The MHN Blog is a companion to the Maritime Heritage Network, a not-for-profit, comprehensive website of maritime heritage organizations, attractions, and activities in the Pacific Northwest. The blog highlights news, activities, and resources useful to the entire maritime heritage community. All views expressed are the author's own. Opposing views are welcome.

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Thursday, January 12, 2006

Lost Captain's Grave Found; Editorial on Maritime Heritage

MHN received a thrilling email from a Marshall Wade, a US Bureau of Land Management employee, who has discovered the lost grave of a Seattle sea captain in the Aleutian Islands. Captain Charles Foss died of a heart attack on August 13, 1935, while he was at the helm of Wawona [link], one of the last three-masted sailing schooners working on the west coast. He died at Unimak Pass in the Aleutian Islands, and his crew buried him at Lost Harbor, on Akutan Island. The following spring, the Wawona, with Foss' former first mate as captain, visited Lost Harbor and placed the headstone at his grave, which hasn't been seen since at least 1947. Wade discovered the grave during a land survey in 2004 and sent me a photo yesterday, showing the gravestone in great condition. This was a thrill to me, because I have just published a comprehensive article in the summer 2005 edition of Pacific Northwest Quarterly titled "The Death, Burial and Remembrance of Charles Foss, Master of the Schooner Wawona."

Dick Wagner, founder of the Center for Wooden Boats, has published an editorial in the Seattle Times in support of a maritime heritage museum at South Lake Union Park in Seattle. [link] The city has promised some sort of maritime heritage presence at the new park, but its form is murky at this point in time.

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