In the April 2014 issue of PassageMaker magazine, contributor Brooke Williams took up down the St. Johns River to meet David Gillespie, a retired deputy state historic preservation officer from New York. Gillespie is a serial restorer of old wooden houses, cars, and of course boats. Williams writes:
"Commissioned and built in 1910, Vagabond came out of the water for restoration in 1954. It was to be a father-and-sons project. They got as far as disassembling the woodwork, leaving the boat ready for the replacement of structural members. After that, the boat sat in a shed in Ithaca, New York, until the family decided to sell it in 2001. David Gillespie heard about the boat, became intrigued with what turned out to be a giant jigsaw puzzle, and bought it."
After years of hard work Vagabond is back on the water and is the floating epitome of mixing tradition and technology. Vagabond is loaded with cutting edge equipment, all centered around an electronic Elco motor rated as being equivalent to 45–85hp diesel, a battery bank of AGM batteries totaling 2,996Ah and a Kohler 8.5kW genset. Despite fully embracing the high tech world, Vagabond retains much of its old world charm with tons of wood throughout and a meticulously restored brass helm she was originally launched with. Pick up the April 2014 issue of PassageMaker magazine and catch the full story in the feature, "Something Old, Something New."