Lumber Schooner Wawona

Once Numerous, West Coast Lumber Schooners Rare

Documentation of Now Disassembled Schooner Wawona

May be Last Documentary Photographs Available of Historic Ship

wawona_port_profile
Port profile of historic lumber schooner Wawona

 

lumber schooner wawona main deck bow
Bow main deck of lumber schooner Wawona.

From the scores of wooden three-masted schooners built in the 19th and early 20th centuries for service in the West Coast lumber trade, the schooner Wawona was one of only two known to be preserved when she was surveyed by the Historic American Engineering Record in 1986. She was dismantled in 2009. She and the one surviving lumber schooner, C.A. Thayer (National Maritime Museum, San Francisco), were built by Hans D. Bendixsen, who was well known in his time for the superior construction of his vessels.

Wawona was designed for the Dolbeer & Carson Lumber Company of Eureka, California to transport more than 500,000 board feet of lumber per voyage from from the Pacific Northwest to ports further south on the coast. Like most ships in her day, Wawona’s hull was lofted from a carved wooden half model rather than a detailed set of engineering drawings. She cost $29,075 to build, and was launched September 27, 1897.

Her official dimensions at launch were:
Length: 156.0 feet
Beam: 36.0 feet
Depth: 12.3 feet
Gross Tonnage: 468.42
Net Tonnage: 413.94

Wawona was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970.

To see her plans check out our Historic Lumber Schooner Wawona plans page.

Note that the awning constructed over the deck is not part of the original vessel.

historic lumber schooner wawona main deck photo
View from bow facing aft main deck of lumber schooner Wawona.
photograph deckhouse lumber schooner Wawona
Forward deckhouse main deck lumber schooner Wawona
photograph galley deckhouse lumber schooner Wawona
Galley inside forward deckhouse lumber schooner Wawona
photograph main deck of lumber schooner wawona
Main deck, view forward from main mast lumber schooner Wawona.
photograph main deck lumber schooner wawona
Main deck view aft from mainmast lumber schooner Wawona
photograph main deck mizzen mast lumber schooner Wawona
Main deck, view forward from mizzen mast lumber schooner Wawona
photograph main cabin lumber schooner Wawona
Forward side of main cabin lumber schooner Wawona.
photograph main deck wheelhouse lumber schooner wawona
Main deck view forward from wheel house lumber schooner Wawona
photograph port bow lumber schooner Wawona
Port bow lumber schooner Wawona
photograph port main mast chainplates lumber schooner Wawona
Port side showing main mast chainplates lumber schooner Wawona
photograph bow drydock lumber schooner Wawona
Bow view in drydock lumber schooner Wawona
photograph stern drydock lumber schooner wawona
Stern view in drydock lumber schooner Wawona
photograph rudder pintle gudgeon lumber schooner Wawona
Rudder detail showing pintles and gudgeons lumber schooner Wawona

These photographs were created in 1986 by the Historical American Engineering Record, a project of the National Park Service. The photographer was Jet Lowe.

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