The Conch Republic ~ We Seceded Where Others Failed
The Conch Republic ~ We Seceded Where Others Failed

Admiral FinbarImmediately following the formation of the Conch Republic, the Conch Navy was set up and Wilhemina Harvey was appointed Admiral and First Sea Lord of the Conch Republic. She in turn appointed Captain Finbar Gittelman to serve as Fleet Commander, Rear Admiral and Second Sea Lord.

In 1990 Captain Finbar, owner and master of the topsail schooner Wolf (which serves as the Flagship of the Conch Republic) decided it was time to recreate the Great Sea Battle. With the support of the Coast Guard Group Key West, the Office of the Secretary General and Schooner Wharf Bar; the re-enactment of the colorful Great Sea Battle is held each April (usually the last Friday of the month) in conjunction with the Annual Conch Republic Independence Celebration.

In 2005 Finbar was promoted to Admiral and First Sea Lord and Captain Reef Perkins was appointed Vice Admiral and Second Sea Lord. The Conch Republic Admiralty also boasts Vice Admiral Peter Anderson (who also serves as Secretary General of the Conch Republic) and Rear Admiral Frank Holden.

Naval battleEach April the citizens of the Conch Republic don their battle gear for the GREAT BATTLE - held during the Conch Republic celebration. Featured on the Discovery's Travel Channel and the Travel Channel, the battle pits Tall Ships against Coast Guard Cutters for the biggest & baddest Sea Battle held annually anywhere in the world !

As Admiral and First Sea Lord of the Conch Republic Navy, Finbar (along with Vice Admiral Perkins and Rear Admiral Holden) presides over the strategy for this "Bloody Battle" and has brought victory to the Conch Republic each year. A true food fight at sea, the battle is fought each year in the harbor of Key West against the invading Federal Ships (represented by vessels of the U.S. Coast Guard

Each year, after the Battle Awards Ceremony held at Schooner Wharf Bar, Admiral Finbar ceremoniously accepts surrender from the invader's Commander and the graciously invite the Federal invaders to join in the celebration of the Victory of the Battle !

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