"Of all national assets, archives are the most precious:
they are the gift of one generation to another,
and the extent of our care of them marks the
extent of our civilization." Arthur Doughty.

About Us

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San Juan Islands, Washington State, United States
A society formed in 2009 for the purpose of collecting, preserving, celebrating, and disseminating the maritime history of the San Juan Islands and northern Puget Sound area. Check this log for tales from out-of-print publications as well as from members and friends. There are circa 500, often long entries, on a broad range of maritime topics; there are search aids at the bottom of the log. Please ask for permission to use any photo posted on this site. Thank you.

20 November 2012


Location, Seattle, WA, 1917.
She was then operated by the US Shipping Board.
Original photo by Webster & Stevens, Seattle, WA.
from the archives of S.P.H.S©

Figurehead is a Knight of Malta.
Center of attraction at Smith Cove Pier 40, Seattle, 
while she was waiting to be converted to a barge.
From the archives of the S.P.H.S.©

"The sailing ship MONONGAHELA (1892-1943)* with her gilded figurehead kept freshly painted. Figureheads were a source of pride in sailing days. And not always were these figures of women. 
             The bowsprit of the ship ROBERT DUNCAN bore the carved figure of that Scotsman. When the ship was sold to the Hind, Rolph Co. the name was changed to the WILLIAM T. LEWIS, one of the company captains. It was then thought necessary to change the figurehead to resemble that gentleman instead of Robert Duncan. Since Lewis had worn a mustache, one was carved and nailed on the figurehead which had one hand at the breast, the other behind his back. On a later occasion, sailors were arguing about the identity of the ship and one exclaimed: "That's Robert Duncan. I'd know the Scotchman anywhere. Look--he's got one hand on his watch, the other on his wallet!"
Text from This was Seafaring
Ralph Andrews and Harry Kirwin
Superior; Seattle, 1955.

"She was a big, bald-headed bark with bridge deck and rounded poop. Purchased by Knohr and Burchard of Germany in 1912, the Germans renamed BALASORE, DALBEK, and continued to sail the big bark from Europe to the west coast. Caught in Portland, OR at the commencement of hostilities in 1914, DALBEK waited out the war until 1917, when the US entered. Seizing DALBEK, the US Shipping Board named it RED JACKET (the USSB had the romantic notion that naming these seized vessels after famous American clipper ships of an earlier era would be interesting.) RED JACKET made one voyage to China and back. Meanwhile, policy changed in Washington, and the seized ships were to be named after Indian tribes. RED JACKET became MONONGAHELA in 1918, and the ship never sailed again. MONONGAHELA anchored in Lake Union, Seattle, and there remained under the ownership of Charles Nelson of San Francisco. Sold again in 1936, the MONONGAHELA became a barge until lost in 1943."
Above text by Donald H. Dyal, Texas Tech. Univ.
"Properly applied they should represent the subject of the ship's name."
From: A Dictionary of Sea Terms by A. Ansted; Brown, Son & Ferguson, Ltd., Glasgow, 1920.

Lost c. 100 miles off Hatteras 29 Oct. 2013.
Captain Robin Wallbridge, 63, lost. 
Deckhand Claudene Christian, age 42, lost.
Survivors: 14.
Figurehead of BOUNTY
Photo dated 11 August 1989
by Luci S. Williams.
Original print from the S.P.H.S.©
The HMS Bounty Organization LLC, New York based, was the owner of the BOUNTY.
She was a recreation of the 18-C. British Naval vessel of the same name. She was constructed for the 1962 MGM film Mutiny on the Bounty, she also appeared in Pirates of the Caribbean. 
More news on the Coast Guard investigation can be found here.

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