From the 18th to the 22nd July 2017, the Italian Navy Training Ship Amerigo Vespucci has arrived in Boston (United States) the seventh port of call of the Training Campaign 2017.
The Training Campaign on board the Amerigo Vespucci represents a key element in the cadet professional development, passing on the Italian Navy’s core values of love for the sea, ethics, loyalty and honor.
On the 19th of April the ‘most beautiful ship in the world’ set sail from the Italian Naval Base in La Spezia, to start the Training Campaign 2017 and visited so far two ports in Portugal (Sines and Funchal), then, after 20 days of navigation across the Atlantic ocean, Hamilton, in the Bermuda islands, and three ports of call in Canada: Halifax, Montreal and Quebec City.
During a port visit in Montreal (Canada) the 79 on-term volunteers (VFP4) of the 24th Course which had been on board since the unmooring from La Spezia, were replaced by the 125 Italian Naval Academy of Livorno (including 11 foreign cadets).
Navy cadets learn the basics of seamanship, they put into practice what has been studied so far in the books bygetting familiar with the marine equipment, climbing up the masts, and using the sextant to calculate the position of the ship with the stars. They all have been splendidly promoting the Italian excellence and will go on upholding the prestige of the Italian Navy abroad through cultural and promotional events in collaboration with our diplomatic representations in host countries.
More than 22 000 visitors in the various ports have had the opportunity to appreciate her style, which is one of kind, and her fascinating timeless beauty.
On Tuesday July 18th at 16:00 local time (22:00 in Italy), the Commanding Officer of the Vespucci, Captain Angelo Patruno, will hold a press conference on board to present the ship and the Training Campaign 2017.
After Boston, the Amerigo Vespucci will proceed to New York, keeping on representing our country and the ‘made in Italy’ in an unusual port of call for the Italian Navy. Media coverage of the Training Campaign 2017 will be provided by RAI (RAI Italia and Linea Blu), Radio Rtl 102.5, RTV San MARINO, La Stampa, and Il Secolo XIX. During her stay in Boston, the Italian Navy Tall Ship Amerigo Vespucci will be moored at the World Trade Center Pier and will be open to the public on the following dates/times:
Tuesday 18 july: 16.30 – 18.30 – Wednesday 19 july: 15.30 – 16.30 – Thursday 20 july: 10.30 – 13.00 – Friday 21 july: 10.30 – 13.00 and 15.30 – 18.30
The Amerigo Vespucci is a tall ship of the Marina Militare, named after the explorer Amerigo Vespucci. Its home port is La Spezia, Italy, and it is in use as a school ship.
In 1925, the Regia Marina ordered two school ships to a design by General Lieutenant Francesco Rotundi of the Italian Navy Engineering Corps, inspired by the style of large late 18th century 74-cannon ships of the line (like the neapolitan ship “Monarca”). The first, the Cristoforo Colombo, was put into service in 1928 and was used by the Italian Navy until 1943.
The second ship was the Amerigo Vespucci, built in 1930 at the (formerly Royal) Naval Shipyard of Castellammare di Stabia (Naples). She was launched on February 22, 1931, and put into service in July of that year.
The vessel is a full rigged three-masted steel hull 82.4 m (270.34 ft) long, with an overall length of 101 m (331 ft) including the bowsprit and a maximum width of 15.5 m (51 ft). She has a draught of about seven metres (23 ft) and a displacement at full load of 4146 tons. Under auxiliary diesel-electric propulsion the Amerigo Vespucci can reach 10 knots (19 km/h) and has a range of 5450 nm at 6.5 knots.
The three steel masts are 50, 54 and 43 metres high, and carry sails totalling 2824 m² (30400 ft²) The Amerigo Vespucci has 26 sails – square sails, staysails, and jibs: all are traditional canvas sails. When under sail in severe sea and wind conditions she can reach 12 knots (22 km/h). The rig, some 30 km of ropes, uses only traditional hemp ropes; only the mooring lines are synthetic, to comply with port regulations.
The hull is painted black with two white stripes, harking back to the two gun decks of the ships her design is based on, but she carries only two 6pdr saluting guns in pivot mountings on the deck, forward of the mainmast. The deck planks are of teak wood and must be replaced every three years. Bow and stern are decorated with intricate ornaments; she has a life-size figurehead of Amerigo Vespucci. The stern gallery is accessible only through the Captain’s saloon.
The standard crew of the Amerigo Vespucci is 16 officers, 70 non-commissioned officers and 190 sailors. In summer, when she embarks the midshipmen of the Naval Academy (Accademia Navale), the crew totals some 450.
Other than during World War II, the Amerigo Vespucci has been continually active. Most of her training cruises are in European waters, but she has also sailed to North and South America, and navigated the Pacific. In 2002, she undertook a voyage around the world.
Memorable was the meeting in the Mediterranean with the USS Independence American aircraft carrier in 1962, blinking with the bright signal: “Who are you?”, Who replies: “Navigo Amerigo Vespucci ship, Italian Navy.” The Americans replied: “You are the most beautiful ship in the world.”