Sunday, October 11, 2009

Road trip: boat bones and fishbones

Jade and I made a road trip to East Setauket, on the north shore of Long Island: a quiet, harbour village very close to Port Jefferson. This is where wooden boats were made, many to carry cordwood to Manhattan; some big schooners, many smaller boats. Boats with history like The Wanderer.
We were attracted to the walking tour on Saturday morning because it spoke of "boat bones". We saw the bones--two schooner's ribs--uncovered by low tide. But first we saw the fish bones.
Our guide was a saltwater gentleman called Bev. He does tours around East Setauket and told us all about the shipbuilder families who had lived there, built the houses, built the village, and how their lives turned from shipbuilding to tourism as their livelihoods were made to change by progress... such as the Erie Canal, steamboats, railway. He also runs historical tours for schoolteachers, taking them all over central Long Island, helping them to help our children understand their heritage. And he recommended a Shirley breakfast place that we have to find.
And who would have believed there was once a rubber manufacturer on Long Island?

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