On her 35th birthday, Last Dance was on display at the Hudson River Maritime Museum. It was her first time in the Hudson River, but that is now history . . . and, she is a bit old. If she were an automobile, the State of Florida would issue antique license plates.
At the display dock behind the museum, Last Dance shared a birth with Half Moon, Henry Hudson’s boat. It was appropriate that the first boat to explore the Hudson River in 1609 was sharing the dock with a more recent boat to explore the river. Well, Half Moon is a replica, a copy of Captain Hudson’s boat. Last Dance is actually the older boat.
Also on display next to the dock was a hundred-year-old steel tugboat. The main walkway along the Rondout Creek, built as a park-like attraction for tourists and a place to be outside on the water for locals, runs between the two old boats on the dock and the big tug. Many people walked past the boats on display admiring the history and beauty.
The Hudson River Museum was small in comparison to the Chesapeake museums, but was filled with history. The experience was well worth a stop at Kingston.
There was other history in Kingston in addition to the museum. A number of tugboats which had been restored or converted to cruising boats were tied along Rondout Creek. However, the most impressive boat (other than Last Dance, of course) tied up along the creek was PT 728.
Seems there is a guy in town who collects PT boats. He has acquired an old, 4-story, brick building that once housed a steamship company to provide space for restoration of the boats. Three PT boats sit next to the huge shop under cover. The one below may have been built in Jacksonville, FL, by Huckins Boats. It is built of plywood while the other boats were carvel planked. Huckins used plywood to speed the building process.
Kingston does have some different collectors. Across the street from the PT boats is a field of streetcars. A local man has collected a variety of streetcars and is putting together a streetcar museum. On weekends, he runs one of the streetcars along tracks out to the lighthouse marking the entrance to Kingston, where steamboats docked and passengers were transported to town by streetcars. Individuals preserving history.