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A consultant for the Port of Anacortes recommends the abandoned tug Enchantress is not eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places or the Washington Heritage Register. 

Historical Research Associates, working under a nearly $20,000 contract, completed an historical evaluation of Enchantress, which is stuck on a piling and resting on the bottom of Fidalgo Bay, not far from the shoreline.

HRA recommends “that the Enchantress is not eligible for the NHRP (National Register of Historic Places) because the vessel does not retain integrity of location, design, feeling, and association. The integrity of the vessel has been compromised by removal of key physical elements that would convey her significance as a Miki-class tugboat. Better and more complete examples of Miki-class tugs exist elsewhere in Puget Sound.”

After thumbing through the report, Bill Mitchell, who has been working to save the tug in place, said “I don’t think the Port got their $19,224 worth in this report.” He termed the report ‘thin.”

Because the Enchantress is over 50 years old, the state Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation required an assessment of the vessel to determine if it was eligible to be listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The assessment consisted of archival research, oral interviews and fieldwork, and the results and the production of the report and a Washington State Site Inventory Form.

In February, the state Department of Ecology gave Mitchell and others who want to preserve the tug six months to put a plan together to move it. Ecology says the tug is a danger to people and to the environment. It’s on state land and it’s illegal to leave abandoned vehicles on state property.  The tug is part of Ecology's high-priority cleanup of Fidalgo Bay.

Mitchell continues to content Enchantress should be left in place and let it deteriorate at its natural rate.


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