The editorial below appeared in the Cape Gazette newspaper in
Lewes, Delaware, on Tuesday, January 17, 2006...
Lightship Overfalls Group on a Roll
The Friends of the Lightship Overfalls
group in Lewes continues its impressive efforts to preserve, restore and
enhance the red-hulled vessel that has become such an icon for the
canalfront in Lewes. In addition to investing thousands of hours of
sweat-equity into chipping paint, cleaning out grime and years of
accumulated dirt, and putting protective and attractive new coats of
paint throughout the interior and much of the exterior, the group has
doggedly pursued grants through public and private channels. Now all of
those efforts are showing results.
Delaware’s Congressional delegation – Rep. Mike Castle
Photo by Ann-Marie Trapani
LV 118 "Lightship Overfalls"
Senators Joe Biden and Tom Carper – recently announced that a $275,000
federal “Save Our Treasures” grant has been approved to benefit the
On top of that, Delaware’s Department of Transportation has approved the
group’s application for a $200,000 grant earmarked for
transportation-related historic preservation.
The Overfalls group also won the agreement of Lewes Mayor and Council to
administer the grant. Given the status of the Overfalls as contributing so
directly to the city’s core value of having a historic relationship with the
sea, and its positive role in economic development through attracting
tourists, the city can easily justify the costs of administering the grant.
With these funds in hand, the Overfalls can move confidently toward
formation of a plan for long-term display and preservation.
Whether the vessel will be lifted from its muddy berth and set in a cradle
or kept in place with mud pumped out and its slip stabilized with
bulkheading is the big question.
Given the professionalism and tenacity of the Overfalls Friends group, that
problem will be solved with equal dispatch, for the long-term benefit of
Cape Gazette editorials are considered and written by members of the Cape
Gazette editorial board which includes Dennis Forney, publisher; Trish
Vernon, editor; Kerry Kester, associate editor; Dave Frederick, sports
editor; Laura Ritter, news editor; and Jen Ellingsworth, art and
To learn more about the Overfalls Lightship and the Overfalls Maritime
Museum Foundation, visit