Category Archives: Boating, boats, ships and the sea

A 400-year-old shallop built and sailed again

John Smith 400

John Smith 400 John Smith 400 John Smith 400

Photos by Michael Wootton

This curious and rather Dutch-looking spritsail-rigged craft is a recreation of the shallop, a boat from four centuries ago.

‘On June 2, 1608, Captain John Smith and fourteen English colonists set out from Jamestown in a 30-foot open boat or shallop to explore and map the Chesapeake Bay. Travelling over 1,700 miles in just over three months, Smith and his men witnessed the Chesapeake at its productive peak, with its incredible ecosystem intact and a multitude of American Indian cultures thriving along its shores. The observations and sketches made by Smith during his travels would form the basis for his remarkable 1612 map of the Bay, which served as the definitive rendering of the region for nearly a century.’

Smith’s voyage is being recreated as I write – read all about it here:

Thanks to Ed Bachmann for pointing this one out!

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A shed to swoon over


Boathouse Boathouse

Regular visitors will know that likes to celebrate sheds and the quality of shedness from time to time.

So here are some photos of a shed to swoon over – a boathouse belonging to friends of ours, guarded over by a group of goats.

Julie and I think it’s probably Edwardian, but whatever it is, it’s really rather special – as is the goat that guards it as his own.


More shed-related posts at

●On Hickling Broad

●Our first boatshed is a prince among sheds

●The Beale Park Thames Boat Show – and another shed

The boats of Swallows and Amazons explained

Swallow II

I gather from Never Sea Land that Stuart Weir’s article about the boats of Swallows and Amazons has a new home here:

I’ve been searching high and low for some photos I took of one of Arthur Ransome’s dinghies in the Windermere Museum, but I can’t find the folder for the life of me. It’s a shame – it’s a nice old fashioned little Continue reading The boats of Swallows and Amazons explained