Fan of Full Fathom Five? Be sure to check it out at its new home!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Seas the Moment

The May 11, 2009 episode of "Are We Alone?," the science radio show from SETI, is all about how our oceans are changing. The show is rather folksy and chatty, as usual, but this episode, "Seas the Moment," is as educational as every episode that they air.

I enjoyed listening to Sylvia Earle, who is, according to the this episode's site, "Oceanographer, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, founder of DeepSearch Foundation, and author of Ocean: An Illustrated Atlas (National Geographic Atlas)," and who, I believe, could make even the most complicated oceanographic concept understandable to even the smallest child. The show is well worth a listen.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lost Franklin clock found

On is a Canwest News Service article by Randy Boswell, "Lost timepiece from Franklin Expedition found." The chronometer has "inexplicably surfaced" in Britain, and its story is fascinating. Boswell also reports that staff at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich are hurrying to unravel that mystery as quickly as possible, as the timepiece will be on display within days of this article's publication.

It might be worth watching the NMM's website for updates!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Aquatic Park Bathhouse murals

This view of the lobby of the Aquatic Park Bathhouse (also known as the Maritime Museum building) in San Francisco was taken by my talented coworker, Tim Campbell (and is posted here with his kind permission). The work on the conservation of Hilaire Hiler's murals progresses, and is a delight to behold--the colors on the cleaned portions of the murals are breathtaking.

More information on the larger Aquatic Park rehabilitation project is available at the San Francisco Maritime NHP's website, and more information on the building is at the Library of Congress' Built in America site, which presents the Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscapes Survey, (1933-Present)--just search for: Aquatic Park Bathhouse

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Lorri Glover on the Sea Venture

The Virginia Historical Society has put up Lorri Glover's recent Banner Series lecture, "The Shipwreck That Saved Jamestown: The Sea Venture Castaways and the Fate of America." (.mp3, ca. 40 min.) With Daniel Blake Smith, Lorri Glover is the author of The Shipwreck that Saved Jamestown about the wreck of the Sea Venture in Bermuda in 1609, and its wide implications. Ms. Glover's lecture is entertaining and educational and just one of many history lectures available online from the Society.

The Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation has even more information on Jamestown and Bermuda, including the Sea Venture, on their Jamestown and Bermuda: Virginia Company Colonies site (mounted in conjunction with their exhibit which runs from March 1-October 15, 2009)--you can scroll down or use the left-bar navigation for links to relevant audio, video, and textual materials.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A look at nautical pulp fiction

It's a sunny day. You're reclining on a deck chair--possibly on the beach, possibly on the deck of a cruise ship making for an island port where the palm fronds sway in the cool breezes. Nap taken, you reach for one of the books nearby. Which would you rather read? Moby Dick, or "A lusty tale of the South Pacific ... The Strumpet Sea?" How about, "Adventurer, lover, rogue, spy--he was a Buccaneer Surgeon!" Do you want to find out "What makes Onionhead run? Food or sex?" Too romantic? Perhaps you'd rather try, "The adventures of George Abercrombie Fox--the toughest bastard in the Royal Navy!"

It's taken a long time, but best-sellers are making their way into research libraries, including ours. Public librarians have long known that these are the books in demand with the reading public, but it's taken longer for research libraries to realize that best-sellers, even pulp novels, have something to offer researchers.

How long? About a hundred and fifty years. Pulp fiction periodicals have been published since the mid-19th century, and the Library of Congress' Rare Book and Special Collections Division holds dime novels dating back to the 1860s. But scholarly attention has developed slowly...

This is the beginning of another article that I wrote for our Library Friends' Relative Bearings on the recently acquired Eberhardt Collection. You can read the rest of it in the .pdf version of the newsletter (p. 1 and 4).

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Mary Lee Fowler in D.C.

If you're in the Washington, D.C. (USA) area on Thursday, May 14, consider spending your lunch break at the Navy Memorial where Mary Lee Fowler will be discussing and signing her book, Full Fathom Five: a Daughter's Search. The event is free and open to the public, part of the Memorial’s "Authors on Deck" Series of Navy-related Book Lectures.

Ms. Fowler's book won Honorable Mention in Non-Fiction at the 2009 Maine Literature Awards--more information on her book and the event is available at the Navy Memorial's events site.

(My thanks to André Sobocinski for sending the lecture announcement.)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Indigenous boats blog

My thanks to Bob Holtzman for writing to tell me about his wonderful blog, Indigenous Boats: Small Craft Outside the Western Tradition. His posts are a pleasure to read and include beautiful graphics, and the alphabetic list of labels makes navigating the site, and the traditions represented, very easy.

He also links to lots of books, and I hope he writes more book reviews--they're well considered and entertaining. Start by reading Raft Wackos.

Thursday, May 07, 2009


Infopeople is a familiar organization to many California library workers, but perhaps lesser known outside the state. They hold fantastic training sessions at low or no cost for California library workers, and make dozens of archived webcasts and webinars available to the world--for free. There are many of interest to those outside of library settings covering topics such as volunteering, technology, leadership and research skills. Many other resources are available on their site, including past training materials, podcasts, etc.

They've also compiled a great search tools page, that lists favorite resources by topic and leads to a custom best search tools site which lists multiple search engines on one page.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

LJ's Darwin reading list

This year is the 150th anniversary of the publication of Darwin's On the Origin of Species. Want to read it, but unsure which edition might be the best? A recommendation is included in Library Journal's article, "Charles Darwin at 200 : celebrate evolution's father with these seven titles."

The article is an annotated bibliography which includes ISBN numbers (for quick searching on your favorite book site) and price. Want to find the titles? To find the books in a library, check out or to purchase the book new, check out IndieBound to purchase from an independent bookseller (just copy & paste that ISBN number, or any other search terms, in the search box). Buying used books? My favorite sites are Abebooks for a bargain, and TomFolio for nicer or collectible editions.

And which edition does LJ recommend? Darwin, Charles. On the Origin of Species: The Illustrated Edition. Sterling. 2008. c.538p. ed. by David Quammen. illus. index. ISBN 978-1-4027-5639-9. $35.

Monday, May 04, 2009

North Atlantic Fisheries History Conference, Norfolk, Va.

Dr. Ingo Heidbrink has sent along an announcement for the 12th North Atlantic Fisheries History Conference, taking place 19-22 August 2009 in Norfolk, Virginia (USA). More information is available from the North Atlantic Fisheries History Association. The invitation:

North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA)
Old Dominion University, Department of History
12th North Atlantic Fisheries History Conference
19-22 August 2009 in Norfolk, VA (USA)
The North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA) and the Department of History at Old
Dominion University (ODU) in Norfolk, VA invites you to participate in the 12th North Atlantic
Fisheries History Conference to be held from 19-22 August 2009 in Norfolk, VA (USA). This
meeting is designed to stimulate scholarly exchange between researchers at all levels (from
graduate students to senior scientists) and in all disciplines that relate to the long-term
development of fishing activity and its impact on the marine environment.
The special theme of the conference will be:
Fisheries Management in a Historical Perspective
In addition to seven thematic sessions with scholarly papers there will be a roundtable on archival
sources and fisheries history research and the launching of NAFHA’s big book (A History of the
North Atlantic Fisheries: Volume 1 – From Early Times to the mid-19th Century).
To register for the conference, please return the attached registration form via fax or e-mail.
Registration deadline is: June 15th 2009.
The conference fee (including all sessions, coffee-breaks, conference-dinner, etc.) is 180.—US$
for NAFHA-members, 210.—US$ for non-members for registration and payment before June 1st
2009 and (210.—US$ NAFHA members, 240.—US$ non-members for registration and payment
after June 1st 2009)
For a limited number of participants, especially young colleagues and colleagues from developing
countries, the conference fee might be partly or completely waived. Such a waiver requires
application before June 1st 2009.
The North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA)
is an international, interdisciplinary organization that aims to enhance our knowledge and
understanding of the historical development of the fisheries conducted in the North Atlantic.
NAFHA meets its aim by fostering research activity, chiefly through the promotion of conferences
that bring together established and emerging scholars to examine socio-cultural, economic,
political and environmental aspects of commercial fishing activity over the last millennium. The
findings of these conferences, together with monographs and reference works, are disseminated
in the Association’s publication series, Studia Atlantica. For further information, visit
The History Department at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA
is one of very few North American university departments with a focus on maritime history.
Research is conducted into global maritime history and the fisheries history of the Atlantic region.
Faculty members include renowned specialists in this field, who participate in the intercollegiate,
interdisciplinary Maritime Consortium at ODU. This brings together scholars from various
disciplines, including the humanities, sciences, social sciences and professional schools, all of
whom are concerned with maritime and marine affairs.
Norfolk, VA is a major seaport of the USA located at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. A rich
local history of fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean as well as maritime
industries, marine research institutions, government agencies like NOAA, the USCG and
maritime museums and collections like the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, VA characterize
the region.
Please forward this conference announcement / invitation to all colleagues who might be
interested in the 12th NAFHA conference in Norfolk, VA on 19-22 August 2009.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information at:
Looking forward to seeing you in Norfolk, VA, in August 2009!
Dr. Ingo Heidbrink
-NAFHA Presidency & Conference Organizer-
Associate Professor – Department of History
Old Dominion University - Norfolk, VA
Phone: 1-757-683-3656 or skype: ingo.heidbrink
North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA)
Old Dominion University, Department of History
12th North Atlantic Fisheries History Conference
19-22 August 2009 in Norfolk, VA (USA)
Preliminary Program
Tuesday, August 18th :
Registration and get-together Reception
Wednesday, August 19th
9:30 – 11:00 Welcome and Introduction
11:30 – 13:00 Session I - The “Science” of Fisheries Management
Chair: David J. Starkey
Petter Holm:
Legitimacy and privatization:
Fisheries management and the role of the fishermen in society
Sydney Holt:
The Evolution of the Objectives, Science and Procedures of Fisheries Management
Katharina Jantzen:
The evolution of incentive-based quota management in North Atlantic cod fisheries
14:30 – 16:00 Session II - Fisheries: Resources, Politics, and Conflict
Chair: Maura Hametz
Will Bryan:
“The Strength of the Scup Ticket”:
The Politics of Fishery Regulation in Rhode Island, 1870-1872
Christopher Magra:
Oceanic Resource Extraction and Conflict in the Revolutionary Era
Christine Overgaard:
Managing Dutch cod fishery in the 1800s
16:30 – 18:00 Session III - Fisheries “Lifecycles”: Stocks and Management
Chair: Matthew McKenzie
Piers Crocker:
The Protection of Stocks of Norwegian Brisling 1900-2008
Ernesto Lopez:
The Anchovy in the Bay of Biscay. The Birth and the Death of a Fishery (1880-2008)
Soeren Byskov:
Trawling for the Danish Fishmeal c.1970-2008
Fisheries management in a sector with bad reputation
Thursday, August 20th
9:30 – 11:00 Session IV - Norwegian Fisheries’ Management
Chair: Aarstein Svihus
Paal Christensen:
The role of fisheries management in the history of the Norwegian fisheries, 1970-2005
Bjoern-Petter Finstad:
The Lofoten Law of 1897 and the Finnmark Law of 2009 –
A comparison between two Norwegian management regimes
Jan Petter Johnsen:
Management and cybernatization in Norwegian fisheries
11:30 – 13:00 Session V - Fishieries Policy in European Commerce
Chair: Lars U. Scholl
Gaute Heyerdahl:
The Creation of the European Communities Common Fisheries Policy, 1963-1970.
Chris Reid, Morten Karnoe Sondergaard:
Bilateral trade and fisheries development: the 1933 Anglo-Danish Trade Agreement
Olga Wisniewska:
Liver-oil logistics – norwegian fish-oil trade with Stettin in the end of XIXth century.
14:15 – 16:15 Session VI - Cultural Aspects of Fisheries History
Chair: Annette Finley-Croswhite
Dag Hundstad:
“Marcus the Fisherman” – Coastal Tourism and Regional Identity
Ole Sparenberg:
The Fischbratküche: „Fish ‘n’ Chips“ in Germany, 1924-1939
Robert Gear:
The Changing Role of Management in Shetland’s Pelagic Fishing Industry 1945-2005
Collin Davis:
Transatlantic Women: Fishermen’s Wives’ Organizations in Gloucester and Hull
16:15 – 18:00 Program with the United States Coast Guard
18:00 – 20:00 Reception
Friday, August 21st
9:30 – 11:00 Session VII - Seas of Change: Fisheries and Modernization
Chair: Ingo Heidbrink
Matthew McKenzie:
“Curbing Commodification: Biology, Culture, and Management in the
Southern NewEngland Colonial Inshore Fisheries.”
Aarstein Svihus:
Modernisation, rationalization of the fishing fleet and the
fishermen’s political response,1950-1990s
Brian McSorely:
Seas of Change: Redefining New England’s Fishing Community
11:30 – 13:00 Roundtable Archival Sources and Fisheries History Research
(Organized by Bill Thiesen, USCG)
14:30 – 18:00 NAFHA Internal Meetings
18:00 Conference Dinner
Saturday, August 22nd
9:30 – 16:00 Post-Conference Tour: Mariners’ Museum and USS MONITOR - Center
18:00 – 22:00 Farewell Reception

Friday, May 01, 2009

Princess Taiping update

Sakkis, a friend of one of Princess Taiping's crew members, Hugh Morrow, took time to leave a comment here. He has a nice post with a video on his blog, "Mr. Cakes mishapps and misadventures." He prompted me to look for some updates.

I was able to dig up the following news stories that cover different aspects of the incident:

In addition, The Old Salt Blog has an update with a link to the details on the freighter, the Champion Express.