On Thursday, March 14, the Buffalo Maritime Center and New York State Canal Corporation will meet to unveil the next phase of the construction of the Seneca Chief. At the gathering, a template will be unveiled, which will help builders, and others involve in the process, to gauge and evaluate the construction process moving forward. The Center will display a piece from the middle section of the vessel as part of a process called lofting, according to the Buffalo Maritime Center. The process will allow builders to estimate the amount of wood that it will require to build the boat, while also allowing for the assessment of the accuracy of the drawings.
The Seneca Chief is the packet boat that was used by Governor DeWitt Clinton in 1825, when he officially declared that Buffalo and New York Harbor were connected by the Erie Canal. A ceremony known as The Wedding of The Waters was conducted to mark the auspicious occasion. Buffalo is now preparing to celebrate as we approach the Erie Canal’s bicentennial, by building the replica packet boat at Canalside, which will ultimately be berthed at the commercial Slip to be used as a “living classroom”.
Onhand at Thursday’s unveiling will be Canal Corporation Director Brian U. Stratton, Buffalo Maritime Center Executive Director Brian Trzeciak, and David Rogers, a major donor to the Center who is paying for the Seneca Chief construction.
Lead image: Painting by John Montague