|dc.description.abstract||In 1953 the tangled, skeletal remains of a ship were pulled from the small harbor of
Penetanguishene, Ontario. Local historians had hoped to raise the hull of a War of 1812
veteran, but the vessel pulled from the depths did not meet the criteria. Identified as
H.M. Schooner Tecumseth, the vessel was built just after the War of 1812 had ended.
Historical research of Tecumseth and her sister ship Newash, which remained in
Penetanguishene harbor, illuminated the ships? shadowy past. Conceived and built after
the war, the vessels sailed for only two years before being rendered obsolete by the
terms of the Rush-Bagot disarmament agreement. Nevertheless, the two vessels offer a
unique perspective from which to view the post-war period on the Great Lakes.
The schooners? hulls were interpreted and analyzed using archaeological evidence. A
theoretical rigging reconstruction was created, using contemporary texts and
documentary evidence of the ships themselves. Architectural hull analysis was carried
out to explore the nature of these vessels. From these varied approaches, a conception of Newash and Tecumseth has emerged, revealing ways in which the hulls were designed to
fulfill their specific duties. The hulls were sharp, yet had capacious cargo areas. The
rigs combined square-rigged and fore-and-aft sails for maximum flexibility. The designs
of the hulls and rigging also reflect predominant attitudes of the period, in which naval
vessels on the lakes gave way to merchant craft.
Taken as a whole, Tecumseth and Newash illustrate how ships, while fluid in the nature
of their work, are also singular entities that truly encapsulate a specific point in time and