A collection of blogs and musings from the people that work at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum - Florida's Finest Lightstation.

November 2008 Archives

« October 2008 | Main | December 2008 »

November 19, 2008

Back to 1888

Posted by: Beau Phillips in Barely Legible, LAMP Boatworks, LAMPosts

It’s Pocahontas Number Three coal, from the famous seam in Tazewell County, Virginia, and according to Brendan Burke it is great for blacksmithing.

After Burke moved the coal from the edges of the forge into the firepot, he labored at the blower churning air through the tuyere and into the fire. Green smoke rose from the coals as Burke fed the flames. “The smoke is just weakness leaving the fire,” said Burke. More precisely, impurities, like sulfur, burning off of the coal as it smolders create the green smoke and turn it into coke that is very different from the kind you would drink with your value meal. To a blacksmith, coke is the very high quality source of heat left once the “weakness,” or impurities, burn away.

Burke turns the blower with one hand to heat the steel
Burke turns the blower to heat the steel

Continue reading "Back to 1888" »

November 14, 2008

11/13-14/2008 Blacksmithing Demonstration at the Lighthouse


What: Blacksmithing demonstration with a traditional forge. Items to be made include boat fasteners (spikes, nails, etc.), chain, oyster knives, etc.
Where: St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum, by the LAMP Boatworks boatbuilding station
When: Thursday and Friday, November 13-14, 2008, 10 am - 4 pm
Who: Sam Turner, LAMP Director of Archaeology, and Brendan Burke, LAMP Archaeologist & Logistical Coordinator
For more information click here

Continue reading "11/13-14/2008 Blacksmithing Demonstration at the Lighthouse" »

November 11, 2008

Honoring Those Who Served

Posted by: Chuck Meide in Events, LAMPosts

An honor guard of four French jets fly overhead during the dedication of the only monument to the U.S. Navy servicemen participating in the D-Day invasion. LAMP and St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum Board member Captain Greg Streeter spearheaded the effort to establish this memorial at Utah Beach, Normandy, some 64 years after the heroic assault.

Every Veteran's Day, we at the Lighthouse are committed to fulfilling one of the most important aspects of our mission, to honor those who have served our country. As an aid to navigation and a sentinel facing the Atlantic, the Lighthouse has always had a military function, especially during times of war. During World War II, the Lighthouse served as a center of U.S. Coast Guard activity, and was manned by lookouts on guard for enemy U-boats. In recent months, another link between the Lighthouse and our WWII maritime heritage has been established, through the efforts of our Board member, retired U.S. Navy Captain Greg Streeter.

Continue reading "Honoring Those Who Served" »

November 8, 2008

Un-breaking the Mold

Posted by: Brendan Burke in LAMP Boatworks, LAMPosts

The Xynides Boat House. (Photo courtesy of Lowell Beyer)

Standing on top of a pile of broken timbers, exposed nails, torn electrical wiring, and a healthy dose of tetanus-in-the-wings can be a normal day for a maritime archaeologist. We recently had some of those days and I report on them here.

Continue reading "Un-breaking the Mold" »

11/08/08 Lecture: Maritime History of St. Augustine


Lecture Title: Maritime History of St. Augustine
Presented by: Brendan Burke, LAMP Archaeologist and Logistical Coordinator
When: Saturday, November 8th, 2008, at 2:00 pm
Where: Anastasia Island Branch Library, in the Large Meeting Room (click here for map)
For further information call: 904-209-3730
Click here to download a flier promoting this event.

November 3, 2008

Milling Begins for the Galveztown Yawls


October 29th dawned bright and chilly. The day marked the beginning of the Galveztown Yawl Project at LAMP Boatworks. The Galveztown is a replica brig under construction in Malaga, Spain. LAMP Boatworks is a principal project partner supplying the Spanish shipyard, Astilleros Nereo, with Live Oak timber for the construction of the ship’s hull. LAMP is also assisting the project by building two yawls. These small ship’s boats will be 14 and 16 feet long and will travel nested on the deck of the Galveztown after the tall ship calls in St. Augustine in 2011.

All craft, be they ships or boats, require fairly special lumber. The process begins with the collecting of tree trunks of suitable timber and then milling them into the required dimensions and shapes.

Continue reading "Milling Begins for the Galveztown Yawls" »

A Fish of a Different Kind

Posted by: Brendan Burke in LAMPosts


In the story of the founding of Rome we hear much about Romulus, the progenitor of the ancient city, and little about his brother Remus. Last heard from when passed by a flock of birds doing the god's bidding in chosing the nascent city state's king, Remus went underground and was never heard from again. On October 22nd, I met Remus.

Continue reading "A Fish of a Different Kind" »