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The Adventure Series: R/V HERO: The End of the Wooden Ship Era in Antarctica
Mystic Seaport’s Adventure Series program for February is “R/V HERO: The End of the Wooden Ship Era in Antarctica” by Richard Wolak at 1:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Until the mid-1980s, the Research Vessel HERO, a wooden-hulled, Maine-built, New England side trawler, was the primary platform for U.S. marine studies in the area of the Antarctic Peninsula, Cape Horn, the Scotia Arc, and Patagonia. She was the namesake of the historic Stonington, Connecticut, vessel that was among the very first to establish the existence of the Antarctic continent in the early 1800s. Connecticut native, Richard Wolak, spent 10 years with the U.S. Antarctic Program and was responsible for the operation of R/V HERO for four years. Richard will take us from the exploits of Captain Nathaniel Palmer and the original HERO that sailed from Stonington to more current tales of harrowing voyages across the Drake Passage, HERO’s encounters with the solid world of polar ice, her unique ability to provide support for polar science, and the ship’s major role in rescuing the crew of a destroyed Argentine research station in Antarctica.