Maritime Monday for Nov 28th, 2016: The Ugly Chickens

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November 27, 2016

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Why Americans Call Turkey ‘Turkey’

How a New World bird came to be named after countries halfway around the globe

The Atlantic – Within the turkey lies the tangled history of the world. OK, not quite. But not far off, either.

“Turkey” the bird is native to North America. But “turkey” the word is a geographic mess—a tribute to the vagaries of colonial trade and conquest. As you might have suspected, the English term for the avian creature likely comes from Turkey the country. Or, more precisely, from Turkish merchants in the 15th and 16th centuries. keep reading

Atlas V launch with GOES-R. Photo Credit: Michael McCabe / SpaceFlight Insider

Powerful Next-Gen Weather Satellite Launches to Begin Forecasting ‘Revolution

“Our nation now has a new weather sentinel, and the data it will produce will soon be vital to our severe storm prediction and warnings,” said Lisa Callahan, vice president and general manager of Civil Space at Lockheed Martin Space Systems. “The data will not only keep our citizens out of harm’s way but will also be used across the Americas.”  more on SpaceFlight Insider

Artist’s illustration of the GOES-R weather satellite in space. GOES-R launched on Nov. 19, 2016, and will reach its final geostationary orbit about two weeks later (at which point its name will change to GOES-16). Credit: NASA

The GOES-R weather satellite lifted off from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today (Nov. 19) at 6:42 p.m. EST (2342 GMT), riding a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket to orbit. The spectacular launch, which lit up the Florida evening sky, occurred about one hour later than planned due to issues with the rocket and launch range that were swiftly resolved.

GOES-R is the first of four new advanced weather satellites that are, somewhat confusingly, collectively known as GOES-R. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which manages the GOES-R program, is expecting big things from all four of these spacecraft.  more on

Atlas Obscura

How a Father And Son Helped Create Weather Forecasting as We Know It

It’s an almost supernatural ability that most of us take for granted: at any given time, almost anywhere in the world, we can know the weather of the future.

It wasn’t always this way. Though the very first committee dedicated to collecting and mapping weather data—the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia—was formed in 1831, all of the maps they produced had to be drawn after weather had already occurred. Predicting the weather remained largely based on superstition, like the famous “red sky at night, sailor’s delight” rhyme.  keep reading

A cirrocumulus cloud study by Luke Howard (1803-11) (© Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library)

How the Naming of Clouds Changed the Skies of Art

The clouds in many 19th-century European paintings look drastically different than those in the 18th century. There are layers to their texture, with whisps of cirrus clouds flying over billowing cumulus, and stratus hovering low. Clouds weren’t classified by type until 1802, and their subsequent study influenced artists from John Constable to J. M. W. Turner.  keep reading

Found Photo: His Royal Highness Holds Inspection of the Crew; 10/20/1930 (Ed Engel)
See also: Portrait of Arthur Phillip, Francis Wheatley, 1786, National Portrait Gallery UK

GoFundMe: Anglo-American Maritime Clothing, 1680-1740

Maritime clothing in the Age of Sail is a topic that only receives minimal attention in the greater history of the maritime world. For those interested in the attire of mariners during the latter half of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, learning about sailor’s garb in the time preceding that period brings further context and understanding to the latter period. In 2015, I completed and successfully defended my master’s thesis for the Maritime Studies Department at East Carolina University concerning the attire of common sailors and pirates for the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries.

However, before I take my thesis to a publisher, I need to conduct more research so I can provide my readers the best work possible. To conduct said research, I need to go to the archives in London for a 3-week research trip.  Keep reading

Royal Navy aircraft carrier, HMS Indomitable, sometime during the 1950’s – photo by Steve Given
The Kensington Runestone – Runestone Museum; Alexandria, Minnesota

A simple farmer did not expect to discover what appeared to be an ancient stone with Viking style graphic symbols engraved on it in the state of Minnesota. Many people were saying he was lying or just simply crazy. Yet around 100 years later, more discoveries have proved the stele was actually the real McCoy.

It was, however, actually left there by the Knights Templar instead of the Norsemen.

The front face had read:

“Eight Gotlanders and 22 Norwegians on reclaiming/acquisition journey far west from Vinland. We had a camp by two shelters one day’s journey north from this stone. We were fishing one day.

After we came home we found 10 men red with blood and death. Ave Maria. Save from evil.” Engraved on the side of the stone were the words, “There are 10 men by the sea to look after our ships 14 days journey from this island. Year 1362.” 

keep reading

VIDEO: Lake Superior Yields Astonishing Intact Shipwreck from 1884
morecambe The Sands, Morecambe, Showing The Majestic at Wards Yard

Shipbreaking in Morecambe

Today, Morecambe isn’t known for much really. It always played second fiddle to Blackpool in the battle for Lancashire’s seaside tourists, and today there is even less to see of merit other than the fabulously restored art deco Midland hotel, and of course the bronze statue of Eric Morecambe.

The town wasn’t an obvious choice of location for shipbreaking, but came about due to the Midland Railway steamer services vacating the stone jetty for nearby Heysham. The jetty was offered for lease, and Sheffield based TW Ward moved in, in 1905.  keep reading

A canal being drained and cleaned in Venice, Italy, 1956 – The Vintage News (click to see full size)

The Other English Royals

Have you ever heard of the Pearly Kings and Queens? A unique subculture of the English capital and an integral part of its heritage; the Pearlies are the unsung monarchs of Britain with a story worth telling. It begins with a shipwreck and thousands of imported pearl button that washed up along the River Thames.

As the story goes, the impressionable Henry, keen to emulate his local heroes, was wondering down the mud banks of the Thames when he came across the shipwrecked cargo of a sunken Japanese boat and thousands of imported pearl buttons. Croft covered his entire worn out dress suit and top hat with 60,000 pearl buttons, sewing them in artful patterns that spelled out Robin Hood-esque slogans like, “All for charity and pity the poor”. keep reading

VIDEO – Hauling the MAYFLOWER II at Mystic Seaport – November 2016

Hauling the Mayflower II at Mystic Seaport

Old Salt Blog – I hope everyone who celebrates the American holiday is having a wonderful Thanksgiving. The holiday is associated with a group of English settlers now known as the Pilgrims who arrived on the Massachusetts coast around 1620 on the ship Mayflower. Now, the Mayflower II, a replica built in Devon, England and sailed to United States in 1957, is undergoing an extensive renovation and rebuild. She was hauled last Friday at the Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard at Mystic Seaport. more

Buckingham on the stocks at Deptford, John Cleveley the Elder, 1752, National Maritime Museum
Buckingham on the stocks at Deptford, John Cleveley the Elder, 1752, National Maritime Museum

Cleveley was a shipwright by trade, and many of his paintings depict ships on the stocks. He also populates his paintings with sailors and people. Unlike many other marine artists of the time, Cleveley never separated the image of the ship from the people who built and sailed them.  keep reading

Manhattan skyline with the Chrysler Building still under construction, May 12, 1930 / William Frange, photographer
Capt. Thomas J. Keating Jr., a member of the Sandy Hook Pilots Association, guides about 150 ships in and out of New York Harbor each year. Join him aboard one of the world’s largest ocean liners. By JAKE NAUGHTON, NIKO KOPPEL and KAITLYN MULLIN

The Channel Masters of New York Harbor

ABOARD THE PILOT BOAT NEW JERSEY — A speed of 7 knots at sea is equal to about 8 miles per hour on land, which doesn’t sound very fast.
That is not how it feels 15 miles or so southeast of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, where the Queen Mary 2 is heading out into the Atlantic. Capt. Thomas J. Keating Jr. emerges from a door in the belly of the vessel, an ocean liner that is about the length of the Empire State Building if it were turned on its side.

keep reading on NY Times

British Royal Navy minesweeper HMS Coriolanus – photo by michal.sevecek

On 5 May 1945, the Shakespeare-class trawler HMS Coriolanus hit a mine while it was sweeping the sea in front of Novigrad; Adriatic Campaign of World War II

see also

This video from RealLifeLore offers a bit of perspective

Try To Wrap Your Head Around How Mind-Bendingly Deep the Ocean Is – Less than one measly percent of all the known shipwrecks in the world have actually been explored. There are a whole multitude of reasons for this but not the least among them is that the ocean is unfathomably huge. Not only does it cover over 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, it also stretches far further down than anything on dry land stretches up. Given how little of the ocean floor is actually accurately mapped, there could be much deeper parts that we just don’t know about yet.

This homemade houseboat remains mostly intact, despite its 1,900 mile journey – photo Declan Murphy/BBC

Mystery as Canadian houseboat washes up on Irish Beach – BBC News

A houseboat believed to have been built by an environmentalist in Canada has washed up on an Irish beach. The vessel is thought to have drifted across the Atlantic, and was spotted as late as September in Portugal Cove-St Philip’s in Newfoundland. The coastguard was alerted by a member of the public who spotted the caravan-sized structure floating on the coast. more on the BBC

Battered houseboat washes up in Co Mayo after apparently drifting across Atlantic

Mar del Plata, Argentina – photo by Rodolfo Frino
Museum of Found Photographs

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