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    Re: From the Scillies to lunars and cooks
    From: Frank Reed
    Date: 2007 Oct 03, 17:51 -0400

    Someone asked off-list where I found the complete text of Zach's letter
    regarding Cleopatra's Barge. It's from "The Ships and Sailors of Old Salem"
    by Paine published in 1912. That's the most complete translation of the
    original that I was able to find online. The original letter was published
    in 1820 in French in "Correspondence astronomique, geographique,
    hydrographique, et statistique". It has been published in translation many
    times (usually in reference to Bowditch's fame) but usually just one or two
    paragraphs. Paine's book is available on Google Books. The entire volume can
    be downloaded as a pdf. Zach's letter begins on page 208.
    By the way, if you would like to see either of the vessels I mentioned in
    the previous post, visit Google Images here: http://www.google.com/imghp
    and search on the vessel's name. For unique names, this is a quick way to
    find what you're looking for. The top 12 hits for "Thomas W. Lawson" are
    images of the seven-masted schooner. One of those is a stamp from the
    Republic of Djibouti portraying the vessel. Following that link led to this
    caption: "The turn of the century saw many sailing vessels employed in the
    oil trade. The world's only seven-masted schooner 'Thomas W. Lawson', built
    1902, was reconstructed for the carriage of oil in bulk during 1905. (Stamp
    on right.) Following two years in the U.S. coastal trade, it embarked on its
    first and last transatlantic crossing, loaded with 58,300 barrels of lube
    oil. The stormy voyage took six weeks and ended on Friday, the 13th of
    December 1907 on the rocks of the Scilly Isles, resulting in the first case
    of oil pollution in the Channel, exactly 60 years prior to the 'Torrey
    Canyon'. " ...that's another way this story is often told; as the first
    modern story of oil pollution. And there is indeed a certain irony that it
    was a super-schooner that began it all. Also, there's a reminder here that
    improbable stories are sometimes true: 'lucky seven' sank on Friday the 13th
    (the US date at the time of the sinking).
    If you search Google Images for Cleopatra's Barge, it's a little less
    successful since, well, first of all, there was the original --the vessel
    supposedly owned by the Queen of Egypt, and second, there's a club in Las
    Vegas at Caesar's Palace (complete with floating dance floor) that has the
    same name. Nonetheless, if you scroll down in the first page of the search
    results, you will soon enough see something that looks like a 19th century
    sailing vessel. And that's it: Crowninshield's yacht de luxe. That image is
    located on the web site of a navigation list member. Small world.
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