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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

With Wind on Same Sides

Here's another instructive rhyme from Nautical Nursery Rhymes by Billy Ringbolt, which resides in the "Peterson, Peter H. (Capt.) Papers," (SAFR 18665, HDC 571):

"With Wind on Same Sides"

When vessels are sailing with wind the same side,
To continue their course they might foul or collide,
The one that's to windward is the one to keep clear,
From her course give the other no reason to sheer.

(Contributer: Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

Mirrored from Full Fathom Five, due to its lack of rss feeds and commenting.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

New in the SF Maritime NHP Library

Here are the Library's lists of new accessions for the last half of June through the first half of August; for more information on any title, contact us or search our catalogs:

Mirrored from Full Fathom Five, due to its lack of rss feed & functioning commenting.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Digging for gold at the Library: Cramp's Shipyard

(by Gina Bardi, Reference Librarian)

The other day I was walking through the stacks and I caught a glint of gold. Now, I am neither a bird nor a rat nor a raccoon nor Gollum, but when I see something shiny, I must investigate further.

What caught my eye was a 1920 book entitled Cramp's Shipyard. In the picture below it is difficult to see how nice the cover is. It's more gold than yellow.

Cover of book


The book is a brief history of the William Cramp and Sons Ship and Engine Building Company, the I.P. Morris Company, and the Kensington Shipyard Co. Most of the slim volume is photos of their various ships which is nice, but we've seen images like those a million times. The thing that knocked my socks clean off (I'm still looking for them...if you see a pair of rainbow toe socks anywhere, they're mine) are the beautiful photographs of the equipment and machinery. Some of these things don't look like they belong of this temporal world. Rather, they look as if they should be in a Dr. Seuss book or in the movie Metropolis. I submit for your approval:

Hydraulic turbine

Where do those tubes go, I wonder? Willy Wonka's Shipbuilding Factory?

Piston rods

Anyone up for a game of pool?

Marine machinery

Marine machinery

It's reminiscent of Dr. Doolittle's snail, no?

Marine machinery with men

Hooooooonk! It calls to mind an ungainly instrument.

Marine machinery with men

I wish this was my playhouse.

Come by the library anytime to check out Cramp's Shipyard and drool over the wonderous machines.

Mirrored from Full Fathom Five, due to its lack of rss feed & functioning commenting.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Hydraulic Dredging

Mirrored from Full Fathom Five (it lacks an rss feed & commenting):

(by Mariah Robertson, Archivist)
Hydraulic dredge modelPatent no. 318,859 was designed by Alphonzo B. Bowers and patented in 1885 via the United States Patent Office. Bowers was originally from Maine and moved to the San Francisco area in 1853 and began to design machinery engineered to advance the development of the Bay Area just after the Gold Rush. Nearly 85 years after his passing, the Alphonzo B. Bowers Papers were donated to the Historic Documents Department and have been processed and are open for researcher use.

Hydraulic dredge model, alternate viewA very interesting aspect of this collection is it seems to be an accepted fact that Von Schmidt was the inventor of the hydraulic dredge. But according to the court documents contained in the collection, in 1888, Bowers sued Colonel A.W. Von Schmidt for infringement and won. This suit was the basis for many future lawsuits regarding infringement of his patents. Some of the companies sued were Williams & Bixler, the Golden State and Miners' Iron Works, the San Francisco Bridge Company, the Pacific Coast Dredging and Reclamation Company (San Francisco), L.W. Bates of Chicago, and the New York Dredging Company. An 1897 appeal case ruling declared Bowers to be the inventor of the hydraulic system of dredging. He spent the rest of his life in litigation regarding infringement lawsuits in the United States, Cuba, and other countries.