preserved by Whaling Enshrined, Inc. and exhibited at Edward H.R. Green’s estate at Round Hill in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts, until 1941. In November of that year, the Morgan came to Mystic Seaport Museum where it has since dominated the waterfront at Chubb’s Wharf.

THE LAST WOODEN WHALESHIP IN THE WORLD

******

⬆️⬇️ The American Seamen’s Friend Society was established in the 1820s and incorporated in 1833 “to improve the social and moral condition of seamen.” Growing out of the same religious revival, which promoted temperance and the abolition of slavery, the society sought to uplift sailors by giving them an alternative to the bars, boardinghouses, and brothels that they commonly frequented while in port.
The society established well-managed and reputable sailors’ boardinghouses, including one for African Americans in New York. It encouraged sailors to save their earnings, which resulted in the founding of the Seamen’s Bank for Savings. On shore, the society provided access to religious services, lectures, and reading rooms. It was perhaps best known for the libraries of books that it placed aboard American ships for the use of sailors.
Between 1859 and 1930 it sent out more than 13,000 of these seagoing libraries, each containing 40 books in a wooden case.


*******

⬆️⬇️ In 1889, the people of the Fishtown section of Mystic commissioned this chapel as a place for Sunday school and prayer meetings. Construction, by local Mystic builders, took only three weeks. The chapel never had its own pastor. Local ministers would hold occasional services here on Sunday afternoons or weekday evenings.
Strong religious beliefs had always determined the values and lifestyles of Southeastern Connecticut’s people.
But, at the close of the 19th century, a local Protestant reawakening occurred, especially among Baptists and Congregationalists. This activity fell short of a full-fledged religious revival, but it was a unique and significant expression of local religious activism.
Newspapers included more and more writings on religious and moral topics. Sunday school picnics and church-sponsored excursions became more popular, and most interestingly, small local chapels like this one were established at crossroad locations in rural areas.
For a few years around 1900, the chapel became a schoolhouse for the Ninth (Groton) School District, but for the next half century the building was unused and neglected.
In 1949, the Fishtown Chapel was purchased, moved to Mystic Seaport Museum, and restored. It was rededicated as a chapel in 1950. Six of the 12 benches are original; the remaining benches, melodeon, oil lamp chandelier, brackets, and side lamps came from churches in the area.

*******

⬆️⬇️ Bringhurst Drugstore Mystic Seaport recreates a drugstore of the period 1870-1885 in a building the museum erected in 1953. A small recreated doctor’s office adjoins the drugstore building.
The store is named for the Bringhurst family of pharmacists, which began with Joseph Bringhurst; (1767-1834), who operated a drugstore in Wilmington, Delaware.
The Bringhurst collection was given to Mystic Seaport by Smith, Kline & French Laboratories, which had acquired it after the store closed.
The building also contains the Abram P. Karsh collection of pharmaceutical items from the Philadelphia area.

*******

⬆️⬇️ The druggist was an important man in any 19th-century community, but especially so in a seaport, because he supplied the medicines and medical supplies used on ships at sea. His knowledge was greatly valued, since few ships carried a doctor and the responsibility for treating the crew fell on the master of the vessel.
The seaport druggist did a substantial business in the stocking and refitting of ships’ medicine chests.

*******


⬆️⬇️ Figureheads and other carvings which decorated wooden ships in the Age of Sail are sometimes all that remain from the many vessels built in the 19th century. Carvings on a vessel were meant to show pride and to capture the public’s attention. Commercial vessels were required to have a name and the carvings frequently reflected that name. Choosing a name that a shipping customer would remember, and having a figurehead that reinforced that memory, was important to ship owners.
The trade of creating carvings for ships was almost always separate from the shipbuilders’ business.
In Mystic, at a time in the second half of the 19th century when there were six shipyards on the river, one local business did carving for most of those shipyards. They also took on other work, doing carvings for homes, making ornate fencing, and in one case, carving a statue of Justice for a courthouse.
The Mystic Seaport Museum Ship Carver exhibit is meant to portray the shop of such an independent tradesman, and the staff who work in the exhibit carve name boards, trail boards, figureheads, and stern boards for boats, as well as shop signs, tobacconists’ figures, and decorations meant for the home.

******

⬆️⬇️ This shipsmith shop was built at the head of Merrill’s Wharf (now Homer’s Wharf) in New Bedford, Massachusetts, by James D. Driggs in 1885. It is the only manufactory of ironwork for the whaling industry known to have survived from the 19th century.
Driggs served his apprenticeship during the 1840s with the James Durfee Company, then the largest and most productive enterprise of its kind in New Bedford. He and another Durfee employee, Joseph Dean, established their own shop near Merrill’s Wharf in 1846, under the name of Dean & Driggs. The two smiths produced a good quality whalecraft: harpoons, cutting irons, ship’s fittings, etc., in a successful partnership that lasted almost 30 years.
Their shop, located in an alley that came to be known as Driggs Lane, was equipped with five forges and machinery run by power tapped from a neighboring flour mill. They employed as many as three journeymen at a time, one of whom was Lewis Temple, Jr., son of the black shipsmith who in 1848 invented the practical toggle harpoon which made capturing whales much more successful than it previously had been.
After Dean’s retirement in 1875, Driggs continued for 10 years in the Driggs Lane shop, probably at a reduced level of production.
In 1885, with the whaling industry on the wane, and having himself reached the age of 65, Driggs relocated to the wharf (a move of only a few hundred feet) in a new, smaller shop that he built with his grandson’s help. This new shop, the one currently exhibited at Mystic Seaport Museum, served Driggs’ needs until 1902, when it was sold to Ambrose J. Peters. Driggs died shortly thereafter.

*******

⬆️⬇️ Block Island Fire Engine #1 was built by Gleason & Bailey in the 1850s and operated by volunteer firemen to protect the wooden homes, businesses, and hotels of that island community.
The pump-break mechanism on the engine could develop enough pressure to throw a stream of water 100 feet. Pulled by hand, this pumper would be accompanied by a hose cart with two 500-foot hoses.

*****

⬆️⬇️ To find their way at sea, far from the sight of land, captains depended upon their quadrants and sextants, used to measure the angle between the horizon and a star (frequently the sun), and their ultra precise time piece, a marine chronometer, along with nautical charts and tables to determine their exact location on the watery world.
A person skilled enough to adjust that most precise clock could also repair the family mantelpiece clock.
One will find plenty of examples of both types of timepieces along with tall case clocks, compasses, barometers, quadrants, sextants, telescopes, and charts from the 19th century in this exhibit.


⬆️ The sextant, its name derived from the Latin meaning one sixth of an arc of a circle, is one of the most important nautical instruments that sailors and mariners relied upon for years, well before the creation of the first GPS systems.
*******

⬆️⬇️ The 19th-century printer, working at typecase and press, was a vital force in the economic, intellectual, and spiritual development of New England’s seacoast communities.
The Mystic Press, assembled to represent a newspaper and job printing shop of the late 19th century, contains the tools and technology of the journeyman printer’s trade. From shops like this, with their Wells and Washington presses, platen job presses, and Cranston cylinder press, came the almanacs, the newspapers, the books, and the handbills so important to the business, political, and social life of the community.
The terms “uppercase” and “lowercase” originated in printing offices. The two types of letters were kept in separate boxes or cases. The capital letters were kept in the upper case and the minuscule letters were kept in the lower case.

******

⬆️⬇️ This is a 250-foot segment of the Plymouth Cordage Company’s ropewalk, built by its founder, Bourne Spooner, in 1824.
This ropewalk was operated by the firm until 1947, when modernization eliminated its usefulness. The original building, located in Plymouth, Massachusetts, was more than 1,000 feet long and contained three rope-making grounds. It would be impossible, of course, for a sailing vessel to operate without rope, so one can understand the importance of this exhibit to the story of America and the sea.
The three main steps in the production of rope are illustrated here with the equipment that did the work. Natural fibers are first spun into yarn; many yarns are twisted together to form a strand; and then three strands are twisted together in the opposite direction to form rope. The extreme length of the building was important as the spinning and twisting had to be done in a straight line, and one needed a 1,000-foot-long path to make a 100-fathom (600-foot) rope. The tension of twisting the parts in the opposite direction at each step is what holds rope together.
Early rope was made of either American or Russian hemp, but by the 1830s abaca (manila) was being imported from the Philippines and rapidly became the preferred fiber. Manila is cleaner than hemp, as well as more durable and flexible, and does not have to be tarred, as did hemp, to resist deterioration by heat, rain, and salt water.
Plymouth Cordage made rope for all kinds of vessels, particularly whalers, where strength and endurance were essential. Most of the rigging for the Great Republic, the largest clipper ship ever built, and the manila running rigging for America’s Cup contenders since the first race in 1851, were supplied by the company.

******

⬆️⬇️ Hoop making reached its peak as the fore-and-aft sailing rig proliferated in the mid-19th century, and flourished until World War II. Relatively few men practiced this craft even then, and consequently, exhibits such as this are rare.
The hoop maker specialized in the manufacture of wooden mast hoops of assorted sizes, which held the sail to the mast on fore-and-aft rigged vessels. The equipment in this building was used by the Smith family in Canterbury, Connecticut until well into the 1930s.
Hoops were only one of the many products that came from their woodworking shop: the Smiths also produced wagons, wheels, clothespins, washboards, stable forks, and belaying pins. During the growing season, this work was generally put aside in order to devote time to their orchard.

*******

⬆️⬇️ Charles Mallory came to Mystic in 1816, having just completed his apprenticeship to a sailmaker in New London. Charles Mallory prospered as whaling and shipbuilding grew in the village, and by the 1860s he was one of the state’s most prosperous ship owners.
This sail loft was originally located downriver from the Greenman shipyard where the Museum now stands, but it was brought here by barge in 1951.
Beginning in the 1870s, blueprints which included the sail area were supplied by a ship’s designer. Prior to that time (and frequently even after that date), sailmakers were of necessity their own pattern makers. After measuring the masts and yards of the ship, the sailmaker made a paper pattern, generally using 1/8″ to the foot as a scale, and then sketched in the outline on the floor of the loft. In order to have as much uninterrupted working space as possible, even the stove was suspended from the ceiling rather than have it sit on the floor
*******

⬆️⬇️ This simple shed at the end of the wharf between L.A. Dunton and Sabino served as the toilet for shipwrights at the shipyard, established by Herbert Newbert and Leroy Wallace in 1942.
The yard specialized in building fishing vessels, including the Museum’s eastern-rig dragger Roann. This one-hole privy, complete with ship carpenters’ notations on its interior walls, represents the most basic form of sewage treatment used by Americans for centuries.
In Thomaston, Maine, the St. George River flushed the waste from the Newbert & Wallace yard. The Mystic River also served as a sewer for human and industrial waste from shipyards, shoreside businesses, and homes. Vessels also discharged their sewage overboard. Eventually, the water quality around many coastal communities was so degraded that marine life declined and human health suffered.
Beginning in 1972, the U.S. Congress passed a series of acts and amendments commonly known as the Clean Water Act, for “the protection and propagation of fish, shellfish, and wildlife and recreation in and on the water.” The act authorized the Environmental Protection Agency to target “point source” pollution like untreated sewage.
More recently, efforts have been aimed at eliminating runoff pollution and on maintaining the health of entire watersheds.
The Newbert & Wallace privy was brought in Mystic Seaport when a new flush toilet was installed at the yard in the early 1970s.

*******

⬆️⬇️ In 1837 Isaac Ames bought property in Lincolnville, Maine, on Penobscot Bay and started a salmon fishing business. During the spring salmon run, he set his pound net alongshore to entrap salmon swimming up the bay.
In 1838 or 1839, he built a small shack which was used during the off-season to house the mooring lines, nets, floats, and buoys that made up his “hook of nets.”
Isaac’s son, George Ames, continued the business as did his grandson, Robie Ames, who fished until 1947, when the scarcity of salmon made it impractical to continue.
At that time he carefully stored all the gear in the shack and locked the door.
In 1967 Mystic Seaport was able to purchase all of his fishing gear, and soon Robie donated the shack to the Museum. After partial disassembly, the building was moved to Mystic in 1969 and restored. The restoration was completed in 1977 and today, the building is fitted out with the original salmon fishing gear that came from the family.

*******

⬆️ The fishing boat Florence represents the evolution from sail to engine power of small inshore fishing boats, a transition which was firmly established by 1910, and is a vessel type which drags a conical net across the bottom to gather fish. That method originated in Europe, and was first adopted by the larger fishing schooners of Massachusetts, the “eastern-rigged draggers” which carried a large wheelhouse aft and a large working deck amidships. Along the southern shore of Connecticut, smaller fishing boats were adapted for dragging: the broad aft deck for working, a small pilot house forward, known as the “western rig.”
In summertime, the draggers were engaged in swordfishing, a favorite fishery of the crews.
*******

⬆️⬇️ The Buckingham Hall House
Life in this coastal home was filled from dawn to dusk, season to season, with hard work, business transactions, and the voices of visiting friends and relatives.
Here, the family of William Hall Sr., a New York import merchant, made their home in the 1830s.
Originally situated in Saybrook, Connecticut, near the only ferry crossing at the mouth of the Connecticut River, the house was purchased in 1833 by Hall’s son, William Hall Jr., from the estate of Samuel Buckingham.
From their windows the Halls witnessed 19th-century life in all its variety: farmers moving goods to market, coastal and foreign trading ships sailing up and down the river, and travelers as they passed down the road to the ferry.
Though access to the river made goods from New York readily available, most of the foods and the fabrics needed for daily life were produced on the farm.

*******

*******

*******




********

******

⬆️ In frontline service for over seven decades protecting New York Harbor, Fire Fighter has the hard-earned distinction of being the most famous fireboat in the world, due to its prowess as a fire apparatus. Pumping 20,000 plus gallons a minute in 1938 made her the most powerful fireboat in the world, and the largest vessel of its kind, with a state-of-the-art power plant. The first diesel-electric fireboat, she was such an engineering marvel when she went into service the following year she went on display at the New York World’s Fair in 1939.

********

NEW ENGLAND STATES 

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Go To Home Page

Archive Blog Posts of Our Country Visits

About Us

About Us

Hello and Welcome to our Travel Blog Website, We are into our fourth year of our full-time Gypsy Lifestyle; buying one-way tickets to circumvent the globe. We enjoy writing about our experiences and taking photos of our adventuring along the… Read More