• Shayne Jones

Belvedere resident lands nautical artifact from China Cabin


Mel Owen (center rear) looks on as a crew from Belvedere-based Hadley General Contractors cuts a centuries-old 700-pound anchor from its pedestal on Feb. 8 before moving it to Owen’s front lawn. The anchor had sat at the China Cabin landmark for 30 years but recently began to tip, threatening the building, so the Belvedere-Tiburon Landmarks Society, which operates the cabin, sought a new home for it. (Elliot Karlan photo / For The Ark)

A centuries-old anchor that sat in front of Belvedere’s China Cabin for 30 years has found a new home after storm action over the years caused it to tip toward the landmark building, threatening to damage it.


A construction crew from Hadley General Contractors hoisted the nearly 700-pound anchor out of the bay with a forklift on Feb. 8 and carried it down the street, placing the artifact in Beach Road resident Mel Owen’s front lawn.


The Belvedere-Tiburon Landmarks Society, which maintains the cabin, first offered the anchor to the San Francisco and Corinthian yacht clubs, which both declined. The organization’s next call was to Owen, a self-described historical and nautical enthusiast who also serves on the city’s Historical Preservation Committee.


Owen, who says he grew up on a boat and has a whole room in his home dedicated to maritime paraphernalia, welcomed the addition to his collection. “I like older things,” he says. “You think about where they’ve been, and it’s just fun to see history.”


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