Saturday August 9th Reconnaissance for the Re-enactment

Sam, Gina and I (Bebe) travelled to Sunset Point Saturday to look into the logistics for the celebratory Transatlantic Cable re-enactment. We knew that access to the shore would be a key challenge as well as hitting White Head Flat at low tide so we could get a sense of how many victanans across it was.

We arrived at Sunset Point around about 11:30AM having searched online to find out that noon was the low tide mark. We easily found a parking space but getting down to the shore was another matter. After politely asking two residents for access across their lawns we were directed to a small path beside the dory Mary. With Frida in the lead we hopped down to the shale covered low tide mark as discreetly as we could. It was the 11:50AM. We walked a short distanc e northward, rounding The Point bringing Bumpkin in view. Sam clipped on a step counting device and she and I unfurled the victanan. Gina took over the video documentation. Leaping frogging across the spit we counted 27 victanans give or take one or two. It took us twenty minutes to complete the measurement. We were concerned with the incoming tide so did not do more than wave to the six or so Bumpkin-ites watching us from the island.

We were being watched from Sunset too. No sooner had Sam and I made our video reports to Gina than two big-ish black dogs came bounding by. Clearly a sign, Frida wriggled free and was chased around four or so circles…Gina tackled her and we high-tailed it back around the Point. Popping up onto the road we noticed a woman watching us from her  enclosed porch. …lucky for us it was Mary McDonnell, the Mary for whom the dory was christened. Mary warmly greeted us and she and her husband Joe listened eagerly to our plans. We traded stories of Bumpkin. Joe McDonnell is active at the Hull Historical Museum and shared some specific knowledge new to us. For instance the building just north of the Nantasket Carousel were moved there from Bumpkin. He even had a copy of a 1917 photo of the Navy assembled infront of them before they were moved. After conversation and water we left having made some new friends…and permission for President Buchanan to access Sunset Point via their land. Hooray!

There is alot to do for the re-enactment and the Tin Can Communication Company re-establishment between the artist-encampments as well as a presence at the dock!

President Buchanan                   Queen Victoria c 1858