July 6, 2005 Lois McClure
Ship's Log
 
 

CREW MEMBER

Scudder Kelvie was born in Brooklyn, NY and learned to sail in the Adirondacks when he was eight years old. He began working for the Lake Champlain Transportation Company on the ferry in 1989, which led to jobs in traditional sail, and tug and barge. Scudder joined the museum this year and serves aboard Lois McClure as Second Mate.

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Many Thanks to our Sponsors, without whom this trip would not have been possible:





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GREETINGS FROM THE CREW!

July 6, 2005

Just one day before the Grand Journey began in earnest, emotions were high. The reality of 3 ½ months away from home, of taking the schooner off the lake for the first time, of bringing this rich history to such a broad audience, all this and a thousand other thoughts lingered in the minds of the crew and museum staff. As the last of a multitude of preparations were finished, many good friends and terrific supporters gathered together to join in the excitement and anticipation, enjoying good company, chocolates, strawberries, and music by the band Atlantic Crossing. Time for speeches! Art spoke for all of us when he expressed his appreciation for this extraordinary opportunity to all our members and sponsors. Kevin Dorn, Secretary of the Vermont Agency of Commerce, and Roberta MacDonald of the Farm Families of Cabot, offered their encouragement and wished us fair winds. As the light faded, the evening of celebration and anticipation wound down. I'd moved the last of my gear aboard our plucky little tug, and fell asleep thinking of near and dear friends and family, and of all the intense work that lay ahead.

The next morning the crew pulled in the beautiful new gangway that the Dock Doctors built, mustered for Capt. Roger's pre-trip briefing, and we were off. Under a hot and muggy sun, C. L. Churchill towed us alongside, first stop Westport, N.Y. There we took on fresh water and fuel, pumped our holding tanks, and had lunch. Then we made our southing, mile by mile with Churchill now towing us astern, half-hour wheel watches to keep the crew fresh in the damp and heavy heat that never let up. By evening, with schooner and tug anchored in the shadow of Fort Ticonderoga, the sky was a soup of wet haze. Most of the crew swam as tugboat wheelsman Sandy fired up the grill and turned out burgers for all hands. One and all marveled at a purple sun dipping low over the Adirondacks. In the thick haze and murky light, our wonderful little corner of the world almost looked like a scene from South Asia.

Friday, July 1, again found us chugging south with Churchill made up "on the hip." Passing through one of the lake's most spectacular locales, the Dresden Narrows, our little ship hummed with life. Hands turned to on an assortment of jobs. Bosun Len finished a new rope ladder while deckhand Kerry installed bars over the cabin windows. Stirling stood wheel watch while Krissy painted below. All over the boat work was done, and a new, more steady energy began to settle over the crew. A nesting eagle was seen guarding her lair. Later, as we approached the Fiddler's Elbow, the wheelsman in Churchill's pilothouse gave a long blast on the tug's horn and whistle. With this salute we passed the home of Cora Archambault, daughter of canalers, and, at 101 years old, a good friend of the museum and the Lois. We were thrilled to see her wave as we passed. On to Whitehall, on to Lock 12, and then, for the first time in maybe 100 years, a sailing canal boat locked through to the Champlain Canal and points south.


SMALL BOAT FESTIVAL July 16 & 17!

Come see live demonstrations on boat building techniques and boat handling as local and regional builders display their hand-crafted boats all weekend. Boats of all styles - kayaks, canoes, guideboats, sailboats and row boats - will all be on display, with many available for purchase and on-water test drives!
Bring the whole family and take part in our annual Duct Tape Regatta, where you'll design, build and race your own cardboard boat, all held together with duct tape. Construction is from 11:00-1:00 with the regatta at 1:30 on Saturday.

Or participate in the Challenge Race, a 3-mile rowing and paddling event,
held on Sunday. Don't miss this family friendly event. Food will be available on site, with picnic areas around the grounds.


Phone: 802-475-2022