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September 24, 2020

There was not one woman on Captain Ahab’s whaling ship “Pequot” in Melville’s classic “Moby Dick” yet many women shipped on whalers and endured the hardships of years on board those “less than homey, blubber smelling ships”. By 1850, a sixth of whaling ships had the wi...

August 27, 2020

You’re fishing the long Island Sound on your boat near Port Jeff with your buddy. It’s getting towards sunset and it’s time to call it a day.  The water shines with red highlights and you have a few fish aboard. Your buddy is pulling up the last fish of the day when th...

"Comparing Two Giants of Nautical Literature"

Ernest Hemingway once said “modern literature began with

“Huckleberry Finn” but E.L. Doctorow argued that it was “Moby Dick” by Herman Melville “that swallowed civilization whole”.  Melville (1819-91) was born in New York Ci...

 Recently I had a strange encounter on Oak Beach near Fire Island Inlet. Walking in the moonlight on the beach west of the Sore Thumb, I saw the water become confused with thrashing. I stopped short and stood still as a strangely dressed man emerged from the waves. He...

This article started as a search for the history of a shipwreck and ended up with the story of a family woven in. This winter, after a storm, I came upon a hull knee, parts of a deck and a hefty beam from a mid-19th century wreck. My imagination wondered what wreck the...

February 27, 2020

There was a time that there were scallops in Zacks Bay. There were also mussels, soft and hard shell clams too, all within my lifetime. Bays all over Long Island had significant stands of eel grass that swarmed with grass shrimp and sea horses (How often

do you see the...

January 31, 2020

There comes a time in every devoted boater's life when you have to consider making some changes. You feel it in your bones. It hangs over you like an impenetrable fog at the mile buoy on the outside.  After waiting it out and nothing is changing, you resort to your gut...

January 2, 2020

 Don Quixote’, by Cervantes, pits an aging, idealistic knight, against his imaginary foes. His quest leads him to joust (“Tilting”) against the turning arms of windmills, which his mind has distorted into menacing beasts. The issue of constructing windmills along our c...

September 25, 2019

Being a lifelong boater, (that’s quite a long time), I hate it when some ‘Land Lubber” or former non-devoted boat owner says sarcastically, “A boat is a hole in the sea you pour money into!’’ Frankly, I have to control myself from laying them low with a ‘Belaying pin”...

August 29, 2019

  I have had a love affair with ships and the sea since reading “20,000,000 Leagues Under the Sea” and “Treasure Island” as a child. Later came Conrad, Melville, Hemingway, Steinbeck, Coleridge and so many more. I’m up to my scuppers with these adventures. I dreamed th...

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September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

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Versatile Skiffs! Historic pleasure and workboats of the bays

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