Designed for dredging oysters from the bountiful Chesapeake Bay, the twin-masted sailing bugeye Edna E. Lockwood is one of the last of her kind. There once was a great fleet of these vessels, but a decline in oyster populations and the introduction of an easier-to-run single-masted dredger called a skipjack spelled the end for bugeyes.
Built in 1889, Edna E. Lockwood underwent a waterline-up restoration in 1975 at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Maryland. But by 2010, her all-log bottom was on its last leg. It took years to find the right trees to restore Edna’s bottom, but in March 2016 the perfect grove of loblolly pines with just the right dimensions was found. Work on the new bottom began in fall 2016.
Museum shipwrights in September 2017 finished crafting the new log bottom, and then freed Edna from her old bottom using chainsaws and a crane. Her topsides and deck were then flown about 20 feet across the boatyard before being propped up just a few feet above the new bottom. This video has more on the bugeye design and Edna’s progress.
You can read about Edna’s full history and the quest to find the perfect logs for her new bottom in the November 2016 issue of Soundings. An update on the project appears in the February 2018 issue of Soundings.