12 Nov 16:
Barbashela will return to her Beauvoir home after being gone for the first time since she was brought here in the early 1880's from the deck of steamboat Natchez. She will initially be housed in the Jefferson Davis Presidential Library atrium and may make a side visit to the Biloxi Maritime Museum after getting reacquainted with her caretakers. She will return:
November 18, 2016
Beauvoir, The Last Home of President Jefferson Davis
2244 Beach Blvd, Biloxi, Mississippi 39531
Barbashela has spent time in the Mississippi Sound, Oyster Bayou and rested on the beach, below the main house, in the library and out back in a storage barn. Many people over 130 years have worked hard to repair her and ensure that she is preserved for the ages. We would like to thank the many staff and volunteers at Beauvoir who have kept an eye on her and saved her so that she could be restored and once again glide across the waters of the Gulf. We are deeply honored to have been entrusted with her care.
Loading Barbashela Jan 2016
Mr. Russell Barnes of Biloxi deserves a round of applause for the excellent survey report that he prepared in 2000, that gave us a great deal of useful information for the restoration. Paul Jermyn also worked diligently to provide digital copies of important detail photos of the boat.
Mrs. Wilbur Moore Jones, United Daughters of The Confederacy, also played an important role in this preservation, as she published the 1921 booklet Historic Beauvoir, which contains the only known complete photo of Barbashela.
It was from this photo that we were able to take many important measurements of the boat and scale them for building new parts. Thank you to those who record and share our history, you never know where your records will turn up and be found as extremely useful!
Barbashela circa 1921:
There are many others who helped along the way: Adrienne and Jack Heuer who gently cleaned years of dirt and old paint from her bits at the very beginning and supervised our efforts at crucial junctures, Pat Lown at WoodenBoat who linked us to experienced shipwrights, Keith Swank for developing the restoration plan and wood specification, UWF for preservation tips, Nat and Ross at Gannon and Benjamin who tutored us on rot removal and material selection, Alan Glos for his small wooden boat expertise, Fred Fisher who gave us tips for working with cypress and made a beautiful set of lodgegpole pine oars, Jamestown Distributors for materials and technical advice, Fisherman John for his pirogue expertise, Maynard Bray who drew the stem for us, Graham McKay at Lowells Boat Shop for caulking advice (pizza cutter!), Murray White who inspected and approved our caulking, and the crew at Wilson Lumber for hand picking every piece of cypress that went into her reconstruction.
We's also like to thank our boys Ben and John, who were essential in keeping her stabilized during her early days and made sure we stayed on track with our efforts. They also were there to glue bits back together, drive key screws, history lessons, kept her safe on her turnover days and assisted with sea trials.
I'd like to thank Audrey, she kept a close eye on me and it was a treat to watch her scrape, brush, paste, drill, screw, caulk and paint Barbashela. She also provided an ethereal link into Barbashela's world and to those who have loved her through the years.
Thank you Winnie and Push for your excitement and for enjoying the journey with us.
Boat Carpenter Boat Whisperer
Click here for Barbashela's full story.