Do you love adding a touch of the ocean to your home? Then why not choose one of our beautiful nautical weathervanes to grace your roofline or garden? Whether topping the gazebo by your boat dock or flying proudly atop your home’s cupola, nautical weathervanes are a great way to display your love of the water.
Where Land, Water and Sky Meet
Weathervanes have long been a part of nautical culture, since sailors depended on the wind to tell them about the weather and to steer their vessels. Vikings, the most notorious seafarers, used handcrafted, banner-style, bronze weathervanes on their ships. These richly gilded, quadrant-shaped vanes didn’t operate like weathervanes on land: since the ships were always in motion, these nautical weathervanes couldn’t give the wind’s true direction. Viking navigators would combine both vessel and wind directions to calculate the true direction of the wind, allowing them to sail across the Atlantic Ocean long before Columbus.
One of the most impressive nautical weathervanes resides in Montague, Michigan. Shaped like a ship and arrow and measuring 48 feet tall, 4,300 pounds, this weathervane is said to be the largest standard-design weathervane. The ship depicted is the famous Ella Ellenwood, a schooner that ran aground in Lake Michigan, just north of Milwaukee, in October 1901, causing the crew to abandon ship. The following spring, the nameplate of the vessel washed up in the ship’s home port of White Lake, on the complete other side of Lake Michigan!