Steam Tug Pejepscot

by Hans | April 16th, 2014

The Pejepscot, a classic spt-and-polish coastal tug, running up the Kennebec River past Maine’s Bath Iron Works in 1908. She was built in 1907 at South Portland, Maine and was under exclusive charter to the Pejepscot Paper Company. If there ever was a tugboat that exhibited pride of operation, she was it.

The Pejepscot might have been a workaday tug, but she was maintained like a yacht, from het oversized flags (including the paper company house flag on her foremast) to her shining brass portlights.

The Pejepscot towed pulp barges in and out of ports from the Bay of Fundy to Maine. She was powered by a 475-horsepower fore and aft compound engine with a scotch boiler. She sank after hitting a ledge near St. John, New Brunswick, in 1910, but she was later raised and returned to service. After layup during the Depression, she was sold and moved to New York; she towed the barge John & Frederick carrying tar products along the East Coast between Jacksonville and Boston. Still later, the Pejepscot was sold and returned to Maine and then to Boston.

The Pejepscot much later in life, a shadow of her former self, but still a handsome tug. The photograph was taken in the mid-1930s off Bath, after she had been converted to a 360 horsepower diesel. A clue to her diesel power is an air horn rather than a steam whistle on het cut-down-stack.

Source: On the Hawser by Steven Lang & Peter H. Spectre

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