"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.

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San Juan Archipelago, 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 650, 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.

16 May 2018


Built at Thomaston, ME. 1878
by Thomas Watts.
Date of photo unknown.
Originally a full-rigged ship, then a bark, and finally rerigged as a 5-masted schooner, long in Pacific Coast lumber and coal trades.
5-masted schooner.
Date estimate by UW of c. 1900.
Location: Port Blakely, WA.
Under Capt. P. Martensen.

Photo by Wilhelm Hester
from the U of W Collections.

1902, 5 September: Capt A. H. Sorenson and wife Marie welcomed a baby girl, Burgess in the middle of the Pacific hundreds of miles west of Central America.
"Ship at San Pedro.
The five-masted schooner SNOW & BURGESS arrived in port late this evening and dropped her anchor in the outer harbor, just off the end of the government breakwater. The arrival of this vessel is of particular note from the fact that she is the only five-master ever entering the port. The SNOW & BURGESS has had a varied and interesting career, such a history as few vessels can boast. Built in 1878, she was full-rigged ship and for fifteen years sailed the seas and visited nearly every port of importance on the globe. For ten years, or until 1903, this barque was under canvass; then she was brought into San Francisco and transferred to her present owner, J. L. Larsen, and was placed on the dry dock at Boole's shipyard. Her rig was again changed, her cabins were rebuilt, and she was turned out of the shops, good as new, and one of the first five masters ever floated. She is 228' long, 41' beam and 24.7' depth of hold. Her tonnage total net is 1548 tons. She carries approximately two million feet of lumber." From the Los Angeles Herald
Text verso: 1911
Crossing the Columbia River Bar.

2 photos from the archives of the Saltwater People Historical Society©

1922: Capt. Dan "Black" Martin was her last skipper. On her last voyage home from Manilla, she was badly hogged and leaked constantly. She had lumber lashing chains around her stern, set up with turnbuckles to keep her together. She did not sail again but was sold for $3,000, despite her appraisal of $200,000 during the shipping boom 2 years earlier. She was burned on the beach at Pt. Townsend. According to the H.W. McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest, edited by Gordon Newell, H. W. McCurdy was involved in the scrapping and her bell was subsequently saved for his yacht.

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