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Archive for October, 2012

US Coast Guard Cutters Doing Good Work in the Pacific

October 29th, 2012

As guardians of the free world, how the United States Armed Forces are perceived by the citizens of other countries is of paramount importance. Consequently, they undertake a number of goodwill missions. Pursuant to this goal, the United States Coast Guard will occasionally dispatch one of its cutters to humanitarian missions in the Pacific region.

The USCG Cutter and Buoy Tender Sequoia recently had the honor of carrying out this duty, and this beautiful 225’ buoy tender did so admirably. Not only did the Sequoia aid law enforcement in performing search and rescue missions, it also collected scientific data, assisted a village’s rebuilding era, taught boat safety, and delivered humanitarian aid and supplies to the South Pacific. Wow. That’s a lot.

Picture of a model of a USCG Buoy Tender

While based in Guam, the USCG Sequoia traveled all about the Pacific, stopping by Pohnpei, a small island approximately 1,900 miles northeast of Australia, where it gave a tour to local school children. It then distributed humanitarian aid to typhoon ravaged atolls, and, a month later, collected various floating objects which contained tracking devices that allowed scientists to track the drift of unattended objects. After this, the Sequoia continued to perform search and rescue missions and provide aid to the island nation of Poluwat, becoming the first US military vessel to visit it in the last 30 years.

The visit of a United States Coast Guard Cutter, such as the Sequoia, is a significant event to the peoples of many of these small island nations. In addition to their humanitarian efforts, such as distributing food and medicine, the US Coast Guard also teaches boat safety and, in the case of the Sequoia visit, even repaired such vital community resources as the island’s only UHF transmitter.  These efforts not only promote goodwill by being a good citizen of the world, they also help to increase the efficacy of future search and rescue efforts by teaching locals to paint their boats bright colors or carry mirrors with them when they go out to sea.

The Sequoia is but one of the 225’ Coast Guard Cutters (or Juniper Class) operating in the Pacific. Currently, the list of Juniper class cutters operating in the Pacific are: USCGC Juniper, USCGC Willow, USCGC Kukui, USCGC Elm, USCGC Walnut, USCGC Spar, USCGC Maple, USCGC Aspen, USCGC Sycamore, USCGC Cypress, USCGC Oak, USCGC Hickory, USCGC Fir, USCGC Hollyhock, USCGC Sequoia, USCGC Alder.

Picture of a model of a USCG High Endurance Cutter

Handcrafted Model Ships is proud to offer an exact model of the Juniper class, which comes complete with a nameplate that can, by customer order, by changed to any of these beautiful ships. Simply specify what you want the plaque to read at the time of your order. These model boats are ideal gifts for anyone whose family proudly includes present of past sailors in the US Coast Guard.

The handsome model and base add a touch of class to any home or office decor, so order yours today!

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Blackbeard’s Ghost Haunts Queen Anne’s Revenge

October 11th, 2012

Halloween is a magical time. Unlike other holidays, it’s less about family and more about exploring personal fantasy – and satisfying your sweet tooth. On this one day, society gives you permission to be whomever you want to be; no other day has that much possibility, which is why Halloween is fun for all ages.
Picture of a model of the Queen Anne's Revenge
Of course, we at Handcrafted Model Ships have a vested interest in one very special Halloween fantasy: the pirate. And what a great fantasy it is: being a scofflaw bandit on the high seas … raiding Spanish galleons of the riches they themselves plundered from the New World – fighting boarding actions with a pistol in hand and a dagger in your teeth. Great fun!

These compelling fantasies are based upon fascinating realities. Let’s face it, in comparison to our modern day office-dwelling existence, pirates led far more interesting lives. One of the most famous, and fascinating, of the real world pirates was Blackbeard; much of the pirate fiction that we consume centers around many of his real world exploits.

You may find the “Pirates of the Caribbean” portrayal of pirates as belonging to their own self-governing society as preposterous. Blackbeard, however, did exist in a world where pirates plotted amongst themselves for their own betterment. For instance, under Blackbeard’s command, a fleet of pirates blockaded the then English port of Charleston, South Carolina. This pirate alliance then engaged in traditional extortion by demanding that Charleston pay a ransom in order to lift the blockade, which they did. Similarly, Blackbeard ruled his ship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge, by the consent of the crew. It would seem that old-timey pirates do follow an honor code after all.
Picture of a model Pirate Ship
What many of you don’t know are the stories of Blackbeard’s ghost, for when it gets close to Halloween, and the seas get dark and stormy, many spot the Queen Anne’s Revenge sailing the seas once more. It isn’t known what the spectral Blackbeard is seeking on the Atlantic; maybe he wants to avenge his death at the hands of Robert Maynard of the Royal Navy, or maybe he’s searching for yet another cargo ship to plunder. Whatever his reasons, be wary, fellow traveler. The likes of Blackbeard’s ghost are not to be taken lightly.

Picture of a model of the Queen Anne's Revenge in a bottle
For those looking to feature Blackbeard’s ghost at your very own Halloween party, an actual Handcrafted Model Ship of the Queen Anne’s Revenge is essential. You’re in luck, because Handcrafted Model Ships has many different versions to choose from, starting with the 7” Queen Anne’s Revenge in a Bottle. A perfect item for a child’s bookshelf, particularly when you tell them the tale of Blackbeard’s ghost. Of course, there are many more high-end models of Queen Anne’s Revenge available, going all the way up to the 37” “Caribbean Pirate Ship.” Oh, did I forget to mention that the Queen Anne’s Revenge bears a striking resemblance to the Black Pearl from Walt Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean? So you’re getting double the pirate bang for your buck!

Other elements of pirate decor include such mainstays as nautical maps, compasses, sextants, and telescopes. These will not only be great decor elements for a room, but they also serve as perfect costume props when it’s time to go trick-or-treating. So don’t sit around being a sorry landlubber. Get your pirate booty today so it will arrive in time for Halloween. Happy hunting!

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