Women At Sea relates the experiences of being the only woman aboard a sailing vessel embarking on the China Trade in the late 1800s. Frances Carleton Brastow Amesbury captured these adventures through her five line a day journal entries and her own photography. When not at sea, she wrote of her life in the seafaring town of Rockport Maine.
The types of vessels she and her husband Captain Stanley Amesbury sailed on, what life aboard those months at sea were like, and the various places they made passage to are all documented in her diaries and photographs.
Frances is the great aunt of Barbara Brastow Semple, our presenter. Through Barbara’s reading of her great aunt’s 15 years of journals, as well as several books and diaries by other women of that era, she has put together a travelogue highlighting women’s voyages at sea, with an emphasis on Frances Amesbury’s experiences sailing the high seas around the world.
About Barbara Semple: Barbara is a South Chatham resident and researcher and docent at the Atwood Museum. She also sings with the Cape-wide Chatham Chorale and its Chamber Singers.
Barbara spent most of her career before retirement as a children’s librarian at public school, public library and private school in New Hampshire. After living for 38 years in New Hampshire, Barbara and her husband Paul retired to South Chatham 13 years ago. Having grown up in Fairfield Connecticut, three blocks from Long Island Sound, sailing boats, and having spent summers in Chatham for 55 years, moving to South Chatham was like coming home.
This lecture is part of a two-part series in partnership with the Chatham Marconi Maritime Center. The second part of this lecture is Sara Kazamias' Women at Sea (Now) on November 3rd. See the Atwood's or Marconi's websites for more details and reservations.