Maritime Monday for August 15th, 2016

kiddhead
more: Bringing Pirates to Justice; Explore Royal Museums Greenwich

 600 year-old pirate skeleton found beneath Edinburgh school playground

When the skeleton was found, City of Edinburgh Council workers were doing a survey for a planned expansion of the Victoria Primary School, located near Newhaven’s Harbour. The workers half expected to find the remnants of the original marina while doing the survey, however they ended up coming across something a little more gruesome.

Thanks to carbon dating, scientists were able to estimate that the bones were from the 15th to 16th centuries, and had belonged to a criminal who was most likely in his 50s. keep reading

Gustloff
“From on 1940 the MV Wilhelm Gustloff was used as an accommodations ship for U-Boat trainees in Gotenhafen. One of them was my grandfather. The pictures where taken by my grandmother during a trip to Gotenhafen in late 1941 or early 1942″ – photo uploaded by Benjamin Hahn

Constructed as a cruise ship for the Nazi Kraft durch Freude (Strength Through Joy) organisation in 1937, she had been requisitioned by the Kriegsmarine (German navy) in 1939. She served as a hospital ship in 1939 and 1940. She was then assigned as a floating barracks for naval personnel in Gdynia (Pomeranian region of Poland and an important seaport on Gdansk Bay) before being put into service to transport evacuees in 1945.

Sunk on 30 January 1945 by Soviet submarine S-13 in the Baltic Sea while evacuating German civilians, Nazi officials and military personnel from Gdynia (Gotenhafen) as the Red Army advanced. By one estimate, 9,400 people died, which makes it the largest loss of life from a single ship sinking in history.  wikipedia

Cincinnati Waterfront 1941
Cincinnati Waterfront: 1941 
chaplain
Chaplain holding a service aboard the Marathon; April 1918

see also: View from Promontory Pier looking down on Capetown, May 1918 from troop Ship Marathon

fez
men in Fez’s painting a ship’s funnel – found in a thrift store
kids
spiffy children posing with a model of a triple masted sailing ship – State Library Victoria Collections
vintage budapest
Vintage Budapest; Bridges and Waterfront (38 images)
mail
Bags of mail at the Home Depot, London; The Postal Museum more
HMS Vanadis in Dartmouth
Swedish steam frigate HMS Vanadis in Dartmouth Jack-Black-And-Michael-Cera-Wearing-Caveman-Costumes

We Were Wrong About How Ancient Humans Colonized North America

 The First Americans Didn’t Arrive by the Bering Land Bridge, Study Says

Washington Post – Unless you closely follow the latest findings in American paleoarchaeology, this is probably the version of America’s origin story you’re accustomed to. But it’s almost certainly wrong.

Discoveries of human activity … at roughly a dozen sites scattered throughout two continents have bolstered support for a new model: the first Americans traveled along the Pacific coast by boat, bopping between intermittent ice-free beaches and living off the abundance of the sea until they finally reached the land beyond the glaciers.  read

Gizmodo – Research suggests there could have been two separate migration thrusts into North America, the first along the Pacific coastline around 15,000 years ago, and the second one when the ice-free corridor became habitable and human-friendly, around 12,600 years ago. read

Mental Floss – Alternate migration routes have been put forth in the past, such as the controversial Solutrean hypothesis, which posits that the first Americans actually came from Europe, not Asia, via a North Atlantic route. But many anthropologists now favor a Pacific coastal route to explain how the first people got to the Americas, though more research is needed to fully understand how these intrepid settlers traveled.  read

Research is forcing scholars to rethink the maritime capabilities of early human and pre-human cultures.

dard
French pre-dreadnought battleship Bouvet in the Dardanelles

 Laid down in January 1891, launched in April 1896, and completed in June 1898 – At the outbreak of World War I, she escorted troop convoys from North Africa to France. She then joined the naval operations off the Dardanelles, where she participated in a major attack on the Turkish fortresses in the straits on 18 March 1915. During the attack, she was hit approximately eight times by shellfire, though did not suffer fatal damage.

She struck a mine at around 3:15, and sank within two minutes. Only some 50 men were rescued from a complement of 710. wikipedia

urania
SS Urania Freezing in the Kattegat; January 1895 – Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

Omar Sharif checks his iphone on a frosty deck.

bostonLS
Boston Lightship circa 1950s

“Dude, that would be a great place to have a party”

weymouth
SS St Patrick in Weymouth, UK

Built 1906 by John Brown and Company for the Great Western Railway – 1914-1919 requisitioned by the British Government as a hospital ship for the duration of the First World War; re-engined in 1926 and caught fire on 7 April 1929; scrapped +

aa
Ca. 1945: A gun crew of six African-Americans who were given the Navy Cross for standing by their gun when their ship was damaged by enemy attack in the Philippine area – Crew members: Jonell Copeland, AtM2/c; Que Gant, StM; Harold Clark, Jr., StM; James Eddie Dockery, StM; Alonzo Alexander Swann, StM; and Eli Benjamin, StM. – African Americans During WWII; 178 images
Imperator
Imperial Russian battleship Imperator Pavel I ( 1905-1923) more on wikipedia
St Petersburg
Russian icebreaker Ermack in St. Petersburg
simonstown
Boys Arriving at Simonstown (South Africa) – HMS Nereide U64. The Nereide was a modified Black Swan Class sloop commissioned in 1946 and scrapped in 1958, a very short life. She may well have been based at Simonstown aka Simon’s Town since the ship’s crest is said to be preserved in the dockyard there.

more about HMS Nereide

sylv
USS Sylvania AKA 44 – more about Sylvania

Attack cargo ship – Sylvania (AKA-44) laid down on 24 February 1945 by the Walsh-Kaiser Co., Inc., Providence, R.I.; launched on 25 April 1945;  delivered to the Navy and commissioned on 19 May 1945. Sylvania sailed for Bikini, Marshall Islands, on 19 February 1946 to participate in “Operation Crossroads” the first post war atomic bomb tests, and operated between there and Pearl Harbor until 21 September when she returned to San Francisco. Moved up the coast to Seattle on 3 October and then to Bremerton, Washington, and the Navy Yard Puget Sound there. Decommissioned at Bremerton on 17 December 1946 and struck from the Navy list on 7 February 1947 (wikipedia)

alberm
Royal Navy Ship Albermarle – Original (3834 x 2880)

One of the the fastest battleships of her time when she was commissioned (1903) but quickly superseded by the new dreadnoughts which began entering service in 1906.

Served with the Grand Fleet on the Northern Patrol during the early stages of World War I. Dispatched to Murmansk in Russia for guard and icebreaking duties for most of 1916. Upon return to England, she underwent a refit and stayed in reserve for the remainder of the war. Decommissioned April 1919, scrapped 1920. (more on wikipedia)

yemen
port of Aden in Yemen; undated.

strangemaps

 Strange Maps: There’s A Ghost Ship Graveyard Under the Streets of San Francisco

Until 1848, San Francisco was a sleepy Mexican village of a few hundred souls, lost in the dunes of the peninsula between the Pacific and the Bay. Two events that year dramatically altered the course of history: the U.S. won the war against Mexico, acquiring vast territories including the future U.S. state of California; and gold was discovered in that territory, drawing in thousands of fortune-seekers from all over the world.

This was before planes, trains and automobiles. The overland route from the East Coast to California was shorter, but the sea route was faster. In 1849, 42,000 Americans flocked to California over land, but 25,000 arrived in a ship. Only a few of the these “forty-niners” actually struck it rich in the gold fields. Most turned to other trades, transforming San Francisco, the terminus of the sea route to California, into a boom town.

By the estimate of a San Francisco harbourmaster in April 1850, no less than 62,000 people from across the globe had arrived in the city by the Bay in the preceding 12 months. About 500 ships clogged up Yerba Buena Cove and vicinity. During the height of the gold excitement, there were at least five hundred ships stranded in the harbor, some without even a watchman on board, and none with a crew sufficiently large to work her. Many of these vessels never sailed again. Some rotted away and sank at their moorings.

keep reading

ankher
Woman sitting on a ship’s anchor – (3009 x 5169)

Best Guilty Pleasure Summer Movies to Guarantee You’ll Never Go Swimming Again

Hammerhead: Shark Frenzy (2005) – Half man. Half shark. Total terror. Not joking.

hammerheadIf you’ve turned on the Syfy channel in the last ten years you’ve probably had the pleasure of seeing what happens when Paul King has his stem cells modified with shark DNA.

Or perhaps you were just appalled when the doctors (on the remote island that no one knows exists) call his wife (who thinks he’s dead) and try and get her to copulate with her now very carnivorous husband in the hope of creating half man/half shark babies.

As cute as they would be, this is a brilliantly bloody disaster from start to finish. It’s awful. Truly. But in the best way possible. 

full article

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