Winter 2002/2003February 1st.
The Kimberly's are busy working on photos, correspondence, artifacts, etc., all things related to the whole ROMANCE experience. The book is on the back burner right now but will benefit from this review of the materials collected over the years. Skipper has just finished an article on the 3-masted schooner yacht, GUINEVERE. It adds much to a newspaper account of her Naval service on submarine patrol in WWII. Capt. K later sailed to the Med in GUINEVERE where she was ultimately sold to smugglers in Tangier.
(Editor's Note: The Windship Way website is going to be redesigned to focus on the Brigantine ROMANCE and the Kimberlys. Suggestions for new areas/content are welcome. Please send your ideas to Tony.)
An internet search looking for ROMANCE related sites turned up a great website. The author had sailed with Skipper aboard the "old" Socony Vacuum tanker MOBILGAS and relates his chance visit to the ROMANCE in the late sixties. Views from the Upper Deck shares some great stories about the Kimberlys with photos like this one of the K's at the wheel of the YANKEE..........
Fall 2002October 2nd.
Skipper and Gloria have had several visitors in recent weeks. Brian Donnely and friend stopped by Detroit to visit the K's. The Kimberly's had taken care of Brian's dog while he was 1st mate on the world cruise of the PICTON CASTLE. Earlier, Peter Wolihan and the Kimberlys got together to reminisce. The K's also talked with Andrew Leyzack (1986) this summer. Editor's note: I sailed with Brian and Andrew in 1986 out of St. Vincent. The other crew member was Sutcliffe who did a number of exceptional scrimshaw carvings for us showing the ROMANCE with Halley's Comet overhead.
Several past ROMANCE guests and crew visited the website. John Miller was only three when he sailed aboard the ROMANCE in 1967; Ronn and Larraine Winkler emailed to say hello. They met and sailed the Pacific together in 1971, getting married in 1972. Their daughter, Kimberly, is now 25. Clyde Sanadi got in touch; he sailed aboard the ROMANCE in 1973.
Spring 2002February 16th from Mrs. Kimberly:
Skipper is sending off his Abraham Rydhberg story to the South African Cape Horner's "Spindrift". Arthur made a wartime voyage to Brazil and back in the Abraham Rydhberg, a 4 mast barque, when he was fresh out of High School. I've started rewriting my rough drafts again, the ROMANCE story is well on its' way.
A search of the Internet found Randy Jone's at home in Greensboro, NC. The ROMANCE website welcomes the latest ex-ROMANCER aboard, Misha Ringland who remembers cruising when Tom Shaffer was mate. Other crew members remembered were Mitsou and Philip Lloyd.
A flurry of correspondence between the Kimberlys and Barbara Seeley resulted when she found the County of Roxburgh on the Kimberly's website. In her letter to the K's she says, "I can not thank you enough for all the wonderful information yoiu sent to me regarding the the County of Roxburgh. It was everything I had been looking for and hoping for - and more. Your contribution to my research was like the exclamation point at the end of a sentence. Wow! It answered my questions, cleared up some misconceptions, and put the period at the end of the story."
November 1st from Mrs. Kimberly:
We're delighted to hear from Bob Wallace - always a fine shipmate and seaman. He has made a very good name for himself, in his continuing sea going career. Randy Jone's film, "Lady of the Sea" won an outdoor film festival award. I have only a pre-World Cruise address for Randy. He may be on the Internet, anyone have his address?
An internet search for County of Roxburgh found the Kimberly's site; it was Barbara Seeley whose Great Great Grandfather, Capt. James Charles Leslie, was Captain aboard the Roxburgh when a huge hurricane set the vessel ashore in the South Pacific. Barbara was in luck; the K's visited the ship 3 times and did extensive research on the wreck and its history. The Kimberly's dug out all of their material and have enjoyed corresponding with Barbara and going over their large collection of information.
Capt. & Mrs. K went on a great lighthouse cruise out of Mackinac City and signed up as members of the Great Lake's Lighthouse Keeper's Assoc.
Mrs. K continues with news about the Cape Horners:
Winter 2001February 12th from Mrs. Kimberly:
I'm delighted to say Skipper just received this surprise honor - membership in the South African Chapter of Cape Horners. Skipper is very pleased of course, but took it calmly. I nearly flipped! Now in the light of the International Society disbanding in 2003, the honor is especially rare and appreciated."
A letter to Captain Kimberly, dated January 15, 2001 from the South African Cape Horners, shares, "Carol Roehm tells me you wrote her saying you enjoyed Spindrift and would like to subscribe. I mentioned this to our chairman, Capt. Bill Damerell who sanctions such weighty decisions. After discussing this fully we have decided to offer you Honorary Membership in recognition of the enormous contribution you have made to 'Square Rig Seamanship' internationally.
It goes on to say, "The visits of the Brigantine ROMANCE are still fondly remembered here in Cape Town. More recently, I had the pleasure of crewing aboard PICTON CASTLE, Master Dan Moreland and one time 1st mate aboard ROMANCE. He proudly showed me the mast boots and said "Skipper made those!" The whole crew seemed in awe of you - even at that distance your benign influence was apparent." So, the honor would be ours if you would accept 'Honorary Membership'. The only other Honorary member is Tor Lindqvist in Australia, who of course spent quite some time in SA involved with LAWHILL and COMMODORE II."
Signed, With Best Wishes, JOSH SPENCER (Secretary)
Skipper and Gloria have been working on a number of projects. Some of the ex-Romancers found a number of items from the ROMANCE and got them to the Kimberlys where they will be lovingly restored. These include a life-ring, stuns'l iron, half of the billet-head scroll and best of all, the binnacle. The binnacle has been polished and turned out to be a real treasure for them.
Dan Moreland called last week before setting sail on the PICTON CASTLE's 2nd world voyage and was very pleased with his new crowd of world voyagers. The K's had a great visit aboard the CASTLE in Detroit where they gave Dan the PC in a bottle Skipper had made.
SUMMER 2000 - This summer the Kimberlys accepted Honorary Life Membership in the Cape Windjammers Association. An organization, wrote President Dennis A. Stevenson, that was established "Aboard the Barque Picton Castle while rounding the Cape of Good Hope in a gale on the 8th day of March 1999". For more on the Cape Horners Reunions, a tradition started by the Kimberlys in 1977, visit the association website at http://users.iafrica.com/o/om/omisditd/associat.ht
SPRING 2000 - Thoughts are turning to some time under sail. Skipper and Gloria are considering sailing aboard the PICTON CASTLE from Lunenburg to Bermuda and then returning with the fleet to Norfolk. At this point with house and pets to care for, they're not sure if they'll take part.Last touches are needed for the Kimberly's model of the Great Isaac Lighthouse and the "County of Roxburgh", both shown here, but they are nearly done. The station still needs a few human touches to bring it to life. The 150' tower, iron-built in 1856, on the edge of the Gulf Stream, guards the vast Bahama Banks. They reduced the bare coral islet to two feet, and the light to 14 inches and modeled her as they saw her in May of 1961, with a brilliant new coat of paint. The keeper's pink buildings are probably a mix of Imperial Lighthouse Service colors.
Mrs. Kimberly recalls Romances's only visit when they called there in 1974. The lighthouse had been reduced to a frugal all white - gone was that awesome candystripe exclamation point which stuck up alone out of the sea, visible for so many miles. The 18 mile kerosene lamp had been replaced by batteries and bulbs barely bigger than a thumb-nail, now visible for 23 miles. The magnificent 8 foot diameter, first order Fresnell lens, lay on the rocks below. They always regretted that they could not re-assemble that creation of nearly a foot thick French glass in its mighty brass frame, as a monument. Recently on TV, a lighthouse restorer valued first order Fresnell lenses at between 2 and 3 million dollars. Another project underway - Skipper is "bottling" NIAGARA for a friend. He's giving the palm-sized brig a lot more rigging than the usual ship-in-a-bottle.
SUMMER 1999 - Skipper went out to greet the Picton Castle upon her return from the extraordinary world voyage. Now home, he and Mrs. K have been staying close to home, caring for her mother who is ailing. Capt. Dan Moreland and 1st Mate Brian found a number of parts of the Romance when he visited Tortola........ There is much fine teak carving and other pieces which the Kimberlys would love to have but are not available. Last owner of the vessel, Morgan Sanger salvaged many parts before the Romance was scuttled and those pieces are not available. Mrs. K is thinking about carving new scroll work, a large job and surely a labor of love. SPRING 1999 - The Kimberlys have been following the voyage of the Picton Castle, which just arrived on March 9th in Cape Town, South Africa. There the crew and Capt. Moreland will celebrate with a reunion of Cape Horners. The reunion was started by the Kimberlys on an early visit to the area. Capt. & Mrs. Kimberly just finished a banner for the reunion which was promptly mailed and will be used at the reunion. Around the edges were the names of all of the ships. They also put together details on the ships that were represented at the 1st reunion. The collection of information, entitled, "Cape Horners at the Cape, The Banner Ships" was sent along with the banner to Cape Town for the reunion. Here is a portion of a recent News Release from the Picton Castle about the event: Carol Roehm, who went to sea for some 15 years in sailing ships and who served aboard the Romance as navigator in 1971 and 1972, is organizing a Cape Horner Reunion Party that is to be held aboard the Picton Castle. The ship is expected to tie up at #2 Jetty, Victoria and Alfred Waterfront (adjacent to the Pub, Bertie's Landing). "We are inviting all those sailors who went to sea on ships such as the Lawhill in the last days of commercial sail," offers Ms. Roehm. "The Cape Horner Reunion Parties were started aboard the Romance by Captain and Mrs. Arthur Kimberly as a way of bringing old comrades together. The first reunion came in 1977 and the second in 1981. Captain Moreland, who served under Captain Kimberly, is continuing the tradition. Thus far, I've contacted 15 of these ladies and gentlemen and hope that others will see our notice in the press." For further details of the party, as they become available, visit the Picton Castle website.
FALL 1998 - Captain Kimberly returned last week from an enjoyable summer aboard the NIAGARA. He said it was a great summer on the lake aboard a well run vessel, working with good people. After a week up at the cabin for a well deserved rest, they are catching up on letter writing and other busywork. Skipper has been with the U.S. Brig NIAGARA since '92, working every year as a valued crew member. He missed the 1997 season, spending time assisting Dan Moreland with his preparation for the world cruise of the PICTON CASTLE.
Mrs. Kimberly has been busy at home, caring for her mother and working on a variety of projects including pulling together her extensive collection of 16mm film, taken through the years. Now with some time, she and Skipper will continue their model work of the Great Isaac light on the Bahama Banks. It was a very tall light, with red and white stripe, lighted when they sailed there, by kerosene through a huge fresnel lens. The model stands 12.75 inches tall. Their latest project plans include building a replica of the Brig Niagara in a bottle.
Her work continues also on her book, half of which is written. Much of the material was written during long passages when time allowed. It was easier to write then with no interruptions and memories fresh in mind. Now, with Romance gone, it is not as easy. This labor of love will be a testament to the great adventure they lived and should contain many interesting details about the people and places they knew.
If you would like to sample her writing, be sure to check out the current installment of the "Log of the Romance" on this site. It covers an early portion of their second world cruise and brings alive the adventure of those early voyages.
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