What next for the old vessel?

Bank places lien on schooner ‘Timberwind’

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 9:00am

    ROCKLAND — In January, the schooner Timberwind, a longtime fixture at Rockport’s Marine Park wharf, was towed out of Rockport Harbor and tied up in Lermond Cove, in Rockland. Her owner, Bob Tassi, said at the time that she was in the process of being sold. Last week, Bar Harbor Bank and Trust initiated foreclosure on the vessel, filing a maritime claim in U.S. District Court.

    The bank is asking the court to allow a lien be placed on the boat, and wants to sell her.

    While the legal paperwork to seize the boat works its way through court, the 81 year-old Timberwind continues to sit in Rockland, under her winter plastic.

    Tassi has owned the 96-foot schooner since 2003, when he bought her and made extensive repairs to the transom, stem and planking. Tassi operated the Timberwind as part of the Midcoast windjammer fleet, taking visitors for day and overnight sails on Penobscot Bay.

    The Timberwind, designated as a national historic landmark, has been, and continues to be listed on the market for $410,000.

    Bar Harbor Bank is  calling its promissory note on the boat, claiming the Timberwind must pay $329,054, as well as a per diem cost of $43.57 for each day after April 23, 2014 to cover expenses and attorneys’ fees.

    The Timberwind remains in Lermond Cove under the custodial care of Equinox Corporation, as determined by the court.

    Just before Thanksgiving, a storm that blew out of the southeast sent strong swells and waves into Rockport Harbor, resulting in the Timberwind’s breaking loose from the mooring and smashing against the dock. Besides a broken bowsprit, pieces of the dock broke, and the town sectioned off a piece of the wharf to foot traffic as a precaution.

    The float in Rockport Harbor to which the Timberwind had been tied remains unusable and cordoned off, as the bank and Tassi come to terms.

    The Timberwind was built in 1931 by Victor Cole at Union Wharf in Portland, according to a history of the boat.

    The Timberwind was not the only schooner to slip its mooring without much warning this past winter. On Jan. 9, the Nathaniel Bowditch was towed to Camden from its berth at Lermond’s Cove in Rockland. The schooner is tied up in a legal suit concerning financial contracts.

    The Nathaniel Bowditch is on the market now for $350,000.


    Timberwind specs:

    LOA: 96 ft 0 in
    Beam: 18 ft 6 in
    Length on Deck: 70 ft 0 in
    Minimum Draft: 10 ft 6 in
    Displacement: 112,000 lbs

    Engine Brand: Timberwind has no engine. She is maneuvered by a yawl boat

    Seating Capacity: 20


    Related stories

    Schooner Timberwind moves long-time berth from Rockport to port unknown

    Schooner ‘Nathaniel Bowditch’ going to public auction Feb. 14 at Camden’s Sharp’s Wharf

    Editorial Director Lynda Clancy can be reached at lyndaclancy@penbaypilot.com; 706-6657