The SS American Victory was a US Victory Ship. after serving in the second world war, and korea, she was mothballed to the fleet in Virgina. When she came up for disposal, funds were raised to repair, and tow her to Tampa Fl. She is in full sailing condition, and sails when funds allow.
Captain James Cook, was a British explorer, navigator, cartographer, and captain in the Royal Navy. He was Killed by Natives on the island of Kona Hawaii, 234 years ago today. Why do we care about James Cook? He was responsible for the earliest charts of much of the east coast of Canada including Halifax – His chart of which is below.
During the Seven Years’ War, he served in North America as master of Pembroke. In 1758, he took part in the major amphibious assault that captured the Fortress of Louisbourg from the French, after which he participated in the siege of Quebec City and then the Battle of the Plains of Abraham in 1759. He showed a talent for surveying and cartography, and was responsible for mapping much of the entrance to the Saint Lawrence River during the siege, thus allowing General Wolfe to make his famous stealth attack on the Plains of Abraham.
Cook’s aptitude for surveying was put to good use mapping the jagged coast of Newfoundland in the 1760s, aboard HMS Grenville. He surveyed the northwest stretch in 1763 and 1764, the south coast between the Burin Peninsula and Cape Ray in 1765 and 1766, and the west coast in 1767. At this time Cook employed local pilots to point out the “rocks and hidden dangers” along the south and west coasts. During the 1765 season, four pilots were engaged at 4 shillings a day each: John Beck for the coast west of “Great St. Lawrence”, Morgan Snook for Fortune Bay, John Dawson for Connaigre and Hermitage Bay, and John Peck for the “Bay of Despair.”
His five seasons in Newfoundland produced the first large-scale and accurate maps of the island’s coasts and were the first scientific, large scale, hydrographic surveys to use precise triangulation to establish land outlines. They also gave Cook his mastery of practical surveying, achieved under often adverse conditions, and brought him to the attention of the Admiralty and Royal Society at a crucial moment both in his career and in the direction of British overseas discovery. Cook’s map would be used into the 20th century—copies of it being referenced by those sailing Newfoundland’s waters for 200 years.
2012 was an interesting year. 180000 people read halifaxshippingnews.ca in 2012 – more then ever before, and growth was steadly climbing from month to month. We also had the 320 posts this year – almost one a day, and picked up Telonix as our first sponsor.
Maritime Shipbuilding is a half hour documentary that reveals the seafaring history and the proud tradition that still lives on to this day. The film will have its world broadcast premiere on Sunday, December 9, 2012 at 12 Noon on CBC TV’s Land & Sea.
Along with the News Release and the above trailer came a series of photographs, of ship building locations Then and now. It Sounds like this film will be a good complement to the talk on shipbuilding at the Maritime Museaum in October.
Spencers Island Beach, Nova Scotia – Photo Credit Geoff D’Eon.jpg
Hantsport, Nova Scotia – Photo Credit Geoff D’Eon.jpg
Port Greville, Nova Scotia – Photo Credit Geoff D’Eon.jpg
The News Release:
It’s a chapter of history mostly forgotten, not just across Canada but even in the Maritime provinces themselves. Shipbuilding – like fishing – is an obvious fact of life on the Atlantic coast, but few people today know just how extensive the industry once was. There was a time not that long ago when men built ships in sheltered harbours, on open beaches and up narrow rivers – ships that went on to carry cargoes and passengers all over the world.
From the first boats built by the earliest settlers, to the golden Age of Sail in the 1800s, and from the Grand Bank fishing schooners to the high tech naval frigates of today – the thousands of vessels built in Atlantic Canada during the past 250 years have shaped the region like no other industry.
Maritime Shipbuilding is a half hour documentary that explores this seafaring history and the proud tradition that lives on to this day. The film travels to once-thriving shipbuilding centres in the Maritimes to rediscover the story of one of the world’s most vibrant, productive, and profitable shipbuilding regions.
Although no longer the economic driving force it once was, the shipbuilding industry in Atlantic Canada continues to prosper. The thousands of people who recently attended the re-launch of the Bluenose II in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia are a testament to that enduring legacy.
Maritime Shipbuilding was written and directed by award-winning Halifax documentary-maker Geoff D’Eon, (Blood On The Coal/Facebook Follies) and produced by Edward Peill from Halifax-based Tell Tale Productions Inc.
“This was an interesting piece to work on. More than 28,000 ships built in the Maritimes? Who knew?” says D’Eon “It’s not only the numbers that are surprising, but the locations where these ships were built, places that today show no trace of the industry that once was.”
Maritime Shipbuildingwill have its world broadcast premiere on CBC Television’s Land & Sea on Sunday, December 9, 2012 at 12 Noon. Following the broadcast, the documentary can be watched on the CBC TV website at: www.cbc.ca/landandsea. Land & Sea is CBC’s 2nd longest running TV series and can be followed on Twitter: @cbclandandsea
Maritime Shipbuildingwas produced in association with CBC TV with funding from Film NS, and Provincial and Federal tax credits.
The Canadian Coastal Forces Trust has launched a campain to raise funds to Purchase and restore a WWII Motor Torpedo Boat. In the Course of thier research, they have identified ex RCN MTB 486 curently acting as a house boat in the UK. The Plan is to Purchase the vessel, and have MTB Marine Ltd., who maintain Britain’s MTB 102, to restore MTB 486 back to operational condition. MTB Marine have provided a quote of $750,000 to make MTB 486 operational again.
USNS Grapple paid a visit to Halifax earlier this month. When She left, she gave a “random” (ie not a major port) destination in Quebec. It now appears that she was tasked with the recovery of remains of the aircrew of a PBY 5A Catalina Aircraft which went down in November 1942 off the coast of Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan, on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River.
Parks Canada Discovered the aircraft in 2009. You can read more about the Recvoery at PC.GC.CA
One of the primary roles for Catalina Aircraft (And the Canadian version, the Canso) was anti-submarine warfare. the PBY was likely patroling the Gulf of St Lawerence when it went down.
Over the coming weeks I’ll be posting a Selection of photos from the very First Tall Ships NS – Circa 1984. First up, We have A visitor from earlier this year –Venezuelan Navy tall ship Simon Bolivar
Next We have a familiar face, The Bluenose II
The Soviet Navy Sail Training Vessel Kruzenshtern, A Difficult get I would imagine in 1984. If the Tug looks familiar, its the Florence M, during her time as Point Vibert with Eastern Canada Towing and Salvage (EC Tug).
Finally we have this unknown American Schooner, I belive to be the Harvey Gamage passing the EC Tug Wharf.
This April 15th marks 100 years since the sinking of the Titanic. The events of the Night of April 14/15 are very well known. Titanic sets sail on her maiden voyage, hits an iceberg, and sinks. hundreds die.
Halifax’s connection to the wreck is in the aftermath. Cable Ships such as the Mina and the Mackay Bennett are dispatched from Halifax to search for survivors/recover bodies. They found hundreds, and they are buried in the Fairview Lawn Cemetery. Dr. John Henry Barnstead, a Halifax Physician was tasked with identifying the Dead. the Methods he Developed for identifying bodies in mass casualty situations are still in use today (and his records are held in the NS Archives)
More broadly, the titanic disaster led to changes that greatly improved safety at sea. The SOLAS (Safety of life at Sea) Conventions were a direct result of the Disaster, as were the Codification of ship board Radio requirements, and the adoption of S.O.S and MAYDAY as distress signals.
For More on Titanic’s Nova Scotia Connections, Including Documents, See the Provincial governments site http://titanic.gov.ns.ca/