Texas Seaport Museum Director Jamie White has reported to supporters of the 1877 Tall Ship ELISSA, that long awaited federal funding is now in place for renovations necessitated by damages incurred to the historic ship and it's Galveston berth as a result of Hurricane Ike.
“It is official,” White announced to ELISSA volunteers recently. “FEMA has obligated almost $1.6 million to repair the hull of ELISSA. This is fantastic news!”
White said that the announcement is a tremendous achievement for TSM and Galveston Historical Foundation.
“I am so proud to have played a role in presenting our case to FEMA,” he said. “The next year will be a very exciting time with a restored hull and new decks.”
ELISSA, the Official Tall Ship of Texas, is known world-wide for its historic significance as one of only three 19th Century iron hull barques still sailing today. The rare ship's beauty and majesty reflect the romance of by-gone seafaring days.
White reported that he met with representatives of Bollinger Shipyard in Texas City and has scheduled the dry docking of ELISSA in September.
“I expect ELISSA to be in the shipyard for about two months,” he reported.
The ship, which had been put in dry dock for routine maintenance in January of 2011, was discovered to have suffered severe damage from electrolytic corrosion on its hull, which required a great deal more work than was anticipated.
It was returned to Pier 21 while funds were solicited for the additional repairs.
Since March of this year, the ship has been at a temporary location at the pier to allow repairs to be made to its berth at the Texas Seaport Museum.
In an interview with Guidry News Service, White reported that the contractor is making progress and the restored berth will be ready for the tall ship when it returns from dry dock. Listen
For a PDF presentation by Galveston Historical Foundation recounting ELISSA's history Click Here.
"Guidry News Service is proud to be the lead media sponsor for the Galveston Historical Foundation's on-going efforts to ensure that ELISSA will be a living example of beauty and history for years to come," said Lynda Guidry.
To learn more about how to become an ELISSA volunteer and to contribute to her future, visit www.GalvestonHistory.org/1877_Tall_Ship_Elissa.asp.
Photos courtesy of Galveston Historical Foundation