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The Maritime Bookstore at Mystic Seaport offers one of the nation’s most comprehensive selection of maritime books, including more than 90 of the Museum’s publications, new titles, used books, rare volumes, pictorial books, and magazines. Additionally, the bookstore offers a DVD viewing area, a children’s section, a CD listening area, and free wireless Internet.
Subjects include: Mystic Seaport publications, Adventure, Art, Blacksmithing, Boat Building, Boat Maintenance, Canoe, Coast Guard, Cookbooks, Cooperage, Crafts, Eric Sloane, Expeditions, Figureheads, Ghosts and Haunted, Kayak, Knots, Log Books and Journals, Maritime Calendars, Maritime Fiction, Maritime History, Model Making, Music of the Sea, Nautical Pictorial, Nautical Terminology, Naval History, New England Pictorial, History and Travel, Pirates, Power Boats, Rigging, Rowing and Sculling, Sailing and Sailboats, Scrimshaw, Sea History magazine, Seamanship, Navigation, and Boating, Shipwrecks and Storms, Special Value books, Voyages, Water, Earth and Sky, Whaling, Wood Carving, WoodenBoat magazine (back issues available) and publications, as well as audio books and more than 200 youth titles.
In Celebration of the 38th Voyage
The Charles W. Morgan is the last of an American whaling fleet that numbered more than 2,700 vessels. Built and launched in 1841, the Morgan is America’s oldest commercial ship still afloat and an icon of the nation’s maritime heritage. The ship sailed on her historic 38th Voyage during the summer of 2014.
The Charles W. Morgan: A Picture History of an American Icon — This coffee table book, published in December 2014 by Mystic Seaport in collaboration with The Day, chronicles the history and recent voyage of the Charles W. Morgan, America’s last surviving wooden whaleship. The 144-page book is a photographic account of the story of the American whale fishery, the Morgan’s career as an active whaleship, as a museum exhibit, and her recent restoration and historic 38th Voyage. The book’s stunning images are selected from the Museum’s collections and from work by the Museum’s photographers, who accompanied the ship during her latest voyage. Winner of the 2015 Betty M. Linsley Award from the Association for the Study of Connecticut History. Order online.
The Charles W. Morgan: America’s Last Wooden Whaling Ship — The one-hour documentary film “The Charles W. Morgan,” which was directed by five-time Emmy winner Bailey Pryor and had its broadcast debut on PBS in May 2014, is now available on DVD. The film tells the extraordinary story of America’s last wooden whaleship and the incredible saga of whaling, the first global industry dominated by the United States. Order online.
The Charles W. Morgan — John F. Leavitt’s comprehensive history brings the whaleship to life, and includes crew lists; a summary of voyages and logbooks; historic photographs of the ship, her captains, and their wives (five sailed with their husbands, two as expert navigators); the author’s own detail sketches; a sail plan; a glossary; and an index. Order online.
Down to the Seas Again: The 38th Voyage of the Charles W. Morgan — Cartoonist and illustrator Lucy Bellwood has published all of her original art from her time spent aboard the Charles W. Morgan during the whaleship’s the historic 38th Voyage.
Whale Hunt — In this narrative Nelson Cole Haley, a harpooner on the Morgan during her third voyage from 1849-1853, provides a feel for what life was like on a whaleship. “This classic true story of a voyage on the Charles W. Morgan is both a wonderful read and an excellent source of information about American whaling in the 19th century,” said Nathaniel Philbrick, author of In the Heart of the Sea. Order online.
New Arrivals at the Bookstore
The Conquering Tide: War in the Pacific Islands, 1942-1944 by Ian W. Toll – This masterful history encompasses the heart of the Pacific War―the period between mid-1942 and mid-1944―when parallel Allied counteroffensives north and south of the equator washed over Japan’s far-flung island empire like a “conquering tide,” concluding with Japan’s irreversible strategic defeat in the Marianas. It was the largest, bloodiest, most costly, most technically innovative and logistically complicated amphibious war in history, and it fostered bitter interservice rivalries, leaving wounds that even victory could not heal. This volume―continuing the “marvelously readable dramatic narrative” (San Francisco Chronicle) of Pacific Crucible―marks the second installment of the Pacific War Trilogy, which will stand as the first history of the entire Pacific War to be published in at least twenty-five years.
The French Prize by James L. Nelson – Acclaimed, award-winning author James L. Nelson – praised as “a master of both his period and the English language” by Patrick O’Brian – returns to the world of sea and sail in The French Prize, a page-turning historical novel.
Shipwrecked in Paradise: Cleopatra’s Barge in Hawai’i by Paul F. Johnston – The first oceangoing yacht ever built in America, Cleopatra’s Barge, endured many incarnations over her eight-year life, from Mediterranean pleasure cruiser to a Hawaiian king’s personal yacht. The famed ship, at times also a Christian missionary transport, pirate ship, getaway vehicle, instrument of diplomacy, and racing yacht, wrecked on a reef in Hanalei Bay on April 6, 1824. Obtaining the first underwater archaeological permits ever issued by the state of Hawai‘i, a team of divers from the Smithsonian Institution located, surveyed, and excavated the wrecked ship from 1995 to 2000. The 1,250 lots of artifacts from the shipwreck represent the only known material culture from the reign of King Kamehameha II (Liholiho), shedding light on the little-documented transitional period from Old Hawai‘i to foreign influence and culture. Although Liholiho ruled Hawai‘i for only a few short years, his abolition of taboos and admission of the Boston Christian missionaries into his kingdom planted the seeds for profound changes in Hawaiian culture.
A Genius at His Trade: C.Raymond Hunt and His Remarkable Boats by Stan Grayson – Today, the name C. Raymond Hunt remains synonymous with some of the most popular boats ever created. They include the classic Concordia yawls and sloops, the Boston Whaler, the pioneering 1960 Miami-Nassau race-winner Moppie, and the production Bertram 25 and 31 Sportfishermen, among others. Designers still marvel at Hunt’s bold ideas for powerboats and sailboats in a variety of competitive classes. While the original 13-foot Boston Whaler pioneered a new market for versatile, safe, small boats, the deep-V hull revolutionized expectations of speed and seaworthiness. 150 duotone photos and illustrations.
The Saltwater Frontier: Indians and the Contest for the American Coast by Andrew Lipman – Andrew Lipman’s eye-opening first book is the previously untold story of how the ocean became a “frontier” between colonists and Indians. When the English and Dutch empires both tried to claim the same patch of coast between the Hudson River and Cape Cod, the sea itself became the arena of contact and conflict. During the violent European invasions, the region’s Algonquian-speaking Natives were navigators, boatbuilders, fishermen, pirates, and merchants who became active players in the emergence of the Atlantic World. Drawing from a wide range of English, Dutch, and archeological sources, Lipman uncovers a new geography of Native America that incorporates seawater as well as soil. Looking past Europeans’ arbitrary land boundaries, he reveals unseen links between local episodes and global events on distant shores.
Mississippi Solo: A River Quest by Eddy Harris – Since the publication of his first book, Mississippi Solo, Eddy L. Harris has been praised for his travel writing. In this exciting reissue of his classic travelogue, readers will come to treasure the rich insightful prose that is as textured as the Mississippi River itself. They will be taken by the hand by an adventurer whose lifelong dream is to canoe the length of this mighty river, from Minnesota to New Orleans. The trip’s dangers were legion for a Black man traveling alone, paddling from “where there ain’t no black folks to where they still don’t like us much.” Barge waives loom large, wild dogs roam the wooded shores, and, in the Arkansas dusk, two shotgun-toting bigots nearly bring the author’s dream to a bloody . Sustaining him through the hard weeks of paddling were the hundreds of people who reached out to share a small piece of his challenge. Mississippi Solo is a big, rollicking, brilliant book, a wonderful piece of American adventure, and an unforgettable story of a man testing his own limits.
Back in Print: Seamanship in the Age of Sail: An Account of the Shiphandling of the Sailing Man-of-War 1600-1860 by John Harland – Numerous successful reprints of contemporary works on rigging and seamanship indicate the breadth of interest in the lost art of handling square-rigged ships. Model makers, marine painters, and enthusiasts need to know not only how the ships were rigged but how much sail was set in each condition of wind and sea, how the various maneuvers were carried out, and the intricacies of operations like reefing sails or ‘catting’ an anchor. Harland has provided what is undeniably the most thorough book on handling square-rigged ships. Because of his facility in a remarkable range of languages, Harland has been able to study virtually every manual published over the past four centuries on the subject. As a result, he is able to present for the first time a proper historical development of seamanship among the major navies of the world.
Books Published by Mystic Seaport
L. Francis Herreshoff: Yacht Designer by Roger C. Taylor — This book is the first of two volumes to chronicle the life and work of the most remarkable yacht designer of his time. The author was given access to the L. Francis Herreshoff Collection at Mystic Seaport and brings Herreshoff’s personality to life, with its artistic and scientific genius, prejudices, omniscience, shyness, quiet friendliness, inward pain, and generosity. He presents a gallery of plans and photographs of Herreshoff’s yachts, with expert descriptions and commentary on the details of his designs.
No Ordinary Being by Llewellyn Howland III — Few 20th-century Americans led a more creative, daring, eventful, and sometimes troubled life than that of the inventor, poet, aviation pioneer, naval architect, automotive engineer, and America’s Cup yacht designer W. Starling Burgess. Deeply researched, richly illustrated, and beautifully produced, this biography will have a particular appeal to recreational sailors, students of early aviation, and lovers of the New England coast, Newport, Long Island Sound, the Chesapeake Bay, the waters of Florida and the West Indies. The 472-page book was published by David R. Godine in association with the New Bedford Whaling Museum, Old Dartmouth Historical Society and Mystic Seaport. It is available for purchase at the bookstore or online.
The Strenuous Life of Harry Anderson by Roger Vaughan — A biography of Harry Anderson: sailor, educator, philanthropist, and predominant international yachting ambassador for nearly 70 years. Anderson’s long, active life provides a unique perspective on a fascinating period of American history. Published by Mystic Seaport.