M/V Lady Eula served North Cat Island Bahamas late 1980s

 M/V Lady Eula, named after Capt. Ernest Dean of Sandy Point Abaco’s wife.
Source: “Island Captain, The Autobiography of Mail Boat Captain Ernest Dean of Sandy Point, Abaco, Bahamas,” with Gary W. Woodcock, White Sound Press, Decatur Illinois, 1997 p.108


DIMENSIONS: 149 tons, “She was 90 feet on keel, two decks, large holds, and a single Caterpillar engine again. She had a large deckhouse on top deck behind the pilot house as well as a large house on the main deck,. The stern of the main deck was built up with a big refrigeration compartment. She was a very spacious and modern boat.”
CONSTRUCTION: built by Jerry Thompson of St. Augustine Trawler Company Inc., in St. Augustine, Florida, wooden hull.
YEAR BUILT: c.1978
EARLY CAREER: served Bennett’s Harbour, North Cat Island, Kemp’s Bay Andros, and Freeport Grand Bahama from Nassau
BAHAMAS CAREER: Andros, Freeport, and North Cat Island from Nassau
CAPTAINS: Capt. John Dean, Capt. Ernest Dean
FATE: grounded and broken up by the waves on San Salvador c.1981
OWNERS: Captain Ernest Dean, Sandy Point Abaco

Captain Ernest Dean wrote: “I very much liked the look of the Nay Dean so I ordered a boat just like her. Since I didn’t have the money for another steel boat, this one was to be constructed of wood. I named her the Lady Eula for my wife. I think she was the prettiest boat I ever owned.”  

I… put my son John as captain of the Lady Eula. His mate was the same Stanford Curry, who later died. We made regular tuns to Kemps Bay on Andros, to Bennetts Harbour on Cat Island, and to Freeport, but all without contract. We were paid by the trip. I didn’t care at all for this arrangement. Both john and I made several attempts in Nassau to straighten it out but neither one of us had much luck getting anywhere. This was a time of a lot of political maneuvering in the Bahamas… When I complained to the government I was told they wanted to give everyone a chance to share in the building of the new Bahamas….. the people of Cat Island said they should have their own mailboat run by their own people. …I reminded the government that I had bought the Lady Eula at their encouragement with the promises of these mail contracts. 

“So, Cat island was told the way the could get their own mailboat was to buy mine, and that’s what eventually happened. I had run her just about two years. Here again is another sad story for the end of a good boat. The Cat island people gave her to an inexperienced captain. From what i was told she was out one night in very bad weather and the captain lost his way. She ran aground on San Salvador where she was pounded by the waves and broke up there on the shore.

NOTES: despite an extensive search the only other reference I can find to this boat is in Trevor Hamilton Associates’ Agricultural study for the Bahamas government in October 1989. In it they simply state that the Lady Eula served North Cat Island and was 149 tons. Nowhere else in the ship directories or databases or image repositories can I find more about this enigmatic vessel. At the same time, Hamilton’s study is otherwise reliable and thorough and so we cannot ignore the reference altogether. It is possible – but I think not likely that they were referring to the Lady Emerald. They also refer to the Lady Blanche of 97 tons, serving the Exuma Cays (about which more to follow).

Source: http://books.google.es/books?id=YecqAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA12&dq=Central+Eleuthera&hl=es&sa=X&ei=xEHQUuaKKczQ7AaR_ICoDw&ved=0CCoQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=Central%20Eleuthera&f=false