Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Portsmouth May Be New Home

The Zuni, a 66-year-old Navy salvage tug passed down to a nonprofit foundation seven years ago, is docked at the Little Creek Naval Amphibious Base in Norfolk away from the eyes of the public.
The foundation’s goal is to help the Zuni make a comeback as a maritime attraction that will bring tourist dollars to Portsmouth.

“You have a unique city here – it has a great maritime heritage – and we have a unique ship,” Rich Cunningham, assistant director of operations for the Zuni Maritime Foundation, told the City Council at a recent meeting.

See my first entry on the Zuni in my blog ( May 15, 2009 ) >

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Battle of Craney Island Commemoration 2009

June 20...Battle of Craney Island Commemoration, Fort Norfolk, Norfolk, Va.

A group of dedicated living-historians, who share a love of history and continually strive to educate the general public about the life and times of the common sailor and soldier of several eras in our history as accurately as possible. This organization recreates the Revolutionary War and War of 1812 for members of the public through encampments and battlefield reenactments. We represent a sailor of the Royal Navy and a militiaman from southeastern Virginia during the American Revolution. As for the War of 1812, we portray a militiaman of the 2nd Va. Regiment of militia as well as a soldier in the 20th U.S. Regiment of infantry.
For further information we can be contacted at

One of the more neglected conflicts in American history is the War of 1812. In an attempt to help educate the public about this important era in or nations past, we in the crew of HM Sloop OTTER participate in various War of 1812 events in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, as well as at other sites around the country. We have two primary impressions; The 20th U.S. Regiment, and the 2nd Virginia Regiment of Militia, as the Fort Norfolk Garrison, 1812-1815 A company of the 20th U.S. saw duty at old Fort Norfolk during the Chesapeake campaign. The 20th also saw action in the northern theater. The 2nd Va. Regiment of Militia was formed at Fort Norfolk, and saw action in the Battle of Craney Island. The Fort Norfolk Garrison considers itself a family friendly unit, while at the same time abiding by a set of uniform and conduct standards that will assure a high level of authenticity. Our uniforms are constructed with appropriate period-correct fabrics, by hand when seams are visible. Through research and documentation the accouterments and weapons we use are as close as possible to that actually used during the War of 1812. Our desire to recreate the troops stationed at Fort Norfolk accurately is such that these standards will be upheld. And when you think about it, if this is done to the best of our ability, we can step back and take pride that we are doing our best. Levels of participationThere are two levels of participation in the Fort Norfolk Garrison, 1812-1815. Entry level is that of a Militiaman in the 2nd Virginia Regiment of Militia. The new member will be required to obtain / assemble a basic militia kit based on the regulations set forth by Governor Barber in January 1812 for Virginia Militia forces.The next level of progression in the Fort Norfolk Garrison is that of Regular as a private in the 20th U.S. regular infantry. Our 20th U.S. impression is intended to be much more "progressive" in nature in that we require an elevated level of authenticity in uniforming and equipment. Because of this, unit members are not required to advance to this level to participate in the Fort Norfolk Garrison, it is strictly voluntary, though encouraged.
So, if you are willing to abide by our standards of authenticity and would like join us, welcome! Contact us at for a membership form and a copy of the Soldier's Manual.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

22nd Race to Cock Island

The Race to Cock Island

The 22nd Annual Race to Cock Island ( and back ) will get underway on Saturday, June 20 at 0900 ( That's 9 AM for you landlubbers ) The harbor will be a forest of masts of more than 300 sailboats. The starting line will be at the Mile Marker Zero of the Intra-Coastal Waterway. View from the Portsmouth Seawall near Tidewater Yacht Marina behind where the Holiday Inn used to be. More info here >

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tall Ships at Harborfest 2009

Monday, June 8, 2009

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Tall Ships Sailing across Atlantic

Few things inspire awe like a tall ship under full sail, unless of course it's several tall ships under full sail at the same time. Pick your hyperbole - jaw-dropping, gobsmacking, totally and truly awesome - seeing that much classic canvas just does something to the blood. Once again this year, the tall ships are giving people in ports around the world a spectacle that has only rarely existed in the last century: The sea filled with big, beautiful sailing ships.

Tall Ships from Europe, North and South America sailed out from Vigo, Spain last month, competing in a sailing race called the Tall Ships Atlantic Challenge. The ships are now sailing on leg two of their adventure, part of a 7,000 mile odyssey around the North Atlantic, where the ships and their hundreds of hardy crew members will visit seven ports in five countries along the way.