A few Corrections on ‘Kid’s’ Cove Article

Hi folks, thanks for the article on the MB Maritime Museum and its latest addition, the “Kid’s Cove.” I enjoyed reading the article and really appreciated seeing some well deserved publicity for the project. However, I feel I must correct some of the misinformation in the article regarding the cannon. First off, the recent origin of the cannon is not the Kelsey winery (however the Kelsey family is storing another smaller gun that the MBMM museum acquired years ago. That acquisition also included several cannon balls that are part of this display.  Both the cannon and cannon balls were salvaged from the Niagra River by the late Andy Zatco of Morro Bay).The gun on display in the “Kids Cove” was donated by the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum in 2019. At the time I was the board Vice President the SB Maritime Museum curator contacted me about some artifacts they wished to donate to the MBMM. Initially the item that garnered my interest was the early 20th century harpoon cannon (Bofors Foundry of Sweden). A team of volunteers went to the storage facility of the SBMM to load the Harpoon Cannon and while there I spotted other items and asked if they could be donated as well. This included the tiny orange experimental submersible, the whaling tri-pot and the cannon and truck. Based on the limited provenance provided by their curator, I can tell you that the cannon was donated to the SBMM years ago by a volunteer who moved to California from Florida’s Atlantic coast. It was explained to me that the gun was a decoration at a restaurant and was given to the gentleman from Florida who eventually ended up in Santa Barbara. The specific origin and history of the cannon is unknown and to my knowledge has not been researched, but according to their information it is probably of Spanish (not English) origin and was manufactured in the mid to late 18th century (1750-1800). Again, this is based on information provided by the SBMM.  

Anyway, thanks again for your continued support of the museum. While I no longer serve on the board of trustees I do help out from time-to-time and I have been following their impressive success.  The MBMM has become a popular institution of admission-free recreation and education, and provides a tangible sense-of-place that celebrates the uniqueness of this tiny

maritime village and history at the edge of the continent.   

 Larry Newland

Board and founding member, 1993-2020

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