Sea smoke sunrise in the cove

Schooner American Eagle Newsletter

February 2015 


In This Issue
Off Season
Things to look forward to
Wildlife Visitors
Cruise News
Puzzle of the month
Back to the present

Vanishing Point by Shawn Payment
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Please don't ask what we do around here in the "off-season" or "where are the snows of yesteryear?"  I suspect you know the answer this winter.  That doesn't keep us from our long-term plan, to have the American Eagle off the dock under sail May 22nd.  Summer breezes can't be far off.

Our house this week, four miles from the schooner.
(Penobscot Bay far right)


         Another month and the crew will be full at it, outfitting for a busy season.  The shipyard becomes a welcoming community come May with the yard by the dock for parking, flower boxes beginning to bloom and the lawn and wild roses recovering from quite a bit of snow.


Some of the herbs for the galley enjoy a harbor view on our deck.





No visions of sugarplums, but perhaps an image of Nola's cherry cheesecake will do.










Wildlife Visitors


     This young herring gull looking in Shary's office window was hoping to join us for a recent coffee break.




Cruise News


        On our Windjammer Days Cruise boarding June 21st we'll have a look at the schooner Ernestina, scheduled for a multi-million dollar rebuild in Boothbay Harbor.  Take a good look at her stern; there will be a new one soon.



I took this when her bow was being rebuilt a few years ago.


Puzzle of the month


        Identify this lighthouse.  Be the first and we'll send you a hat!



Please email us your answer 


helpful clues:


1.  We sail by it several times a year


2. and we often see these not too far away








a young humpback

under the bow.








3. And if those hints aren't sufficient, here's what Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote about a visit there in September 1852.


"Mr. ______ rowed me this morning, in his dory, to _____ Island, on which is the lighthouse. There was scarcely a breath of air, and a perfectly calm sea; an intensely hot sunshine, with a little haze, so that the horizon was indistinct. Here and there sail-boats sleeping on the water, or moving almost imperceptibly over it. The lighthouse island would be difficult of access in a rough sea, the shore being so rocky. On landing, we found the keeper peeling his harvest of onions, which he had gathered prematurely, because the insects were eating them. His little patch of garden seemed to be a strange kind of soil, as like marine mud as anything; but he had a fair crop of marrow squashes, though injured, as he said, by the last storm; and there were cabbages and a few turnips. I recollect no other garden vegetables. The grass grows pretty luxuriantly, and looked very green where there was any soil; but he kept no cow, nor even a pig nor a hen. His house stands close by the garden,--a small stone building, with peaked roof, and whitewashed. The lighthouse stands on a ledge of rock, with a gulley between, and there is a long covered way, triangular in shape, connecting his residence with it. We ascended into the lantern, which is eighty-seven feet high. It is a revolving light, with several great illuminators of copper silvered, and colored lamp-glasses. Looking downward, we had the island displayed as on a chart, with its little bays, its isthmus of shingly beach connecting two parts of the island, and overflowed at high tide; its sunken rocks about it, indicated by the swell, or slightly breaking surf. The keeper of the light-house was formerly a writing-master. He has a sneaking kind of look, and does not bear a very high character among his neighbors."


4. The original fog bell weighed 806 pounds and was cast by Paul  Revere's son, Joseph.  The bell could not be heard over the pounding surf and was discontinued in 1823.


Should you want to take your own pictures of lighthouses, come on our Lighthouse Photography Cruise boarding July 5th.


Not a single one has come in the mail since January so we'll just have to post our own, new last summer.

But as pretty as a picture is this illustration contained in "Gus Harvey, boy skipper of Cape Ann" by Charleton L. Smith.

The author was a deep sea sailor, boatbuilder, and occasional chanteyman in Marblehead, Massachusetts.
      Back to the present, with snow up onto the windows of the dock building and a deckload of snow on the tug.

Crew pictures next month.  Hope to see you this summer,  

John and the crew


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Schooner American Eagle
P O Box 482 
Rockland, ME  04841
(800) 648-4544