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Restoring Hemingway's boat

A team of preservationists will travel to Cuba to examine Ernest Hemingway's fishing boat.

india Updated: Apr 10, 2007 19:16 IST

A team of preservationists will travel to Cuba on Sunday to examine author Ernest Hemingway's fishing boat. Members of the Boston-based Hemingway Preservation Foundation will travel to Finca Vigia, Hemingway's Cuban estate, where they will examine the

Pilar

.

Hemingway sailed the 40-foot (12 metre) boat when he lived in Cuba from 1939 to 1960, and is said to have conceived some of his greatest works, including The Old Man and the Sea, while aboard. The group is working with the Cuban government to preserve the Pilar, Hemingway's home and the thousands of Hemingway drafts, manuscripts, letters, photographs and books stored there. The home is considered of such importance that the National Trust for Historic Preservation placed it on its 2005 list of America's 11 Most Endangered Historic Places even though it is not in the United States

The fear is that the warm, humid conditions will eventually damage the papers, which include the never-published epilogue of For Whom the Bell Tolls.

The Pilar is stored under a metal roof on a former tennis court on the estate.

Hemingway bought the Pilar, a Wheeler Playmate, in 1934 from a shipyard in Brooklyn, New York. In his will, he left the vessel to his boatman, who gave it to the Cuban government.

First Published: Mar 27, 2006 12:51 IST