This week at OTM Inc, we worked on the Request for Proposals for Phase I Construction Activities of the Lightship No. 83 Rehabilitation Project. A lot of the RFP is based on the Preliminary Engineering Assessment OTM Inc performed three years ago, but there’s still plenty of information to discover for the open bid process. First, we determined the power and lighting requirements, and worked on the language used to explain that there are no Disadvantaged Business Requirements for this project but we still encourage them to participate. Boring office work.
We also began assembling a bid for Northwest Seaport to provide nautical archeologists to survey and document all aspects of the Lightship including (thanks to Nat) all the systems. The team will need to start right away and most will be brought here from out of town, so there are some logistics to figure in to the bid.
Nautical archeology is an interesting trade. Often they work underwater to document the ship, but they also document ships that are floating and in parking lots. They focus on the hull shape and rigging, then cargo. Then they continue to ask questions and look for answers.
Many of us trying to recreate boat parts or replace missing custom parts have been junior archeologists all along by asking “what used to be here?” and “why was this here?” Also, when we are issued a cabin on an ancient ship and we see tie off points over the bunk we thing “what is this?” Then, in really rough weather, we think “well, this is a good spot to tie myself in.”
Or here’s another: you find a pile of broken matchsticks under the wheelhouse windows. You might clean them up – unless you have ridden out a storm and realize they wedge the window to keep it from rattling. There are millions of things like this that archaeologists look for and will be looking for as part of this documentation project.
So readers, what are funny custom things on your boat that archeologist in 500 years will have a hard time figuring out?