Sea History 179 - Summer 2022

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No. 179





National Marine Sanctuaries at 50! Shipwreck Discoveries: Endurance and Industry Off the Hook, Limitation of Liability Oregon Steam Navigation Co. Marine Artist C. W. Mundy











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No. 179



12 National Marine Sanctuaries at 50! by John Galluzzo, introduction by Elizabeth Moore This year the Marine Sanctuary system is celebrating fifty years of conservation and stewardship. In addition to preserving underwater ecosystems, these sites also protect hundreds of years of shipwrecks, and their stewards are using a variety of methods and technologies to share those wreck sites with us. 18 From Pilot to President: Captain John Ainsworth & the Oregon Steam Navigation Company by Mychal Ostler Steamboat captain John Commigers Ainsworth built a transportation empire in the Pacific Northwest through a combination of business acumen, hard work, and consistent insight as to how to capitalize on being in the right place at the right time.

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30 How Sail Fueled the Industrial Revolution—Sailing Colliers and the Steamship Fleet by Carla Lesh, Sarah Wassberg Johnson, and Steven Woods During the transition from sail to steam, wind-powered vessels still played a critical role in supplying the new engine-driven ships with coal, without which they were dead in the water. Is there a role for sailing cargo vessels in the 21st-century?

c. w. mundy

25 Exulted by the Sea, an Artist’s Inspiration at the Water’s Edge by C. W. Mundy Impressionist painter C. W. Mundy’s work ranges from portraits and still life to the boats and working waterfronts he has encountered in his travels around the world.


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33 Off The Hook? The Fatal Fire Aboard the Dive Boat Conception and the Limitation of Liability Act by CAPT Michael J. Rauworth, USCGR (Ret.) Maritime attorney and former Coast Guard captain Mike Rauworth explains the legal ramifications of marine casualties and how they affect shipowners and the victims of disasters at sea. 38 Industry and Endurance: Two Recent Shipwreck Discoveries in Two Remarkable Weeks by Monica Allen, and Mark Antelme, Celicourt Communications February and March were productive field seasons for the maritime archaeology teams aboard two research vessels on opposite sides of the globe in the successful location, identification, and documentation of shipwreck sites. One had long been forgotten, and the other was so famous it never fell off our radar. Both have important stories to tell.

DEPARTMENTS 4 Deck Log and Letters 8 NMHS: A Cause in Motion 44 Sea History for Kids

48 Ship Notes, Seaport & Museum News 58 Reviews 64 Patrons

Sea History and the National Maritime Historical Society Sea History e-mail:; NMHS e-mail:; Website: Ph: 914 737-7878; 800 221-NMHS MEMBERSHIP is invited. Afterguard $10,000; Benefactor $5,000; Plankowner $2,500; Sponsor $1,000; Donor $500; Patron $250; Friend $100; Regular $45. All members outside the USA please add $20 for postage. Sea History is sent to all members. Individual copies cost $4.95.

33 falklands maritime heritage trust

Cover: A Wisconsin Historical Society maritime archaeologist dives on the wreck of the schooner Walter B. Allen, sunk in 1880 off Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The wreck lies in 165 feet of water on the Wisconsin side of Lake Michigan and is in the newly designated Wisconsin Shipwreck Coast National Marine Sanctuary. Photo by Tamara Thomsen, Wisconsin Historical Society. (See pp. 12–17 for more on National Marine Sanctuaries.)


SEA HISTORY (issn 0146-9312) is published quarterly by the National Maritime Historical Society, 1000 North Division St., #4, Peekskill NY 10566 USA. Periodicals postage paid at Peekskill NY 10566 and add’l mailing offices. COPYRIGHT © 2022 by the National Maritime Historical Society. Tel: 914 737-7878. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Sea History, PO Box 68, Peekskill NY 10566.




Celebrating a Milestone

ifty years. During times of war and peace, recession and prosperity, for longer than any of our staff or trustees have been with the National Maritime Historical Society, our publication Sea History has flourished. Over the years since its modest beginnings, it has become the pre-eminent journal of the maritime heritage community, preserving and promoting the stories, ships, and culture of our seafaring past in myriad ways. As print media publications dwindle or disappear altogether, Sea History relishes her halfcentury status, and carries on. Our long-time senior staff writer, Shelley Reid, pulled together the history of the magazine—from its first black-and-white 40-page issue in 1972 to the 64-page color publication you are reading right now—for an installment of our biweekly online and email feature Sea History Today; you can read it at https:// It is an excellent overview, explaining such things as how we started regular features still included today, like Sea History for Kids, plus past features long since retired—Peter Stanford’s popular “Cape Horn Road”—and more recently concluded, such as Peter McCracken’s guide to researching maritime topics on the internet. Today, Sea History is resplendent with vibrant color illustrations, and each issue carries fascinating articles about key events and people in our maritime past, stories of everyday sailors past and present, news of maritime archaeology and what it has to teach us, updates on historic ships in danger of disappearing forever, book reviews, and news from a wide range of topics in the maritime heritage field. It tells the stories, great and small, that make up the wondrous panorama of our maritime history. Historic ship stewards and maritime museum leaders have told us that the features we have published in Sea History have often made the difference in promoting exhibitions, supporting and saving collections, and even helping historic ships claw off a lee shore. Sea History has had only a handful of editors in its long history. Frank O. Braynard edited the first issue, Norman Brouwer the following two, both men giants in the field. Peter Stanford then became editor from 1976 until 1999, interrupted only by a short stint in 1988, when author and historian Lincoln Paine served as editor for two issues. Peter called Sea History “the journal of a cause in motion, the cause of the living heritage of seafaring.” He passed the torch to Justine Ahlstrom. Deirdre O’Regan, our current editor, took the helm in 2003 and has embraced the role with the experience and enthusiasm of someone who has sailed across oceans, worked as a sailmaker both ashore and at sea, and taught maritime history and literature to undergraduates. Even in the early issues that did not have the sophisticated layout and high-quality images the magazine is known for today, the content was engaging and important. It has always been a remarkable publication; it just gets more so with each issue. When our beloved trustee Rodney Houghton died in 2008, it seemed the most appropriate way to honor his memory was to inaugurate a yearly award for the best feature article in Sea History. Rodney had been an avid reader and supported the efforts to share the stories of our seafaring heritage with current and future generations, to make sure they were not forgotten. The list of the award winners ( at right) and their feature articles reflects the excellence and diversity in the publication. Over the years hundreds of thousands of readers have discovered in the pages of Sea History magazine a treasure-trove of stories that captivate, inspire, and above all educate Americans about the vital role of the sea and those who have sailed upon it. The lessons that our seafaring history teaches us—the values of hard work, courage, preparation, and good spirit—are timeless. And we plan to have Sea History continue to tell those stories on its 100th anniversary. —Burchenal Green, NMHS President 4

Rodney N. Houghton Award for the Best Feature Article in Sea History —Past Recipients — William H. White (2008) “In the Wake of Bounty: A Voyage of Recovery” James L. Nelson (2009) “Taking the Fight to Sea: Machias and the First Sea Fight of the American Revolution” Capt. Arie L. Bleicher (2010) “Man and the Oceans” Matthew Stackpole (2011) “Restoring an Icon—Preparing the Whaleship Charles W. Morgan for her 38th Voyage” Capt. Walter Rybka (2012) “The War of 1812 on the Inland Seas” J. Phillip London (2013) “Before ‘Old Ironsides’—the Origins of USS Constitution and Her First Captain, Samuel Nicholson” Andrew Lambert (2014) “British Strategy in the War of 1812—the Balance of Power in Europe and the Perils of a Peripheral War” Kathleen Ciolfi/Geoff Carton (2015) “Explosives (see note C): The Unusual End of the Robert Louis Stevenson” James P. Delgado (2016) “Maritime Archaeology in the 21st Century” William H. Thiesen (2017) “Cutterman Frank Newcomb and the Rescue of USS Winslow” Donald Shomette (2017) “Tidal Wave: The Greatest Ship Launch in History” CAPT Michael J. Rauworth (2018) “Probing the Mysteries of the Jones Act” Paul Johnston (2019) “The Smithsonian, the US Navy, and Aquatic Avian Excrement” Kathleen Broome Williams (2020) “‘Amazing Grace’ Hopper: The Woman Who Brought the Navy into the Digital Age” Skip Finley (2021) “John Mashow (1805–1893): From Slavery to Master Shipbuilder and Designer” SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

OFFICERS & TRUSTEES: Chairman, CAPT James A. Noone, USN (Ret.); Vice Chairman, Richardo R. Lopes; President, Burchenal Green; Vice Presidents: Jessica MacFarlane, Deirdre O’Regan, Wendy Paggiotta; Treasurer, William H. White; Secretary, Jean Wort; Trustees: Charles B. Anderson; Walter R. Brown; CAPT Patrick Burns, USN (Ret.); CAPT Sally McElwreath Callo, USN (Ret.); William S. Dudley; David Fowler; Karen Helmerson; VADM Al Konetzni USN (Ret.); K. Denise Rucker Krepp; Guy E. C. Maitland; Capt. Jeffrey McAllister; Salvatore Mercogliano; Michael Morrow; Richard Patrick O’Leary; Ronald L. Oswald; ADM Robert J. Papp Jr., USCG (Ret.); Timothy J. Runyan; Richard Scarano; Capt. Cesare Sorio; Chairmen Emeriti: Walter R. Brown, Alan G. Choate, Guy E. C. Maitland, Ronald L. Oswald; Howard Slotnick (1930–2020) FOUNDER: Karl Kortum (1917–1996) PRESIDENT EMERITUS: Peter Stanford (1927–2016) OVERSEERS: Chairman, RADM David C. Brown, USMS (Ret.); RADM Joseph F. Callo, USN (Ret.); George W. Carmany III; Christopher J. Culver; Richard du Moulin; Alan D. Hutchison; Gary Jobson; Sir Robin KnoxJohnston; John Lehman; Capt. Brian McAllister; Capt. James J. McNamara; Philip J. Shapiro; H. C. Bowen Smith; John Stobart; Philip J. Webster; Roberta Weisbrod NMHS ADVISORS: John Ewald, Steven A. Hyman, J. Russell Jinishian, Gunnar Lundeberg, Conrad Milster, William G. Muller, Nancy H. Richardson SEA HISTORY EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: Chairman, Timothy Runyan; Norman Brouwer, Robert Browning, William Dudley, Lisa Egeli, Daniel Finamore, Kevin Foster, Cathy Green, John Jensen, Frederick Leiner, Joseph Meany, Salvatore Mercogliano, Carla Rahn Phillips, Walter Rybka, Quentin Snediker, William H. White NMHS STAFF: Executive Director, Burchenal Green; Director of Development, Jessica MacFarlane; Head Bookkeeper, Andrea Ryan; Executive Assistant, Heather Purvis; Senior Staff Writer, Shelley Reid; Membership Coordinator, Marianne Pagliaro SEA HISTORY: Editor, Deirdre E. O’Regan; Advertising Director, Wendy Paggiotta Sea History is printed by The Lane Press, South Burlington, Vermont, USA.


g in k c ba


PUBLISHER’S CIRCLE: Peter Aron, Guy E. C. Maitland, Ronald L. Oswald

Wind Shifts: Veering and Backing I enjoyed “The Emerald, Opium, and Human Trafficking” by Daniel Laliberte in the spring 2022 issue. But I caught the line in the opening paragraph, “ he approached the Washington shoreline, the wind began to back from SE to SW. He had to sheet in the sails and keep his vessel close-hauled to make headway in the light southwest breeze.” I always understood that wind backs counter-clockwise and veers clockwise. So, I think, in this example, that the wind was veering from SE to SW. Marc Auslander Millwood, New York



We Welcome Your Feedback!

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ve e


From the editor: Yes, wind shifting clockwise is indeed veering. I am impressed with your keen eye (and somewhat unimpressed with myself that I missed it!)

Birthplace of the US Navy: The Debate Continues My two cents on the claims of Marblehead, and under the orders of Gen. Washington Beverly, and Salem, Massachusetts, as the and manned by the Marblehead militia birthplace of the United States Navy. The under Capt. Nicholson Broughton. There schooner Hannah was leased by the Com- was no connection whatsoever to the naval mander in Chief of the Continental Army, establishment soon to be created by the George Washington, on 7 August 1775. delegates in Philadelphia. Furthermore, She sailed on her first military mission on there is scholarship to suggest that the 5 September and had her famous encoun- Beverly-based Hannah was not a Marbleter with HMS Nautilus on 10 October, head vessel at all but was owned by a Col. after which she was laid up. The Continen- John Lee of Manchester. I refer your readtal Navy was not created by Congress un- ers to the 2002 booklet The Hannah and til 13 October, so it is difficult to see how the Nautilus, by Thomas Macy, published Hannah can be considered a naval vessel. by the Beverly Historical Society. That does not stop people from making the Thus, the claims of both Marblehead claim, of course, or from referring to her and Beverly are moot. As a Salem resident, as a privateer, which she was not. Hannah seafarer, historian, and member of its Mawas an armed schooner, leased by the Army rine Society (est. 1766), I don’t believe

Join Us for a Voyage into History Our seafaring heritage comes alive in the pages of Sea History, from the ancient mariners of Greece to Portuguese navigators opening up the ocean world to the heroic efforts of sailors in modern-day conflicts. Each issue brings new insights and discoveries. If you love the sea, rivers, lakes, and

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Schooner Hannah


anyone in Salem considers our city to be the birthplace of the US Navy, as much as we would be honored by the association. And there are very few bar-room brawls in Marblehead any more, over this issue or any other. Capt. Michael Rutstein Schooner Fame of Salem Salem, Massachusetts











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While Mr. White attempted to pinpoint the birthplace of the United States Navy, he ended up discussing what could be claimed to have been the birth and birthplace of the Army’s navy, which occurred 24 August 1775 with Washington’s commission of the 78-ton schooner Hannah, then owned by John Glover of Marblehead. Hannah operated under the authority of the Continental Army with army personnel for crew as part of what some have called “Washington’s Navy.” Hannah’s first commander was Nicholson Broughton, a captain in the Continental Army. Marblehead could therefore make a legitimate claim to have been the birthplace of the Army’s navy or “Washington’s Navy.” Whitehall (then called Skenesborough) is completely incorrect with its welcome signs and historical plaques prominently placed around town. The fleet constructed at Skenesborough that operated under command of General Benedict Arnold was, without question, under the control of the Continental Army. It had no relationship in any way, form, or manner to today’s United States Navy.

The Army’s navy operated more than 4,000 vessels during the Civil War under the authority of the Union Army. By the midpoint of World War II, the Army’s navy was operating more than 13,000 vessels, from small craft to troop transports under the authority of the Army’s Transportation Corps, Water Division. The birth of the Army’s navy is discussed within The Army’s Navy Series, Volume I, Marine Transportation in War, the US Army Experience, 1775– 1860 by Charles Dana Gibson with E. Kay Gibson. The birth of the United States Navy is discussed authoritatively and comprehensively by Dr. William S. Dudley within his Inside the US Navy of 1812–1815, published last year by Johns Hopkins University Press. Within the preface of his book, Dr. Dudley states: “There was neither a navy department nor a secretary of the navy before 1798.” E. Kay Gibson Hutchinson Island, Florida I enjoyed William H. White’s amusing account of where and when the American navy was founded. I would like to submit some alternate dates that make Whitehall, New York, the hands-down winner. In 1773 and 1774, a far-sighted New Haven merchant, one Benedict Arnold, could see the strong possibility of war with mother England in the coming months and recognized that Britain could snuff out any incipient American-armed resistance simply by sailing a substantial army down Lake ChamSEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

plain from Canada. As early as September 1774, Arnold and some friends took a reconnoitering trip to the lake, visiting Whitehall (then called Skenesborough), Forts Ticonderoga and Crown Point, and then on to Fort Saint John at the northern end of the lake. Arnold took note of a nearby battery of cannons at Skenesborough, as well as the 65-foot ketch Katharine. When he finally reached Fort Saint John, he saw that the British were already building warships to gain control of the lake. Arnold returned home to Connecticut and founded a regiment of the Governor’s Foot Guard. When he learned about the skirmish at Lexington and Concord, he ordered his regiment to ride north: twothirds went to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to secure a commission and confer on strategy with General/Dr. Joseph Warren, while the other third went to Skenesborough with orders to seize the ketch, arm her with the cannons from the battery, and prepare to attack Ticonderoga when the rest of his men could join them. The ketch, renamed Liberty, was officially dedicated for Continental Service and was ready for action by 30 April 1775, only eleven days after Concord! Arnold was augmented by men from all over New England and New York, promptly captured Ticonderoga and Crown Point, and ordered that their cannons be sent to form a ring around Boston to force the British out of the city. From there he sailed up to Fort Saint John, captured the garrison and seized the recently built 65foot twelve-gun sloop George, renaming her Enterprise. The sloop was dedicated for Continental Service on 18 May 1775, the first purpose-built warship in the American Navy. None of the other locations can claim dates that even came close to these. As for the official founding of the Continental Navy, that occurred on 13 October 1775, when Congress passed a Rhode Island bill to establish a navy. In 1974–1976 I built a full-size copy of the Navy’s first ship, the 12-gun sloop Providence, currently homeported in Alexandria, Virginia. I am now engaged in building full-size copies of both Liberty and Enterprise as part of a sail-training program. John Fitzhugh Millar Colonial Navy, Inc., Williamsburg, Virginia SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


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A CAUSE IN MOTION ach year the National Maritime Historical Society awards galas bring together under one roof a diverse group of those who love, value, and serve the sea. On April 27th, we were especially pleased to be able to gather in person at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, with the always-delightful Gary Jobson at the podium as MC, for the much-anticipated return of the National Maritime Awards Dinner. This year we honored three extraordinary individuals: Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution; Kristen L. Greenaway, CEO & President of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum; and Naval Historical Foundation historian Dr. David F. Winkler. Lonnie Bunch was recognized for his outstanding contributions to the study and interpretation of the passage of enslaved Africans to America, in particular his work with the Slave Wrecks Project and the Center for the Study of Global Slavery, and as Members of the NMAD committee represent leaders throughout the maritime heritage the driving force behind the creation of the community, and their leadership helps make the event engaging, important, and successful. National Museum of African American History and Culture. Regarding his inspiration for the museum, he explained that he sought to build “an institution that could transform a nation, that could help people get their arms around what has always divided us, the challenge of race.… We had to create a museum that would tell a people’s story—but it’s a nation’s journey.” In closing, Bunch remarked: “Americans are brave and amazing people who can look at their history, the totality of their history, can shine a light on all the dark corners, not to affix blame, but to say look how a nation has changed. Look how a nation continues to try to live up to the stated ideals of our founding fathers and mothers.… This award recognizes that there are opportunities to expand our understanding of maritime history. There are opportunities to help people find inspiration. Our job, using history, is to find reality, but still give hope.” One of Kristen Greenaway’s first initiatives when she took over the helm of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in 2014 was to work on ways to partner with local communities to become a better resource in the region. “The Chesapeake Bay has a unique social and cultural heritage, and the museum is a folklife center that works to preserve these stories. From the Indigenous history to the last 400 years of European influence, here is the perfect microcosm to explore the relationship between the local environment and its culture.” Under her leadership, the museum expanded its shipyard program to maintain its own fleet of historic vessels and those of other museums,

photos by tony raymond photography & shelton photo


A Long-Awaited Celebratory Gala

(above) Dr. Paul Gardullo, historian and curator for the NMAAHC and director of the Center for the Study of Global Slavery, presented the NMHS Distinguished Service Award to Lonnie Bunch. He remarked: “Throughout Lonnie Bunch’s career as a historian, as a curator, as a museum director, and as the 14th secretary of the Smithsonian —the world’s largest museum and research complex—he has always seen museums as sites of extraordinary power and possibility, as both engines of groundbreaking research and as educational places for people of all backgrounds…as sites of change…just as much about today and tomorrow as yesterday.” Laura Lott (left), president of the American Alliance of Museums, presented Kristen Greenaway with the NMHS Distinguished Service Award stating, “Museums don’t just look back, but they are leading us into a brighter future… as president of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum and through her work with the Council of American Maritime Museums and the International Congress of Maritime Museums, Kristen Greenaway has influenced museums around the nation and across the world to play a leading role in working with their communities to become better stewards of their environment.” 8


as well as to teach and maintain the skills required to do this kind of work. To this end, the museum has created a four-year, 8,000-hour education certification in traditional maritime skills. The shipyard recently launched a new Maryland Dove, a replica of the 17th-century trading vessel that accompanied the first European settlers to what is now Maryland. In addition to providing income to the museum, it also provided a means of teaching maritime skills to the next generation. She stated, “The vessel is not only an important interpretive venue but puts the living tradition of historic Chesapeake on display.” Greenaway has also championed efforts to combat climate change by initiating policies at her own museum, starting with the creation of a sustainability team within her staff. She explained that “[i]t is imperative that maritime museums support efforts to address plastics in our seas—the maritime community has a large stake in this issue.” Navy veteran Dr. David Winkler has inspired hundreds of participants who attend the triennial Maritime Heritage Conferences, for which he has served as program chair on multiple occasions, to collaborate on innovative projects. “The opportunity to bring people together makes these folks appreciate the ties that broaden their own particular niche. It enables people to exchange ideas and expand their vision.” A strong advocate Dr. Timothy Runyan, NMHS trustee and for saving and preserving historic ships, Dr. Winkler was a leader in the campaign chairman of the National Maritime Alliance, to save USS Olympia, Admiral works tirelessly as an advocate for federal fundDewey’s flagship at the Battle of ing for the maritime heritage community. He is Manila Bay, when its future was here with NMHS president Burchenal Green. threatened by lack of funding and maintenance back in 2010. Dr. Winkler is an expert in the history of the Cold War and the Navy’s role in that conflict and has written numerous books and articles and presented papers on the topic to a wide range of audiences. What each of the esteemed award recipients emphasized, as they concluded their remarks, was the importance of the people with whom they work; that it was only by relying on the talents, vision, and dedication of others that they have found success in their own pursuits. It is certainly true here at the National Maritime Historical Society. —Burchenal Green, NMHS President (left) United States Naval Academy superintendent VADM Sean Buck, who accepted the NMHS Distinguished Service Award on behalf of the Academy at the 2021 virtual National Maritime Awards Show, with David Winkler (middle) and new NMHS trustee VADM Al Konetzni, USN (Ret.). Upon presenting this year’s award, VADM Buck commended Dr. Winkler for his “outstanding career as an internationally recognized educator, author and historian, and as a very successful ambassador for naval history.”

(above) National Maritime Awards Dinner co-chairs Amy Lent and Sam Byers, with founding dinner chair Philip Webster (left). (left) The US Coast Guard Academy Cadet Chorale, under the direction of Daniel McDavitt, performs for guests during the awards ceremony. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022





courtesy burchenal green

courtesy american cruise lines

Supporting NMHS — Thank you, Jim Pollin!

his past March, the National Maritime Historical Society was the recipient of an incredible gift from NMHS Afterguard Jim Pollin, a philanthropist who shares our passion for maritime history. We were fortunate when he discovered us a few years back, and last year, he offered to support the Society by providing thirty cabins onboard the American Cruise Lines paddlewheeler American Heritage for a cruise up the Mississippi River, donating 100% of the proceeds from each cabin booked by our members. After an informative, fun-filled week together, Jim rounded up the dollar figure covered by our members’ cruise fares and made his full donation in the amount of $150,000, a most generous and welcome contribution. The cruise served as both an incredible fundraiser and a chance to get to know our members and trustees better, while enjoying the sights American Heritage on the Mississippi River and learning about the rich maritime heritage of the lower Mississippi. It was an experience that took us from New Orleans to Memphis, with port stops and tours along the way. What a gift! And how special to travel on American Cruise Lines, whose founder and our honorary trustee Charles Robertson was honored with the NMHS Distinguished Service Award back in 2016. I enjoyed the intimacy of the smaller river cruise ship. It is wonderful to travel up the Mississippi, listening to the water churning and observing the impressive ship traffic on the “Big Muddy,” one of the most important commercial waterways in the country, if not the world. Our members loved the local history and entertainment presented onboard as well as the many tours, each with a different favorite—from swamp tours to the historic homes and plantations of Louisiana, to the sobering visits to the Civil War gunboat USS Cairo and the battlefield at Vicksburg, from the historic river port at Natchez, Mississippi, to the rollicking home of rock & roll, blues, and jazz in Memphis. After reading and writing about the ship and its history for so long, we were particularly pleased to be able to finally visit the Fletcher-class destroyer USS Kidd in Baton Rouge. We are grateful (and impressed!) with Jim’s creative take on how to support NMHS, and we hope his example will inspire others to design unique platforms of philanthropy to support our maritime heritage. —Burchenal Green, NMHS President NMHS members, trustees, and staff are the most interesting, and we enjoyed the chance to spend a full week with them aboard American Heritage! Many thanks to Jim Pollin (seated, far right) for the opportunity.



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Sea History Magazine Turns 50! The National Maritime Historical Society is celebrating 50 years of Sea History magazine! We’ve come a long way since our first issue in April 1972, a modest black-andwhite publication reporting on the news of maritime museums. From the very start, the Society’s mission has been to preserve and promote our maritime heritage among maritime organizations and the great community of people who love ships and mariners, the sea, rivers, and bays. Sea History has broadened its horizons over the years, from an initial focus on historic ships and shipsaving to include the world of marine art, sail training, marine archaeology, maritime law and medicine, and broader maritime history. And now all issues are indexed and accessible on our website, complete with hyperlinked entries, helping us reach new generations of maritime enthusiasts. If you love Sea History magazine and the work we do to promote our shared maritime heritage for sailors and scholars of all ages, please consider making a donation to the National Maritime Historical Society today. We are grateful for your support, which preserves a legacy of knowledge and provides critical funding for Sea History magazine, online resources at, our ongoing educational initiatives including Sea History for Kids online and our documentary on Ernestina-Morrissey, the Society’s efforts to highlight the plight of historic ships in distress, and the conservation of the Society’s maritime library and collections—a treasure of scholarship, information, literature and lore. Donate today at

Not a member yet? Sign up and join thousands of Americans in helping to preserve our maritime heritage. Our membership forms an active constituency, advocating for the recognition of our maritime traditions while working for positive changes for the future. Join us today at

Are you on our email list? Our list of subscribers is growing every day, but if it’s missing someone important—you!—please sign up today. Join thousands of fellow enthusiasts who are raising awareness of our seafaring heritage and speaking out for our maritime legacy. We look forward to having you in our crew! Sign up for our email list today at

Thank you for your support! SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


National Marine Sanctuaries at 50!


by John Galluzzo, introduction by Elizabeth Moore, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

or the first centuries of human existence on North America, the ocean was not viewed as anything more than a source of seafood, a vector for shipping and transportation, a buffer to foreign enemies, and, for some, a venue for spiritual awakening. As the nation developed and grew, maritime resources became even more vital. Ports were established and then enlarged as ship traffic increased and the vessels themselves grew bigger; inland waterways were straightened and dredged, and a network of canals extended the reach of shipping traffic even further inland. The fortunes of the ocean-based sector of the national economy would wax and wane over the decades, but fishing, shipping, vessel construction, and port activities were always important components. Shortly after the American Revolution, the new United States government created the Revenue Cutter Service (forerunner of the US Coast Guard) and US Navy in large part to protect American sea commerce. Other government agencies and programs were founded along the way to manage, protect, and regulate trade, fisheries, navigation, safety at sea, and the environment—all recognizing the value of our maritime activity and its effect on the oceans and freshwater systems within and surrounding the nation. In the 21st century, we have seen the rise of a new term, “blue economy,” which the World Bank defines as “the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods and jobs, and ocean ecosystem health.” The blue economy touches all of our lives whether we know it or not, and the ocean’s role as an economic powerhouse will only increase in importance in coming years. Emerging industries based on the ocean’s resources include biopharmaceuticals, seabed mining, renewable energy, desalination, eco-tourism, aquaculture and fisheries, and technology. As our lands and waters were fundamentally transformed by the Industrial Revolution, the ocean now faces a similar threat of rampant overdevelopment and unsustainable harvest if we do not keep the blue ecology in mind along with the blue economy. In 1956, in perhaps the earliest modern call to create protected underwater parks, G. Carleton Ray and Elgin Ciampi, in their book, The Underwater Guide to Marine Life, wrote: “Some of the richest areas should be set aside and protected as are ‘wilderness’ areas on land.” Since that time, the United States has become an international leader in the creation and management of marine protected areas. As of 2022, more than a quarter of our waters (including the Great Lakes) are in some type of underwater park, and three percent are in the most highly protected category that prohibits all extractive uses. That said, most of these waters are

located in two large marine protected areas in the remote Pacific Ocean: Papahānaumokuākea and Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monuments, which means the vast majority of our coastal waters in the continental US—the areas of the most intensive human activity—are under pressure. In 1969 the Commission on Marine Science, Engineering and Resources (the “Stratton Commission”) released a report on the marine environment, “Our Nation and the Sea: A Plan for National Action,” which emphasized three issues: the ocean as a frontier for resource development, emerging threats to the coastal environment, and the need to restructure federal ocean and coastal programs. It led directly to a reorganization of federal ocean conservation efforts and the creation of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) the following year. Then in 1972, Congress passed a series of relevant statutes: the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act that, among other things,

monitor art and photo mosaic courtesy us navy and noaa onms

The discovery of the remains of USS Monitor off the North Carolina coast in 1973 (and its positive identification in 1974) prompted the governor of North Carolina to nominate the site as the nation’s first National Marine Sanctuary. The ironclad warship was found lying upside-down on the seafloor with the rotating gun turret dislodged but wedged in place by the aft deck. The turret was recovered in 2002 and is being conserved at the USS Monitor Center at the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Virginia. established the National Marine Sanctuary Program; the Marine Mammal Protection Act; and the Coastal Zone Management Act. A year later, scientists and maritime archaeologists discovered the wreck site of the Civil War ironclad USS Monitor off the coast of North Carolina, which would later become the first National Marine Sanctuary (in January 1975). Ten years later, there were six NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries, with more being proposed. Congress has amended and reauthorized the Marine National Sanctuaries Act numerous times. An important amendment in 1980 granted Congress authority to review a sanctuary designation before it becomes final. Today, the National Marine Sanctuary Program comprises sites located in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Gulf of Mexico, and inland waterways.

Elizabeth Moore is a senior policy advisor at NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. This introduction was adapted from “The Making of a Maritime Nation: The Ocean of a Past, Present, and Future America,” published online at 12


courtesy noaa office of national marine sanctuaries (onms)

The National Marine Sanctuary system comprises fifteen sanctuaries and two Marine National Monuments. The two most recent designees are the sanctuaries in Mallows Bay-Potomac River in Maryland and the Wisconsin Shipwreck Coast in Lake Michigan.


photo by bryan dort, courtesy noaa onms

he National Marine Sanctuary system is celebrating fifty years of conservation and stewardship in 2022. Due to the variety of missions carried out at individual sanctuaries, which differ remarkably in scope, size, and focus, there are numerous ways to immerse oneself in the ongoing anniversary commemorations around the United States throughout the year. If you’ve ever gone on a whale watch out of Boston or Provincetown, you’ve already visited one sanctuary, the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary at the mouth of Massachusetts Bay. Ever hooked onto a mahi-mahi or snorkeled on the reef in the Florida Keys? Chances are you did

so in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Perhaps you’ve been birdwatching along Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, gone diving on shipwrecks in Thunder Bay in Lake Huron, or kayaked among the remains of the ghost fleet of Mallows Bay in the Potomac River. It’s hard to know, without the use of navigational charts, whether you’ve entered or are leaving one of the National Marine Sanctuaries. Unlike land-based National Parks, there are no “welcome” or “thank you for visiting” signs. But National Marine Sanctuaries are as real as any park and hold stories to fascinate us all, from shipwrecks to marine life large and small, above the water and below.

The Office of National Marine Sanctuaries falls under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and serves as the trustee for more than 620,000 square miles of marine and fresh waters, ranging from Washington State to New England, from Florida to American Samoa. As of 2022, the network includes fifteen National Marine Sanctuaries and two Marine National Monuments. As federally managed entities, the sanctuaries are designed and mandated to be accessible to the public for use in myriad ways, from research to recreation to commercial opportunities. Mostly, the primary message is one of immersion in the ocean sciences through wildlife observation, diving, fishing, sailing, and more. One day in a National Marine Sanctuary can kickstart a young person’s lifelong love of the water. For those interested in maritime history and archaeology, there could be no better arrangement to facilitate diving into shipwrecks, even if it is a virtual visit vs. donning wetsuits and scuba gear. Many National Marine Sanctuaries feature—or were even designed around—shipwreck Shipwrecks in National Marine Sanctuaries are protected, but also meant to be accessible and shared with the public. In the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Lake Huron, some of the shallow-water shipwrecks can easily be seen from glass-bottom boat tours or on your own as snorkelers and paddlers.



noaa fisheries/ari friedlaender

noaa/sbnms and l-3 communications/klein associates, inc.

sites within their boundaries. Each wreck has its own story to tell. Collectively, they spell out the history of the New World and the development of the country, from wreck sites in offshore locations, to the coast, to inland waters. Let’s look back to 23 October 1972, when Congress passed legislation that would become the National Marine Sanctuaries Act and created the pathway to today’s sanctuary system. The discovery of USS Monitor’s remains off the North Carolina coast the following year prompted the creation of the first sanctuary. While the original act did not have historic preservation in mind, it became the perfect protective entity for the wreck site. And it has done so for many others that followed. For Sea History readers with a particular interest in ships and seafaring, several of the National Marine Sanctuaries include some dramatic and intact shipwrecks within their waters. The Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary is home to more than 200 shipwrecks, including the “Titanic of New England,” the remains of SS Portland, which sank with all hands in 1898. Stellwagen is also celebrating an anniversary this year—30 years. It was established in 1992 as one of the nation’s renowned wildlife-watching destinations in the United States, a place where upwelling drives nutrients to the surface, where they feed everything from Wilson’s Storm-petrel— small, pattering birds gleaning bits of food from the water’s surface—to the athletic

Sidescan sonar image of SS Portland: Locating specific wrecks like the Portland in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary takes a combination of historical research on shore, access and training to use cutting-edge technology, and sometimes plain old good luck. and acrobatic humpback whale. As the humpbacks are putting on a show for summer whale watchers on top of the water, it’s far below the surface that the drama of human history has played out and is now being shared with the rest of the non-diving public. SS Portland was a sidewheel steamship that was en route to Portland, Maine, from Boston, when it got caught in a violent storm that is still referred to as the Portland Gale. After 124 years on the

bottom of the ocean, SS Portland is still recognizable by the remains of its walking beam engine and twin smokestacks on the seafloor. The staff at the sanctuary has held live virtual visits to the wreck site, and in 2023 will recognize the 125th anniversary of its sinking. On Lake Huron, the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary offers a completely different visitor experience. While Stellwagen Bank’s waters can be dark and murky, the clarity of the lake allows for glass-bottom boat tours of what’s known as “Shipwreck Alley.” Diving, snorkeling, and even kayaking can bring maritime heritage tourists within view of many wrecks. The team at Thunder Bay worked with local partners to create a Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Trail that captures the stories of wrecks like the New Orleans, Pewabic, and E. B. Allen, all sharing in the greater narrative of economic development The Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary in Massachusetts attracts thousands of tourists each year to witness the abundance of whales that come to feed there in the summer. The humpbacks put on a show for whale watch boats consistently all season long.



wisconsin historical society and woods hole oceanographic institution (whoi)

During a late spring snowstorm in 1880, the schooner Walter B. Allen sank in Lake Michigan and settled in 165 feet of water. The wreck sits upright with its two masts still standing, coming within 90 feet of the surface. This site is one of 36 shipwrecks within the Wisconsin Shipwreck Coast Sanctuary’s boundaries that represent vessels that played a central role in building the region between the 1830s and 1930s. Twenty-seven of these wrecks are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. through shipping on the Great Lakes. Thunder Bay operates a visitor center in Alpena, Michigan, which acts as an information primer for people heading out on glass-bottom boat tours that depart from right behind the building.

California’s Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary may hold as many as 400 shipwrecks within its waters, starting with San Agustin, a Spanish galleon that was destroyed in a gale in 1595. From early explorers to participants in the Gold

Rush to troop transports moving soldiers in and out of San Francisco in World War II, the variety of vessels and, unfortunately, tragedies, are boundless. Each story ties to the greater maritime history timeline: the development, through time, of accurate

photo by tane casserley, courtesy noaa onms

Shipwrecks in the Great Lakes are generally in a remarkable state of preservation, due in large part to the cold fresh water and scarcity of marine life that quickly degrades wooden ship remains in a saltwater environment. The 1862 Lucinda Van Valkenburg (below) lies on the bottom of Lake Huron in approximately 60 feet of water. The wreck site is a popular destination for recreational divers.



noaa fisheries / matt mcintosh

noaa onms / tane casserley

charts; the recognition of the need for lighted aids to navigation; the development of the nation’s shore-based lifeboat system; weather tracking and forecasting; and more. The Monitor National Marine Sanctuary protects this most precious bit of Civil War history and has been a model for exploration, conservation, and collaboration with shore-based partners—namely the USS Monitor Center at the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Virginia. The most recently established sanctuary puts the word “shipwreck” right in its name: the Wisconsin Shipwreck Coast National Marine Sanctuary on Lake Michigan is home to 36 known shipwrecks. Fifteen of these vessels are preserved almost completely intact due to the Great Lakes’ cold freshwater. Three have standing masts, a rarity among sunken wrecks. More than 100 vessels were reported lost in those waters, indicating that more wrecks lie waiting to be discovered, explored, and protected. In warmer waters, along with the spectacular coral reefs it protects, the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary has its own shipwreck trail. Hawaii’s Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument holds remains of Hawaiian fishing sampans, Pacific colliers, American and British whaling ships, Japanese junks, and military ships and planes. These maritime submerged cultural artifacts are preserved in pristine waters, but they are also remote, (top) The Monitor National Marine Sanctuary isn’t just about USS Monitor. Other wreck sites, often teeming with marine life, are within the sanctuary’s boundaries and protection. In this photo, sand tiger sharks and other fish swarm over the wreck of the WWII-era oil tanker Dixie Arrow in the same waters as the Civil War iconic ironclad.

noaa onms / greg mcfall

(2nd from top) A kayaker paddles among the remains of 200 ships within the Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary, designated in 2019.


(left) In the clear waters of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, Dr. Kelly Gleason Keogh hovers over a ginger jar, one of many artifacts strewn across the reef at French Frigate Shoals from the 1823 wreck of the whaler Two Brothers. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

noaa onms / nick zachar

and the Monument staff has worked hard to make these sites available to the public through livestreaming field work on site and producing museum exhibits, documentaries, and publications to share with people across the country and around the world. These examples just hint at the history and marine environments being studied, protected, and shared by the National Marine Sanctuary system, and barely begin to tell of the work being done to preserve and interpret these resources for future generations. During this 50th anniversary year and beyond, explore the National Marine Sanctuary system firsthand to see how it is perpetuating, one story at a time, our country’s maritime history. Start with a virtual visit to https://oceanservice.noaa. gov/navigation/heritage/ and plan your journey from there.

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John Galluzzo is the author of 52 books on the history and nature of the northeastern United States and is the Maritime Heritage Chair of the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. With NOAA maritime archaeologists Matthew Lawrence and Dede Marx, he co-authored Shipwrecks of Stellwagen Bank: Disaster in New England’s National Marine Sanctuary for The History Press. John frequently reviews books for Sea History. The primary objective of a National Marine Sanctuary is to protect its natural and cultural features while allowing people to use and enjoy the ocean or waterway in a sustainable way. Sanctuaries serve as natural classrooms and laboratories for students and researchers alike to promote understanding and stewardship of our waters. (top) This youngster is learning to be a good steward by participating in a beach clean-up day in the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary in California.

noaa / ryan tabata

(2nd from top) Marine scientists, engineers, and ROV pilots test equipment in the control room aboard the NOAA research vessel Okeanos Explorer. (left) A marine debris team removes a large net from the shallows of Midway Atoll in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


From Pilot to President:

oregon historical society

f ter coming West in 1850, John Commigers Ainsworth became one of the most famous, wealthy, and influential figures in Pacific Northwest history. His business ventures in transportation, banking, mining and real estate not only made him and his partners rich, but also advanced the settlement, modernization, and economic development of the Columbia and Willamette River valleys.

John Ainsworth, taken during his late 30s or 40s. His lapel badge most likely commemorates his association with Oregon’s Freemasons, an organization in which Ainsworth enjoyed a long and prosperous career. Of all his business pursuits, Ainsworth’s presidency of the Oregon Steam Navigation Company (OSN) remains the most frequently celebrated by historians. The OSN has long been considered the first large-scale capitalistic enterprise in the Northwest. During its 19 years of operation, the OSN monopolized Columbia River transportation and dominated the Northwest economy. Under Ainsworth’s leadership, the OSN introduced modern transportation infrastructure, communication systems, and elitist wealth to the Oregon frontier. 18

by Mychal Ostler For Ainsworth, steam navigation was much more than a strategy for making money. Beneath his daily responsibilities as manager and investor, Ainsworth was a steamboat pilot at heart. He had a deep emotional attachment to steamboating, one that money could never replace. Later in life, he reminisced about his years in the pilothouse: “The sensation to me, of entering a water that had never before been divided by the prow of a steamer, was beyond description.” Before he became a wealthy business owner, Ainsworth struggled with poverty and instability. Born in 1822 in rural Ohio, Ainsworth lost his mother at the age of three and his father a few years later. By the age of thirteen, the orphaned Ainsworth was forced to quit school and assist an uncle in his mercantile business. In his uncle’s employment, Ainsworth worked long hours as clerk, sales associate, stock boy, and bookkeeper. His uncle eventually encountered financial setbacks and had to close his business. Now unemployed, Ainsworth followed his uncle to Kentucky, where they purchased a keelboat and a cargo of merchandise. They spent the next summer season floating down the Ohio River, gradually selling off their cargo to travelers and riverside patrons. Ainsworth discovered his home on the water. He spent the next fifteen years making a living on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, where he graduated from keelboat to steamboat, worked his way up the ranks to pilot, and eventually saved enough wages to buy his own steamboat, which he operated as captain. In 1848, news of the gold strike at Sutter’s Mill spread through Ainsworth’s neighborhood and his career goals changed quickly. He sold his steamboat, along with the rest of his property, and booked passage to California. After disembarking at San Francisco in the summer of 1850, Ainsworth took a steamer to Sacramento City, where he found a community of other Mis-

wikimedia, p.d.


Captain John Ainsworth & the Oregon Steam Navigation Company

Jacob Kamm’s resume included at least 20 years of service in the engine rooms of steamboats on the Mississippi, Columbia, and Willamette Rivers. Kamm and Ainsworth became close friends and business partners when they met in Sacramento City in 1850. The two helped found the Oregon Steam Navigation Company in 1860. The OSN made Kamm rich. He sold his company stock in 1866 for a total of $159,500 (approx. $2.9 million today). sissippi Valley transplants. One was Jacob Kamm, a Swedish immigrant who had much in common with Ainsworth, notably an extensive and unique resume of steamboat operations. While he was based there, a man from the Oregon territory came to town, a Willamette River settler named Lot Whitcomb. On a business trip to Sacramento City, Whitcomb was looking for qualified men to operate what he envisioned as the first modern steamboat north of the Bay area. He sought out Ainsworth and Kamm and pitched his idea for the construction of a steamboat that resembled the best packets SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

John Ainsworth’s house in Oregon City. Built in 1851, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

oregon public library

The Lot Whitcomb at her home port of Milwaukie, Oregon. Her launch in the winter of 1851 was a well-attended, all-day celebration featuring speeches, military band performances, feasts, and a formal ball. During the economic recession of 1854, the Whitcomb was sold to California interests for service on the Sacramento River. Ainsworth was aboard when she was towed down the coast to San Francisco. Local newspapers followed the Whitcomb closely, reporting her speed, excursions, towing jobs, and mishaps. The Whitcomb was said to have made the upriver trip from Astoria to Portland in less than ten hours, a fraction of the time it took any other Columbia River vessel—sail or steam—to travel the same route. Those who took personal risks to finance the project were richly rewarded. In just four years of operation, the Whitcomb produced sizable returns on her owners’

investments, notably Ainsworth who, just one year after the Whitcomb was launched, enjoyed enough expendable income to construct one of the finest antebellum residences in Oregon City. After selling the Whitcomb in 1854, Ainsworth and Kamm convened again for another project. Based on the challenges they encountered in the rough water below Oregon City, Ainsworth and Kamm concluded that the sidewheel design was not ideal for the Willamette River’s boulder-

photo by ian poellet, via wikipedia

on rivers back east: fitted with a passenger cabin, twin smokestacks, and sidewheels. The design, though a common sight on eastern rivers, did not exist in the remote Northwest. In exchange for their help in designing his steamboat, managing its construction, and operating it after launch, Whitcomb promised Ainsworth and Kamm competitive monthly salaries and part ownership in the vessel. Ainsworth and Kamm accepted Whitcomb’s offer and, after only two months in California, sailed again for a new home base. When they landed in Oregon City, they found a very different environment than what they had become accustomed to in California. The sparsely-populated and remote settlements lining the Willamette River offered few resources for shipbuilders. Ainsworth and Kamm ordered an engine and boiler from an East Coast firm and worked with a local foundry to produce the tools needed to assemble the machinery when it arrived. To pay for the orders and fund the acquisition of other materials and wages for laborers, Whitcomb and Ainsworth scoured their business networks to drum up investors. Meanwhile, to offset costs, Whitcomb mortgaged his entire estate and Ainsworth deferred his salary, accruing over $2,000 in back-pay. Eventually, even the laborers were asked to make sacrifices, including accepting produce from local farmers in lieu of cash wages. When launched, the finished steamboat was the most impressive man-made structure yet seen in the Oregon territory. Named after her principal owner, the 160foot Lot Whitcomb presented gracefully on the water with a shallow-draft hull, flanked with twin enclosed sidewheels, and a brilliantly painted deckhouse. Forward on the hurricane deck, Ainsworth and Kamm paid homage to their Mississippi River days by installing two towering smokestacks. From the day the Whitcomb was launched, she and Captain Ainsworth became instant legends in the region. Speeches were delivered and poems were written about the steamboat and its commander.


strewn and tumultuous currents. Their solution was to relocate propulsion to the stern as a way to increase power, responsiveness, and maneuverability. To increase visibility of constantly changing river conditions, forward stacks were swapped with the pilothouse, placing a single stack aft. The result was a very different design than what was typically seen, even on eastern rivers. When it was finished, Ainsworth and Kamm’s second steamboat (christened Jennie Clark after the daughter of one of the project’s investors) secured two places in history as the West Coast’s first sternwheeler and the first of a long line of vessels whose design would dominate inland waterway marine engineering for the next 70 years. With Ainsworth once again behind the wheel and Kamm in the engine room, the Jennie made daily trips between Portland and Oregon City. The sternwheeler design proved effective immediately as she plowed through the rapids below Willamette Falls, making the upriver trip in a fraction of the time of her contemporaries. Word spread that the Jennie was the fastest and most reliable means of travel on the Willamette, which increased passenger and freight counts and helped Ainsworth secure a mail contract. By 1858, Ainsworth and Kamm were ready for another project. Ainsworth invested heavily in making his next steamboat a marked improvement on the Jennie. He

and Kamm drew up plans for another sternwheeler, this time with a larger hull, engine, and boiler than that of the Jennie, and sprang for cabin comforts such as a dining hall, bunkrooms, salons, skylights, and even ornamental molding for bulkheads. Ainsworth sought financing in Portland and found a banker who agreed to cover a portion of the construction expenses. To demonstrate their appreciation, Ainsworth and Kamm named their new steamer after the daughter of the banker, Carrie Ladd. When launched, the Carrie Ladd proved even more handsome and powerful than the Jennie Clark. On her trial run, with Ainsworth at the helm and Kamm at the throttle, as usual, the Carrie broke the speed records set by their two previous steamers on the route from Portland to Fort Vancouver. Thrilled, Ainsworth then took the Carrie forty miles further up the Columbia River to test her strength against the Cascades rapids, where she not only broke the speed record for that route, but also climbed further up the rapids than any other steamboat had ventured before. After his trip to the Cascades, Ainsworth realized that the Carrie’s performance had much more value than mere novelty. Control of the most powerful vessel on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers granted Ainsworth control over trade, as shippers and travelers would be quick to learn that the Carrie was the fastest and most reliable mode of transportation into

oregon historical society

Contemporary drawing of Ainsworth and Kamm’s Jennie Clark, the first sternwheeler ever built or operated in the Pacific Northwest. After launching her in 1855, Ainsworth spent the next three years behind the wheel and even helped load and unload freight at landings. In the early 1860s, she was transferred from Willamette River service to a new coastal route to take advantage of growing seasonal traffic to Washington and Oregon beaches.


the Northwest interior. Ainsworth could run the Carrie between Portland and the Cascades and make a sizable profit stealing customers from his competitors. John Ainsworth had a much grander vision: he approached the major steamboat operators of the lower Columbia with a proposition to consolidate and share profits. They acquiesced, and the result was the transformation of several disparate firms into a single operation of the largest fleet of steam vessels yet assembled north of San Francisco. With his new responsibilities managing more assets, employees, and finances than ever before, Ainsworth traded his pilot cap for a seat at the head of the boardroom table of an organization calling itself the Union Transportation Company. In 1860, Ainsworth seized an opportunity to add to the fleet and double the service area of the company. He brought in fellow business owner and personal friend Robert Thompson, who owned and operated the only steamboat above The Dalles, Oregon. Thompson’s steamboat and toll road were absorbed by Union, which extended the larger company’s reach to the Snake River and interior Northwest market. Ainsworth then led a reorganization of the company, established a headquarters in Vancouver, elected an executive leadership team, issued company stock, and changed its name to the Oregon Steam Navigation Company. As the Civil War broke out in southeastern states on the other side of the continent, Ainsworth and the other OSN shareholders enjoyed a highly profitable first year of business. In the spring of 1861, gold was found in the Washington territory, and a rush ensued. The Columbia Valley became inundated with prospectors, who fought for deck space on the OSN’s steamers heading upriver. Hungry for profits, Ainsworth took advantage of the demand by charging high rates for passengers and freight. The result was a revenue stream so substantial that the board returned some of it to shareholders, paying them 4.5% in dividends by the end of the year. The rush continued to gain momentum the following year. Traffic doubled, and the OSN’s capacity for customers was exhausted. That summer, the OSN was forced to turn away patrons. Ainsworth, SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

poring over daily business at headquarters, struggled to keep up. He scribbled a note to a friend in San Francisco: “I scarcely have time to eat, and everyone connected with the company is hurried as much.” The hard work paid off, and by the end of 1862 revenue was even higher than in the previous year. Flush with the company’s cash, Ainsworth indulged in his passion for steamboats like never before. During the first four years of the OSN’s operations, Ainsworth assisted in the design or purchase of approximately 16 river steamers. Of these, the sidewheelers were the largest and most commodious. Most impressive was the 225foot New World, which dwarfed every other watercraft on the river at the time and whose passenger cabin featured red Oregon Steam Navigation Co. common stock certificate No. 3105, issued May 15th, 1874. Ainsworth’s signature is at bottom right. In 1872, the OSN sold the majority of its stock to the Northern Pacific Railroad, which subsequently ran into financial trouble, and the OSN was able to buy back a controlling interest at an average discount of 75% per share. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

upholstered seats, marble tables, and brass chandeliers. In 1865, the OSN appropriated $500,000 for their largest marine engineering project: a 270-foot ocean-going steamship, complete with masts, rigging, and twin 35-foot-wide paddlewheels, commissioned to inaugurate a coastal shipping service between San Francisco and Portland. When the Oregonian was launched from a New York shipyard and sailed

courtesy university archives

carleton watkins collection, oregon historical society

Sidewheeler Oneonta, launched in 1863 to serve alongside at least two other steamers on the OSN’s Cascades-Dalles route. This 150-foot-long, 500-ton vessel is perhaps the best manifestation of Ainsworth and Kamm’s affinity for the Mississippi River design. When she was transferred downriver in 1870, the honor of piloting her through the Cascades rapids was given to Ainsworth.

around Cape Horn for San Francisco, Portland newspapers reported that she broke the existing record for the voyage. As the nation recovered from the Civil War, Ainsworth continued to build and buy steamboats, expand the OSN, and accumulate personal wealth. The company chased the traffic, which chased the gold and silver strikes of the interior Northwest. Shipyards turned out new steamboats faster than ever, in as little as four months on one occasion, to capitalize on the dramatic increases in demand. By 1867, the OSN gained access to the Canadian, Salt Lake, and Missouri River markets through its navigation of uncharted lakes and rivers. Competition on the river was not an issue, for the OSN enjoyed a monopoly over hundreds of miles of inland water traffic. Ainsworth, ever-vigilant about and hostile toward those who schemed to encroach on the OSN’s market share, quickly took advantage of legal loopholes and arranged subsidy agreements with new steamboat owners to prevent them from operating on the OSN’s routes. Ainsworth and the board often bought competitors outright, rolling their assets into the company to serve their expansion goals. Ainsworth’s initiatives continued to make both profits and history into the 1870s. The OSN went on to build modern railroads, telegraph lines, shipping canals, and numerous commercial buildings throughout the Columbia and Willamette River systems. Steamboat construction continued, exclusively using the sternwheeler


Mychal Ostler is a lifelong Pacific Northwest maritime history enthusiast. Raised on the shores of the Columbia River and having worked several seasons as an engineer aboard the sternwheeler Columbia Gorge, Ostler is intimately familiar with paddlesteamer operations and lower Columbia River navigation. This is his second article for Sea History. Mr. Ostler can be reached at mychal. 22

oregon public library, ben maxwell collection

Sternwheeler Wide West

oregon public library, ben maxwell collection

Wide West interior

One of the OSN’s most celebrated and ornately decorated sternwheelers, Wide West, was built in Portland in 1877. Ainsworth spent a reported $114,000 to build the ship, whose engineering elements included watertight compartments with steam bailing pumps, a hydraulic steering gear, and running water for cabin toilets. After the great sternwheeler was dismantled in 1888, her crew quarters and pilothouse were installed atop the hurricane deck of the sidewheeler T J Potter, where it remained until 1900. Hotel Redondo, c. 1900

california historical society collection

design. The OSN’s crowning marine engineering achievements during the ’70s included the 246-foot Wide West and 236foot Mountain Queen, the largest and most luxurious sternwheelers ever built or operated in the Northwest. These two steamers connected with two railroads and another large sternwheeler to provide an approximately 300-mile through service that boasted the most comfortable, efficient, and modern accommodations of their time in the Northwest. In 1879, after two decades in the boardroom, Ainsworth sold the OSN, including its four railroads, multimilliondollar real estate portfolio, and fleet of 28 sternwheelers, to the Oregon Railroad and Navigation Company for $5 million. The OSN’s assets were irreplaceable to the OR&N, as was Ainsworth himself, who retained a seat not only on the OR&N board of directors but also on that of the Northern Pacific Railway, where he advised the management of each company’s Northwest operations and occasionally provided emergency financial assistance from his own bank account. After selling the OSN, Ainsworth moved to California. Outside of Oakland, he built Roselawn, a fifteen-acre country estate, complete with a massive mansion for himself, a five-acre ornamental garden, and a guesthouse for his son. Not one to be satisfied with a retirement of leisure, Ainsworth kept busy and invested the rest of his fortune by venturing into banking and real estate development. His largest venture was the construction of the elegant 225-room Hotel Redondo in Redondo, California. Active, productive, and industrious until nearly the end, Ainsworth died at the age of 71, just a few months after founding the Central Bank of Oakland.


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Celebrating over 40 years of America's finest contemporary marine art. Join today and you'll get our full color, quarterly magazine, the Society's News & Journal for a whole year (4 quarterly issues) 24

SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022 Painting: Priscilla Coote, Ebb Tide, oil on linen, 18 x 24 (detail)

Exulted by the Sea,

an Artist’s Inspir ation at the Water’s Edge


by C. W. Mundy

first met C. W. Mundy in 2016 at the first National Conference of the American Society of Marine Artists (ASMA) in Williamsburg, Virginia. He was a featured speaker and gave his signature presentation, “The Authorship of Painting and the Science Thereof,” in which he discussed the “Seven Foundational Truths” of painting: drawing, squinting, design, value, color, edges, and paint manipulation. Most of the people who attend the ASMA conferences are artists, with a few collectors and art lovers mixed in. I was there in my capacity as editor of Sea History to learn more about marine art and trends, and to get to know the artists with whom we collaborate on projects involving NMHS and articles for Sea History. I had never heard of C. W. before, but I appeared to be the only one there who was unaware of his large and heralded role in the contemporary marine art community. C. W.’s presentation was an education for me. I learned about hard edges and soft edges, the use of light, and the importance of composition and methodology. C. W. discussed how he views painting as “problem solving.” He even demonstrated the technique of painting upside-down. He was right-side-up of course, but he showed how, for studio work Rough Seas, When the Lee Rail Becomes a Stranger, versus painting en plein air (French term for 24 x 24 inches, oil on linen (2022) “in the open air”), flipping his canvas allows him to step away from interpreting a boat or scene as a specific subject and allows him to focus on shape, light, texture, color, and values. It was clear from his fellow artists in the room how much they value him as an ASMA Fellow, not just for his contributions as an artist, but also as a mentor. I subsequently learned, at the 2nd ASMA national conference, about his talents as a musician, as he opened the conference with a jam session on his banjo, playing bluegrass music for the group before he assumed his role as an artist and presenter. In addition to his achievements in the art world, which are considerable, he is a well-known performer with a bluegrass band. His current ensemble is a popular Indianapolis-based bluegrass band called the Disco Mountain Boys, which recently released a CD, The Impressionists. While ships and boats and waterfront scenes are clearly his passion, C. W. is also an award-winning portrait artist, illustrator, and still life painter, although we focus on just his maritime subjects here. Enjoy this look at some of the works of this multi-talented contemporary marine artist. If you are on Cape Ann, Massachusetts, this summer, it would be worth your while to swing by the Folly Cove Fine Art Gallery in Rockport and check out some of his recent paintings featured in An Expression in Art Featuring C. W. Mundy, Derek Penix, Tad Retz, and Patrick Lee, 18 June–14 July 2022. —Deirdre O’Regan The Rana and the Mimi, Late Afternoon Light, 16 x 20 inches, oil on linen (2001) SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022



y journey to paint old boats and harbors on location began in the early 1990s. My love for old wooden boats and schooners led to years of studying artwork created by the Old Masters of ships, schooners, pirate ships, and clipper ships in books and museums, and ultimately on a quest to experience painting harbors and boats en plein air.

Born and bred in Indiana, a mostly land-locked mid-western state, I first traveled to Michigan in 1992 to paint on location in the harbors of the Great Lakes, but I began reading about an old artist colony in Gloucester, Massachusetts, which piqued my interest and inspired me to seek out the working fishing town. The Rocky Neck Art Colony was established in the 19th

The Lynx at Dry Dock, Gloucester Marine Railway, Rocky Neck, 21 x 14 inches, oil on linen (2017) 26

century, and its members were artists I admired: Anthony Thieme, Aldro Hibbard, Emile Gruppe, and Frederick Mulhapt, among many others. Later, American Impressionists were attracted to the area and eventually formed the Rockport Art Association. Traveling to Gloucester and Rockport not long thereafter for a several-weeks-long painting trip, I came to realize that I always feel at home in these working waterfront communities, where boats and fishermen going about their daily business are part of the everyday scenery. I love the sights and sounds and smells that make the harbors recognizable as places of maritime labor and seafaring culture. Gloucester, considered to be America’s oldest working seaport, fulfilled my every expectation, and I have traveled many times to paint there ever since. Following these first expeditions, in 1994 I began making trips to Europe, the first of many extended plein air painting trips. Over many years, my wife and I always sought out the old harbors in each country we visited—France, Italy, Spain, England, and The Netherlands. It was a joy to spend the day painting along the waterfront, then enjoy a meal of freshcaught fish. Prior to each trip, my wife would do the legwork: reading the maps, studying up on local culture, and planning our itinerary, and during our travels she would shoot video and photograph me painting on location. Later, we would use the images, along with the art I created, to make up brochures about the paintings I made and to produce 20-to-30-minute professional videos from each trip. To make a livelihood as an artist, these promotional materials are key to getting the word out there and finding galleries and clients who might be interested in working with you. It was the dream of a lifetime to travel to all these places, immerse myself in the local environment, and paint what I observed. My artistic background began early in life. I studied art in high school and college, but I also pursued interests in music and sports. I continued my education in Los Angeles, earning a master’s degree in fine art. My first job as a professional artist was in sports illustration. I had comSEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

Schooner at Old Gloucester, 30 x 40 inches, oil on canvas (2017) peted as a basketball player in high school and college, and always had a passion for sports. With the guidance and help of others, I formed a company specializing in sports-related art and spent more than a decade following this pursuit. For a time, I worked as official illustrator for Bobby Knight, head basketball coach at Indiana University. Many of my sports illustrations are displayed at the National Art Museum of Sport, located on the campus of the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Two of my large paintings from this era hang in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. In the early ’90s I sought to move from the restrictions of illustration to pursue

more of a fine art career. I took workshops from prominent artists and began painting “from life,” rather than painting from pho-

tography. Traveling and painting landscapes en plein air was a great instructor. I learned to capture a scene in a few short

Bob Knight Neon Tribute, c. 1978 5 x 7 feet, graphite and acrylic SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


hours—a necessity because of the changing light and shadows over the course of a day, or the weather, mosquitoes, and other natural forces. Plein air painting forced me to work quickly and taught me to analyze a scene in a short amount of time: the values of the scene (there are nine values in the scale from dark to light), colors that naturally harmonize or complement, design with a centrality of focus, and edges within the painting (where shapes meet, from soft edges to hard edges). When I am painting, it’s not so much about the subject matter, it’s about seeing the shapes, values, lines, light and shadow. My artistic nature has always been to experiment, explore various ways to paint many different subjects, using brushes and palette knife and other art tools, sometimes even using an available twig or stick. As an impressionist-style artist, the recurring theme in my paintings has always been: “The power of the suggestive is much greater than the statement of reality.” Boats at Mevagissey, Cornwall, 12 x 12 inches, oil on linen (2019)

The Vincie N. at The Wharf, Early Morning, Gloucester, painted en plein air on location, 24 x 30 inches, oil on linen (2001) 28


“C. W. Mundy is one of America’s leading expressionists, no question. His mastery of all elements of painting—composition, atmospherics, lighting and color across a wide range of subjects, from still life to portraiture to landscape and seascape— speak volumes about his virtuosity. Plus his desire to share his insights and elevate the work of others make C. W. a great example for all the Fellows of the American Society of Marine Artists.” —Russ Kramer Fellow and past ASMA president (left) C. W. Mundy painting the fishing fleet on location in Gloucester, 2001. It has been an honor to be a Fellow in the American Society of Marine Artists since 2015 and participate in the recent ASMA national exhibition, which traveled to five museums throughout 2020–2022: Jamestown Settlement Museum, GulfQuest Maritime Museum, BurroughsChapin Museum of Art, Minnesota Marine Art Museum, and wrapping up at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. In June I will head to Gloucester and Rockport again. It is very exciting for me that my paintings will be exhibited for the first time in Rockport, in a place where I first began my career as a marine painter, at the Folly Cove Fine Art Gallery, with an opening of An Expression in Art, a fourartist exhibition, on June 18. My artwork will be exhibited at that time with three other nationally recognized artists: Derek Penix (California), Patrick Lee (Pennsylvania), and Tad Retz (New York). Currently, I’m spending more time in the studio and painting from my photographs, my memories and experiences. It has been a pleasure and a dream and a blessing to be able to travel the world to capture these beautiful and historic harbors. Gloucester is not only high on my list, but an enormous historical achievement. For more on the artist, visit www.cwmundy. com. Details on the exhibition this summer at the Folly Cove Fine Art Gallery are available at The Veteran, 40 x 30 inches, oil on canvas (2015) SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


How Sail Fueled the Industrial Revolution— Sailing Colliers and the Steamship Fleet

n 1909, just over 100 years after Robert Fulton’s North River Steamboat first sailed up the Hudson River, the largest wooden sailing vessel ever built was launched from the Percy & Small Shipyard in Bath, Maine. The six-masted schooner Wyoming was built as a collier—a sail freighter specifically designed to haul coal. Colliers had been used since the Middle Ages to supply cities with coal, but with the advent of steamboats and industrialization they took on new importance. The seventeen-year Fulton-Livingston steamboat monopoly was broken just four years before the Delaware & Hudson Canal opened in 1828, bringing high-quality anthracite coal from Pennsylvania to Kingston, New York, and from there to the Hudson Valley and beyond. This huge influx of inexpensive, high quality coal to the cradle of steamboat navigation dramatically helped expand the use of steamboats as competition to sail’s near 5,000-year monopoly on waterborne travel. As technology improved, steamships began plying the open ocean as well as inland waterways. But they had a serious The collier Wyoming. Massive schooners still had a role limitation—their range was dictated by the amount of fuel they could carry. in the steamship era, carrying coal to stations around Sailing colliers, which burned none of their cargo en route, supplied steamboat the country and around the globe to fuel the engines of fueling stations worldwide until after the First World War, enabling steamboats the ships that made most sailing vessel work obsolete. to expand their reach and travel ever-increasing distances. The global importance of coaling ports to projecting the commercial and naval power of 19th-century empires is easy to see by the publications they inspired, such as the Office of Naval Intelligence’s Coaling, Docking, and Repairing Facilities of the Ports of the World, issued from the 1880s to at least the 1910s. These publications gave the amount of coal imported to and available at places like Singapore, a critical coaling station between China and the Suez Canal. By 1887, the Southeast Asian island port city was importing 240,000 tons of coal annually from England alone. The importance of coal to navies and merchant fleets worldwide continued to grow and was the topic of many heated debates and reports in the US, UK, and elsewhere. Coal for industrializing cities along the US coast was provided by sail freighters like the Wyoming into the 1920s.

maine maritime museum collection


by Carla Lesh, Sarah Wassberg Johnson, and Steven Woods Hudson River Maritime Museum

hudson river maritime museum collection

Today, 30-40% of global maritime trade is dedicated to transporting fossil fuels, and ships are looking to keep that fuel as cargo and not use it up in the transport. The twin problems of high fuel costs and climate change have raised the same question faced by fuel shippers 150 years ago. More shippers are looking to the 19th and early 20th centuries for inspiration, as sail power is being reintroduced to the international shipping business. Lessons from the 1970s oil crisis have been revived for using free wind power to move cargo worldwide. Kingston, New York: A sloop and schooner loading coal at Island Dock in the late 19th century. 30


The Hudson River Maritime Museum in Kingston, New York, is examining the role of sail freight in the past and how our precarbon global economy might inform a future without fossil fuels. A New Age of Sail: The History and Future of Sail Freight on the Hudson River is on view now until the end of 2023. For more information, visit (left) Vessels loading coal at the docks of the Delaware and Hudson Canal, Rondout Creek, New York, 1870.

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Sail freighter schooner Apollonia

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OFF THE HOOK? The Fatal Fire Aboard the

Dive Boat Conception and the Limitation of Liability Act n Labor Day weekend in 2019, the charter dive boat Conception set out from Santa Barbara, bound for Santa Cruz Island (one of California’s Channel Islands), to provide its thirty-three passengers with a memorable scuba diving adventure. After a day of diving, the boat came to anchor in an uninhabited bay of the sparsely populated island, and everybody bunked down to await further diving adventures the following morning. A morning that most never saw. Overnight, in the pre-dawn hours of 2 September, a fire broke out on board. Five of the six crewmembers (including the vessel’s master) were sleeping on the topmost deck and, after unsuccessful efforts to suppress the fire or to extract passengers, were able to escape. All of the thirty-three passengers and one crew member who were sleeping in accommodations below the main deck were trapped, unable to escape as the boat burned and sank, despite efforts of the other crew and of first responders. It was one of America’s worst maritime disasters—a genuine tragedy. Investigations ensued, of course, but three days after the fire, lawyers for the vessel’s owners—the owners—filed a lawsuit, which asked the federal court to exonerate them—that is, to find them blameless—or at least to limit their liability to a sum fixed by federal statute: as little as zero, or as much as roughly $41,000. As the entire compensation for the loss of 34 human lives and the injuries to the five survivors, that would mean at most an average of less than $1500 per life lost, as the total compensation for the loss. The statute they referenced is the Shipowner’s Limitation of Liability Act, currently codified in US federal law: Title 46 of the United States Code, starting at Section 30501 (the “Limitation Act”). Today’s law is an evolution of a statute enacted by Congress in 1851, more than 170 years ago. The original statute was designed to promote investment in US-flag shipping. This was a time when there was actual competition among the various national merchant fleets for the opportunity to carry the trade of the producer nations of the world—principally those of western Europe. Many of those fleets were already protected by limitation schemes from other sources. The US statute was designed to put the US merchant fleet on a competitive footing with those of the nations with whom it competed for the intercontinental carrying trade—in 1851.

santa barbara county fire department


by CAPT Michael J. Rauworth, USCGR (Ret.)

MV Conception engulfed in flames, 2 September 2019. Limitation is largely not understood by the general public. It tends to provoke public outrage when some incident—like this one—puts it into the headlines: examples include the Deepwater Horizon mega-spill in the Gulf a decade ago (with eleven deaths), and the case of the Titanic, in which the owners were able to limit their liability to less than $100,000. The outrage is not without justification. Indeed, the law itself has been profoundly criticized—not only in the press, but also in scholarly legal articles. Some of the most potent criticism shows up in judicial opinions, including those written by judges who feel themselves constrained by the law to give the shipowner the benefit of limitation, despite their better judgment. In the wake of the Conception disaster, federal legislation has been proposed to amend the Limitation Act,1 and criminal charges have been brought as well. The key to getting the protection of the statute is the phrase “privity or knowledge.” If the incident and the harm is ruled to have happened without the “privity or knowledge” of the management or of the owners (and if the other procedural requirements have been satisfied), then the owners cannot be held liable for more than the cap spelled out in the Limitation Act, which is usually far less than the total harm suffered as a result. The tendency of judges in the modern era is decidedly hostile, though, to finding a lack of “privity or knowledge.” Limitation is accordingly very often denied. Whether the owners of the Conception will establish a right to limitation is yet to be seen; the facts as known suggest doubt. Assuming their claim for limitation is successful, let us consider the ramifications.


(left) MV Conception, owned and operated by Truth Aquatics out of Santa Barbara, California, ran live-aboard scuba diving excursions out to the Channel Islands.

1 “Small Passenger Vessel Liability Fairness Act of 2021;” S. 2805 and H. R. 5329, 22 September 2021.



photo by dick bell, tampa bay times, 1980

The insurer of the owners will be the principal beneficiary of the ruling. This is because most applicable marine insurance policies are claused so as to limit the liability of the insurer to the extent of the liability of the shipowner pursuant to limitation. Thus, it could be that the insurer may be called to reimburse the shipowners for the approximately $41,000 of the presumptive limitation fund, and no more. This would amount to the shipowner and its insurer dodging a bullet: avoiding nearly all liability for the financial losses to the estates of the 34 people who died in the fire and to those who survived with injuries. Most employers are legally fully responsible for harm caused by their employees, and they have to buy insurance that covers that liability. The original 1851 theory of the Limitation Act was that shipowners—because ships are often “out of reach”—have little ability to oversee or control the actions of the masters and crews of their ships (as distinct from shoreside employers), and therefore should not have to bear the full legal liability for their actions, unless those actions were known to or controllable by the owners—in other words, were within the owners’ “privity or knowledge.” But this statutory protection amounts to a subsidy in favor of the shipowner (and their insurers). Not a subsidy in the form of a direct payment but a subsidy in the form of relief from some sorts of liability, it’s typically assumed that such shelter from liability translates into lower insurance premiums for the subsidized industry. Subsidies are creatures of the political process, of course, and there’s typically a lively discussion about the wisdom of any given subsidy. But putting to one side the basic wisdom of the 1851 subsidy, a significant question that follows is: at whose expense does the subsidy come? In the case of the Limitation Act, the answer is: at the expense of those who suffer from the acts of the shipowner—namely the individual(s) who suffer personal injury or property damage—mostly the “ordinary citizens,” in other words. This is the underlying reason for most of the criticism of the Limitation Act. So, let’s take a moment to compare the Limitation Act to some of the similar2 protections3 that exist in some other industries. In aviation, for example, the Montreal Convention limits claims by passengers on international flights to something less than USD $200,000 per person. (Smaller limits apply to losses of property, etc.). The Convention requires notice to passengers of the limits that apply, and contemplates that travelers have access to one-time flight insurance, of the kind offered by kiosks or machines in airport corridors and lobbies. It has no application on purely domestic flights (e.g. Chicago to New York) or on flights involving nations that are not signatories to the Convention (e.g., Vietnam). In addition, it has the effect that airlines are barred from asserting certain defenses to liability. This largely means that

During a storm on 9 May 1980, the freighter Summit Venture struck a major support of the southbound lane of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge. The main span toppled into Tampa Bay. Automobiles and a Greyhound bus plummeted into the bay 150 feet below; 35 people lost their lives. airlines are automatically liable in crashes. (This is seen as something of a compensation for the opportunity to limit the amount of their liability.) Individual employees (e.g. pilots, mechanics) are also protected. The convention does not, however, protect those who do not operate air service, but who may nevertheless be sued (e.g., the Boeings and Airbuses of the world). And as with the seagoing Limitation of Liability Act, the subsidy comes at the expense of ordinary citizens, namely the passengers who are harmed but nevertheless denied (or limited in) their injury or death recovery. A significant difference is that only passengers are so limited in the aviation scenario (pursuant to a written warning printed on their ticket), while in the maritime scenario the limitation applies to all those who are harmed, even those who are strangers to the vessel or the voyage. For example, take the case of the 1980 allision of the bulker Summit Venture with the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, across the mouth of Tampa Bay. No one was killed aboard the ship, but more than 30 people driving across the bridge fell to their deaths. They certainly had no warning of any looming limitation of liability, nor any opportunity to “make other plans,” much less any opportunity to buy special life insurance in an airport corridor. In the end, limitation was denied in that case, despite the efforts of the owners of the Summit Venture. Had a few facts been different, those owners might have been successful, and all of those deaths would have gone uncompensated (or undercompensated). Just like the Titanic. For a further comparison, we leave the field of transportation and turn to nuclear power generation. In the years following World War II, the federal government faced the problem of encouraging the development of a civilian nuclear power generation

2 This article does not attempt to analyze the 1976 international Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims (the “LLMC Convention”). The US is not a signatory to the LLMC Convention, and therefore its vessels get no benefit from it, nor any limitation benefits anywhere outside the US. 3 Limitations of liability occur, of course, with great frequency in contracts, including those that most of us do not bother to read when asked to assent to them online. But at least these are capable of being identified by those who do bother to read them, and the consumer is at liberty to decline to concur, or to decline to do business with the entity that calls for assent to them. Other statutory limitations of liability exist as well, even when no contractual consent is required: one example exists in federal oil spill laws. These are outside the scope of this article.



industry. In particular, the power generation industry reported an inability to raise the necessary investment for civilian nuclear power because of the vast risks for which such a plant could be liable—think Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima— in light of the shortfall in the aggregate of the insurance coverage available from the whole of the private insurance industry in the US. At that point, that aggregate stood at a level that today appears quaint: a mere $60 million. (Commercial insurers are limited by law in the amounts of risk they are permitted to underwrite, limits that depend in part on their corporate assets.) In 1957, Congress enacted the Price-Anderson Nuclear Industries Indemnity Act. It required nuclear plant licensees to purchase the full $60 million of available liability coverage as a means of protection for the public. It required the licensees, collectively, to “chip in” to assemble a further fund of $500 million for the further benefit of those who might be harmed in a nuclear incident. But it capped the aggregate liability—to all of those who might be harmed—at the sum of the two, namely $560 million. In other words, once claims from a nuclear accident aggregated more than that figure, claimants would begin to lose out—they’d find their recovery capped by the $560 million aggregate limit, with no one else to turn to. Another case of a powerful industry being subsidized by a shield against suits brought by ordinary citizens whom they might harm. Now, it appears that fortune has largely favored the US nuclear industry. Even the Three-Mile-Island incident (1979) only drew something like $71 million from the then-existing funding scheme, which has been updated several times since 1957. In 2011 Fukushima generated a loss reported in excess of $2 billion. Imagine the consequences of a Chernobyl-level incident in proximity to New York City—just think of what we see on TV from Ukraine! Even with a successful (i.e., no-death) evacuation, the losses to the economy would be staggering, even if it were possible to re-occupy most of the NYC area fairly soon afterward. Without taking sides on the politically fraught issue of the wisdom of nuclear power generation (in the first place), let alone on the wisdom of a limitation of liability as to nuclear incidents, it is possible to report some good news on this front. In the latest re-enactment of the Price-Anderson Act, the available commercial insurance has increased to more than $400 million, and the additional fund for the benefit of those harmed increases the available funding to north of $12 billion. But in order to address the possibility of claims aggregating in excess of the funding provided for, the latest statute contains the following text: In the event of a nuclear incident involving damages in excess of the amount of aggregate public liability under paragraph (1), the Congress will thoroughly review the particular incident in accordance with the procedures set forth in subsection (i) and will in accordance with such procedures, take whatever action is determined to be necessary (including approval of appropriate compensation plans and appropriation of funds) to provide full and prompt compensation to the public for all public liability claims resulting from a disaster of such magnitude. 42 USC §2210(e)(2)(emphasis added). SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

This is significant. It means that today’s subsidy in favor of nuclear power is no longer expected to come at the expense of those ordinary citizens who may be harmed by an incident. Instead, the subsidy is planned to come at the expense of the entity that brought the subsidy into existence—namely the government of the United States. Let’s return to the original subject—the Limitation Act—and look anew at its original justifications and how they play in today’s world. The Act serves badly as an incentive for investment in US flag shipping: Limitation was intended to advantage US-flag shipping against the fleets of other nations, but today it is equally available to foreign-flag ships. How does that constitute an advantage? And why are ordinary citizens, harmed by foreign-flag ships, deprived of the ability to obtain full damages—all to the benefit of the owners and insurers of the foreign-flag ships? Moreover, in terms of international trade, the United States flagged fleet has long since largely ceded the field to foreign-flag ships (even if some are economically controlled in the US). Obviously, in terms of its competitive effect, the Limitation Act has completely failed to achieve the purpose that it was enacted to achieve. Indeed, the Limitation Act is at best a remote and weak subsidy and incentive. When it wants to, the government knows how to subsidize the US-flag fleet of ships through more direct—and above-board—means. For example: a) Currently, certain government-owned or -subsidized cargoes moving internationally are reserved for the USflag carriers. In the past, this cargo preference applied to larger amounts of cargo, and those higher numbers could easily be restored. Cargo reservation or preference is, of course, a form of subsidy; b) In the past, the federal government supported foreigngoing US-flag carriers by direct construction and operating subsidies, and certainly could easily do so again; c) US coastwise trade is totally reserved to US-flag ships, and therefore does not stand in competition with ships of other flags to begin with. The justification for the Limitation Act, thus, is severely eroded at best. Limitation is fundamentally not a wise provision of public policy: The original concept of the Limitation Act, of course, was that shipowners should have a measure of protection from liability for the faraway acts of the masters and crews of their ships. But domestic airlines have full responsibility for harm caused to third parties by their pilots and other employees, so do trucking companies, and rail operators. When an aircraft is in flight, or a truck is on a faraway interstate, the employer has about as little ability to directly supervise the conduct of the driver or pilot as does a shipowner with respect to a shipmaster and its crew. Modern insurance is available, after all, to afford liability coverage to 35

Unlike limitation in aviation, there is no notice given to those whose rights are limited: Airline tickets on flights subject to the limitation of liability under the Montreal Convention at least contain a written warning to the passenger, and stand-alone trip insurance is available in airport corridors, so that passengers can fill the gap. No such warning is required to be given to persons who are subject to limitation as to a marine casualty, even though the Limitation Act is likely to harm them even more than the Montreal Convention would. Indeed, even owners of cargo, who are subject to an additional form of limitation of liability under a different statute—the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act—are at least afforded the opportunity to “opt out” of the COGSA limitation. Maritime limitation sweeps too broadly: Even if the Limitation Act were amended to oblige carriers to warn their passengers of how the Act limits their rights (in parallel to the Montreal Convention), this would still be of no help to those who are harmed despite being strangers to the vessel, such as those who are harmed in incidents akin to the Sunshine Skyway Bridge disaster. The availability of modern insurance makes the Limitation Act obsolete: The nearly universal availability of marine liability insurance (known as Protection & Indemnity coverage, or “P&I”) is a major facet of today’s marine industry. Even though their policies afford them the benefit of the Limitation Act, the P&I insurers who underwrite the liability policies cannot be sure that the benefit will be available to them. After all, they must account for the risk that the incident in question will be ruled to have occurred with the “privity or knowledge” of the owner, and that limitation will thus be denied, and thus that their entire policy limits will be at risk. The risk that limitation might be denied must be taken into account in setting the P&I premiums for marine insurance policies. The additional premium (assuming that limitation was never available) cannot be of an amount that would be ruinous to ship operators. Moreover, near-universal involvement of marine insurance points to yet another unfairness of limitation. The subsidy that comes at the expense of ordinary citizens (by limiting their recovery) works mainly to the benefit of the P&I insurers—at the end of the day it is their checkbooks that are protected by the Limitation Act. Any subsidy to the US fleet should come through the “front door”: As stated above, the Limitation Act serves as a subsidy for shipowners (and their insurers), one that comes at the expense of ordinary citizens who have the bad luck to be harmed by a maritime disaster. This is profoundly unfair. The history of the Price-Anderson Act shows that the federal government is capable of “pick36

ing up the tab” when it uses a limitation-of-liability provision to subsidize an industry that it deems worthy of such protection. Since any such limitation of liability is under the control of the government, government itself should do what it takes so that ordinary citizens are not harmed by the limitation, as the current version of the Price-Anderson Act does. Indeed, as noted above, the federal government certainly knows how to enact other financial subsidies (direct or indirect) in favor of the maritime industry in the United States. To be sure, these come at the expense of the federal treasury (and eventually the taxpayers), and will therefore be subject to vigorous debate. But a subsidy in the form of limitation of liability should not escape public scrutiny or debate by “flying under the radar” of public attention—by the artifice of funding the subsidy at the expense of ordinary citizens, as the Limitation Act currently does. The bottom line is that the Limitation Act should be repealed. If Congress wants to subsidize the US-flag merchant fleet, let it do so by way of the “front door,” namely, an overt subsidy funded by the federal treasury. If Congress chooses to subsidize the industry by means of a new or different limitation of liability provision for the fleet, let it do so in the sunlight—with a provision that pays the ordinary citizens from the federal treasury for any shortfall in recovery from shipowners caused by the new limitation. There is simply no excuse to subsidize any industry at the expense of people who’ve been harmed by that industry.

ventura county fire department

airlines and trucking companies, providing coverage for the acts of all their employees. There is no basis for the idea that the maritime industry—as compared to trucking or aviation—deserves unique protection from liability for the actions of its employees.

MV Conception on the morning after the fire Michael J. Rauworth is a maritime attorney based in Boston who maintains a Coast Guard license as Master, Sail, Steam, and Motor Vessels of any gross tons, based on more than 200,000 nautical miles as a deck officer and master of commercial and military vessels. In nearly 30 years of service with the USCG and Coast Guard Reserve, he rose to the rank of captain and served in command of one US Navy unit and five Coast Guard units. His clients include pilot organizations, ship owners, port authorities, marine insurers, shipyards, marinas, and other maritime businesses and individuals, and he taught marine insurance at Massachusetts Maritime Academy for many years. Mike is well known in the traditional sailing ship community as the board chair of Tall Ships America, a post from which he recently stepped down after almost 20 years of service. His past articles in Sea History seek to explain maritime law with respect to the Jones Act, the Law of General Average, and this article on the Limitation of Liability. He is the winner of the 2018 Rodney Houghton Award for the Best Feature Article in Sea History. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

Your Purchase of this John Stobart Print Will Directly Support the National Maritime Historical Society! Generously donated by renowned artist John Stobart and the J. Russell Jinishian Gallery to benefit the Society, “New York, Lower South Street, c. 1885,” signed prints.

Through this special offer from the National Maritime Historical Society, you can acquire this stunning print that portrays a bygone time in New York City’s most historic waterfront area— a tranquil era of cobblestone streets, lantern light, and horse-drawn wagons. Each lithograph is personally approved and hand signed by the artist, John Stobart. Image size 18” x 26” on 25” x 33” paper, unframed. Special price for NMHS members: $350 each + $30 s/h.

To order, call 1-800-221-NMHS (6647), ext. 0, e-mail, or visit our website at SEA HISTORY 159, SUMMER 2017

NYS add applicable sales tax.



Two Recent Shipwreck Discoveries in Two Remarkable Weeks In a two-week period earlier this year, oceanographic research expeditions announced they had found and identified two important shipwrecks on opposite sides of the globe. One was the wreck site of Shackleton’s Endurance; the other was a small American whaling vessel. While the latter wasn’t famous, it does represent the opportunities that seafaring offered to black and brown men in the 19th century. Both discoveries offer a chance for us to learn more about our maritime history in new and significant ways. —Deirdre O’Regan, Editor, Sea History

Industry in the Gulf of Mexico, a 207-Year-Old Whaling Ship Found on the Seafloor


noaa ocean exploration

n 3 June 1836, the crew of the Nantucket whaler Harmony came across an abandoned vessel in the Gulf of Mexico, adrift and “waterlogged,” about 70 miles south of the mouth of the Mississippi River. They boarded the ship and “took off 230 bbls. oil, part of sails and rigging, chain cable and anchor.” The vessel was a Massachusetts whaler, Industry, and the loss was subsequently reported in

by Monica Allen various New England newspapers. The remains of the wrecked whaler were found 185 years later in 6,000 feet of water and identified by a team of scientists and archaeologists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), and SEARCH Inc. When members of NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research team were

planning the 2022 shakedown cruise for NOAA’s 224-foot research vessel Okeanos Explorer in the Gulf of Mexico, they decided to investigate the site of a previously located shipwreck that had not been fully surveyed. Guided via satellite through a connection from partner scientists onshore, on 25 February 2022, remotely operated vehicle (ROV) pilots aboard Okeanos Explorer maneuvered an ROV to the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico and collected footage of the wreck site that revealed a number of diagnostic features. The most obvious artifact that identifies this wreck as a whaling vessel is the telltale tryworks, a cast-iron stove with two large kettles that was used to render whale blubber into oil. The shoreside team, led by James Delgado, PhD, senior vice president of SEARCH Inc.; Scott Sorset, marine archaeologist for BOEM; and Michael Brennan, PhD, also of SEARCH Inc., already suspected that the previously unidentified wreck was the 1815 whaler Industry, based on historical records of the ship itself and analysis of the wrecking event as reported in contemporary documents. The NOAA team aboard Okeanos Explorer confirmed the vessel’s measurements matched those of Industry in historical documents. The location of the wreck site, 72 nautical miles from the whaler’s last recorded position, could be A NOAA Ocean Exploration crew aboard the research vessel Okeanos Explorer documented the brig Industry shipwreck in the Gulf of Mexico at a depth of 6,000 feet during a February 2022 shakedown cruise.




The prominent feature on the wreck is a cast iron stove atop a pile of bricks configured as a whaling tryworks. Iron ship’s stoves were commonly known as “cambooses” in the 19th century. The camboose on the wreck site is corroded and covered with concretion, but its face has the cast name “G & W ASHBRIDGE” clearly visible. The Ashbridges were scions of a prominent Quaker family that had invested in New Jersey bog iron founding and camboose manufacture. in the newspapers at the time, there was some mystery about what happened to its crew. When the Harmony’s crew came across the dismasted and sinking Industry, it had already been abandoned and the crew was nowhere to be found. Robin Winters,

This sketch of the brig Industry was found inside the ship’s 1828 logbook in the collections of the New Bedford Whaling Museum. As the American whaling fishery grew during the 19th century, so too did the vessels in the whaling fleet, as larger tonnage ships and barques became the standard. Schooners and brigs, however, remained in the fleets of smaller communities through the Civil War, especially those that engaged in seasonal hunting. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

new bedford whaling museum library and archives

attributed to the drift of the ship—awash but still afloat after it had been abandoned—within the Gulf of Mexico’s Loop Current. “That there were so few artifacts on board was another big piece of evidence it was Industry,” said Sorset. “We knew it was salvaged before it sank”—referring to the visit by Harmony’s crew when the vessel was still accessible. The 64-foot Industry was built in 1815 in Westport, Massachusetts, and hunted whales across the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, and the Gulf of Mexico for twenty-one years. During the ship’s career she consistently sailed with a diverse crew. While the crew list for her final voyage was lost when the ship went down, records from her first twenty years of whaling show that the ship’s company comprised black, white, multi-racial, and Native American men serving in various roles. Industry’s crew was searching primarily for sperm whales in the Gulf on 26 May 1836 when a storm snapped its masts and opened its hull to the sea. It is the only whaling vessel known to have been lost in the Gulf of Mexico out of 214 whaling voyages conducted there between the 1780s and the 1870s. While the loss of the ship itself was reported in the shipping community and

noaa ocean exploration

The shipwreck site reveals minimal artifacts on the seafloor, but the outline of the ship is clearly delineated in the sediment and allows archaeologists to get a reasonable measurement of the hull’s length and beam. Marine organisms have consumed much of the structure, leaving the floors and portions of the frames intact, but little remains of any wooden ship component above the mud line.


new bedford whaling museum library and archives

a librarian at the Westport Free Public Library, tracked down a 17 June 1836 article in the Nantucket Inquirer and Mirror that reported the Industry’s crew had been picked up at sea by another Westport whaling ship, Elizabeth, and her crewmen were eventually returned safely to Westport. “This was so fortunate for the men onboard,” said Delgado. “If the black crewmen had tried to go ashore, they would have been jailed under local laws. And if they could not pay for their keep while in prison, they would have been sold into slavery.” Whaling and its role in American history have been studied from many angles, but the typical whaling history most people have learned about concerns the big square-riggers and crews: the fictional Captain Ahab of the Pequod and Moby-Dick, the real-life Captain Pollard of the Essex, and the well-documented ship and crew of the last surviving wooden whaling ship Charles W. Morgan, for example. During

Boat-steerer and foremast-hand fastening a harpoon to its shaft. this same period, whaling provided men of color an opportunity for steady employment, upward mobility, and relative independence as compared to the experiences

of their brethren ashore. “Imagine, then,” said Delgado, “the circumstances for these sailors…sailing as free men from Westport and touching at American ports where slavery existed…. With this in mind, seventy miles out in a stormy Gulf, did the crew fear trying to row for shore in their boat, or have a greater fear if a passing ship headed for a Gulf port might pick them up? Fortunately for Industry’s crew, the whaling brig Elizabeth of Westport… was close by and rescued them all.” Monica Allen is the Director of Public Affairs for NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research.

new bedford whaling museum library and archives

Industry is also connected to the life of Paul Cuffe, a well-known Massachusetts sea captain, entrepreneur whose father was a freed slave and mother was a Wampanoag Indian. Cuffe started whaling as a teenager and rose to become a successful shipbuilder, merchant, abolitionist, philanthropist, founder of an integrated public school, and among the leaders of a project to settle freed black people in a new colony in Africa. His son William served as Industry’s navigator and his sonin-law, Pardon Cook, was an officer onboard. Cook is believed to have made the most whaling voyages of any black person in American history. (left) Paul Cuffe’s son, William Cuffe, is listed in this 1828 logbook as Industry’s boat steerer and navigator. 40


Endurance Found: Shackleton’s Legacy Endures ne hundred years after the death of Ernest Shackleton, the ship that he abandoned in the Antarctic was located by a team of maritime archaeologists and oceanographic technicians as part of an expedition organized by the Falkland Maritime Heritage Trust, led by Falkland Islands native and maritime archaeologist Mensun Bound and expedition leader John Shears. The discovery was made on 5 March of this year, following the work initially conducted by the 2019 Weddell Sea Expedition, during which the search for Endurance was not the main focus but rather an added mission, since the research vessel was going to be conducting marine science surveys in the same area where the Endurance sank in 1915. Endurance was purpose-built in 1912 for polar cruising, with her keel, frames, and planking made from stout oak and Norwegian fir. Her hull was sheathed with tough greenheart (Chlorocardium rodiei ) as a sacrificial layer to protect the hull from damage by ice. A 144-foot three-masted barquentine, Endurance could operate under both sail and power, as she was fitted with a 350-horsepower coal-fired steam engine, which could get the ship moving at speeds greater than ten knots.

royal geographical society


by Mark Antelme and Celicourt Communications

Searching for a lead of open water in the ice pack: When conditions allowed, the Endurance crew set all sail and fired up the engine to try to push through to open water, to no avail. Shackleton purchased the ship in January 1914 to serve as his expedition vessel for his upcoming Imperial TransAntarctic Expedition, during which he planned on crossing the Antarctic continent overland. The saga of the ill-fated expedition is one of the most famous in history, and the story and photos of the crew’s aban-

donment of their ship in the ice pack of the Weddell Sea and their remarkable feat to save themselves have been studied, exhibited, written about, and dramatized in documentaries and films. Photographer Frank Hurley’s presence of mind to photodocument their experience and make sure his glass-plate negatives survived the ordeal

falklands maritime heritage trust

Endurance’s hull is upright and remarkably intact. The ship’s wheel is still in place and the aft deck is now home to deep-sea marine life.



courtesy falklands maritime heritage trust and nick birtwistle

has made it easy for people to learn about the ill-fated expedition. The last any human laid eyes on the ship was on 21 November 1915, when the ship, heavily damaged by the crushing pressure of the ice pack, sank after being trapped in the ice for 10 months. The mission shifted to one of self-rescue, and, for all the attention the story has received over the last century, little attention has been given to the fate of Endurance. Until recently. After a private donor funded the 2022 expedition to the tune of more than $10 million, the goal to find Endurance became the primary focus. A ship and crew were assembled to carry out the mission towards the end of the Antarctic summer, when the ice would be at its thinnest. The team put to sea from Cape Town aboard a South African polar research and logistics vessel, Agulhas II, owned by the Department of

Agulhas II entered the Weddell Sea in mid-February 2022 and began deploying the AUV shortly afterwards. The 440-foot polar research vessel was built for navigating through and breaking ice. It can push through ice one meter thick at a speed of five knots.

royal geographical society

Forestry, Fisheries and Environment. The expedition’s departure was widely covered in the news. Few outsiders had faith that there would be much left to see, even if they did find the ship’s remains on the seafloor, considering the photographs Frank Hurley shot in the weeks before the ship sank, showing the rig crumpled and tangled in a complicated mess of wire, rope, and splintered wood. Onboard Agulhas II, the expedition leaders were confident that the hull was likely to be intact and that the conditions in the depths of Antarctic waters would have preserved the wood and metal components of the ship. After approximately thirty dives with the autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) in a predefined search area, the wreck site was located in nearly 10,000 feet of water, sitting upright and in an excellent state of preservation. Maritime archaeologists rarely get such immediate and conclusive evidence that allows them to identify a given


So determined was photographer Frank Hurley to save his glass-plate negatives documenting the expedition that he returned to the flooded ship after they had abandoned it to retrieve them. Recovering more than 120, Shackleton reportedly had him smash the remaining plates so he would not be tempted to return for the others. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

falklands maritime heritage trust

It doesn’t get much better than this for maritime archaeologists trying to identify a shipwreck.

Frank Wild, second in command of the expedition, takes a last look at Endurance after the crew had abandoned the ship and set up camp on the ice a safe distance away. The ship was obviously severely damaged when it sank with its rig in a tangled broken mess, but the 2022 team was confident that the hull beneath the ice would likely still be intact. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

designation assures that any expeditions to the wreck site will not make contact or disturb the vessel’s remains “including all artifacts contained within or formerly contained within the ship, which may be lying on the seabed in or near the wreck within a 150-meter radius. This includes all fixtures and fittings associated with the ship, including ship’s wheel, bell, etc. The designation also includes all items of personal possessions left on the ship by the ship’s company at the time of its sinking.”

The submersibles did not make contact with the vessel’s remains or its associated artifacts; the images and scans captured on the seafloor will be used to create educational materials, museum exhibits, and a documentary. Mark Antelme is CEO of Celicourt Communications, the PR adviser for the Endurance22 Expedition. The Celiocourt team also handled communications for the Weddell Sea Expedition in 2019.

royal geographical society

vessel on the bottom of the ocean, but this shipwreck leaves no doubt. When the team sent the second AUV down with highresolution video and still cameras, there was the name “ENDURANCE” staring them in the face, without a letter missing or out of place. The wreck site is approximately four miles south of the last recorded position as logged by Endurance’s captain, Frank Worsley. The photos of the ship on the seafloor excited not just people interested in the Shackleton saga, but marine scientists who are reveling in the images coming back from the depths of strange and rarely seen marine life growing on and near the wreck, including a wide variety of sea stars, sponges, anemones, and a deep-sea squat lobster thriving in the frigid waters so far down that no sunlight penetrates to the seafloor. In 2019, the Endurance wreck site was added to the Antarctic Treaty as a designated historic site and monument. This


SEA HISTORY for kids

courtesy the wandering bull, llc

Each northern quahog has a unique white and purple pattern, which Native artisans for at least 4,000 years have shaped into pendants, beads, spoons, and tools. and waste materials. Since quahogs prefer warm, muddy, or sandy bottoms, they’re usually found in shallow bays along the coast and the mouths of rivers. Quahogs only live along the North American east coast and the shores along the Gulf of Mexico. Marine biologists identify two species: the northern quahog ranges from the Canadian Maritimes down to Florida, while the southern


quahog lives off Florida and around the Gulf of Mexico. The northern quahog’s shell is generally smooth on the outside and usually has that famous purple edging and swirls on the inside. The southern species has rough, more pronounced ridges on the outside of the shell, and its inner shell is usually entirely white. In 1758, Carl Linnaeus of Sweden coined for this particular clam the species name mercenaria. “Mercenaria” is from the Latin for wages or a hired worker. Linnaeus must have read about how beads made from this clam’s shell, “wampum,” had been used as a type of money. Unfortunately, this connection between the quahog clam, wampum, and currency has been oversimplified. To start, the word “wampum” is taken from an Algonquian word, wa” pa” piag, which meant specifically a string of shell beads that were only white. Colonists reduced the term to simply refer to all beads. More importantly, for Native American tribes in this part of the world, this clam is foremost a source of food and spiritual connection. Historically, Native people crafted quahog shells into scrapers to carve wooden boats and bowls, and into eating utensils, trowels, and even into tweezers. Beyond valuing quahogs for food and tools, Wampanaog and other Native American tribes used the shells to make beads and other forms of art. Oral histories and archaeological excavations reveal that Wampanoag ancestors and other Algonquin peoples have eaten quahogs and made beads from the shells for more than 4,000 years. The women in these coastal communities, especially during the centuries of

deirdre o’regan

Animals in Sea History by Richard J. King he quahog, a clam, has had a diverse role in human history, but it’s one that has often been misunderstood. Pronounced kō-hog—derived from the names common to Native American tribes of the region, like that of the Narragansett, who call the animal poquaûhog—this clam is a bivalve invertebrate with gills, a liver, a heart, and two oval shells connected with a thick hinge. Quahogs dig themselves just below the surface of the seabed, then they send up two straw-like tubes: one to inhale sea water for oxygen and microscopic plants, and the other to exhale that water

Quahogs are often served steamed with butter or as the main ingredient of clam chowder. European colonization, became the primary gatherers of shellfish to feed their families, as well as working as artisans to create wampum. When European settlers arrived, quahog beads began to serve as a convenient way to barter, a substitute for coins when trading, but this was only a late and very brief development in North American history. To create wampum, pieces of the shell are carefully broken, filed, and smoothed into tubular beads, then painstakingly drilled into each end of the bead to make the hole.

Wampum, tubular beads, are a Native art form for decoration, community building, and story-telling. For a relatively short time, wampum was used as a form of currency when Native tribes wanted to trade with colonial settlers.

throughout the ancestral territory of the Wampanoag, Narragansett, and Mashantucket-Pequot tribes, among others. In 2020, over 100 people of the Mashpee-Wampanoag tribe, led by Paula Peters and Linda Coombs, created an ornate wampum belt to tell a story and revive the tradition of creating wampum within their community, and to serve as the leading object of a traveling exhibit in the UK that was interpreting the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower’s arrival to Cape Cod. This wampum belt,

made with nearly 5,000 quahog beads, was also created to raise awareness for their search for an exceptionally significant belt, worn by their ancestor Chief Metacom (King Philip), which was stolen after he was murdered in battle. It is possible the belt, made of quahog shell, is still somewhere in England. Thank you to Paula Peters for help with this story. For more Animals in Sea History see or

One of the most meaningful and earliestdescribed wampum belts, of the treaty type, is known today as the “Two Row Wampum,” explained in the oral history and transcribed speeches of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois). Their leadership had achieved remarkable peace among themselves, uniting multiple tribes. In 1613 they then negotiated a treaty with the Dutch, presenting these new settlers on the Hudson River with the Two Row Wampum to commemorate the agreement. On the belt, two bands of purple beads ran parallel on a white-beaded river, one band representing the Dutch ship’s path and the other a Native canoe’s path, each riding parallel but on their own as equal, autonomous, and peaceful nations. Today, quahog remains a prized food, fishery, and medium of artistic expression Danielle Greendeer holds the recent Mashpee-Wampanoag wampum belt, crafted by over 100 community members.

“Sea History for Kids” is sponsored by the Henry L. & Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation

courtesy smoke sygnals

courtesy smoke sygnals

Only a couple of beads can be made from a single shell, so hundreds, sometimes thousands of quahogs need to be harvested and crafted to make a large wampum adornment for the wrist or neck, or for a long sash or belt. Although people have worn wampum jewelry or adornments informally, wampum garments have traditionally been created for sacred reasons and for storytelling. Some of these individual works of Native art have lives of their own for particular communities, similar to the life of a document like the Declaration of Independence or the passing down of a family Bible or Torah. Wampum belts are often too large or beautiful to be worn on a regular basis. They have been used as invitations to formal events, to document and signify treaties, to declare alliances, and to commemorate family and community connections.


Everyday Speech from Sailors of Yesterday


eafarers speak in a language all their own. They don’t look left and right, but rather port and starboard. Ships’ cooks don’t work in kitchens, they cook in galleys. Boats don’t have bathrooms, they have heads. Ships are constructed with ceilings and floors, but the ceiling isn’t over your head, and the floor isn’t what you stand on. Feeling sleepy and a little unsteady? You might say you are feeling groggy. Are you queasy? You have nausea. Surprised and perhaps annoyed or disgusted? Then you might say that you are taken aback by the situation. Skimming money off an account at work is known as keeping a slush fund on the sly. Most of these terms are familiar to everyone, landlubbers and sailors alike, but these come straight from the sailor’s vocabulary. Let’s take a look at some of the terms and expressions we use every day that come from nautical origins.

Speaking of admirals, during the Age of Sail, ships’ officers in the British Royal Navy, like noblemen ashore, wore large curly wigs as a symbol of wealth and rank. The higher their status, the bigger and more elaborate the wig. Thus, the men referred to the ship’s officers Bigwig Admiral Vernon, a.k.a. “Old Grog” as bigwigs (but not to their faces). Admiral Vernon is thus associated both with the terms grog, groggy, and bigwig. Today, we call people who are important or influential (or those who consider themselves important) “bigwigs.” Maritime archaeologists investigating the remains of HMS Invincible, which sank in 1758, found an unusual artifact on the wreck site—wig curlers, which were used to style the wigs of the ship’s officers. The wig curlers are currently on display as part of Diving Deep: HMS Invincible on exhibit at the Chatham Historic Dockyard in England until 20 November 2022.


Back onshore, we hear a lot in the news about the practice of filibustering in Congress, a term referring to the tactic used to stall a vote on legislation by “talking a bill to death,” whereby a senator can talk at the podium for an unlimited amount of time without interruption and thus obstruct or delay the vote. The term first appears in the English language in 1591, then called “fleebooter” or “freebooter” from the Dutch word “vrijbueter” and the Spanish word “filibustero.” A freebooter referred to pirates and buccaneers who robbed or plundered. The term evolved to the definition we use today when politicians who engaged in this type of obstruction were deemed political pirates who hijacked the discussion and thus robbed the time and objectives of the majority. (above) Actor Jimmy Stewart’s character in the 1939 film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington famously staged a filibuster to halt the vote on legislation he considered unjust and corrupt. In the movie, his marathon speech lasted just shy of 24 hours before he collapsed from exhaustion. In real life, the record for the longest continuous filibuster goes to South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond, who in 1957 stood at the podium and spoke against the proposed Civil Rights Act for 24 hours and 18 minutes.


Not enough sleep or maybe too much sleep? When you are feeling a little out of it, you would say you are feeling groggy. The term refers to when sailors drank too much grog, which in the Age of Sail was served as a daily ration of watereddown rum aboard navy ships. Booze on a navy ship? Who thought that was a good idea? In that era, ships carried drinking water in barrels, but water stored this way has a limited shelf life. Because they could not risk dehydration amongst the crew, the sailors’ fluid intake was supplemented with beer and rum, which could be stored for long periods of time. In 1740, a British admiral, either concerned with the effects drinking alcohol had upon the sailors, or perhaps interested in saving money, ordered the rum be diluted with water. The decision was made by Admiral Edward Vernon, known as “Old Grog” because of his fondness for wearing a coat made of grogram—a kind of coarsely woven cloth. Needless to say, the sailors were not pleased about the new rule and, from that point on, the watered-down rum was referred to as “grog.”

Following on the sometimes not-so-admirable tactics used in politics, “slush fund” refers to a stash of money set aside for expenses that are not kept on the books, often used for bribes or some other inappropriate expenditures. Back when the mainstay of the sailor’s diet was salted meat, the ship’s cook would boil the meat in big pots to make it palatable, and then skim the greasy fat off the top, called slush, and store it in empty barrels. There was a market ashore for the slush, and the cook, if he didn’t get caught by the ship’s officers, would sell it, and keep the money for himself.


Sea History Scavenger Hunt

ACROSS 3. type of whale often seen breaching on Stellwagen Bank 4. autonomous underwater vehicle 7. hull sheathing to protect wooden ships from ice damage 9. 2 words: ship cook’s skimming the fat for personal gain 13. schooner delivering food along the Hudson River in 2021 14. political stalling, but comes from a nautical background 15. type of marine propulsion that in time made sails obsolete 16. type of propulsion used by steamers before the propeller 18. the “Titanic of New England” 19. territory where John Ainsworth made his fortune 21. Limitation of Liability Act serves to protect this group 23. Sea History & the National Marine Sanctuaries are this old 24. type of vessel that carries coal 29. 2 words, ship that struck the bridge across Tampa Bay 31. wind changing in a clockwise direction 32. Shackleton’s intrepid photographer 33. the whaling ship Industry was this type of vessel

DOWN 1. Endurance’s sailing rig 2. Marblehead schooner serving in “Washington’s Navy” 5. Sea where Endurance sank in 1915 6. 3 words, artist painting outdoors 8. sacred garment made from wampum 10. bivalve that makes good eatin’ and wampum 11. Marine National Monument in the NW Hawaiian islands 12. how sailors felt if they drank too much of their daily ration 13. Treaty that protects the Endurance wreck site 17. six-masted schooner built at Percy & Small Shipyard 20. Sea History’s first editor 22. what to pack for a visit to the 1st National Marine Sanctuary 25. ship that rescued the Industry’s crew in the Gulf of Mexico 26. famous black sea captain, entrepreneur, and abolitionist 27. Ainsworth’s business partner; namesake of their first vessel 28. Mississippi, Columbia, and Willamette 30. the first National Marine Sanctuary site

Answer key on page 55. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


courtesy uscg sector buffalo

Hull work on the decommissioned Fletcher-class destroyer The Sullivans (DD-537) was just one week away from resuming for the 2022 season when a major hull breach on 13 April caused the ship to take on water at her berth at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park (BECNMP). The ship had been undergoing hull repairs in 2021 to remove zebra mussels, inspect the hull, and apply an epoxy coating. That process had to be suspended for the winter when the water temperature dropped below 54 degrees due to the application parameters of the two-part epoxy. As a result of the hull breach, the ship began taking on water and developed a 22-degree list to starboard. The response effort included members of the Buffalo Police and Fire Departments, the Department of Homeland Security, the US Coast Guard, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, BidCo, T & T Salvage, and Miller Environmental Group. The dewatering process employed 22 industrial pumps; by 2 May the mission to right the vessel had shifted from an emergency response phase to a

Water being pumped out of the flooded USS The Sullivans (DD-537 on 15 April 2022. maintenance and decontamination phase. Divers had plugged more than 50 holes in the hull, and about 95% of the water had been removed from the ship. As of press time, cleaning and decontamination of the interior spaces was underway and museum staff were conducting a triage of artifacts

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removed from The Sullivans in workspaces aboard the guided missile cruiser Little Rock. The Sullivans will most likely remain closed to the public for the 2022 summer season but the museum’s other two ships, the Guided Missile Cruiser USS Little Rock and the Gato-class submarine USS Croaker, are open for visitors. Paul Marzello, BECNMP President and CEO, told the Buffalo News: “I want to thank a community that’s filled with passion, commitment, and faith for standing strong when faced with misfortune. The motto of The Sullivans is ‘We Stick Together,’ based on the passionate spirit of the five Sullivan brothers, and that was never more evident than the 21 days it took to raise the ship named in their honor. We will be stronger as an organization as a result of this incident.” USS The Sullivans is the only US Navy ship to be named for more than one person; the Sullivan brothers—Joseph, Francis, Albert, Madison, and George—were killed in action on 13 November 1942 when their ship, USS Juneau (CL-52), was sunk by a torpedo. The Sullivans was commissioned on 30 September 1943 and saw action in World War II as well as the Korean War and the Cuban Missile Crisis. When she was decommissioned in 1965, she had earned eleven battle stars for meritorious performance. The vessel was transferred to Buffalo in 1977. (BECNMP, One Naval Park Cove, Buffalo, NY; Ph. 716 847-1773; ... SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

The Lake Champlain Maritime Museum (LCMM) has announced that it will be retiring the Lois McClure, a full-scale replica of an 1862-class sailing canal boat, in October of 2023. The final two seasons of the vessel’s service will “give [the museum] the opportunity to explore how canal boat owners would have evaluated, repaired, and retired their own canal boats in our past,” according to the museum’s website. LCMM is documenting the process for what it calls a “living archive,” which will contain oral histories and other documents; the public is encouraged to share family stories, photos, and documents related to life on the canals, as well as Lake Champlain canal schooner Lois McClure

Records from 370 whaling voyages have been added to the database, and the Dennis Wood Abstracts of Whaling Voyages have been integrated into its offerings. The Dennis Wood abstracts are brief summaries of whaling voyages over the period 1830– 1874, drawing on letters, telegrams, and reports, as well as the Whalemen’s Shipping List and Merchants’ Transcript. More than 2,300 pages of handwritten entries were scanned from the collection of the New Bedford Free Public Library and uploaded

to the Internet Archive (, and can be accessed via the WhalingHistory website. “These new additions to the world’s most comprehensive whaling history database enhance the site’s scope and, most important, make it available for all to use,” said Paul O’Pecko, Vice President of Research Collections at Mystic Seaport. “Researchers, genealogists, students, teachers, and history buffs alike will find it to be the most robust and useful repository of whaling history documentation and

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memories from anyone who volunteered on or aboard the McClure. The Lois McClure was built in 2003–2004 at the Lake Champlain Transportation Company’s Burlington shipyard, based on a set of plans from 1842 and studies of two Burlington Harbor shipwrecks, the General Butler and the O. J. Walker. The schooner is named for museum supporter Lois McClure who, along with her husband, Mac, is a contributor to the schooner project as well as other local community projects. The McClure is 88 feet long with a beam of 14.5 feet, and is constructed of mostly local-sourced wood, including 20,000 feet of white oak from Vermont and Maine for the hull. www., 4472 Basin Harbor Road, Vergennes, VT) ... New content has been added to the whaling history website, a joint project of Mystic Seaport Museum and the New Bedford Whaling Museum. The site incorporates data from sources such as logbooks, journals, ship registers, newspapers, business papers, and custom house records. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

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These maps from the Distribution Mapping and Analysis Portal show changes in black sea bass distribution from 1974 to 2019. Black sea bass expanded approximately 140 miles north over this period of time. Analysis Portal (DisMAP) draws on data from NOAA Fisheries bottom trawl surveys for the Northeast, Southeast, Gulf of Mexico, West Coast, and Alaska regions, reporting on over 800 fish and invertebrate species caught in those surveys. Visitors to the portal can track a given species to learn about changes in its distribution over time, as well as indicators such as change in latitude, depth, and range limits. “Changes in fish stocks can have significant economic and cultural impacts for communities and businesses across the US. The visualization capabilities of this new tool

boost our ability to turn the data NOAA collects into robust decision-making resources for the entire fishery management community, helping build a Climate-Ready Nation,” said NOAA administrator Rick Spinrad. ( dismap/) ... The Congressional Gold Medal was awarded on 19 May to the US merchant mariners of World War II, who played crucial roles in the nation’s war effort. Congress passed the Merchant Mariners of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act two years ago to recognize the merchant mariners for their courage

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scholarship.” The Whaling History project features three databases that have been stitched together—the American Offshore Whaling Voyage database, the American Offshore Whaling Log database, and an extensive whaling crew list database. All data is open to the public and is downloadable for any researcher to use with other tools and systems. (MSM, 75 Greenmanville Ave., Mystic, CT; www.mysticseaport. org; NBWM, 18 Johnny Cake Hill; New Bedford, MA; ... The amount of information available online for maritime research continues to expand; the Lloyd’s Register Foundation Heritage and Education Centre (HEC) announced in January the release of over 150 editions—from 1768 to 1919—of the Lloyd’s Register of Shipping to Google Books, with further editions to follow. The HEC has made the volumes available via Wikimedia and Internet Archive portals as well. The program’s goal is to make every edition of Lloyd’s Register to the year 2000 available across all platforms. As different volume sets were digitized at different times by different entities, the depth of accessibility varies. The Register Book for the years 1764–66, for example, can be viewed as PDFs, while the years 1930–35 are searchable by ship name, build year, and tonnage, and later Registers are searchable for any data field. The HEC online collection features ship plans, correspondence, and other documents related to ships in the Register, as well as the Center’s library catalog. The resource has its roots in Edward Lloyd’s Coffee House in London; its customers founded the Society for the Registry of Shipping in 1760 to record information on the quality of vessels for the benefit of merchants and underwriters. The Society has evolved over the years; in July 2012 Lloyd’s Register converted to Lloyd’s Register Group Limited, whose shares are owned by the registered nonprofit Lloyd’s Register Foundation. (www. ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries, in collaboration with Rutgers University’s Global Change Ecology and Evolution Lab, has launched an interactive tool to track the location and movement of marine species in US waters. The Distribution Mapping and

World War II Merchant Mariners at the Capitol. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022


in any military branch, according to the National World War II Museum. In 1988, the mariners became eligible for benefits through the Department of Veterans Affairs. (AMMV,; Dept. of Veterans Affairs, … The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS) announced in March the discovery of the 172-foot schooner-barge Atlanta in 650 feet of water in Lake Superior near Deer Park, Michigan. The discovery followed the work from last


and contributions during the war. “[President Franklin D. Roosevelt] called their mission the most difficult and dangerous transportation job ever undertaken,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at the ceremony, which was held at the US Capitol and attended by congressional and military leaders. The medal will be displayed at the American Merchant Marine Museum in Kings Point, New York. In addition, each of the surviving WWII merchant mariners—now estimated to number about 12,000—will receive a bronze replica of the prestigious award. Two of the WWII mariners—101-year-old Charles Mills of Baltimore, Maryland, and Dave Yoho, 94, of Vienna, Virginia—attended the ceremony. Yoho had a single request to those in attendance at the ceremony: “And, so, when you’re with others, say to them of what we did; urge them to read about us and find out about us. Greet us today if you can [and] then say to those, ‘We gave up our yesterdays for your better tomorrow.’ ” Yoho enlisted at age 15 and became a civilian merchant mariner at age 16. Once in the US Merchant Marine, he went to basic training and then worked in the boiler room of a refueling tanker, which served ships in the South Pacific. “I’m speaking for 248,500 guys who are already dead,” he said at the ceremony. “One out of 26 of us died, but thousands of us came home deprived of a part of our life. That’s probably one of the least-understood missions that ever was accomplished in modern warfare.” Challenged to man the fleet during wartime and when so many mariners were lost, the service began taking young men at age 16 to fill the void—Yoho was among them. “We brought home the scars of war. [We] delivered 15 million tons of goods in war materials to five continents—13 million tons to the South Pacific, 8 million tons to the Mediterranean, 5 million tons to Russia. Put it all together, and that’s what came out of our growth [when the United States] had the wisdom to bring us aboard.” During World War II, nearly 250,000 civilian merchant mariners delivered military supplies and armed forces personnel by ship to foreign countries engulfed in the war. Between 1939 and 1945, 9,521 merchant mariners lost their lives, a higher proportion than those killed

Atlanta’s name on the trailboard.


Climb the tower at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum for panoramic views and explore history through underwater archaeology, a shipwreck exhibit, conservation lab, traditional boatbuilding, children’s activities, and more! Discover the maritime heritage of St. Augustine, including our latest discovery – a pewter button from a 1782 British shipwreck with the letters “U.S.A.” distinctly revealed on its front side. Learn how it may have been a trophy of war.

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courtesy alabama historical commission

summer, when a team partnered with Marine Sonic Technology to scan more than 2,500 miles of Lake Superior using sidescan sonar, which revealed a total of nine shipwrecks. The Atlanta sank on 4 May 1891, carrying coal from Buffalo to Duluth, Minnesota. The towline connecting the barge to the steamer Wilhelm parted during a storm, and the crew abandoned ship. Their lifeboat overturned as they approached Crisp Point Life-Saving Station and only two crewmembers survived; their accounts of the ordeal were reported in the local paper, the Soo Democrat. ( ... In early May, archaeologists and technicians returned to the Clotilda wreck site in the Mobile River for a 10-day expedition to recover targeted artifacts, remove trees overlaying the site, and make an environmental and structural assessment of the ship’s remains. In the 2021 FY budget, the State of Alabama through the Governor and Alabama State Legislature appropriated $1 million to the Alabama Historical Commission (AHC) to begin Phase 3 of preservation efforts for the Clotilda. The envi-

Maritime archaeologists from SEARCH and Diving With a Purpose (DWP) survey the river bottom between the starboard side of the Clotilda site and the riverbank to collect disarticulated elements of the wreck for evaluation, recordation, and preservation. ronmental study examined the composition of the sediment around the wreck, monitored water movement, and performed a biological review of the species that have colonized the wreck area. After confirming

that the wreck site was clear of obstructions, divers from Resolve Marine systematically removed 94 disarticulated timbers for archaeological assessment. That work focused on cataloging and documenting recovered

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courtesy alabama historical commission

A maritime archaeologist waits to inspect a disarticulated timber from the Clotilda wreck site as a Resolve Marine diver removes the D-ring from the crane boom. Artifacts were only briefly exposed to the air during inspection and recording. They were kept submerged in river water in a tank to ensure that they remained stable until they returned to the wreck site in the river. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

lected for further study is to place them back inside the wreck itself. Maritime archaeologists from SEARCH and a team from Diving With a Purpose were finally able to inspect the wreck site without obstruction. Most of the disarticulated elements that were recovered were timbers and iron fasteners, but five artifacts were retained for additional analysis and possible conservation. The other items selected were a lead hawsepipe, a small section of hull planking held together by iron fastenings, and a section of planking that retains marks from a circular steam saw. After analysis and conservation, these artifacts will help illustrate the story of the enslaved people aboard Clotilda. What can be said with confidence in this preliminary stage is that the wood below the mudline is much better preserved than the sections of the shipwreck that extend into the water column. Probing in the stern section indicated that the ship is in two or more pieces with a section of the stern broken away and possibly preserved beneath the mud. Divers were able to get a first glimpse inside the hold where captives were held and observed vertical posts and a bulkhead that does not appear to be part of the ship’s original architecture. It is too soon to speculate regarding the function of these features. Once the samples have been analyzed and conserved and the findings from this phase of the project studied, the Alabama Historical Commission will create a management plan for the site that will allow for the protection, preservation, and interpretation of the Clotilda wreck site. (ahc. ... Sailing to Freedom, Maritime Dimensions of the Underground Railroad, an exhibition based on the 2021 publication of the same title, edited by Timothy Walker, PhD, opened in May at the New Bedford Whaling Museum in Massachusetts. Self-emancipation along the Underground Railroad was not entirely via overland routes. What has been largely overlooked by historians is the great number of enslaved persons who made their way to freedom using coastal water routes along the Atlantic seaboard. Enslaved African Americans often escaped by sea aboard merchant and passenger ships, or using smaller watercraft. This groundbreaking exhibition expands

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timbers and, for selected diagnostic ones, scanning them three-dimensionally. Maritime archaeologists from SEARCH conducted the initial archaeological analysis and preliminary identifications. After divers exited the water, Survtech ran multibeam sonar and aerial LiDAR to provide the first clear image of the wreck without all the trees, snags, and disarticulated timbers that previously obscured the view. SEARCH scanned the artifacts and disarticulated elements using Pix4D software to create photogrammetric images that may be viewed from multiple angles before divers placed them back inside the wreck. Much of the work in this phase of investigation focused on environmental science. Dauphin Island Sea Lab is investigating what grows on and in the wreck, from bacteria to more visible marine organisms. Sealed in anaerobic mud, timbers are often protected from being eaten by riverine and marine organisms. The best conservation practice for the timbers that are not se-

The story of the many unknown players in the maritime Underground Railroad are told in the new exhibition. One was Dempsey Hill (c. 1842–1894), a waterman and a slave since birth. Early in the Civil War, he broke into the Beaufort, North Carolina, Customs House to steal nautical charts detailing the coastal waterways of the region. Later, he and four enslaved companions stole a pilot vessel and escaped, delivering the charts to the blockading US naval squadron. Hill served as an able seaman in the US Navy throughout the war, after which he settled in Wareham, Massachusetts. our understanding of how freedom was achieved by sea and what the journey looked like for many African Americans. The exhibition corresponds with an NEH Summer teacher’s institute “Sailing to Freedom: New Bedford and the Underground Railroad,” taking place in July 2022. The exhibition runs through 20 November 2022. (NBWM, 18 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford, MA; Ph. 508 997-0046; www. ... Sam Heed, historian and education director with the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation (KNF), was elected president of the Council of American Maritime Museums (CAMM) on 29 April at the organization’s annual meeting at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michael’s, Maryland. CAMM was founded in 1974 to bring together institutions working toward the 53

Marine Science, a master’s in Marine Affairs from the University of Washington, and a master’s degree in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. She has earned numerous personal and team awards during her nearly four decades of Coast Guard service. Admiral Fagan is the longest-serving activeduty Marine Safety Officer, which has earned her the distinction of being the Coast Guard’s first-ever Gold Ancient Trident. ( ... For the first time since her arrival in Greenwich, England, visitors to the world-famous tea clipper Cutty Sark can climb aloft and enjoy views of the Thames and London like no other. Royal Museums Greenwich, which owns and operates the muADM Linda L. Fagan, USCG seum ship, has partnered with Wire & Sky, command ceremony. She is the 27th Com- an urban adventure company, to design mandant and the successor to Adm. Karl and run the climbing experience where L. Schultz, who is retiring. Fagan is the visitors scamper up the ratlines to the platfirst woman to lead the Coast Guard and form at the fighting tops and, after taking the first woman to head up any of the in the view, return to the deck by way of United States armed services. A 1985 grad- zipline in a controlled descent. Those seekuate of the US Coast Guard Academy, ing to go further can pay for the “ExperiWallscience ad-Sea History2022.qxp_Layout 1 1/5/22 Plus”12:53 andPMgoPage out1 on the lower topsail Fagan holds a bachelor of degree in ence uscg

preservation and interpretation of North America’s maritime heritage. A subgroup of the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), CAMM acts as an authoritative voice on policy matters that impact the preservation of maritime history. Heed has extended the reach of KNF’s educational mission through research and program partnerships with the Vasa Museum in Stockholm, the Smithsonian Institution, the National Park Service (NPS), and NOAA’s Monitor National Marine Sanctuary, and the Delaware Department of Education. Prior to joining KNF, Heed taught history for twenty years at the Haverford School, where he was recognized as a National Teacher of the Year in 1991 and honored with the school’s first endowed chair, The Russell C. Ball, Jr. ’44, Chair in History. Before that he spent five years as a trial lawyer and served as a federal law clerk for the Honorable Robert S. Gawthrop III. (CAMM,; KNF, ... Admiral Linda Fagan assumed command of the United States Coast Guard on 1 June at a change-of-

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Visitors aloft on Cutty Sark. yard. Visitors must be 12 and over. Those who’d prefer to go the other direction can descend beneath the hull where they are allowed to reach up and touch the coppersheathed hull. The Climb-the-Rig Experience requires reservations in advance. ( ... A group of sea shanty musicians and enthusiasts have launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a new website directory, Maritime Music Directory International,

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Cutty Sark


which will steer fans to maritime-themed bands and festivals. Dean Calin, website project head and the founder of the maritime musical group, Bounding Main, explains: “When an event is looking to hire performers of sea shanties they can search this directory for experienced bands and individual performers accepting bookings. Likewise, maritime-themed bands looking for performance opportunities can search this directory for likely places to get booked. Fans of the music can find festivals in their area to attend, or they can see what music or videos their favorite bands have recorded and follow a link to where they can order them online.” The Maritime Music Directory International will be a self-populating, central location for fans of sea shanties to discover exactly what they want about music groups, festivals, individual performers, and their recorded music. (You can check out their website—a work in progress—and find links to the Kickstarter website at ... In May, Plimoth Patuxet Museums in Massachusetts announced it has received a $1 million donation from the Safe Family Foundation for the museum’s endowment. The gift will help support the educational mission of Mayflower II. Mike Safe served the museum for many years as a trustee and believed strongly in the museum’s mission. Mayflower II was built in Brixham, Devon, England between 1955 and 1957, after which she set out with a crew of 33 across the Atlantic under her own sail power, arriving in Plymouth, Massachusetts, on 13 June 1957 to great fanfare,


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including from then-Senator John F. Kennedy and then-Vice President Richard Nixon. In 2020, Mayflower II returned to Plymouth after a multi-year and near-full restoration at the shipyard at Mystic Seaport. Nearly 70% of the ship’s timbers, planking, frames, knees, and beams were replaced, using six types of wood from eight states and as far away as Denmark. Plimoth Patuxet had major events planned for that spring and summer to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the original Mayflower’s arrival in Massachusetts, but that was the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and all in-person events were canceled. The 65-year-old ship was recently named to the

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PIRATE PLAYING CARDS AND PRINTS by Signature ASMA Artist, Don Maitz, National Geographic contributor and originator of the Captain Morgan Spiced Rum character. Fullcolor playing cards have different watercolor images on each face. Prints present sea-rover adventurers. Order from: www.paravia. com/studioshop. BOMBSHELL by T. F. McGraw. The true tale of a unique Union Army fighting ship, born of Gen. Burnside’s 1862 “Operation Anaconda.” Modified at ‘New Berne’ in 1863 as a gunboat for use on the Carolina coastal rivers, Bombshell landed Army raiders, provided artillery cover, evacuated freedmen, and supported other missions. The plucky little steamer was sunk at the Battle of Plymouth and promptly raised by the Confederate Navy, only to be recaptured in battle by the Union Navy, as she served as consort to the ironclad CSS Albemarle. $20.00, including postage & taxes, directly from Indian Creek, PO Box 14663, New Bern, NC 28561. NATIONAL PARKS PLAYING CARDS. Many of America’s National Parks are represented on these cards with interesting facts and images. FINE ART PRINTS OF SEA ROVERS & BUCCANEERS by award-winning ASMA Signature artist Don Maitz. Visit:

KEEPING THE TR ADITION ALIVE by Capt. Ray Williamson. The remarkable story of Maine Windjammer Cruises,TM founder of the windjammer industry. 172 page, 11 x 14 hardcover book with over 100 full-page images from the days of cargo to the present. Price–$48. Call 800 736-7981; email CUSTOM SHIP MODELS, HALF HULLS. Free Catalog. Spencer White, 4223 Chestnut Dr., Center Valley, PA 18034. SHIP MODEL BROKER: I will help you BUY, SELL, REPAIR, APPRAISE or COMMISSION a model ship or boat. PRESIDENTS PLAYING CARDS. All 46 US presidents are represented on these playing cards with interesting facts and quotes. THE AUTHORITY TO SAIL by Commodore Robert Stanley Bates. The fully illustrated authoritative history of US Merchant Marine licenses and documents issued since 1852. Coffee-table size book, 12” x 14.” Order direct: The Parcel Centre, Ph. 860 739-2492;

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900 new pieces to its Collections Online Portal. Launched in March 2021, the portal allowed online visitors to view selected archives, artifacts, and photographs from

south street seaport museum

National Register of Historic Places, a rarity for a replica ship. ( ... South Street Seaport Museum (SSSM) announced in March that it had added

south street seaport museum

White Star Line Demitasse Cup and Saucer, c.1902-1904

Flying Enterprise II, mid 20th century by Carl Evers (1907–2000)

the museum’s collections of over 28,500 objects, exploring the role of New York City as a significant world port. The new digital pieces include the Wendell Lorang Maritime Postcard Collection, Lithographs and Prints, Drawings and Watercolors, and ceramics. The digital collections can be viewed at (12 Fulton Street, NY;

March 2022 - September 2022 SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022



Underwriters of the United States: How Insurance Shaped the American Founding by Hannah Farber (Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia, and University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, 2021, 335pp, illus, notes, index, isbn 978-1-46966363-0, $34.95hc) Marine insurance may not seem like an important, much less an interesting, topic to many people interested in history, but as Professor Hannah Farber demonstrates in this deeply researched, smartly written book, it played a critical role in the formation of the early republic. The fact that there is little in the historical literature about marine insurance makes Underwriters of the United States an original and welcome addition. Farber argues that marine insurers underwrote the establishment of the United States or, as she puts it, “bet on American independence for their own benefit.” Insurers were merchants who understood doubleentry bookkeeping, risk in its various forms, and interest calculations. They were attuned to the latest news from overseas and foreign admiralty court decisions, and they mastered the law of merchants (lex mercatoria), what Farber describes as “a bottomless ocean of rules, customs, provisos, and exceptions.” Insurers underwrote privateers and merchant vessels in the American Revolution and continued to do so in the near-continuous worldwide French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Risk was thus distributed, providing some security to commerce, which sustained customs revenue to the government. With their profits, merchantinsurers invested in government debt, thereby bolstering the credit of the new government. Later, they founded and invested in banks. As the insurance business matured and grew, insurers left the consortium model (the leading example of which was Lloyd’s of London), and with state charters embraced the corporate form, which further distributed risk. Farber’s prologue sets up the whole story. She proffers a hypothetical insurance transaction in Boston in 1800, which allows her to delve into various types of maritime risk, the mechanics of insurance, and the elements of an insurance contract. There is much to learn here, but Underwriters of the 58

United States is not an insurance treatise. Rather, Farber writes about the political economy of insurance. Each chapter deals with a different era of insurance, as insurers dealt with the changing risks to maritime commerce and as the insurance business expanded geographically, with regard to the numbers of companies and types of risks insured. In the early republic, marine

insurers were the preeminent interpreters of the international market; they provided political and commercial intelligence to the federal government, which lacked its own apparatus to gather and synthesize information on foreign developments; and insurance policies limited risks to traders, while forcing them to conform to the rules laid down in the policy or forfeit indemnification for any ensuing loss. One theme throughout Underwriters of the United States is that insurers simultaneously wanted to be autonomous actors, outside of public scrutiny because of the difficulty in understanding the specialized knowledge of the business, and yet able to call on the federal government as the ultimate insurer when huge risks produced negative outcomes. Although marine insurance might be considered a sterile subject, Farber’s writing is pithy and witty, such as her assertion that underwriters “lamented wars loudly but sought out war risks quietly,” or describing one rapacious merchant-insurer as drawn to the city of Philadelphia “like a mos-

quito to a warm artery.” Farber provides readers with deft, colorful portraits of some of the leading figures of this history, most of whom are unknown today. For historians, Farber’s eighty pages of endnotes (onequarter of the book) are a treasure trove of supporting information and sources, but a more casual reader sticking with the text need not worry about being bogged down in scholarly minutia. Underwriters of the United States is an excellent book in every respect, full of fresh insight into an overlooked aspect of the history of the new republic. It would be unfortunate if this book only attracts academic readers. Hannah Farber demonstrates how marine insurance, “a quintessential practice of capitalists,” was a spur to economic risk-taking, encouraged longdistance trade, buttressed American diplomatic policy, and allowed for the accumulation of capital that was in turn invested in the institutions of the new country. Much of this story will be eye-opening to readers. In short, Underwriters of the United States provides a new gloss on the early history of the United States. Frederick C. Leiner Baltimore, Maryland Opening the Great Depths: The Bathyscaph Trieste and Pioneers of Undersea Exploration by Norman Polmar and Lee J. Mathers (Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, 2021, 359pp, illus, notes, biblio, appen, index, isbn 978-1-68247-591-1; $44.95hc) Exploration of the deep ocean began in the early 1900s and continues today in an environment hostile to humankind. Modern technology—fiber optic cables, advanced sonar systems, and autonomous and unmanned vehicles—has made these expeditions safer and the depths more accessible, yet less than 10% of the seafloor has been explored to date. We have better maps of the moon and Mars than of our oceans. These endeavors to explore the depths of the oceans culminated with the first manned descent into the Challenger Deep, the deepest place on earth (near Guam), by the submarine Trieste in 1960. Opening the Great Depths is a detailed look at the technological development of deepsea bathyscaphes and manned expeditions into the deepest places of the planet. SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

dives. The Thresher expedition, coupled with the search for Scorpion, allow for a fascinating backdrop from which the authors tell the story of the construction of Trieste II, brought on site to search for Scorpion in October 1968, and Trieste III, which would dive on both sites a handful of times throughout its career between 1969 and 1979. As a pioneer of deep-sea exploration and manned submergence, the involvement of the three Trieste bathyscaphes in these searches for lost submarines weaves a profound story. Featuring a forward by retired Lieutenant Don Walsh, the book is a great read and stands as a significant contribution to maritime history. Michael L. Brennan, PhD Jacksonville, Florida The ultimate goal of the US Navy’s 1959–1960 Project Nekton was to send a manned submersible into Challenger Deep, while also measuring a suite of oceanographic and geological metrics. Following a series of test dives late in 1959, the successful dive into Challenger Deep on 23 January 1960 was made by US Navy Lieutenant Don Walsh and Jacques Piccard, the son of Trieste’s designer Auguste Piccard. Polmar and Mathers’s chronicling of the bathyscaphe’s design, development, and career as a naval research submarine is a compelling read. The authors’ careers as a naval consultant and intelligence officer, respectively, play a strong role in their ability to document and describe the pioneering of such a massive technological achievement and its profound impact on furthering deep-water exploration. The description of the trials and ultimate record-breaking dives includes interesting descriptions of the deep “hadal” zone. Equally interesting in the history of the Trieste is the bathyscaphe’s later career. This includes the deepsea missions to find the wreckage of two nuclear submarines: USS Thresher (SSN593), lost in April 1963, and USS Scorpion (SSN-589), lost in May 1968—both with all hands. Following a deep-tow camera system’s detection of debris from Thresher, Trieste dived on the wreck site in June 1963 and made several subsequent assessment SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

independence. Dolin divides these vessels into two types: the first were heavily armed ships with large crews whose singular purpose was to locate and capture enemy ships. The second were armed merchant vessels that sailed between the world’s ports to trade goods. American privateers were commissioned by federal and state governments with letters of marque, a license permitting them to take prizes in time of war. The documents served as both official letters of reprisal and bonds of good behavior. When a prize was deemed legal by an admiralty court, the vessel and its contents were auctioned and sold. Privateer vessel owners, captains, and crew were remunerated according to a predetermined share agreement. Those maimed in a battle, or the survivors of those killed in battle, were The Glencannon Pressusually provided for by way of a reimbursement/health 4 col. inches (2.25 x 4.5 inches) scheme, somewhat reminiscent of a classic pirate Prefer right hand page, bottom right.pact. When the War for Independence broke out, Great Britain had the largest navy in the world and, with it, controlled most of the world’s oceans and seaborne trade. The nascent Continental Army, in comparison, was undertrained, poorly equipped, and



Maritime Books


Rebels at Sea: Privateering in the American Revolution by Eric Jay Dolin (Liveright Publishing, New York, 2022, 352pp, illus, maps, biblio, notes, index, isbn 9781-324-04744-5; $32.50hc) During the Revolutionary War, American privateers—a term applied to both the vessels and the men who sailed them— served as controversial maritime weapons and have been the subject of scholarly debate about their effectiveness ever since. In his latest book, Rebels at Sea, bestselling author Eric Jay Dolin explores the use of privateers: their abuses, shortcomings, and the tactical significance during the war for

Black Knight The Life and Times of Capt. Hugh Mulzac The complete life story of the first black man to have and sail on an American master’s license and the first to command a Liberty Ship throughout World War II. More than 300 pages, 14 in full color. FREE Catalog Tel. 1-510-455-9027 59

Anne T. Converse Photography

Neith, 1996, Cover photograph

Wood, Wind and Water

A Story of the Opera House Cup Race of Nantucket Photographs by Anne T. Converse Text by Carolyn M. Ford Live vicariously through the pictures and tales of classic wooden yacht owners who lovingly restore and race these gems of the sea. “An outstanding presentation deserves ongoing recommendation for both art and nautical collections.” 10”x12” Hardbound book; 132 pages, 85 full page color photographs; Price $45.00 For more information contact: Anne T. Converse Phone: 508-728-6210

by Kurt D. Voss All proceeds from this pictorial history benefit the ELISSA preservation fund.

Published by Arcadia Publishing and Galveston Historical Foundation $21.99. 128 pages, 200 photographs Autographed copies available at (409) 763-1877, or online at:

w w w. t s m - e l i s s a . o r g 60

dependent upon locally manufactured arms and munitions, as well as those purchased in the West Indies or seized in battle. For its navy, Congress cobbled together a modest number of vessels, mostly converted merchantmen. Eleven of the colonies created some sort of state navy, seaborne militia, or “sea fencibles” that patrolled and defended their coastal enclaves. Congress realized that privateers harassing or interdicting British shipping on the Eastern Seaboard, the West Indies, and around the British Isles could wreak havoc on the home country by crippling its commerce. British shipowners responded by sending their ships to sea in convoys, requiring the Royal Navy to peel off assets to serve as escorts. Marine insurance rates increased dramatically, followed by inflation at home, providing the main impetus for the birth of the substantial American letter-ofmarque fleet, armed vessels that included whaleboats, sloops, cutters, brigs, and fullrigged ships. American privateering vessels increased in number from 66 in 1777 to 550 by 1781, then dwindled to 22 by the war’s end. Dolin takes his reader through a quick overview of the Revolutionary War as seen through a hypothetical privateer’s point of view and argues that the maritime enterprise of privateering was vital to the insurgent’s success. Historical accounts of individual privateers provide anecdotal detail and a fair amount of excitement in the telling. We meet John Greenwood, an army fifer, privateer, and dentist; Major General Nathaniel Greene and his relatives, who financed about twenty privateers; and James Forten, the black sailmaker, privateer, and abolitionist—among others. Britain, of course, mobilized its own privateers in countermoves. Dolin’s chapter “Hell Afloat,” on the adversities suffered by American seamen captured by the British, was exceptionally graphic and especially emotive, including verses of privateer Philip Freneau’s poem “The British Prison Ship.” The author devotes a major portion of his book to analyzing the efficacy of the privateering operation. It was at times accused of degrading American morals by offering men the opportunity to pursue profit over patriotism and castigated for

draining off manpower and ammunitions from the Continental Navy and Army. Privateering may not have been the decisive factor in the defeat of the British, but Dolin argues that the privateer fleet was an important cog in the martial machinery of the Revolutionary War through British losses of goods, ships, and men. Rebels at Sea is a worthwhile addition to Eric Jay Dolin’s superb scholarly library of maritime works. A few minor shortcomings are nonetheless worth mentioning. The author provided an extensive account of the Penobscot Expedition—but while several privateers took part in the debacle, it was not a privateering mission. Not addressed was the role that privateers played in relation to the slave trade and its consequences in North America and Great Britain. While privateers did not regularly capture slave ships or raid plantations, a small number of enslaved individuals found themselves taken as “prize cargo” during the conflict, and this would seem worth a mention. I was surprised at a couple of other individuals whose stories were omitted. These points noted, the author does not claim this work to be a comprehensive history. Rebels at Sea is a broad and well-researched examination of the role of letterof-marque vessels and privateering during the American Revolution. This new work is very much a welcome addition to Revolutionary War maritime history. Louis Arthur Norton West Simsbury, Connecticut Samuel Pepys and the Strange Wrecking of the Gloucester: A True Restoration Tragedy by Nigel Pickford (The History Press, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, UK, 2021, 293pp, biblio, illus, appen, notes, isbn 978-0-75-097553-9; $25.50hc) A prospective king sets out on a voyage from England to retrieve his wife in Scotland. The political climate of the period, charged with the nation-dividing struggle for religious supremacy between the Catholic Church and the Church of England, has cooled to the point that he—a Catholic—believes he can safely lay claim to the throne should his brother, the current monarch, pass on. But the ship in which he is sailing runs hard aground in SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

maritime tragedy. For Pickford, forty-five minutes of terror upon the sea become a grand backdrop for the broader history of Restoration England. John Galluzzo Hanover, Massachusetts

the early morning of a clear day. Even with companion ships and yachts nearby retrieving the crew and passengers as they flounder in the water, more than a hundred souls are lost. What possibly could have gone wrong? A witness to the scene was Samuel Pepys, the great diarist, letter writer, and gossiper. Despite his constant desire to hobnob with England’s elite and an invitation to sail with the would-be king, he was not aboard the ill-fated Gloucester. Instead, he took a berth aboard a different vessel of lesser stature. Did he, perhaps, have reason to avoid sailing aboard Gloucester? Did he know something about the state of the ship that others did not? Author Nigel Pickford pieces together the story through logbooks, journals, letters, and even artifacts recovered from the wreck site. Courts-martial were held to vilify—or exonerate—the navigators responsible for plotting the vessel’s route, widows were paid bounties, and the future king claimed to have been saved by divine providence, signifying, therefore, his right-

ful path to the throne. The book brings to life the coffeehouses of the late seventeenth century, the seedy back-door dalliances of the men and women of the upper classes, and the scheming mind of Samuel Pepys as he reacts to this seemingly inexplicable

Giants of the Sea: Ships & Men Who Changed the World by John D. McCown Jr. (self-published, USA, 2020, 335pp, tables, biblio, $29.95hc) With a background that includes decades as a shipping industry executive, John McCown Jr. covers the business of the maritime transportation realm from inception to the modern era admirably well in his recent book Giants of the Sea. This selfpublished tome covers the history of maritime commerce across the ages and zeroes in on nine visionaries of the last century whose stories of innovation and risk combined with the nuts and bolts of ship finance, manning, environment, and regulation made them titans of the shipping industry and set the course that global maritime commerce would take going into the 21st century.

CIVIL WAR AT SEA The Union Blockade in the American Civil War

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A Database of Over 123,000 Vessels Online @ This list was updated 1 January adding more information for many of the vessels and eliminating duplication. We are also working on speeding up search time. I have compiled this list from the “List of Merchant Vessels of the United States” and numerous other annuals. Not only American vessels, but foreign ones too, whether commercial, yachts, warships, sail, power, unrigged and some not documented. Now working on update #5, which will add more recent vessels and information.

Coming March: Shipwreck Index and Chronological list.

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Hours: Wed-Sun 11am-5pm Suggested Admission:

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McCown walks a fine line, presenting a subject typically loaded with industry jargon and technical language to a general audience, and succeeds in making the topic understandable to a wide range of readers. As a shipping executive who worked closely with some of his subjects, perhaps the most admirable aspect of his book is what was left out to achieve a pragmatic narrative flow. The book’s themes include the classics of supply and demand, economies of scale, emissions reductions, barriers to market entry, the high cost to aggregate tonnage, the leadership bloodline conundrum, private versus public funding, and the multi-generational aspect to accrue critical mass and market share. The author attributes the shipping industry’s volatility to weather politics, natural disasters, and even the occasional prince. Princes? McCown explains that seaborne trade is subject to many chokepoints: Gibraltar, Panama, Suez, Magellan Straits, the English Channel, the Straits of Bosporus, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and others. In the wrong hands, these chokepoints can become purgatories where princes, despots, and factions could, at least in theory, hold ships hostage until tribute is paid, as in the Barbary pirates of yore, or the Somali version today. Successful shipping industry professionals had a nose for certain opportunities and a toughness to survive failures, sometimes by insuring their assets beyond the gills. Greek shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos’s secret of success was to “buy cheap and buy big” and to use credit to his advantage, which contrasted with the more conservative, long-term contract approach employed by his father-in-law, the patriarch Stavros Livanos, or Yue-Kong Pao. It didn’t hurt that Niarchos also insured ships in wartime for many times their market value, and that several of them were sunk during World War II, netting him significant insurance payouts. In his analysis of 20th-century shipping influencers, the author discusses magnates Henry Kaiser (Liberty ship construction), Malcolm McLean (container shipping), D. K. Ludwig (tanker financing), Ole Skaarup (dry bulk ship design), Stavros Niarchos (dry bulk finance and supply chain integration), Aristotle Onassis (risk/reward, SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

tankers, and market adaptation), Yue-Kong Pao (shipbuilding, market-creation), C. Y. Tung (container innovation), and finally Maersk McKinney Moller (fleet and service aggregator). Each risked adapting to new technologies, introducing innovations in cargo handling, expanding economies of scale, or financing to meet a market which often didn’t even exist at the time. McCown argues that shipping is “the basic enabler of world trade…[and] is fundamentally an arbitrage. The extraordinarily efficient sea conveyance system that developed after World War II is the lubricant that moved world trade into high gear.” Oceans constitute 97% of all water on earth, and nearly 90% of the world’s commerce is carried across the oceans linking suppliers with global markets. As McCown points out, “big oceans, big ships, big numbers.” In 2018 there were 17,546 cargo ships more than 600 feet in length in service across the world’s oceans. Despite the advances in technology and our understanding of sea routes, currents, and weather systems, the ocean is as hostile and dangerous today as ever. In the nine years before the book’s release in 2020, at least 876 ships were lost at sea. No book can encompass every aspect of an industry that carries as much as 90% of world trade at some point in its life cycle. Nevertheless, this volume does admirably well to present a cogent presentation of where shipping has been going for the past century, and those who helped get it where it is today. The text is highly informed, buttressed by solid, innovative, and original research. Neither “sea stories” nor “data displays,” Giants of the Sea is a well-cogitated and surprisingly humanistic, descriptive, and readable account. Eric Wiberg Boston, Massachusetts Mutiny on the Rising Sun: A Tragic Tale of Slavery, Smuggling, and Chocolate by Jared Ross Hardesty (New York University Press, New York, 2021, 267pp, illus, notes, index, 978-1-4798-1248-6; $25hc) Is it possible to piece together with any form of accuracy the particulars of a mutinous event that took place off a remote area of South America nearly 300 years ago, when the mutineers threw the ship’s SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022

papers overboard to hide their tracks? In his latest book, Jared Hardesty proves that with extant primary and secondary source material and close study of the world of Atlantic commerce as it was at the time, we can, indeed, create a compelling narrative that explains why three sailors attempted to perpetrate such a heinous act on the schooner Rising Sun in 1743. Through legal testimony, letters reprinted in Boston newspapers, and other sources, survivors on both sides of the mutiny provided the baseline story. The conspirators, the two who survived long enough to provide testimony, each blamed the other, one refusing to answer about half of the questions posed by the Dutch officials in Suriname who oversaw the case. Hardesty had to decide what is credible and what is not, and then make deductions for motives and post-mutiny actions based on historical knowledge of international relations as they affected the Atlantic trade world. Why did they kill some members of the ship’s leadership, but spare others? Why did they want to sail for the

Orinoco, and what were their plans once they got there? The relevance of events that took place in the mid-18th century—and their related controversy—reaches into the 21st century. In 2013, Boston’s Old North Foundation decided to expand its mission by opening a chocolate shop to interpret the history of the city’s role in 18th-century Atlantic commerce. It named the shop after a parishioner chocolatier and sea captain, Newark Jackson. After Captain Jackson’s Historic Chocolate Shop was up and running, the namesake’s history as a smuggler of slaves came to light (as relayed in Hardesty’s 2016 book Unfreedom: Slavery and Dependence in Eighteenth-Century Boston), as well as his brutal death at the hands of Rising Sun mutineers. Mutiny on the Rising Sun is a compelling tale based on real events and Jared Hardesty is to be commended for his investigative work and success in pulling together a narrative that is both a good read and accurate in the telling. John Galluzzo Hanover, Massachusetts

This triple-expansion epic is set in 1913 Shanghai, where four cultures are about to collide: China, Korea, Japan, and the US. The point of collision is three tons of Japanese gold ingots meant to undermine an already collapsing China. “The Abalone Ukulele is a master class in historical fiction. With painstaking research and a gift for story spinning, Crossland brings to brilliant life a sprawling epic of greed, gold, and redemption.” —Joseph A. Williams, author of Seventeen Fathoms Deep and The Sunken Gold INDIVIDUAL ORDERS: FOR BULK ORDERS:

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Paperback: $27 Order your copy through AbeBooks, PayPal, or mail your check to: Berkshire Boat Building School, POB 578, Sheffield, MA, 01257 Questions? call 413 229-2549 or email at


NATIONAL MARITIME HISTORICAL SOCIETY AFTERGUARD J. Aron Charitable Foundation, Inc. The Artina Group Matt Brooks & Pam Rorke Levy CACI International, Inc. Caddell Dry Dock & Repair Co. George W. Carmany III In Memory of James J. Coleman Jr. Christopher J. Culver Brian D’Isernia Eckert Trust Henry L. & Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation In Memory of Ignatius Galgan ADM & Mrs. Jay L. Johnson, USN (Ret.) Arthur M. Kimberly Trust VADM Al Konetzni Jr., USN (Ret.) In Memory of H. F. Lenfest Richardo R. Lopes Guy E. C. Maitland McAllister Towing & Transportation Co. Ronald L. Oswald ADM Robert J. Papp Jr., USCG (Ret.) Estate of Walter J. Pettit Sr. The Pollin Group, LLC In Memory of Capt. Joseph Ramsey, USMM In Memory of Charles A. Robertson Dr. Timothy J. Runyan The Schoonmaker Foundation In Memory of Howard Slotnick Capt. Cesare Sorio John & Anne Stobart David & Beverly Verdier William H. White Jean Wort BENEFACTORS David S. Fowler John & Anne Rich

ARS Investment Partners Bank of America Byers Foundation VADM Dirk Debbink, USN (Ret.) Richard T. du Moulin J. D. Power Family Hon. John Lehman Dr. Jennifer London Lori, James II, & Jim Mathieu CAPT James A. Noone, USN (Ret.) Scarano Boat Building, Inc. H. C. Bowen Smith Norma Stanford In Memory of Peter Stanford Philip & Irmy Webster

PLANKOWNERS RADM Joseph F. Callo, USN (Ret.) CAPT Sally McElwreath Callo, USN (Ret.) Dayton Carr Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum Coast Guard Aviation Association In Memory of William J. Green Capt. Howard R. Hill Jr. Royal Holly Ruth R. Hoyt/Anne H. Jolley Foundation, Inc. Neil E. Jones H. Kirke Lathrop Norman Liss Carolyn & Leonard Mizerek William G. Muller Navy League of the United States Pritzker Military Foundation Sidney Stern Memorial Trust Jeremy Weirich Dr. David & Mary K. Winkler SPONSORS Paul M. Aldrich American Maritime Congress Charles B. Anderson Deborah Antoine John Appleton John Armitage James R. Barker CAPT Donald Bates, USN (Ret.) Lawrence Behr Richard J. Bodorff John B. Caddell II Dr. John & Rachel Cahill Dr. Allan C. Campbell Jeffrey & Dr. Sharon Cannon James W. Cheevers J. Barclay Collins Gerald F. B. Cooper William J. Coxey Jr. C. W. Craycroft Dr. William S. & Donna Dudley VADM Robert F. Dunn, USCG (Ret.) Dr. John Finerty Mrs. D. L. Fleischmann Craig L. Fuller In Memory of D. Harry W. Garschagen Elizabeth Gibson Burchenal Green ADM Jonathan Greenert, USN (Ret.) Lee Ferguson Gruzen Robert S. Hagge Jr. Joseph C. Hoopes Independence Seaport Museum RADM Eric C. Jones, USCG Dr. Reginald H. Jones Benjamin Katzenstein Charles R. Kilbourne Dr. Brett M. Klyver L3 Harris Technologies CDR C. R. Lampman, USN (Ret.) Cyrus C. Lauriat Amy T. Lent Paul Jay Lewis Com. Chip Loomis III Ann Peters Marvin Eugene Mattioni Capt. Jeffrey McAllister David J. & Carolyn D. McBride McCarter & English, LLC Peter McCracken Dr. Joseph F. Meany Jr. Charles H. Miller Michael C. Morris Robert E. Morris Jr. Mystic Seaport Museum Janis Nagy New York Yacht Club Capt. Eric Nielsen Wynn & Patricia Odom Erik & Kathy Olstein COL Bruce E. Patterson, USA The Betty Sue and Art Peabody Fund Brian R. Phillips Charles Raskob Robinson David & Susan Rockefeller Safran Helicopter Engines USA Lee H. Sandwen Conrad Scheffer George Schluderberg Seip Family Foundation Philip & Janet Shapiro Family Foundation Douglas H. Sharp CDR William H. Skidmore, USN (Ret.) Skuld North America, Inc. C. Hamilton Sloan Foundation Sharon Slotnick Philip E. Stolp Daniel R. Sukis Capt. Raymond Thombs Memorial Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation RADM Frank Thorp IV, USN (Ret.) Alix Thorne Roy Vander Putten Otokar Von Bradsky Thomas Wayne Dr. Paul Zabetakis DONORS Benjamin Ackerly Edwin L. Adler Peter Anderson Matt & Rita Andis Carter S. Bacon Jr. Dr. William Baker Hal Barstow John D. Barnard Ernest T. Bartol Charles R. Beaudrot Jr. W. Frank Bohlen Eleanor F. Bookwalter James H. Brandi RADM David C. Brown, USMS (Ret.) Dennis Brugger Ronald L. Buchman CAPT Patrick Burns, USN (Ret.) Leonard Caiger RADM Nevin P. Carr Jr., USN (Ret.) Capt. Ned Chalker Benjamin Clark Mark Class CAPT Richard W. Cost, USNR (Ret.) CAPT Roger L. Crossland, USN (Ret.) Robert Ian Danic James P. Delgado C. Henry Depew Thomas Diedrich Richard H. Dumas Gary Eddey MD CAPT Mitchell Edson, USN (Ret.) William Elliott William V. Engel Ben P. Fisher Jr. Robert P. Fisher Jr. Webb Gilmore Gray Family Foundation Sonia Hallenbeck Dr. David Hayes Charles Hennighausen William L. Henry Steven A. Hyman Timothy A. Ingraham J. Russell Jinishian Gallery Gary Jobson Henry Kaminski Robert F. & Sue Kamm Robert C. Kennedy Jr. CDR Robert E. Kenyon III, USNR (Ret.) Mary Burrichter & Bob Kierlin Paula Knickerbocker Kobrand Corp. & Marco Sorio David Kolthoff Denise R. Krepp James P. Latham Frederick C. Leiner Robert Lindmark Babcock MacLean CAPT James McDonald, USCG (Ret.) Walter C. Meibaum III Jefferson D. Meighan Dr. Arthur M. Mellor Richard S. Merrell Christopher W. Metcalf Richard Michaux CAPT R. G. Moore, USCG (Ret.) Thomas A. Moran CAPT Vance H. Morrison, USN (Ret.) Michael Morrow John & Elizabeth Murphy Alan O’Grady Joanne O’Neil William Palmer III Richard G. Pelley Eleanor J. Perkins Nathaniel Philbrick Carla R. Phillips Carl A. Pirolli Mr. & Mrs. Norman H. Plummer Jennifer N. Pritzker CAPT Wes Pulver, USCG (Ret.) Andrew A. Radel Phineas Reeves Roland Rexha Albert Reynolds In Memory of Bert Rogers William M. Rosen Richard M. Rosenberg Capt. Carlos A. Rosende Robert Sappio Greg Schlosberg Dorothea Schlosser Bill Skarich Edmund Sommer III Robert W. Spell Patricia Steele David Stulb Diane & Van Swearingin Thomas Howard Townsend Steven J. Traut Russell R. Tripp Vicki Voge Lee P. Washburn Gerald Weinstein Daniel Whalen George C. White Barbara B. Wing Richard C. Wolfe PATRONS CAPT John E. Allen, USN (Ret.) Philip & Sherida Allor Silas Anthony Jr. Laurence V. Baldwin Robert Baly VADM Thomas J. Barrett, USCG (Ret.) Steve B. Batterman Allan H. Beck Mr. & Mrs. Vincent Bellafiore Dudley Bierau Joseph Bihlmier Margaret Brandon Jerry M. Brown Theodore Bull Henry S. Burgess Robert P. Burke Jose O. Busto In Memory of Joseph Anthony Cahill Charles J. Cannon Elliot Carlson Judith L. Carmany Mark G. Cerel James M. Clark Jr. Dr. Gerard J. Clifford Jr. Stephen Clineburg Sharon E. Cohen Leo Convery John C. Couch Jack Creighton Samuel D. Crum Jr. Morgan Daly Ms. Joan M. Davenport William A. Davidson Jeannie Davis Mr. & Mrs. Philip C. DiGiovanni George Dow Francis DuCoin Michael F. Dugan Reynolds duPont Jr. Peter E. Egeli Jacqueline Eldridge Ken Ewell Rev. Robert Fain Charles C. Fichtner James J. Foley Jr. HMC Philip E. Galluccio, USN (Ret.) Jeffrey Garrison Peter C. & Kathy R. Gentry Capt. Dwight Gertz Susan Gibbs Thomas A. Giegerich James R. Gifford Celeste Anne Goethe Herbert E. Greenbacker Richard J. Greene Ruth Noble Groom Ray Guinta T. Morris Hackney Robert M. Hall CAPT Roger P. Hartgen, USCG (Ret.) Capt. Peter Hartsock Nathan L. & Helen Hazen Samuel Heed J. Callender Heminway CAPT J. W. Hetherington, USNR (Ret.) Michael Howell Judge Lynn N. Hughes Marius Ilario MD Andrew MacAoidh Jergens Niels M. Johnsen Paula J. Johnson Robert P. Johnson Horace Jordan Richard Julian James & Barbara Kerr James L. Kerr CAPT John Kirkland, USCG (Ret.) Mr. & Mrs. Chester W. Kitchings Jr. R. Joyce Kodis Donald R. Kritsch Miles A. Kulukundis Peter R. La Dow David R. Lamb John L. Langill Alexander R. Lerner Peter & Carolyn Lind Louis & Linda Liotti John L. Lockwood George C. Lodge Jr. James L. Long Douglas & Diane Maass Lawrence Manson Marchant Maritime Maritime Heritage Prints Thomas L. Mason Diana Q. Mautz Ben McCaul Leander McCormick-Goodhart William McCready Kevin C. & JoAnn McDermott Alan R. McKie Glenn L. Metzger Vincent Miles Mineral Springs Farm Robert Miorelli Michael G. Moore Walter N. Morosky Jr. John Mulvihill Chris O’Brien James T. O’Donnell Patrick Onions Jeffery Opper Christopher Otorowski Roger Ottenbach Wes Paisley William L. Palmer Jr. Michael Palmieri James S. Perry John C. Perry Andrew Pesek Alan D. Peterson Hon. S. Jay Plager Peter B. Poulsen Dennis & Leslie Power Stuart Pratt David Prohaska Mr. & Mrs. John Randall CAPT Michael J. Rauworth, USCG (Ret.) Mr. & Mrs. William P. Rice CAPT W. E. Richardson, USN (Ret.) Reed Robertson Mr. & Mrs. Peter Roehsler Dr. Albert Roper R. Gregory Sachs Sherwood A. Schartner Timothy Schoolmaster Larry C. Schramm Howard Schutter CDR John E. Scott, USN (Ret.) Robert W. Scott Dr. James Seay Dean Mr. & Mrs. John R. Sherwood III Richard B. Silbert Lada Simek Jerry Smith Richard Snowdon David T. Spell Jr. Jerry Stewart Marty Sutter Swimmer Family Trust Craig Swirbliss RADM Cindy Thebaud, USN (Ret.) Craig Thompson Charles Tobin Capt. John Torjusen Joseph Truglia Sandra Ulbrich Capt. Harold Vanderploeg Frederick A. Van Mourik Robert Vincent Capt. Sam Volpentest Richard S. Wakefield William R. Walsh Terry Walton Roberta E. Weisbrod Capt. Lee Frederick Werth William U. Westerfield Blunt White Nathaniel S. Wilson William L. Womack Richard Woods In Memory of Woodson K. Woods Chet Zegler Davi Zehler James Zimmer 64 SEA HISTORY 179, SUMMER 2022 CAPT Channing M. Zucker, USN (Ret.)

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WWW . AMERICANMARINEART . COM Mississippi Boatman, 1850, by George Caleb Bingham, from the John Wilmerding Collection at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

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