Monday, June 15, 2009

Kalmar Nyckel Was In Yorktown Over The Past Weekend, June 13th & 14th, 2009

The Kalmar Nyckel was at the Yorktown waterside this past weekend. An incredible reproduction Swedish 1625 2oo tonne Pinnace ship. This ship has over 8 miles of rope on her. We had the privilege to meet the Captain and the crew who gave us a tour of the ship and some of it's history. The ship was hand crafted and made by Allen C Rawl. The concept for this ship happened back in 1934 when the King of Sweden visited the United States. In 1994 the project was undertaken 50 years after it's concept. The sail area is 7,600 square feet. This ship took about 3 years to complete and it's first voyage was in 1997. The Kalmar Nyckel was commissioned in May of 1998.

Some background history. The original Kalmar Nyckel was one of America's pioneering colonial ships. Her historical significance rivals that of the Mayflower, yet her remarkable story has seldom been told. This ship first came to America leaving behind 24 passengers of Finnish, German, Swedish and and Dutch decent to colonize the new world. The Kalmar Nyckel made a total of 4 voyages between Sweden and the colonies, more than any other ship of the era.

The Kalmar Nyckel is owned by the Kalmar Nyckel foundation in Wilmington, Delaware, which is where her base is. The maintenance and upkeep are all funded by ship cruises. CLICK HERE to learn more about the Kalmar Nyckel and the foundation.

She is often mistaken for a pirate ship, but that is okay, the foundation is aware of this and takes full advantage of such. She was at the Blackbeard Festival in Hampton the week before and she will be at the Norfolk Harbor Festival July 3rd, 4th and 5th. We highly recommend the trip to go see her and take one of the daily cruises. At Yorktown there were two types of cruises available on her. The day cruise was a pirate cruise while the night one was a more reserved sunset cruise.

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