The Winnie Estelle

The Winnie Estelle

A very beautiful boat and interesting part of American history see link below! I believe she left our harbor for her journey back home to the Chesapeake Bay area.

The wooden buyboat (also known as a Bay boat or run boat) was one of three large boats Nick's grandfather, Noah T. Evans, built in Ewell 90 years ago. The first was the Island Belle, a mail boat used to shuttle passengers, packages and groceries to Smith Island from the mainland. Next, he built the 66-foot Winnie Estelle which he named for his two daughters...

A little more research turned up a sketchy history of the Winnie's travels. Bradshaw and Evans learned the family boat had left the mid-Atlantic region in the 1960s, bound for Florida and the Caribbean. Some time later, a Bermuda man bought the Winnie and used her to haul lumber from Honduras to Belize.

"Captain Dave," as he was known, was also a pilot and died in a plane crash in the 1970s. Following his death, the Winnie changed hands often but was finally left to rot on a shoal in Belize. She sat for years until a boat captain named Roberto Smith decided to restore the Winnie in honor of Captain Dave. "I guess he thought he could get it cheap," says Evans. According to 1980s newspaper reports from Belize, the Winnie was jarred from her grave on the beach and towed to a boat yard for evaluation. The estimate was six months and plenty of sweat, not to mention a king's ransom in lumber.

"They were going to rebuild it in six months but it took five years," says Evans, "and it cost them a fortune." Captain Roberto pressed on, meticulously reconstructing the boat using the very same pine the Winnie hauled across the Caribbean years earlier. The boat was recommissioned in 1990. "Captain Roberto had a way of doing things perfectly," noted one article. "He is an ultimate Virgo."

You may purchase a print of this image here! 

Stern of the Winnie Estelle