The Hermione Arrives in Alexandria, Virginia

The French-built replica of the 18th Century tall ship L’Hermione, whose namesake brought the Marquis de Lafayette to America in 1778, tied up at the waterfront in Alexandria this morning, shortly after midnight, to the cheers of a small but enthusiastic crowd of well wishers.

Hermione 01

The Hermione Docks in Alexandria, 12:48 AM June 10, 2015

The replica, built with exacting detail to match the original frigate which played such a significant role in the American Revolutionary War, is on a  goodwill tour of  US cities on the east coast.  Details about the ship and its journey can be found at the excellent post by Patti on her “Displaced Beachbums” blog.

These photos were made under some rather difficult lighting situations.  The frigate, following a short stay at Mount Vernon, had to pass under the Wilson Bridge to reach Alexandria.  The draw bridge opens its spans for ship traffic only at midnight for about 15 minutes and only, from what I understand, about once a week or on special occasions. Sailing vessels must proceed through the gap under motor power so the sails had to be furled.  (By the way, I apologize to nautical experts for any mis-use of technical terminology–this is not a topic with which I can claim more than rudimentary knowledge).


Hermione 04Wilson Bridge opens for the Hermione  (12:04 AM)

There isn’t much ambient light at midnight, so the frigate is barely visible. (Nikon D800E on tripod with 70-200mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 200mm; exposure: 1/4th sec. @ f/2.8, ISO 3200).

Hermione 03

The Hermione Draws Closer (12:12 AM)

Hermione 02

Turning for the Final Approach (12:23 AM)

The Hermione will be in Alexandria through June 12 and then departs for Annapolis.  I suspect it will be a midnight departure.

Keep Shooting…..

25 thoughts on “The Hermione Arrives in Alexandria, Virginia

  1. Your photos are gorgeous! I was also watching the midnight arrival in Old Town (at Ford’s Landing) and, to be honest, I was relieved to read that you found the photography conditions challenging as well. My photos didn’t come out very well but I’m still going to post them 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Patti. Very nice of you to say and I’m looking forward to your post. Yes, the conditions were not great, and it wasn’t just the lack of any light; I got there and found a perfect location with a good perspective of the drawbridge and what would have been a full broadside view as it passed before turning and coming back to tie up about 5 feet away. But one of those party boats moved into a position blocking our view of the bridge about 15 minutes before it opened. So I had to scurry around for an alternate spot. Some kindly boat owners took pity on me and let me onto their dock. I’m looking forward to this afternoon which will have the benefit of daylight.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I do so like that high ISO but RAW… I keep telling myself “next month” I will delve into the workings of it/with it yet that time never seems to come. Guess that time could be now… almost! 😉


    • Thanks very much. It is a pretty impressive vessel. I wonder what the crew was thinking when they saw the crowd on the dock at midnight. But maybe most of them were asleep in their bunks (hammocks?). They have a big day today with all of the public tours.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Bonjour Monsieur Kent, Vos Photos sont magnifiques, Je me suis permis de poster celle du pont Wilson vers mes amis de Facebook. car je suis de près le voyage de l’Hermione en Amérique.
    Hi, M.Kent, Your pictures are amazing, I’ve allowed myself to post the Wilson Bridge One on my facebook page (friends only) since I’m a close follower of L’Hermione trip to the USA.
    Thank You


  3. Hi Robin, I’m visiting thanks to Patti and have enjoyed reading both of your blogs in regards to Hermione’s visit! What a marvelous event and I thank you for sharing your photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, and thanks so much for visiting my blog and letting me know your thoughts. I have been following Patti for some time now and really enjoy her postings. She really gets around this area (and many other places) and is a great source of information on what’s happening. I hope you will drop by again.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ll definitely be checking back in, Robin. You may (or may not) know that I got to meet Patti in April at a Bloggers gathering in DC. So much fun! I hope to get back up there sometime this fall!

        Liked by 2 people

      • Thanks for the follow-up. No I didn’t know that is how you met Patti and I didn’t even know that Bloggers have gatherings in DC. I need to turn up the power on my radar.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Poor lighting conditions and still fantastic photos, Robin! What a great event. (And my, you do get around 😉). Sorry but I had to laugh at the scenario of the party barge – best laid plans and all that. But what nice people to invite you onto their dock! As for Patti and Laurie (LB, above), the Blogger meetup she references is one I took part in (I should say crashed!). Laurie is a fellow blogger on Monochromia and was kind enough to invite me to a lunch in Georgetown and that’s where I met Patti. And over the course of the meal, as I recounted meeting “another” blogger, Patti realized I was talking about you 🙂 Small world, right??


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