Schooner Coronet around the world

The schooner Coronet in 1893, racing off New York, photographed by Nathaniel Stebbins.
The schooner Coronet in 1893, racing off New York, photographed by Nathaniel Stebbins.
The schooner Coronet in 1893, racing off New York, photographed by Nathaniel Stebbins.

In the 1880s Rufus T. Bush was at the top of his game. Standard Oil had purchased his oil refining business and Bush now had a great deal of money and was retired. He had previously owned a steam yacht but now he wanted a schooner. One of the very best wooden boat builders in New York City was the C & R Poillon shipyard, located in Brooklyn at the end of Bridge Street, close to where the Manhattan Bridge is today. Brothers Cornelius and Richard Poillon were renowned for building fast and able Sandy Hook pilot boats and well-appointed yachts. 

The schooner built for Bush, Coronet, was launched in August 1885. Designed by William Townsend, she was built along the lines of a pilot boat. Coronet was a gaff schooner with a length of 133 feet, a beam of 27 feet and a draft of 11.6 feet. The interior was done by Stanford White, with stained glass doors, a sweeping marble staircase, mahogany-paneled staterooms and an 18 by 18-foot main saloon with deep pile carpets and a chandelier. She also had a piano, a marble fireplace and six staterooms. The ship was captained by Christopher S. Crosby for 20 years. 

Last month we wrote about the race between Dauntless and Coronet from New York to Ireland. After the race Bush put the ship up for sale, but as there were no takers he and his son Irving decided in 1888 to do a circumnavigation instead. 

Coronet was the first American-registered yacht to round Cape Horn. The ship circumnavigated going east around the world. Bush kept Coronet for five years and in the years after him, she has had at least eight different owners. The ship has been used for scientific expeditions, cargo carrying, picket patrol and for Christian evangelism. This last purpose was carried on by The Kingdom, a religious organization that purchased Coronet in 1905. The Kingdom ultimately donated Coronet to the International Yacht Restoration School in the mid 1990s. Now Coronet is owned by Crew, a restaurant group owned by brothers Miles and Alex Pincus. The brothers have begun a three-year restoration of Coronet at Mystic Seaport.  

So let’s join Captain Crosby in 1888 as Coronet heads north and east from Cape Horn. It is December 12 and we’ll do a morning lower limb sun shot.

The height of eye is 20 feet, there is no index error and the ship’s clock is set on LMT.

We’re looking to find the GMT of the sun’s observation and need to plot the sun line and calculate an estimated position. The time of the observation is 09:52:30 LMT. The DR position of Coronet at the time of the observation is S 53° 15’ by W 65° 34’.

Captain Crosby takes an observation of the sun’s lower limb with an Hs of 52° 02.8’. n

A. What is the time in GMT?
B. What is the Ho?
C. Using Volume 3 of HO 249, calculate the intercept and azimuth. Plot the EP.

For answer click HERE