Events Calendar
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View from the Bow
Paddlewheeler Update
View from the Stern
Wooden Boat School Update
Collections Update
2013 Calendars are Here!
Welcome, Expedition Florida 500
Coastal Cleanup

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Check Out Our New Website! 


We are very proud to unveil our new site, which was created by volunteer Eddie Woodward with some technical support by 2K Web Group.  Click the image below to navigate to our home page.


Further enhancements are underway, so check back often!  As always, we welcome your feedback.



Events Calendar


The Corner of Our Country, by Homer Hirt, President of RiverWay South.

January 12, 2013

This talk will center around the junction of the three rivers (Apalachicola, Chattahoochee, Flint) now covered by Lake Seminole.  Topics will range from historical importance, transportation on the tri-river system, and people, places, boats and barges. Today's opportunity for tourism on the system and in the riparian counties will also be discussed.  Homer Hirt is President of RiverwaySouth Apalachicola/Choctawhatchee, an eight county rural tourism coalition.  He has a weekly column in the Jackson County Times, is President of the Lake Seminole Advisory Committee, and is a member of the Governing Board of ACF Stakeholders.  He retired from the U. S. Navy (Reserve) with a rank of Lieutenant Commander and went on to become the Port Director of the Jackson County Port on the Apalachicola River.  Mr. Hirt has a valuable depth of knowledge of ACF history paired with a vision of the future.  $5 includes low country boil following the presentation.  We'll have the fire pit going on the docks!

Build a Canoe!   
January 18, 2013

The Plywood Canoe is a great boat building project for families or groups of 2 to 4 people. When completed, the canoe is 15' 3" in length with a 31 ˝" beam. It can be paddled with kayak or canoe paddles. Inexpensive to build using ordinary tools and materials, the canoe gives everybody access to boat building and a boat. The course runs three days with an optional day of painting on the fourth day.  This boat is built using plywood sheets and dimensional lumber and uses many of the techniques used in building larger boats including lofting. 


This boat is suitable for one adult, and adult and child, two children, or an adult and a couple of dogs.


The AMM will provide all of the materials, tools, and instructors to keep you and your friends and family on the right course. We will build up to three boats in a weekend and group size is limited to four.  
We have a great calendar of boat building classes coming up in the new year, for a variety of small vessels.  Click here for more information.

Apalachicola Anchors Workshop -- Register Now! 
January 19, 2013

Ever noticed how many old anchors are laying around in Apalachicola? Ever wonder about their history? Join us for a day all about anchors!  We are very excited to have archaeologists Barbara Hines and Franklin Price joining us from Tallahassee for this special project. The day will start with a presentation at 10 a.m. about identifying the parts of an anchor and what those parts can tell us about their history. This session is open to everyone. Then, in the afternoon, help us record the anchors around town so that they can be entered in the world-wide Big Anchor Project Database.  The fieldwork component begins at 1 p.m. and requires registration. Email Barbara Hines or call 850-877-2206 to register.  Click here to download the flyer!


Build a Kayak

January 21, 2013


The Wood Duck Kayak is a beautiful, versatile, easy-to-use recreational kayak.  With a big cockpit and ample stability, the emphasis is on comfort.  But these boats really paddle well.  The Wood Duck is built from a kit, with precision-cut panels ready to go. Puzzle-joints and pre-drilled stitching holes make for fast and accurate assembly with no carpentry skills required.  Sheathed in fiberglass inside and out, the Wood Duck will withstand real-world abuse and will bounce over submerged stumps without harm. The boat can carry a heavy payload in the fore and aft compartments, enough for picnicking, camping or a whole lot of fishing gear. The boat is constructed from okoume plywood throughout.  This is a beautiful tropical wood, prized for its grain, light weight, and workability. 

Click here for more information.  

Community Paddle and Coastal Cleanup to Welcome Expedition Florida 500

January 25-26, 2013 


Samantha Fortunas, one of our newest staff members, will be escorting Expedition Florida 500 into Apalachicola aboard the museum's very own handmade wooden stand up paddleboard on January 25th.  Expedition Florida 500 (XF500) is a celebration of Florida's coast and waterways designed as a year-long project where anyone is invited to join expedition leader Justin Riney as he navigates Florida's entire coastline atop a stand up paddleboard.  Click here for complete details.


Religion Above and Below Deck in World War II, by Dr. Kurt Piehler, Director of the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience

January 26, 2013


On a cold winter night in February 1943 an American troopship would be torpedoed in the North Atlantic.  Panic gripped the men as the ship quickly listed to its side and started sinking. Four chaplains-two Protestant ministers, a rabbi, and a Roman Catholic priest-worked to calm the scores of green soldiers and helped them escape the doomed ship.  The four chaplains gave up their own life preservers to those GIs without them and stayed aboard the doomed ship.  In the distance, survivors reported seeing these four chaplains united in prayer as they disappeared into the frigid sea. 


The Four Chaplains became a major symbol of ecumenicalism and sacrifice for the nation.   Their story is emblematic of a larger story about the role religion played in the life of World War II GIs, especially for those in the Navy.   In this talk, Professor Piehler will examine the religious life of American sailors and officers in World War II.  In contrast to earlier wars, the United States went to great lengths to ensure the American GI had access to chaplains and could freely exercise their right to worship according to the dictates of their conscience.   During the war 2,934 chaplains strived to meet the needs of sailors and Marines ashore and afloat.  $5 includes low country boil reception. 


Build a Rowing Shell

January 28, 2013


Build a Sloop Rigged Passagemaker Dinghy

February 4, 2013


The Dog Island Shipwreck Survey, by Dr. Chuck Meide, Director of LAMP (Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program) in St. Augustine 

February 9, 2013


Build a Canoe

February 15, 2013


Build a Stand Up Paddleboard

February 18,2013


La Florida and the Maritime World of Juan Ponce de León, by Peter Cowdrey, Exhibit Research Specialist at the Florida Historic Capitol Museum

March 9, 2013


Sea Music by the St. Pete Shanty Singers!  A program incorporating history and maritime music of significance to the Apalachicola River and Bay.

April 20, 2013 


Apalachicola in the Civil War, by Ken Johnston, Executive Director of the Civil War Naval Museum

May 17, 2013


Civil War Living History Weekend

May 17-19, 2013



Our lectures are supported in part by:


Watch the video announcing our Winter/Spring 2013 Lecture Series, made possible with support from the Franklin County Tourist Development Council, and produced by Southern Breeze Media.
Watch our Lectures on Video!

Miss a lecture you really wanted to see? Thanks to volunteer Robin Vroegop and her Half Shell YouTube Channel, you still can.  Here are some recent ones which are now available online:
Dr. Nancy White's Adventures in Apalachicola Valley Archaeology
Rhonda Majors Kimbrough's History of Prospect Bluff
Barbara Hines' Turpentine and Naval Stores Industry in North Florida
Be sure to check out Robin's many other videos.  She describes her "Half Shell" YouTube channel as "an online video forum for Community members who live, work, and recreate beside 'America's Last Great Bay,' the Apalachicola Bay. Our lifestyle reflects our unique geography: we reside in the great mixing zone where the fresh waters of the Apalachicola/ Chattahoochee/Flint River Basin meet the salty waters of the Gulf of Mexico." In addition to capturing many community events and issues, she has produced several videos for the Maritime Museum, including this one on fiberglassing a Stand Up Paddleboard in our Wooden Boat School, which has had 750 views. You can find more videos from our Wooden Boat School here.
View from the Bow

Coastal Sailing Tour Fundraiser for Franklin County Maritime Heritage 

by George Kirvin Floyd, Founder

    Heritage sailing along the Gulf Beach of SGI the Friday after Thanksgiving in our circumnavigation event.

The Flagship vessel of the AMM, S/V Heritage, our 58' immaculate wooden ketch, will be embarking on a sailing tour of the entire navigable coast of Franklin County in early March to promote the maritime heritage of our unique Gulf coastal community in much the same fashion as did the early passenger vessels of the 1800s.  We are cooperating with the Tamara Allen of the History Museum in Carrabelle and others in Eastpoint and Alligator point to host S/V Heritage and run fundraiser raffles and trips as part of the journey.  We will be taking on guests for "day crew" on the passage making days and running trips as promoted by our maritime heritage partners to help raise funds for Franklin County maritime heritage organizations.  The Heritage will have our wooden catspaw dinghy, Hope, in tow to provide transportation of crew and guests to and from shore during the anchorage. 

We are targeting the departure date for Friday, March 1st and will proceed upon the sail plan documented below where our proposed route is documented in red with a red star for planned anchorages.  


Evening before Day One - 6 PM - Reception for all participants at the Maritime Museum with a review of the sail plan and the events that will transpire along the way.  This will allow captains and crews to meet and discuss the course, weather conditions, and communications.

Passage Day One - Passage to Lower Anchorage behind Little St. George where we will have a festive bonfire on the beach supported by enthusiasts coming out on the Starfish. 

Passage Day Two - proceed through West Pass and then sail westward along the gulf beach of St. Vincent and then return to an easterly heading to make an offshore run to the beaches of Little St. George just east of Cape St. George.  Passing the cut we will cruise down the gulf beaches of St. George to anchor off of the Lighthouse.  Rowing ashore we will have a celebration at the Lighthouse Park and have dinner on the island.  


Passage Day Three - The following day we will continue passage down the remaining portion of St George and on to Dog Island.  Continuing on past Dog Island beaches we will turn north and proceed into Carrabelle. 




Passage Day Four - After stopping for a week in Carrabelle, we will sail on to Alligator Point and into the Carrabelle river as far as depths permit and then on to Dickerson Bay in Panacea before returning to Carrabelle.




Passage Day Five - After a short stay in Carrabelle, we will resume our westerly run back to Apalachicola after an overnight anchorage in in Ballast Cove on Dog Island.  And then the final leg back into Apalachicola. 




We will time the Passage Days to take place on the optimal weather conditions.  For instance, our Gulf Beach runs will occur following the northerly frontal systems that blow through this time of year.  Following the first gusty day or two as the front blows through the winds normally subside somewhat and become steady with a northerly bend that make cruising off of the Gulf Beaches an awesome experience for the cruisers and a spectacle for those ashore.  Consistent depths allow good cruising just off the outer sandbars around 50 to 100 yards offshore.  Cold clear nights and warm sunny days combine to make an awesome sail experience.  As Northerly winds are frequent in early March, we expect that there will be ample opportunity to catch the conditions we seek.


Since wind and wave forecasts are very reliable up to a week in advance, we will be able to provide updates on departures for each leg of the journey approximately a week in advance.  We will provide updates via our web site so that passengers and spectators can monitor and make their plans.


If you are interested in sailing as part of Heritage crew let us know by email at


Photos from our first SGI circumnavigation event following Thanksgiving:


Guests aboard the dinghy, Hope, making way to the beach with the SGI lighthouse in the background.


Photo by Terry Kemp, President of the SGI Lighthouse Association, of Heritage at anchor in the Gulf just offshore of the SGI Lighthouse park. Note the calm waters due to the Northerly wind making the Gulf Beach in the lee.
S/V heritage making the beach run among the palm studded shore of SGI
Paddlewheeler Update

As you will note from our previous newsletter articles, we took possession of the Jean Mary in May when we towed her to the St. John's Boat Company shipyard in Mayport, Florida.  From late May through mid-July, we employed a surveyor, Jack Allinson, to provide an assessment of the condition of the vessel that could help us in determining the scope of effort required.  Jack regular surveys steel hulled vessels such as the Jean Mary and employed very sophisticated tools such as Infrared Thermography (IT) and Multiple Echo Ultrasonic Thickness Measurement (UTM).  See the IT video for a very interesting thermal view of the Jean Mary on the ways at Mayport.  See also the Cygnus web site for an explanation of the Technology and the Theory of UTM.  Well, we were pretty impressed with all of this state of the technology and very encouraged by the final survey report.  The illustration below represents the bottom and sides of hull.  The diagram is oriented with the bow at the left and stern at the right, the top grid row is the starboard side, the large middle grid row is the bottom and the bottom grid row is the port side.  Three UTM measurements were done for every grid section.  The red highlighted sections were the only areas that appeared to have unacceptable wastage which would require replacement.  




Repairs were planned to be completed with the general method of shell plate repair, internals, scantlings and welds are to be done to satisfy USCG requirements. The minimum acceptable shell plate replacement size is 18" X 18" with radius corners on insert for unsupported plate.  Repairs to the plating regardless of location were planned to be done by cropping and inserting the affected area with paint-primed mild steel plating that matches the original plating thickness (in most cases 3/16") with radius corners on insert.  It all appeared very logical and the scope very manageable which led to our original expectations of being completed within six to eight weeks (see July 2012 newsletter).  We were very excited.  We noted the obvious spots where replacement would be required corresponded to the chart above.  Since the bottom was covered by many coats of bottom paint, the actual visual inspection of the plating required reliance on the UTM testing. 


The cyclonic surprise occurred as our crew began use of the large industrial sandblaster to rip away the layers of paint and rust which revealed the true state of metal decay.  We were shocked to find pitting scattered throughout almost all of the bottom plating.  Many of these pits went completely through the plating with nearly invisible holes visible only through the drip and run of water allowed that emitted from them.  Approximately 80% of all plating had this pitting ranging in density from light to heavy.  As the shock set in, we began to consider options.  Alternatives ranged from a fiberglass covering over the entire hull to bailing out and selling her for scrap.  It was a very discouraging time at Mayport.   A continuous series of small setbacks were now compounded by the onerous dilemma.  


Well, among mariners, if anything is worth doing, then it is worth doing right.  Lives often hang in the balance of short cuts intended to save a few bucks or get it done quicker.  And the final key element in the decision is the realization that the future home of this vessel, the Apalachicola River will present a special set of challenges to the hull of any vessel that plies her waters.  The strong currents and high probability of collisions with snags, sand bars, limestone shoals and even navigation aids in the un-dredged and unmaintained Apalachicola River call for an optimal solution.  The oyster bars in the bay and the desire to have a long term productive vessel that will take a licking and keep on ticking for many years to come led to the final decision.

We have committed to undertake a complete replacement of all steel plates of the hull.  As the bow was the most likely point of impact and the bow rides light on the original plimsol marks, we also decided to increase the thickness on the bottom through the first two watertight bulkheads.  The added weight on the bow will also be offset by the removal of the approximate two ton original condenser left over from the days of steam propulsion.  We will replace all deteriorated frames and structure along the way as well.  When we are done, it will be a new hull.


These new revelations and the resulting decision for a complete rebuild of her bottom and framing will add months to the restoration project.   As of this writing, we have successfully replaced the first four bow plates.  These being the most difficult because of the complex curves in that area and the increased metal thickness, we are using these as a time standard and an ability to refine technique  The first plate  took four weeks, the second three, the third two and the forth, one week.  The knowledge and improving technique of our team is coming together and gaining efficiency with each new plate.  In addition as the hull moves from bow to stern beyond the second bulkhead, the hull configuration takes on a square box style shape similar to a barge.  This will make for a much easier plate replacement process.  Also, the other welding teams are winding up work on the wing decks and other lesser scope projects that will enable them to join the team working on the bottom plating.  Our current best guess is that all work will be completed by the end of April, but we can only gain precision as we reach the halfway point, so there is still a lot of uncertainty. 


Beyond the big surprise and renewed commitment to the project, we have continued to make other, less monumental, progress.  All three engines are working now.  We have mapped out most of the electrical systems and it is all in good condition with only minor repairs necessary.  We have purchased the replacement chilled water system for HVAC and it is being manufactured and will begin installation soon.  All cabins have been completed ripped out down to the studs to allow inspection and repairs.  We have begun designs on the integrated state of the art electronics that will be piped throughout the boat.  We have begun planning for the addition of a hydraulic stern thruster to compliment the bow thruster.  This to allow maximum navigable maneuverability in the tight turns and swift currents of the Apalachicola.  We have repaired the winch, the air system which powers the calliope and the hydraulic pumps that run steerage and the elevator.  


There is a lot going on with our crew running around twelve to fifteen and sometimes surging up to almost 20.  Most importantly there have been no accidents and our safety program and training continues to be a huge focus.  The morale is high and the commitment is firm.  The Jean Mary will morph into the Samuel Floyd at launch and she will ply the waters of the Apalachicola sometime this summer. 


Images of the work underway follow.


d. Photo of the second bow plate being fitted. Note the removal of wing deck bottom overhead.


Replacement deck plating being laid in.
In the engine room, Scott McClain working on the 50KW generator and transfer panel above
Extreme lunar tide floods the job site, but work continues. View from the stern.
Rebuilding the stern framing supports for the paddlewheel.

View from the Stern
Remains of the Steamboat Era

Ann and Randy Bivins recently came upon a very interesting sight in the Chipola Cutoff near Wewahitchka: the remains of an old steamboat.  They contacted Franklin Price, Underwater Archaeologist with the Florida Department of State's Bureau of Archaeological Research.  Franklin was able to determine that they had found the steamboat Apalachee, a wreck which was investigated in 2007, and provided historical information about the vessel, which is reproduced below.

"Apalachee was one of several steamboats that served the Chattahoochee, Flint, and Apalachicola Rivers at the end of the nineteenth century. Built in 1890 at Wheeling, West Virginia by A.J. Sweeney & Son, the sternwheel steamboat was listed at 161 tons, measured 135 feet in length, 28 feet in width, and had a depth of hold of 4.5 feet.  She drew 28 inches of water, and was powered by twin 12-inch diameter cylinder engines with a 5-foot stroke for an average speed of 10 knots. Apalachee was a composite-built boat, in that her wooden hull was reinforced with iron frames and bulkheads.

The steamboat fleet along the rivers belonged to four shipping lines; Apalachee was owned by the People's Line, as was the Steamboat Flint. The fleet carried cotton, lumber, naval stores (rosin and turpentine), wood shingles, barrel staves, oranges, oysters, passengers, and various other items between Columbus, Georgia and Apalachicola, Florida. They also carried paying passengers; Apalachee could accommodate 50 cabin passengers.

Between February and March, 1891, Apalachee made the voyage between Wheeling and Columbus, where her arrival was welcomed by many interested citizens. The following month she carried an excursion party of 163 persons to Apalachicola and 122 persons back to Columbus. Then in May she carried Professor Moore's "Ark and Floating Theater" with a troupe of "snake charmers, ventriloquists, fat women, etc." to Columbus, where it would spend the summer before departing for other tours. Between 1891 and 1899 Apalachee was a familiar sight along the principal docks of the river system; in 1893 she made 21 round trips between Columbus and Apalachicola.

Apalachee spent several years running up and down the rivers, but she was not free of tragedy. In early December 1891 her mate was lost overboard when he struck his head against the sternwheel. The following year a well-dressed passenger shot the boat's porter after refusing to pay passage. On the last day of December, 1894, Apalachee sank at her berth due to a broken or frozen suction pipe; that winter the temperature in Apalachicola reached 10 degrees above zero. After being pumped out and refloated, she went back into service. On the afternoon of June 24, 1899 Apalachee struck a snag in the Chipola cutoff near Wewahitchka and sank in 25 feet of water with the loss of one deckhand. Twelve cabin passengers and others on deck managed to get off before she went down in two minutes with 300 barrels of naval stores and other freight, part of which was saved. Since her owners only carried fire insurance, she was declared a total loss, and abandoned in the river."

Franklin conveyed his appreciation to the Bivins for reporting their find and noted that "so many shipwrecks are found not by explorers or archaeologists, but by members of the public like yourselves."

Apalachee at a dock on the Flint River.
A closer view of the remains. You can clearly make out the structure of the paddlewheel.
Wooden Boat School Update
by Ron Dierolf, Director



John Pearman and his wife Jo were part of our December canoe building class.

Last month saw the building of pirogues by students.  While these boats are simple they require many of the techniques used for building larger boats - some lofting, fairing, scarphing, fastening - and, of course, lots of sanding.  You cannot build any wooden boat without a good supply of sandpaper.  Sanding gets you up close and personal with the boat and the wood and, as an added benefit, tones the arms and shoulders. 


Plans are being made for erecting a shelter for the restoration of the Golden Ball.  She will be moved a few yards to a pad of oyster shells and will be placed on jack stands in preparation for the start of replanting, which will be the first step in a long restoration process.  We hope to begin work on the Golden Ball herself in late January or early February.  Come on out, make some sawdust, and learn about a classic wooden boat.  We will have an expert boat building/restorer on site for much of the work and this will be a great opportunity for anyone interested to learn first-hand a rare skill - the planking of a classic yacht. 


Last month also saw the fine-tuning of the shop including the issuance of a Safety Plan.  This plan standardizes safety practices for all users of the shop.  AMM is committed to the safety of its staff, clients, and visitors and expects all boatbuilding to be fun, educational, and safe. 


Visitors are always welcome at the shop so come by and see what is being created!  Please check the newsletter and museum web site for upcoming boatbuilding classes.  You can also reach Ron at (850) 653-2500, or send us an email for more information.



Ann Cowles of Carrabelle built her own boat with assistance from her son. She plans to use the boat for enjoying the bay with her black lab, Pepper, and her grandchildren. Here, our Wooden Boat School Director Ron Dierolf looks on as Ann prepares to make a cut. This was her first boat building project.
George Floyd and museum intern James Floyd survey the boat building in progress.  James' grandfather (and namesake) was also a builder of many fine wooden boats. Teaching traditional maritime skills to new enthusiasts, and new generations, is one of our core missions. Check our website for the complete list of upcoming classes.




Eco-Tours at the Museum
by Capt. Peter Burgher
Volunteer Primary Captain



Few know that Apalachicola's 250,000 acre estuarine reserve is the largest in the nation. The beauty of this truly special area of our land and river resources is available almost daily in Museum eco-tours. There are several scenic routes, depending on tides, wind, and weather -- each one of which offers a special insight into what makes this area a verdant beauty and growth source for birds, porpoises, fish, and alligators. Now the eagles are gathering to mate soon -- an aerial ballet that is a wondrous thing to see. Cormorants are present in unusually large numbers due to the invasion of sea water and the salt-oriented fish they look for.


The Museum's Coast Guard-licensed captains provide commentary about the area's history, ecology, and river habitats. A shorter waterfront tour explores different types of seafood harvesting and local history. The Museum's Starfish catamaran has accommodation for up to 40 persons, nice seats, tables, and a "head" (restroom to land lubbers), while our new mini-tour boat accommodates four to six people on private tours. Every passenger is provided an estuary chart to take home as a memento of their tour. Trip guides and reference materials are carried by the Captains and provided on each table to enable everyone to know exactly what they have seen and experienced. With 1300 plant and tree species, 80 reptiles, 40 snakes, 360 fish, and a host of mollusks, birds, and flowers to see, the Museum's tours are really special and a lot of fun. No two trips are the same --- come find out for yourself.     



Collections Update


Volunteer Mark Parsley examines a recent acquisition, a Civil War era carbine.

Work continues on our Civil War exhibit collections. With the help of Civil War artifact expert Mark Parsley, a museum volunteer, we are continuing to acquire an outstanding assortment of items relevant to the blockade of the port of Apalachicola.  


 Recent acquisitions include a carbine, part of our collection tracing the evolution of weaponry used by Naval forces, a Midshipmans jacket, a Naval straw hat, a ship's telescope, and several items depicting life aboard ship for the average sailor, such as a shaving mirror and blade. 


Mark plans to loan the museum a few items from his personal artifact collection including an authentic sailor's ditty bag, a pair of sailor's pants, a sailor's palm (tool used to push needles through canvas for stitching sails), a pipe, and a pair of sabers. 


These items will be on display after exhibit cases with proper security are obtained, and upgrades to museum security overall are installed.


Stay tuned for more information as the exhibit work progresses.





A Civil War era Naval straw hat.
Blockading sailors would certainly have worn these under the Florida sun.

A Civil War era Naval telescope. This unique piece was wrapped in sail cloth, presumably to provide a more secure grip in wet conditions. Note the rope work also.

Get Your 2013 AMM Calendar!
Our 2013 calendars are available in the Museum gift shop. They feature beautiful aerial photographs taken by our volunteer Captain, Pete Burgher, who is also a pilot. A part-year resident of Indian Pass with his wife Elinor, Pete takes to the skies above Gulf and Franklin Counties every chance he gets. Our calendars featuring his gorgeous collection of Forgotten Coast aerial photos, Patterns in the Water, are a fundraiser for the Museum.
Pete is a retired partner from the international accounting firm of Arthur Young and is a consultant on management affairs and an expert witness. His experience as a mariner goes back to his childhood in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, where he learned to sail on his grandfather's Herreshoff starting at the age of 8. He was soon sailing around Buzzard's Bay and the Elizabethan Islands, crewing, and racing.  Later, he shared his love of the water with his wife Elinor and children. The family lived in Boston and then Captiva Island, where they spent time together sailing and exploring the coastline.  Although they also have a house in Michigan, where they like to enjoy the snow, the couple made Indian Pass their home in 2000.  

With his aerial photography, Pete has merged his love of flying with his love of the water into a beautiful photographic calendar. Click here to read the article in the Port St. Joe Star newspaper about this project. And stop by for your calendar today!

xf500Community Paddle & Coastal Cleanup to Welcome Expedition Florida 500 Paddlers


Samantha Fortunas, one of our newest staff members, will be escorting  Expedition Florida 500 into Apalachicola aboard the museum's very own handmade wooden stand up paddleboard on January 25th.  Expedition Florida 500 (XF500) is a celebration of Florida's coast and waterways designed as a year-long project where anyone is invited to join expedition leader Justin Riney as he navigates Florida's entire coastline atop a stand up paddleboard.  


Riney and the XF500 team departed Pensacola on the first of the year and will be passing through Apalachicola on January 25th and 26th. 


Samantha is coordinating a community paddle and coastal cleanup upon Riney's arrival.  All watermen, stand up paddlers, kayakers, and boaters alike are encouraged to join in to escort the XF500 team from Apalachicola Bay into Battery Park and then participate in the community coastal cleanup.


Additionally, XF500 team will be attending our lecture and shrimp boil at 7:00pm on January 26th. Come out and view the Apalachicola Maritime Museum's first handmade wooden stand up paddleboard and join Samantha as she welcomes Expedition Florida 500.


Schedule of Events:


January 25th

  • 3:00pm Meet at Battery Park
  • 3:00pm -4:30 Community Paddle
  • 4:30pm- 6:00 Coastal Cleanup of Battery Park area
Coastal Cleanup

The University of Florida, in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), seeks volunteers to participate in coastal cleanup events on St. George Island on Saturday, January 19th, and on St. Joseph Peninsula on Sunday, January 20th.  


These beaches provide important resources for nesting shorebirds and sea turtles as well as our local economy, and by volunteering for these cleanup efforts to remove unsightly and harmful trash and debris, you can help improve our valuable coastal habitats.  Volunteers will also document the amount and types of items they pick up on the beach to determine sources of coastal debris to help reduce and prevent its adverse impacts on our beaches.  If you are interested  in volunteering for these cleanup events or have any questions, please e-mail Jessica McKenzie.


St. George Island Coastal Cleanup

When:  Saturday, January 19th, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. EST (or until all sections of beach have been covered)

Where:  Meet at the St. George Lighthouse parking lot, located at 2 East Gulf Beach Drive

What to Bring:  Dress appropriately for weather and walking (trash bags, gloves, and water will be provided)


St. Joseph Peninsula Coastal Cleanup

When:  Sunday, January 20th, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. EST (or until all sections of beach have been covered)

Where:  Meet at Cape Palms Park, located just south of Rish Park

What to Bring:  Dress appropriately for weather and walking (trash bags, gloves, and water will be provided)


Staff Contacts

Founder & Chairman

Research & Education Director

Operations Manager

Wooden Boat School Director

Museum Phone
(850) 653-2500

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