Lightship Winter Quarter LV107, Jersey City

Posted in Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2009/07/30


The lightship Winter Quarter, that graced the Winter Quarter shoals in Virginia, is now berthed in Liberty Landing Marina, Jersey City. Statue of Liberty ferries Miss Liberty (rear) and Miss Gateway (fore). More Winter Quarter Shoal Lightships –sail powered!–that served in the USCG here.

Sketched while waiting for the Liberty State Park ferry. The ferry captain said, “It had a great bar. Was a vicious cycle: work, get paid, go the bar, work, get paid, then go to the bar…”

Winter Quarter (LV-107)
built: 1923, Bath Iron Works, ME
length: 132.3 ft / 40.3 m
beam: 30 ft / 9.1 m
draft: 14.6 ft / 4.5 m
displacement: 775 tons
location: Tidewater Basin, NJ

* Tidewater Basin is to the east, Morris Canal is to the west; the developers are selling it as Clermont Cove.


so you work on a lightship? wait for the punchline…

Posted in Uncategorized by bowsprite on 2011/10/29

Lightships were floating lighthouses placed in dangerous areas by the United States Lighthouse Service (later incorporated into the United States Coast Guard.)

In addition to maintaining the light, they had bells or horns which sounded to warn passing vessels of  shoals. One CG chief petty officer told of his days of making deliveries to several lightships, before they were replaced by the large “monster buoys:”

“We would bring food and new crew about every 10 days. They often lived on the fish they caught. Most of those horns were 4 second every 2 minutes—24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

“You know what was funny? when we picked up the guys at crew change, they’d stop while they were talking every few minutes. They were so used to stopping for the horn that the pause ended up in their speech. It would take them awhile to adjust.”

 thank you, again, Capt J.J.!

The yacht Nantucket is in town, in the Morris Canal, across from the full-time, office WinterQuarter. Also, see Brian LaFloca’s children’s book, “Lightship,” which has beautiful illustrations of life aboard a lightship.

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