Independence Seaport Museum

Highlights from the Edna Lockwood Restoration Symposium

On March 10-11, 2016, we hosted a symposium of historic vessel preservation experts, allowing a detailed examination of proposed procedures and recommendations for the restoration of Edna E Lockwood. Symposium experts were:

·      John Brady, President, Independence Seaport Museum

·      Todd Croteau, Historic American Engineering Record, National Park Service

·      Richard Dodds, Curator of Maritime History, Calvert Marine Museum

·      John England, Head Shipwright, Deltaville Maritime Museum

·      Quentin Snediker, Shipyard Director, Mystic Seaport Museum

·      George Surgent, Head Shipwright, Calvert Marine Museum

Our principal take-aways from the forum were:

1.     Fundamentally, our approach of assembling new logs separately, cutting the bottom off the existing boat, and marrying new with existing, is sound. This approach has a number of advantages: it maintains the historic continuity of the boat, as recognized in historic preservation best practice, so that even with 100% material replacement, we still have the historic vessel (as identified by Snediker). By assembling the new logs separately (as opposed to a piece-by-piece replacement), original fastening techniques can be replicated (as pointed out by Michael Gorman and vetted by others). And this approach also allows us to save a significant part of the historic material in an intact and recognizable form--something that is rarely accomplished in historic vessel preservation projects, unless the old vessel is mothballed to an interior space and replicated afloat.

2.     We were encouraged to make use of traditional sealants—raw linseed oil, turpentine, red lead—and to avoid epoxies and plastics.

3.     We heard an extensive discussion on fasteners, which steered us away from steel and toward a combination of bronze and locust or Osage treenails.

4.     We have unanimous support for attempting to remove the hog (drooping of the ends), but it comes with a number of cautions about how to adequately plan for this, which will mean a bit more with adjusting the HAER drawings and problem-solving with how the old is married to the new.

5.     The interior of the vessel provides little opportunity for interpretation, so the guiding principle should be to maximize air circulation below decks, an important factor in long-term preservation.

6.     We seemed to arrive at a consensus to select a mid-20th century date for the restoration period; that is, when the project is completed, Edna should appear much as she did at the end of her oyster dredging days, and that date should guide decisions about what to include when there are possible options.

Our plans for Edna through September—before we start work on the logs—have taken an interesting turn. She was to be put back in the water, to clear the railway for Winnie Estelle to be prepped for her Coast Guard inspection. Unfortunately, one of Edna’s logs has rotted out and she’ll need to stay dry. We have a 100 ton crane arriving this week to remove her masts and to lift her parallel to the waterfront container that is acting as her workshop. We’ll make this work on our behalf, as we plan to build access steps up to Edna’s deck, and from the deck guests will be able to see the logs being worked on.

-Kristen Greenaway, CBMM President

CBMM hosts March 11 forum on restoring Edna E. Lockwood


(ST. MICHAELS, MD–February 22, 2016) On Friday, March 11, 2016, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md. will convene a panel of maritime preservation experts for a public forum on its planned 2016-2018 restoration of the National Historic Landmark Chesapeake Bay bugeye Edna E. Lockwood. The program runs from 9:00 to 12:00 noon in the museum’s Van Lennep Auditorium with a panel that includes specialists in wooden vessel restoration, maritime documentation, and historic vessel preservation. The forum is free and open to the public, with limited seating and advanced registration required.

Participating on the panel will be John Brady of Independence Seaport Museum, Todd Croteau of the National Park Service Maritime Program, Richard Dodds of Calvert Marine Museum, John England of Deltaville Maritime Museum, Quentin Snediker of Mystic Seaport Museum, and George Surgent of Calvert Marine Museum.

The session opens at 9:00 a.m. with an introduction to the 1889 Tilghman-built oystering vessel, Edna E. Lockwood, which has been a floating exhibition at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum since 1967. Later in the forum, the panel will review the recent documentation of Edna’s hull through photogrammetry and laser scanning, followed by an overview of what lies ahead in the restoration project. The panel will address a series of questions and technical problems anticipated in the restoration, with the public invited to ask questions and offer comments.

Built in 1889 by John B. Harrison on Tilghman Island for Daniel W. Haddaway, Edna E. Lockwood dredged for oysters through winter, and carried freight—such as lumber, grain, and produce—after the dredging season ended. She worked faithfully for many owners, mainly out of Cambridge, Md, until she stopped “drudging” in 1967. In 1973, Edna was donated to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum by John R. Kimberly. Recognized as the last working oyster boat of her kind, Edna E. Lockwood was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1994.

“This type of boatbuilding is specific to the Chesapeake Bay,” said CBMM Chief Curator Pete Lesher. “Just as Native American dugout canoes were formed by carving out one log, a bugeye’s hull is unique in that it is constructed by hewing a set of logs to shape and pinning them together as a unit. Over the next two years, museum guests will have incredible opportunities to watch the restoration progress and to see a boat built in a way you can find nowhere else, and in full public view.”

Established in 1965, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is a world-class maritime museum dedicated to preserving and exploring the history, environment and people of the entire Chesapeake Bay, with the values of relevancy, authenticity, and stewardship guiding its mission. Serving more than 70,000 guests each year, the museum’s campus includes a floating fleet of historic boats and 12 exhibition buildings, situated on 18 waterfront acres along the Miles River and St. Michaels’ harbor. To register for the March 11 forum, email or call 410-745-4941.

The 1889 log-bottom bugeye Edna E. Lockwood, shown here, is the queen of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s fleet of historic Chesapeake boats and will be the focus of a March 11 public forum when CBMM convenes a panel of maritime preservation experts to discuss Edna’s planned restoration. Recognized as the last working oyster boat of her kind, Edna E. Lockwood was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1994. The March 11 program runs from 9:00 to 12:00 noon in the museum’s Van Lennep Auditorium, and is free and open to the public, with limited seating and advanced registration required. More photos of the bugeye are