Blog | Lake Champlain Maritime Museum

Video Blog: A look at the Steam Tugboat MATHILDA

Posted by Jean Belisle on Aug 13, 2014 3:23:08 PM

The steam tug MATHILDA (photo: Kerry Batdorf)

In the second video blog from the schooner LOIS MCCLURE's 2014 tour, Jean Belisle talks history about the Canadian steam tugboat MATHILDA, outside of the Hudson River Maritme Museum.

The internals of the MATHILDA's two piston dual expansion steam engine of unknown origin (photo: Tom Larsen)

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Topics: Education, Schooner Lois McClure

2014 Captain's Log, Part 2

Posted by Roger Taylor on Aug 11, 2014 4:20:41 PM

On the morning of July 25th, at the Larrabee’s Point Wharf, Shoreham, the Lake Champlain Canal Schooner Lois McClure was canal-ready, with her masts, booms, gaffs, and their sails stowed horizontally atop the heavy, gray, wooden T-braces that keep the rig up off the deck and out of the way. The schooner, lightly loaded with her ballast stone, has a height above the water of a little less than 15 feet when carrying her rig this way, just matching the funnel height of the C. L. Churchill, with her own masts down on top of her cabin house. Thus the two vessels can squeeze under a “Low bridge—everybody down!” of the canal.

The CARILLON and C.L. CHURCHILL docked at Larabee's Point in Shoreham (photo: Tom Larsen)

Art Cohn and Jean Belisle on the tug got their anti-thunder-squall anchors on board and stood by to come alongside the schooner and into towing position on the hip, as soon as the Fort Ti ferry left her landing alongside our berth and moved off, dropping back down to the bottom the cables she runs on. We’d have to be well out of our berth before the ferry came back, so Art brought the Churchill in smartly, her four lines were made fast and adjusted for good balance underway, and we backed away from the dock, the Oocher holding the tug, and hence the schooner’s stern, up against the south breeze. Once clear, the Oocher shifted to the schooner’s bow and turned her round to head south. And we accomplished this before the ferry started her return run. Good, good.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

Video Blog: Kingston

Posted by Arthur B. Cohn on Aug 10, 2014 7:56:00 AM

The first video blog from the LOIS MCCLURE's 2014 tour! Art Cohn kicks us off with greetings from Kingston.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

2014 Captain's Log, Part 1

Posted by Roger Taylor on Aug 3, 2014 1:20:52 PM

The year 2014 includes the Lois McClure’s tenth birthday and the C. L. Churchill’s fiftieth birthday. Mercy. Where does the time go?

In her ten years of replicating the voyages of her ancestors, the Lois McClure has traveled 3,000 miles on the lakes, rivers, and canals of Vermont, New York, Quebec, and Ontario; she has called at 200 ports; she has presented her history lesson to 200,000 visitors. During the past ten years of the tug Churchill’s life—previously, she has been steam yacht, diesel towboat for movie-star vessels, Maine coast cruiser, and boatyard workboat—she has towed the canal schooner for many of those 3,000 miles, enabling our floating museum to maintain an ambitious schedule and to maneuver into and out of tight berths and to enter and exit canal locks with as much grace as the schooner’s shiphandlers could muster.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

Shipwrecked: The Tragic Story of the Canal Schooner "Troy"

Posted by Sarah L. Tichonuk on Jul 14, 2014 7:05:00 AM

The captain’s hat, trunk and pocketbook ... have been picked up but none of the bodies have yet been found.   (North Star 1825)

 

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Topics: Underwater Archaeology

Do Whalemen Get Blisters?

Posted by Sarah L. Tichonuk on Jun 25, 2014 4:36:00 PM

Do Whalemen Get Blisters?

I know I certainly am getting blisters, accompanying a crew from Lake Champlain Maritime Museum to row a brand-new whaleboat. We're participating in a boat parade in New Bedford, MA to welcome home whaleship Charles W. Morgan, built there in 1841. Charles W. Morgan is the last wooden whaleship in the world, and sails this year on her 38th voyage. We've been practicing our rowing, though you wouldn't know it from the relaxed pose in that photo. I doubt we're going to break any speed records...

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Topics: Champlain Longboats, Whaling, Boatbuilding

The Captain’s Log, Part 6

Posted by Roger Taylor on Oct 18, 2013 6:20:00 AM

On September 7th 2013, the morning after our arrival at Salaberry de Valleyfield, we awoke to a strong southwest breeze. We had intended to squeeze through a narrow bridge, with the tug towing ahead, since she wouldn’t fit through on the hip, and move up the old canal at Salaberry to moor right in the center of town for receiving visitors. But with that much wind on the schooner’s quarter, there would be no way to control such a tight maneuver.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

Video Blog: Diving in Chambly, QC

Posted by Arthur B. Cohn on Sep 27, 2013 10:37:00 AM

Diving for zebra mussels in Chambly, QC.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

Captain's Log, part 5

Posted by Roger Taylor on Sep 16, 2013 2:41:00 PM

At Cape Vincent, at the upper end of the St. Lawrence River, on August 22nd, we converted the Lois McClure from a “standard canal boat,” one that has no propulsion of its own, to a sailing canal boat. With the help of a crane truck (courtesy of Rick Evans and Evans Crane) on the dock, we lifted the six spars of her schooner rig ashore: two masts, two booms, and two gaffs. Next went the braces that had kept the big sticks up off the deck. Then we stepped the foremast and set up its stays and shrouds to keep it upright. Ditto the mainmast. Now, the crane lifted First Mate Tom Larsen aloft in a basket to secure the springstay, the wire that runs between the two mastheads. Booms and gaffs were lifted back on board and put in position, held by their jaws, topping lifts, halyards, sheets, and lazyjacks. There. We were ready to bend sail.

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

Video Blog: Salaberry-de-Valleyfield

Posted by Arthur B. Cohn on Sep 13, 2013 11:02:00 AM

Schooner Lois McClure docked in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, QC, and saw more than 1,800 people!

 

 

 

 

 

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Topics: Schooner Lois McClure

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