Old Alaska salmon boat scheduled for destruction

Posted: Friday, July 11, 2003

FIELDS LANDING, Calif. (AP) A once-prized salmon boat, The Yankee Girl, is now slated for destruction.

The Yankee Girl was built in 1929, in Seattle, and fished for salmon from Southeast Alaska to Morro Bay, California. Her hull is likely Douglas fir over white oak ribs. The tag on her stern reads Ketchikan.

Now she sits at the Humboldt Bay Harbor Recreation and Conservation District shipyard. A few admirers gathered, but none had the $5,000 minimum bid to buy the boat.

In her prime, when salmon boats packed the bay, she would have been worth $80,000 to $100,000, said Leroy Zerlang of the Humboldt Bay Maritime Museum.

''The Yankee Girl was one of the prettiest boats in the bay,'' Zerlang said.

But the salmon went away. Upon the collapse of salmon stocks, old salmon boats large enough to go after albacore tuna, did, while others eventually converted to plunder crab.

Not well suited to either purpose, the Yankee Girl lost her value.

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