Longboats and life on Tristan da Cunha

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Boatbuilding on Tristan da Cunha

My researches have led me to this wonderful collection of photos of Tristan da Cunha from the 60s, 70s and 80s taken by Swedish explorer and painter Roland Svensson – I’ve been thinking about remote islands quite a bit this week following my post about South Georgia a few days ago.

Do please take a look at this collection – many show the local canvas-covered longboats being built, rowed and sailed, and, in one case, used as a home.

If you look carefully, you’ll also spot one of Sven Yrvind’s Bris boats. For more intheboatshed.net posts on Yrvind, click here.

For much more on Tristan da Cunha longboats, click here.

For more on Tristan da Cunha at the Wikipedia, click here.

2 thoughts on “Longboats and life on Tristan da Cunha”

  1. Serendipity's a wonderful thing.

    I haven't thought about Tristan da Cunha for years before I wrote this post. But today, only a couple of days after I wrote this post, I've just watched a BBC programme about asthma in the island's population. It was transmitted just tonight, and included several great clips of the longboats being used. I don't mention it often, but I'm also interested in asthma, as I've been a life-long sufferer…

    As I sit here typing this evening, the coincidence seems extraordinary!

    Read the BBC's story on the subject here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7766656.stm


  2. Gav

    Had a prolonged look at the Tristan dC pictures you linked to. Fascinating stuff. Making harbour over that kind of swell – not for the faint hearted, so not for me! The longboats are magnificent, they appear to be cobbled together from any old driftwood yet clearly are well up to the job. With the skin on frame construction they must be very light on the water, probably just bob around like corks. The long straight keel was of particular interest – last time I saw anything like that was at Portsoy – a Dysart Yawl, it puts a good chunk of the hull weight just where it's needed as well.

    Great stuff – keep it up.


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