Essex Shipbuilding

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For three centuries, shipbuilding flourished in Essex, a small village wrapped around a shallow tidal estuary that flows into Ipswich Bay. From sturdy little Chebacco boats to the tough but graceful fishing schooners that plied the Grand Banks, Essex vessels became known throughout the maritime world as swift and strong fishermen, and Essex shipbuilding became synonymous with craftsmanship of the highest order. More than four thousand ships slid down the ways destined for ports such as Gloucester, Boston, and New York. By the middle of the twentieth century, however, the industry had vanished and this extraordinary chapter in American maritime history was closed. Essex Shipbuilding recalls an era when dozens of vessels in different stages of construction lined the Essex River and the shipyard gangs worked six days a week, year-round, in any weather. Featuring the photograph collection of Dana A. Story, Essex Shipbuilding illustrates the firms of A.D. Story and Tarr & James, who built the famous racing schooners Mayflower, Columbia, and Gertrude L. Thebaud, and the high-lining fishermen Elsie and Adventure. Essex Shipbuilding also depicts these vessels at sea-fishing, racing, or pursuing more unusual work, from Arctic exploration to naval service in both world wars to rumrunning during Prohibition.
ISBN: 9780738510828
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
State: Massachusetts
Series: Images of America
Images: 200
Pages: 128
Dimensions: 6.5 (w) x 9.25 (h)
Courtney Ellis Peckham is the manager of collections and research at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum. She holds a master's degree in United States social and cultural history from Tufts University and has spent much time researching the immigrant fishing communities of Gloucester in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
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