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Charles Lagerbom teaches AP US History at Belfast Area High School and lives in Northport. He can be contacted at clagerbom@rsu71.org. He is the author of "Whaling in Maine," available through The History Press (www.historypress.com).

Latest
  • Published
    June 10, 2021

    Shipwreck and gold – Part 2

    Soon after the rescued survivors of General Grant returned to civilization, the irresistible siren-song began about golden treasure just sitting there waiting for whoever was quick enough, bold enough and competent enough to grab it. A series of search and salvage attempts were soon launched. The first happened in March 1868 within two years of the wreck and just months after survivors arrived in New Zealand. The …

  • Published
    June 3, 2021

    Shipwreck and gold, Part 1

    The three-mast 1,183-ton ship General Grant was built in Bath in 1864, named for the famous Civil War general and future U.S. president, part of a series of ships built by R. Morse & Sons, which also included General Butler, General Shepley, and in 1869, General Chamberlain. The final two were named for Maine-born generals. Launched into the Kennebec in late winter, General Grant went to Boston and loaded cargo …

  • Published
    May 27, 2021

    The wreck of the Alfred D. Snow

    Over February break, I visited the Thomaston Historical Society to research Maine-built ships which rounded Cape Horn, for my next book. There, I learned about a Thomaston ship named Alfred D. Snow and its captain, William J. Willey. It is an incredibly poignant story. Alfred D. Snow, a three-decked down-easter was built by local captain of industry, James Watts. Launched May 1877, the 232-foot ship made its …

  • Published
    May 27, 2021

    The wreck of the Alfred D. Snow

    Over February break, I visited the Thomaston Historical Society to research Maine-built ships which rounded Cape Horn, for my next book. There, I learned about a Thomaston ship named Alfred D. Snow and its captain, William J. Willey. It is an incredibly poignant story. Alfred D. Snow, a three-decked down-easter was built by local captain of industry, James Watts. Launched May 1877, the 232-foot ship made its …

  • Published
    May 20, 2021

    The RBW Trifecta

    For scuba diving in Midcoast Maine, Rockland’s Breakwater, which we refer to as RBW, is a great option. It actually offers three different dives at the same location, each one different, giving a surprisingly varied view of the ocean. Located off Jameson Point, Rockland Breakwater is at the end of Samoset Road and abuts Samoset Resort’s golf course. Parking can be formidable; you want to park as close to the …

  • Published
    May 13, 2021

    But, Dad, it’s due tomorrow!

    My son called from college at the end of March, said he needed to do a project and wanted to interview me about scuba diving. He is a junior at Husson New England School of Communications, majoring in video productions. The project involved an interview and video shots of a subject and he thought a scuba video and interview of me would fit the bill. Now I really do not like seeing myself on video or hearing my …

  • Published
    May 6, 2021

    Maine-built schooner + Bermuda Triangle = maritime mystery

    While looking into the history of Maine-built schooners, I came across a reference to the Carroll A. Deering. This five-masted schooner is considered to be one of the more intriguing mysteries in maritime history. Whoa! I’ve got to look into this! The 3,500-ton schooner was built in Bath in 1919 by G.G. Deering Company and put into commercial use. Named for the company owner’s son, it was launched April 4, 1919 …

  • Published
    April 29, 2021

    Twilight Time

    The current passenger excursion boat on Moosehead Lake is called the Katadhin, or more affectionately, Kate. I saw it a few summers back while exploring the Greenville region. Then I discovered that Katadhin was sister ship to an earlier vessel named Twilight, actually Twilight II. When I found out that particular Twilight had sunk in the lake at its anchorage and was still there and accessible to scuba divers, I …

  • Published
    April 22, 2021

    There’s no viz like low viz

    As a scuba diver here in Maine, I often hear people ask how far you can see underwater. There is no real simple answer, it actually depends on a lot of different factors. First, we need to go over some definitions. Visibility in diving is an estimation of the water’s clarity and is measured as distance in feet at which a diver can see horizontally. That visibility, however, can be greatly affected by light, …

  • Published
    April 8, 2021

    The Boxer and Enterprise

    As far as wars go in American History, the War of 1812 does not get that much coverage or study. But here in Maine, the conflict proved to be a momentous event that shut down our economy, devastated our commercial shipping and saw us militarily occupied. It also put us on the road toward statehood. One major event that happened here in Maine was an epic maritime duel between two square-rigged naval vessels of …

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