I recently was invited to view the Mayflower II, currently under renovation at the Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard, at Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic Seaport, Connecticut.
I’m grateful for the invitation from fellow Geneablogger, Heather Wilkinson Rojo, of Nutfield Genealogy Blog. She and her husband Vincent, kindly became my guide and chauffeur for the day. I had not seen either the Mayflower or Mystic in decades. The day turn out beautiful in weather [a few showers,] learning opportunities and overall enjoyment of each others company.
Heather has written a wonderful overview of the Mayflower preservation efforts on her blog site, Nutfield Genealogy. I will not duplicate her efforts.
Vincent and Heather Wilkinson Rojo
After a warm welcome in the Vistor’s Center we met up with the Plimoth Plantation staff, our host for the day, we proceeded to the Shipyard. While listening to the presentation about their preservation work, I turned around and saw the Mayflower II. Feelings of longing came over me. I still need to find the reported direct line ancestor to the Mayflower. I have found many cousin lines, but sadly, not my direct line.
Mayflower II: My first look
Mayflower II: another look
The Mayflower II welcomed us like old friends.
Heather and Vincent boarding the Mayflower
There is a beautiful view from the Mayflower II of Mystic
View from the Mayflower II
The preservation crew use old and new style tools in the renovations.
“Tween” Deck 1
“Tween” Deck 2
The “tween” deck, also known as the gun deck, offers a view of how the Pilgrims lived. Imagine 102 cooking, all the passengers and crew quarters, their belongings, and animals living and the gun in one small space. [They had more room than those aboard the “Arbella” with 125 passengers, and a smaller vessel. This was one of the ships my ancestors came over on ten years later.]
Cooking aboard ship
The Cooking area is being used for storage during renovations.
The gun ports were numbered.
The gun room is located where you saw the Emblem in the photograph above [Mayflower II another look.]
Whit Perry gave a very informative overview of the Mayflower and the Mayflower II.
Whit Perry is the director of maritime preservation and operations. He is giving an overview of his crew on the days restoration and work projects.
The Capstan [circular log sharped column in the center of the ship. You can see some of the new live oak boards for needed repairs to the Mayflower II. The haven’t seasoned, yet, to the dark shade you see on the older boards around the ship.
The cargo hold was below the “Tween” Deck via a cargo hold hatch.
To see more views and cut a way views of the Mayflower visit this page “The Mayflower Voyage.” It describes what the ship better than I can is words.
Live Oak from South Carolina 600 years old
Live oak history
What is ‘live oak”? Why is it so important in the preservation of the Mayflower II [and even in restoring “Old Ironside.”]?
Richard Pickering, Deputy Executive Director of Plimoth Plantation, tells us that live oak is one of the reasons the restorations take so long to complete. They need to find the Live Oak trees in a size that can accommodate the making of new boards for the Mayflower. This keeps the authenticity of the ship by doing so. It is an ongoing global search to fine them.
Richard Pickering Heather Wilkson Rojo and Vincent Rojo
If truly curious:
Heather Wilkson Rojo’s Blog posts about the Mayflower II in dry dock, and her most recent post “The Mayflower II under renovation at the Mystic Seaport shipyard,”
Plimoth Plantation’s website about the Mayflower II,
Watch the Mystic Seaport video of the Mayflower II restoration,
To donate to the Mayflower restoration project go the “The Mayflower II Restoration” web page,
Click on the links embedded in my blog post such as; live oak, the Mayflower cross view and a few others.
I hope the pictorial narrative helps you in better understanding the efforts put into preserving a national monument, The Mayflower II.” It is important that we save our heritage. many building, covered bridges and building have been lost more to decay and neglect, than to any other cause.
Thank you Heather Wilkinson Rojo and Vincent Rojo for you photography, invitation and pleasant company for our day at Mystic Seaport Museum/Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard.
Published under creative common license
June Stearns Butka, “Mayflower II at Mystic Seaport Museum,” Damegussie Genealogy Rants, posted 12 May 2016, https://damegussie.wordpress.com/?p=2220&preview=true: (accessed 12 May 2016.)