When I visited St. Michael's earlier this year and stopped by the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, one of the historic boats that captured my attention was the Winnie Estelle, a 1920s Chesapeake Bay buy-boat. A buy-boat, as the name implies, is used to buy and sell seafood. These vessels would travel up and down the Chesapeake Bay and buy oysters and others seafood directly from harvesters.
Of all of the tugboats working in the Baltimore Harbor and surrounding waters, there are likely few, if any, with the history of the "Baltimore". The Baltimore Tug was built in 1906 by the William Skinner & Sons Shipbuilding Company, which dates back to around 1815. This great port city has an extremely long history with shipbuilding and the prestige that comes with this industry.
In 1993, the Baltimore Tug was declared a National Historic Landmark, quite an honor for this old steamer. Today, it is maintained by The Baltimore and Chesapeake Steamboat Company and can often be found moored behind the Baltimore Museum of Industry. The nearly 85-foot riveted iron hull has stood the test of time and the tugboat's design proudly reflects the styling of yesteryear.
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This vessel has changed ownership on quite a few occasion and has even survived her own sinking at her dock on the Sassafras Riverin 1979. Nonetheless, she has been raised and remains a living symbol of history, for which we can be proud.
This image was created on a cool Fall day in October 2011.
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