Maymont Boat: Waterlogged Wood Conservation

Restored by:
Lyle Browning, Archeological Society of Virgina, ASV
and Bill Trout, Virginia Canals & Navigations Society, VCNS

This is a hull of a 15’ by 80’ foot Kanawha canal boat which was discovered in Maymont Park, City of Richmond, Virginia in 1976 by Bill Trout of the Virginia Canals & Navigations Society, VCNS. It was excavated in 1999-2000 by Lyle Browning with the Archeological Society of Virginia, ASV.

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Photo of the Kanawha canal boat when Lyle Browning took over and after the initial cleaning down to the deck planking. The canal boat dates from pre-1850 and is made from oak and pine.

Full view of the boat with a light dusting of snow. Taken by Harry Jaeger of ASV.

Full view of the boat with a light dusting of snow. Taken by Harry Jaeger of ASV.

Keel plank and ribs of boat.

Keel plank and ribs of boat.

Deck planking showing wear marks.

Deck planking showing wear marks.

Interior of boat showing pre-1850 vertically sawn ribs and the keel plank. Just prior to removal.

Interior of boat showing pre-1850 vertically sawn ribs and the keel plank. Just prior to removal.

The boat was removed in 8′ long segments to be road legal and transported to E.T. Moore & Company wood yard in Richmond, VA to be treated.

The bow in the process of being moved.

The bow in the process of being moved.

The boat segments were dried out prior to treating. We hosed off the wood to remove mud and dirt. The SP-11 was painted on multiple times and then covered in plastic to dry slowly. The SP-11 has stabilized the wood and prevented further degradation.

The boat is currently in storage until it can be displayed.