Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Galveston, Oh Galveston

Location: Bolivar Peninsula RV Park (el 30 ft); Crystal Beach, Texas

all pictures taken with Nokia Lumia Icon 929 Cell Phone

Well, first off, I'm not in Galveston although I passed through it on my way here. I also passed through the middle of Houston at noontime on a Saturday and with the exception of a construction zone, I zipped through at 60 mph. Galveston is only about 15 miles from the campground and the short trip includes a very nice free ferry ride. I usually stay at this park when I'm in this area. It is a nice park with full hook-ups and a very fast wi-fi. It is also a Passport America campground which cuts the rate in half on Mondays thru Thursdays. 
It's a nice, well maintained park

Staying on the peninsula is a slower pace than Galveston, especially during the off season, which is just beginning. The ferry is one of the attractions for me. I'll be here for 6 days and will use the ferry at least 4 of those days to go into Galveston.
I saw a few of these while driving around the peninsula. An elevated deck with a place to park a couple RV's beneath. If a storm comes, you tow your RV away. I may be a nice way to have a base camp here without the expense of building a beachhouse. The beach is about 200 yards away from this one. 

The ferry ride is always nice.

Mostly, I'll just be relaxing while here. I did take a boat tour around Galveston Bay and toured the tall sailing ship "Elissa". Both of these tours are part of the Texas Seaport Museum and are reasonably priced. This is the second tall sailing ship I've toured with the first being in Erie, Pennsylvania back in 2014. I saw something on that ship back then but didn't get a picture of it and I hoped to find it again on the Elissa. I found something similar, but not exact. The thing I was looking for was "deck prisms". Each sailing ship, prior to electricity, had them installed in the deck of the ship. It provided light below decks by refracting the sunlight through the prism and broadcasting it below decks. The ones on the Elissa appear to be more modern. I guess I'll just have to go back to Erie to get a picture of the ones there. :)
The Elissa

Here are 3 deck prisms, although they seem much more modern than the other's I've seen.

The other ship I wanted to get a closer look at was the sunken ship, S.S. Selma. It is a concrete ship from the early 1900's. Nope, that doesn't mean it transported concrete, it means is was built out of reinforced concrete. Yes, concrete. Steel was hard to come by during World War I, so some people came up with an idea to make ships using concrete instead of steel. It may sound silly, but making concrete float isn't a problem. It doesn't matter what material you use to make a boat; it will float as long as it displaces an equal weight of water. It's all in the shape of the material, not the weight. The Selma was launched in 1919 as a tanker. In 1920, she struck a jetty in Mexico and was towed to Galveston for repairs. No one in Galveston knew how to repair a concrete ship so a decision was made to scuttle her in Galveston Harbor which was done in 1922. She has been there now for almost 100 years. You can see her from a distance while riding the ferry, but I wanted a closer look so I took the harbor tour. She has survived the salt water much better than a steel ship would have done under the same circumstances.

One of many dolphins that came by to say "howdy" on the harbor tour.

The S.S. Selma. Reinforced concrete tanker ship.

Port bow view of the S.S. Selma. Pretty good for being in salt water for nearly 100 years.

I will be here until Friday when I'll be moving on to Sulphur, Louisiana to visit family. 

Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road. 


1 comment:

  1. I have fished around the Selma many times. Some folks will get on the Selma but I was never brave enough to do that. At times you could wade fish to within about ten feet of the bow. At other times you could not get within a hundred feet. The bottom shifts daily around that ship.