Historic Oregon Fishing Boat Broken Up

Tradewinds Kingfisher

Tradewinds Kingfisher on her maiden voyage in 1941. Photo courtesy Lincoln County Historical Society

The Oregon-based Lincoln County Historical Society has demolished a boat listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 50-foot Tradewinds Kingfisher, a charter fishing boat long associated with Depoe Bay, Ore., was deteriorating quickly and may have posed an environmental hazard, if it had sunk. “It had to be scuttled,” said Historical Society Director Steve Wyatt in a news release. “As a museum professional, my job is the preservation of objects; this was a difficult decision.”

Tradewinds Kingfisher was built in 1941 by Westerlund Boat and Machine Works of Jantzen Beach, Ore. After the Kingfisher owner and skipper, Stan Allyn (1913-1992) took possession of the boat, the U.S. entered World War II. The Kingfisher served as a boarding and patrol craft from Astoria to Coos Bay. At war’s end, the Kingfisher returned to Depoe Bay to serve as Allyn’s flagship charter boat. Many charter boats built in the 1950s copied the Kingfisher’s then innovative styling. The Kingfisher was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1991 and retired from service in 2000. Continue reading

Classic Workboat Show 2013

Classic workboats from the Puget Sound region gathered today at the Historic Ships Wharf in Seattle’s Lake Union Park for a show alongside the historic ships permanently berthed at the site. Visitors also got the first public views of the ongoing restoration work aboard Lightship No. 83, also called Swiftsure. The retired NOAA research ship John N. Cobb was also open to the public. The show was organized by Northwest Seaport and supported by Seattle-area maritime businesses and 4Culture, King County’s arts and heritage agency.

WWII-era tug Comanche finds new home


The former US Coast Guard tug Comanche has found a new home in Bremerton, Wash. Photo by Joe Follansbee.

Congratulations to the 143-foot, former US Coast Guard tug Comanche, which is settling into a new berth on the waterfront in Bremerton, Wash. The boat is owned by the Tacoma-based Comanche 202 Foundation, a non-profit supported primarily by veterans of her service as a Coast Guard vessel. Launched in 1944 as a U.S. Navy tug with a mission of pulling damaged warships out of the line of fire, she won a Battle Star for action in Okinawa during World War II. Transferred to the Coast Guard after the war, the government retired the vessel in 1980. It worked as a private tug in Puget Sound before it was acquired by the foundation in 2007.

Comanche was a fixture on the Tacoma waterfront until earlier this year, when a dispute over insurance and the lack of a rental agreement with Foss Waterway Seaport, the waterfront museum which controlled the tug’s moorage, forced the ship to find a new home. Soon after the hull work was completed in late August, the Port of Bremerton’s downtown marina welcomed Comanche with open arms, putting it near another historic ship, the destroyer USS Turner Joy, a veteran of the Vietnam War and now a museum ship.

Staffed entirely by volunteers, Comanche is one of the few large historic ships that can visit nearly any port on Puget Sound. It shows up at local maritime festivals, such as Olympia Harbor Days on Labor Day weekend. It also hosts programs for at-risk youth. Back at Bremerton, Comanche opens to the public for tours on Saturdays and Sundays. “It’s all free,” says Joe Peterson, the foundation’s director of operations, “but donations are not refused.”

Design for Seattle Maritime Education Center Unveiled

Artist's rendering

Artist’s rendering of planned Wagner Education Center at Seattle’s Center for Wooden Boats

The Center for Wooden Boats in Seattle has unveiled its plans for a $6.6 million education center next to its 37-year-old facility at Lake Union Park. In a statement released today, CWB says the wood, steel and glass education facility, designed by award winning Seattle architect Tom Kundig of Olson Kundig Architects, recalls historic Northwest boatbuilding facilities. The education center will also serve as a modern “front door” for the museum, Lake Union Park, and the surrounding neighborhood. Construction is set to start by the end of 2013.

The design includes a dedicated youth classroom that can be converted to a sail loft, new gallery and exhibit space, and a new boat shop. The education center is the largest portion of a $9.5 million capital campaign aimed at improving CWB’s existing facilities at the south end of Lake Union. The addition will be named the Wagner Education Center after Dick and Colleen Wagner, CWB’s founders.

“This new facility will make it possible for even more people to come down to Lake Union Park and pick up a hammer or chisel or plane and find the joy when they make a boat with their own hands,” Dick Wagner said.

The CWB capital campaign has received support from the City of Seattle, King County, and Washington State, along with leadership gifts from business, individuals and private foundations totaling $6.7 million. CWB needs to raise $2.8 million to reach its goal. The design was unveiled at an annual block party for the South Lake Union neighborhood. More information about the capital campaign is available at the CWB website.

Source: Center for Wooden Boats