Day 35 – Tuskaloosa

Miles cruised 0, fuel purchased 0, slip fee $45, daily high temperature 78*F

Sunday was a cleaning frenzied day on Changing Latitudes. The exterior of the boat, the glass windows and the Eisenglas .sparkle. The boat was vacuumed using the central vacuum system. Several loads of wash where done. The cover was put on the dingy in anticipation of two days of rain.

Almost all of the boats that came in with us yesterday took off very early this morning. Only Bobin Robin, Glass Slipper and Winndecks are still here. Bobin Robin moved into a slip with a roof to avoid the rain. We chatted with a slip holder from Florida that stays in Demoplis during hurricane season. He said he is used to the sound of rain pounding on the tin roof in his slip. He advised the downside of a covered slip is that on cold sunny days he is in the shade and it is cold with no warmth.

We are now cruising on the Black Warrior Waterway which is the southern section of the Tom Bigbee Waterway from Demopolis to Mobile. Tuskaloosa translates to Black Warrior. Who was Tuscaloosa?
Tuskaloosa (died 1540) was the chief of a Mississippian chiefdom in what is now the U.S. state of Alabama. His people were ancestors to the several southern Native American tribes (the Choctaw and Creek peoples) who later emerged in the region. The modern city of Tuscaloosa, Alabama is named for him.

Tuskaloosa is notable for leading the Battle of Mabila at his fortified village against the Spanish conquistador Hernando de Soto. After being taken hostage by the Spanish as they passed through his territory, Tuskaloosa organized a surprise attack on his captors at Mabila, but was ultimately defeated.

Contemporary records describe the chief as being very tall and well built, with some of the chroniclers saying Tuaskaloosa stood a foot and a half taller than the Spaniards. His name, derived from the western Muskogean language elements taska and losa, means “Black Warrior”.

“ [Tuskaloosa]’s appearance was full of dignity he was tall of person, muscular, lean, and symmetrical. He was the chief of many territories, and of numerous people, being equally feared by his vassals and the neighbouring nations. ”

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DeSoto had his men set fire to the town, “breaking in upon the Indians and beating them down, they fled out of the place, the cavalry and infantry driving them back through the gates, where losing the hope of escape, they fought valiantly; and the Christians getting among them with cutlasses, they found themselves met on all sides by their strokes, when many, dashing headlong into the flaming houses, were smothered, and, heaped one upon another, burned to death.
“They who perished there were in all two thousand five hundred, a few more or less: of the Christians there fell two hundred… Of the living, one hundred and fifty (150) Christians had received seven hundred wounds…”
It was noted later that four hundred hogs died in the conflagration.

The exact count of the dead is not known, but Spanish accounts at the time put the number of Indian dead at between 2,500 and 3,000. This range would make the battle one of the bloodiest in recorded North American history.[

Priscilla and I walked over to the boat yard. There is a collection of derelict boats that almost defies description. There are abandoned boats of all shapes and sizes. If you want a boat really cheap, I can help.

Here are photos of two boat you might like to buy to do the Loop.

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The marina has a donation area. If you have stuff on your boat you want yo give away just leave it there. Looks like someone fell off the wagon and is getting rid of all their non-alcohol beer.

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Carl (Chef) Wooden – quote for the day.
“There is but a plank between a sailor and eternity.” – Thomas Gibbons

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