Guest Blogger Matt Maples: 100
Posted by Tall Ships America on August 22, 2011
1900 – 53°35.4’N x 5°16.1’E
By Matthew Maples
Happy Birthday to us! The Europa celebrated her centennial birthday on August 13 in Hamburg, Germany. All who sailed on her, past and present, were invited to her exclusive party. Dozens of voyage crew from past sails came aboard to mingle their stories amidst our colorful deck, complete with trays of appetizers and evening drinks from the bar. Both Rederij director Reinoud and Captain Klaas gave speeches, toasting the alacrity of our ship and its equally adventurous crews. Klaas said the ship was even older than him, though he is working on that! Then our current trainees gave a short presentation detailing their eventful sail from Halmstad. No doubt those who were present had a moment to recall the experience of their first Europa sail.
On the 15th, Europa moved closer to the mouth of the Elbe River to berth in Cuxhaven alongside one of her sisters, Elbe 1. As you may (or may not know), the Europa was not always the Ocean-Wandering sailing bark and was not always counted among the most famous tall ships in the world. Quite the opposite in fact, she was a floating lighthouse! At anchor in the Elbe River, the Europa’s original name was Senator Brockes, and was third in a series of light-ships that guided mariners into the Elbe River, hence her original designation as Elbe 3.