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New York Central 13Have you ever wondered what it would take to bring an 1887 tugboat back to life? Eric Fischer, who has been restoring the railroad tug New York Central 13 since 2002, gives all the gritty details on his photoblog.  Click here to visit. 


Donate to all the historic ships through NRHSS
Donate to all the historic ships through NRHSS!

News & Events

Remembering John Krevey, Hero of the Harbor

By Betsy Frawley Haggerty

John Krevey and the Frying PanNothing was impossible for John Krevey—or so it seemed. He bought an old lightship that had spent years on the bottom of Chesapeake Bay, dug tons of mud out of it, scraped off a million or so barnacles and (three years of work later) sailed it to New York City where it became one of the waterfront’s most popular destinations. Click here for the full remembrance (in PDF)...

Success Where it Counts: With Kids

Twins on the Cornell
Twins Josie and Bea loved their boat trip.

I received the following email this morning from a woman who brought her 3-1/2 year-old twin girls for a ride on the Cornell. "Thanks so much for this wonderful picture and again a great ride. We loved the whole thing from the history lesson, to the ride and watching the fire boat (what a bonus)."

--Betsy Frawley Haggerty

2010 Historic Ship Rendezvous a Great Success: NRHSS Hosts All-Day Event at Pier 40 Hudson River Park

Photos by Betsy Frawley Haggerty.

Fireboat John J. Harvey offered 4 free trips.
Fireboat John J. Harvey offered 4 free trips.

On Saturday, June 19, 350 children and adults rode the tugboat Cornell and the fireboat John J. Harvey during educational trips that highlighted the importance of historic ships, the history of the North River (the Lower Hudson) as a major shipping port, and the recent conversion of its piers into the world-class Hudson River Park.

Fireboat John J. Harvey did water displays on every trip.
To the delight of everyone on board and on shore, the fireboat John J. Harvey did water displays on every trip.
The Lilac
The lighthouse tender Lilac.

Hundreds of visitors also toured the steam engines and crew quarters of the former U.S. Coast Guard lighthouse tender Lilac. Maritime historian Norman Brouwer gave talks about the Lilac’s storied past.

 The tug Cornell offered three 45-minute educational trips, and the fireboat John J. Harvey, four. All trips and tours were free to the public. A grant from Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer to Friends of Hudson River Park for historic ship programming funded the ship appearances.

The Cornell (left) and John J. Harvey together on the river.
The Cornell (left) and John J. Harvey together on the river.
The John J. Harvey saluted the cruise ship Norwegian Jewel as it headed down the Hudson.
The John J. Harvey saluted the cruise ship Norwegian Jewel as it headed down the Hudson.

 “This event did just what we wanted it to do,” said Betsy Frawley Haggerty, president of the North River Historic Ship Society. “It drew hundreds of people to the park and the river and offered 350 people, half of them children, a chance to tour some wonderful old ships, get out onto the river, have some fun and learn about the importance of our waterways.”

Captain Matt Perricone and crew Amy Bucciferro of the tug Cornell.
Captain Matt Perricone and crew Amy Bucciferro of the tug Cornell.

Historic Ship Rally Celebrates New York Maritime Life

All photos by Bernie Ente.

Tug Pegasus on tour

Pegasus takes visitors for a free educational trip on the Hudson River.

On September 5, 2009, the 102-year-old tug Pegasus tied up to a barge in the Hudson River ready to begin her day’s work.  For more than 90 years, this classic harbor workhorse spent her days pushing oil barges, docking ships, and towing railroad cars.  But on this day, she had a new and important job: to educate the public about New York’s storied maritime past and its present-day importance.

Pegasus was one of six historic vessels that participated in the North River Historic Ship Rally at Hudson River Park Pier 84 on Labor Day weekend 2009. The North River Historic Ship Society produced the day-long event to bring people to the water to learn about the past and present of New York Harbor, the busiest port on the East Coast and the third largest in the nation.

The Mercantillers on Pier 84

The Mercantillers perform a mix of sea chanteys and other favorites on Pier 84, as tug Cornell heads out for an educational river tour.

  
Day Peckinpaugh at Pier 84
The canal motorship Day Peckinpaugh is open for tours at Pier 84 as part of its 2009 Quadricentennial tour.

In addition to Pegasus, which took a total of 175 adults and children out on the river during four free educational cruises, the following historic vessels also participated in the event:

  • The 60-year-old tug Cornell, a retired railroad tugboat, which also offered free educational river trips to 175 people;
  • The 95-year-old Waterfront Museum and Showboat Barge (a.k.a. Lehigh Valley Railroad Barge # 79), which welcomed more than 600 visitors for dockside tours;
  • The Day Peckinpaugh, a 259-foot cargo carrier and motorship that plied the New York State Canal System from 1921 until 1994. Now owned by the New York State Museum, it accommodated 700 visitors on the New York City stop of its Lake Champlain-Hudson River Quadricentennial tour. The tour was sponsored by the Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor;
  • The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, which was open for dockside tours. Built by Pete Seeger and colleagues in 1969, the Clearwater has been at the forefront of the Hudson River cleanup;
  • The 107 year-old-tugboat Urger, the flagship of the New York State Canal System, which offered an onshore educational display.
Tugs Urger and Pegasus
Urger and Pegasus in front of Pier 84.
 
Clearwater
The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater arrives at Pier 84 for the Historic Ship Rally.

All events were free to the public. Thanks to a July 4 fundraising benefit at Pier 66 Maritime, the North River Historic Ship Society was able to provide the $12,000 required to pay for ship and crew costs. Thanks also to Friends of Hudson River Park for acting as co-sponsor and assisting with permitting and insurance, and to the Hudson River Park Trust for allowing us to use Pier 84 for this free public event.

Signing up at the NRHSS booth.
Members of the public sign up for free educational tugboat trips.
 
Safety first for all children 12 and under
Safety first:  All children 12 and under are fitted with life vests before they ride on any of the historic vessels.

North River Historic Ship Society is now raising funds to sponsor additional historic ship trips and tours in 2010.  Click here to make a donation.