Historical timbers in traditional vessels of the lower São Francisco River
Traditional boats are directly linked to the history of the São Francisco river and its riverine communities, one of the largest navigable rivers that allowed the colonization of northeastern Brazil. This study is aimed to identify the wood used in the construction of boats from the lower São Francisco river, and generates subsidies to better understand the relations of use of forest resources destined to traditional naval carpentry. Four boats were studied belonging to the museum collection of the National Sea Museum, São Francisco do Sul, Santa Catarina. The collection of historical timber was performed with the aid increment borer for subsequent production of histological slides and anatomical description. The identification of the timber was conducted by comparison with reference collection. Eleven timber species were identified in the construction of the boat’s components. They are: Apuleia leiocarpa (Fabaceae), Astronium graveolens (Anacardiaceae), Brosimum gaudichaudii (Moraceae), Dalbergia nigra (Fabaceae), Hymenaea courbaril (Fabaceae), Manilkara dardanoi (Sapotaceae), Myracrodruon urundeuva (Anacardiaceae), Paubrasilia echinata (Fabaceae), Sextonia rubra (Lauraceae), Tabebuia aurea (Bignoniaceae) and Terminalia glabrencens (Combretaceae). The knowledge about the timber and their technological use provide to the construction of traditional boats a rich cultural meaning that integrates people and trees in the landscape of the São Francisco river.
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