Visiting the JFK Library in search of the President’s rescue coconut

Coconut on President John F. Kennedy's Desk. Image: JFK Library, KN-C23153.

The coconut on President John F. Kennedy’s Desk. Image: JFK Library, KN-C23153.

After the Battle of the Coral Sea Commemoration dinner on the USS Intrepid, I was up early and on the train to Boston and the John F. Kennedy Presidental Library and Museum.

I seem to have bad luck visiting this northern city, teaming rain, windy, 6 degrees (celsius) – just like my last three visits! Bad to worse, the train ran late by half an hour and when I arrived at the JFK Library for my meeting with Karen Abramson, Head of Archives, building works nearby had cut their cable to the outside world. So, with no computers, no phones, and no voicemail, the friendly docent (US word for volunteer) at Reception did not have any mobile numbers, couldn’t look them up and didn’t have access to ‘go fetch’ Karen, and the security officer didn’t have a radio and couldn’t leave his post.

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Endeavour: Sailing and Sea Birds

Stephen Radley. Image: ANMM.

Stephen Radley. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Growing up in Portland the bay was a constant in Stephen Radley’s childhood – swimming in the summer, watching the ships unload their cargo, trawlers returning with their catch and people sailing their yachts. One memory that remains of those days is that of the cray boats returning with their catch, cooking the crays right there on the wharf and then selling them still steaming.

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Endeavour: From Land to Sea

Sam Wilson. Image: ANMM.

Sam Wilson. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Like his father, Donald, sailing did not play a large part in Sam Wilson’s childhood. However, unlike his father, the sea did play a major part in his childhood. Living in Bunbury a block away from the beach Sam spent a lot of time body boarding or just hanging at the beach with his mates. Watching vessels on the horizon and the yachts sailing up and down the coast became a fascination for him but joining them never entered his mind. It was during this time at the beach that he was unconsciously honing his ability to read the waves and the sea. An ability which would serve him later when the sailing bug took hold.

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Endeavour: A Garage Sale Changed His Life

Donald Wilson. Image: ANMM.

Donald Wilson. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Born in Perth, Donald Wilson did not have a much involvement in maritime pursuits during his childhood. His interests were more of a land-based variety such as tree climbing, scrambling over rocks, ham radio and photography.

When he completed his schooling his interest in ham radios led him into Electronics at WAIT (West Australian Institute of Technology, now Curtin University). However, when he discovered that the course covered a bit more than his areas in interest he dropped out.

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Endeavour: Crossing a Bridge

Cordon Miller. Image: ANMM.

Cordon Miller. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Growing up in Colorado Cordon Miller did not have much of a chance for maritime pursuits, his domain was mountains, rivers and trees. It was not until he was at The Citadel, a Military College in Charleston, South Carolina, that his interest in sailing was sparked.

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Endeavour: Seven Times A Supernumerary

Marie-Antoinette Burton. Image: ANMM.

Marie-Antoinette Burton. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Marie-Antoinette Burton, born in St Helen’s, Lancs, is an eight times voyager on HMB Endeavour, seven times as a Supernumerary.

Her love of the sea began in 1957, at the age of six, when she emigrated with her parents aboard the SS Australia. It was the expanse of the sea and sky, the motion of the ship and the excitement of it all that sparked a love that took a few decades to finally find fulfilment.

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Endeavour: A Belated Gap Year

Nicolas Bracco. Image: ANMM.

Nicolas Bracco. Image: ANMM.

A blog series from on board the Australian National Maritime Museum’s HMB Endeavour replica as it sails from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. See our Sail the Endeavour page to learn more about joining voyages like this.

Nicolas Bracco decided to take his Gap Year after graduating university instead of before going to university.

He was born in Buenos Aires (Argentina) but around the age of one his family moved to the country town of Campana for his father’s work then moved back to Buenos Aires when he was six years of age.

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The Maritime Museum tour : ‘Celebes Sailors, Ships and Spice’

You haven’t seen Indonesia until you have been to South Sulawesi.

Our group of 14 intrepid ANMM members set off on 2nd June with our leader Jeffrey Mellefont, five Indonesian guides and a driver for a two week adventure tracking the history of the Makassan/Bugi forays to Northern Australia in search of the Trepang, the building of the pinisi wooden boats and the magic culture of South Sulawesi.

Photo courtesy of fellow traveller Robert Osmond

Photo courtesy of fellow traveller Robert Osmond

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