Boats & Navigation

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Sea Chanteys - Songs of the Working Sailors of Yore Explores

The range of work and recreational songs used by sailors to ease their efforts and pass the time in the days of big sailing ships.

Customization: 45 minutes to 1 hour. Singing and Multimedia. Can be tailored in duration and content to the target audience.

Illustration by W. Symons. - Patterson, J.E. “Sailors’ Work Songs.” Good Words 41(28) (June 1900): 391-397.

A Celestial Navigation Practicum

A four-session introduction to the art of celestial navigation focused on observations of the sun and sight solution by hand scientific calculator. Sessions 1 and 2 introduce the concepts, both astronomical and practial; session 3 takes students out to the shore to take actual sun sights with a sextant; session 4 concludes with sight reduction and plotting the results. No sophisticated math is required, although some familiarity would enhance understanding. Although probably not resulting in a complete facility in the process, the student will have experienced all of the tools necessary for this seafaring art.

Four two-hour sessions; perhaps offered once a week, or on four successive days. All material is provided, including access to sextants. Students will be provided with all course material and a take-home CD of the course.

Wooden Boat Building - A Heritage of the Piscataqua Region

Ship and boat building were a central part of life and the economy of the region from the early 1600's to the 1870's. Early vessels were for river and Gulf of Maine utility; later ones voyaged world-wide. Explore the types, origins and production in several up-river towns, the mast trade and resulting deforestation. Later the down-river "clipper ships" era, the Naval Shipyard and the abruipt end of large wooden construction after the Civil War. Also, and epilogue considering the grenetic activity during the "Great War' - building both wooden and steel merchant ships - and look at current builders in the area.

Customization: two-hour format with a break inthe middle. Could be presented in two sessions - perhaps on two separate days.