Recently we were watching our local news station and they did a story on a boat cruise being offered out of Greenport, Long Island in a small boat named “The Glory.” Of course, living on an island there are boat cruises every two feet along the coasts. However, what caught my attention were the words “replica of a boat from the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago.”
You can guess what came next. This past weekend the weather was perfect for being out on the water, so we drove out to Greenport and took the cruise.
A bit of history for my friends from the World’s Fair historical groups (taken from The Glory’s website): “Glory is a 1990 reproduction of a 30 foot Fantail launch originally built by the ELCO Company (Electric Launch Company) for the Chicago Exposition of 1893. ELCO built electric-powered vessels for customers as diverse as J.P. Morgan and the Tsar of Russia until the early 1920s when the inexpensive cost of fossil fuels made electric power uneconomical.”
The architect Olmstead was the one who pushed for these electric boats to be used at the 1893 Fair because the alternative at the time was steamboats, a noisy and smoky form of transport.
The boat’s owner and captain David gave us a thoroughly entertaining cruise, mingling information about the boat’s history with stories of the history of the Greenport area we were cruising around. I knew I was going to enjoy this trip from the minute I saw his “monkey pirate” co-pilot.
Before Stretch’s adoring fans start sending me messages, rest assured that we obtained a life vest in his size and he wore it throughout the cruise.
And he worked up quite an appetite from all the fresh sea air, so he suggested a Sunday dinner at one of the famous Claudio’s restaurants which he thought would be fitting for someone of his celebrity.
After dinner, he left us his check to pay and said he was going to do some water cruising of his own and we could pick him up at the harbor in Oyster Bay when we got home.