A series of webinars presented by
The American Schooner Association and The Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race

Past Sea Stories

All Hands on Deck: A Modern Day High Seas Adventure to the Far Side of the World with Will Sifrin

Patrick O’Brian’s Master and Commander was scheduled to begin filming in Hollywood, CA. Rose, the replica 18th-century warship bought for the production, was in Newport, RI, two oceans and thousands of miles away. Will Sifrin recounts how he and a “ragtag crew of thirty oddballs” embarked on an epic adventure to deliver Rose, hopefully, in one piece. 


Deadly Gamble: The Wreck of Schooner Levin J Marvel with Kathy Bergen Smith

On August 12, 1955, the schooner Levin J Marvel capsized in the Chesapeake Bay near North Beach, MD. Twenty-seven souls were washed into the storm and the captain was charged with negligence and manslaughter. Part shipwreck story and part courtroom drama, author Kathy Bergen Smith weaves a tale of Chesapeake history drawn from eyewitness accounts.


Adventure and Education Under Sail with Nancy Richardson

Inspired by Capt. Irving Johnson’s world voyage, Nancy has sailed 107 tall ships, from Antarctica to the Arctic and all seven seas. As a lifelong educator, she’s worked with Tall Ships America, Girl Scouts, National Marine Educators, LA Maritime Institute, USCG Reserve and Sail Training International and now advocates for ocean literacy.


Recreating Capt. John Smith’s Voyage of Discovery with Chris Cerino and John Mann

Sailing and rowing an open shallop, the crew retraced 1,500 miles of Smith’s 1608 exploration of the Chesapeake bay and inaugurated the Capt. John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail Recreating Capt. John Smith’s Voyage with Chris Cerino and John Mann.


Greenland Bound Along the Viking Route with Andy Schell

Andy sailed 59 North’s Farr 65, Falken, on the Viking Route from the Chesapeake to Iceland, via the spectacular Prins Christian Sund fjord system in southern Greenland. Andy shared details about the voyage, including the preparation of both boat and crew, how it compared to his passage to Spitsbergen in 2018.


The Rebuilding of Schooner Blackbird with Peter Thompson

This is the story of Blackbird’s rebuild from lying fallow to charter boat in the Gulf of Maine. It is the story too, of how attention to detail, combined with an eye toward historical accuracy, can yield beautiful results. An open-ended discussion will follow the presentation.


Mapping the Great Lakes After the War of 1812 with Gordon Laco

Gordon Laco has outfitted fine yachts and sailing ships for many years and served as an historic consultant on over 50 films including “Master and Commander”. In this expansive story, Laco takes us back to the uneasy peace following the defeat of Napoleon and the Royal Navy’s charting of the Upper Great Lakes.


A Trip to Haiti and Cuba with Nat Benjamin

Nat Benjamin co-founded the highly-respected wooden boatyard, Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway. Nat and his artist wife, Pam, have made several passages to Haiti in their schooner, Charlotte, where Pam, has supported many local causes through her non-profit, SenseOfWonderCreations.org.


Around Cape Horn Narrated by Irving Johnson Movie and Discussion

In 1929, a 24 year old country boy named Irving Johnson brought a camera aboard the 320′ Barque Peking and filmed his voyage around Cape Horn. Johnson added narration to his spectacular footage in 1980 and produced the iconic film. Aired March 15, 2023.


Sailing a Baltimore Clipper with Jan Miles

Captain Miles has been with Pride of Baltimore, Inc. since 1981. He was the first to sail the original Pride across the North Atlantic and has has served as master or mate aboard many other vessels, including Lady Maryland, Californian, Bill of Rights, New Way, Alexandria, Brilliant, Clearwater, Elissa, Oliver Hazard Perry and Tiare Toporo. He also helped develop model sailing programs for youth at risk.


A Quest for Knowledge Under Sail with Matt Rutherford

Matt Rutherford completed a record-breaking, non-stop, single-handed voyage of 27,077 miles around North and South America. Since finishing the circumnavigation of the Americas, Matt has created Ocean Research Project, an organization dedicated to science, education and exploration. In 2013 Matt spent 70 days in the Atlantic ocean mapping out the unexplored eastern side of the Atlantic Garbage Patch.


Rainbow, from Concept to Reality with Reggie Townsend

From scouring the forests of Asia for materials, though lead pours in Indonesia, revolution in Jakarta, a posting in Alaska, and a delivery from the Indian Ocean to St. Mary’s City, Maryland, Reggie Townsend pursued a dream to build an ocean going, two-masted boat that could take the rigors of the open ocean yet retain a traditional, easy to handle style.


A Life of Unexpected Opportunities with Nicholas Alley

For over 40 years, Nicholas Alley has followed a career path of unexpected opportunities that have led him to jobs on some of the best-known and best-loved boats and ships in America. Currently actively involved in deliveries, tall ships and tugs, Captain Alley walks us through his life on the water. Join us for a trip with this well-known and highly regarded captain. Aired November 17, 2022.


My Life with Mystic Whaler with John Eginton

Mystic Whaler became a fixture along the New England coast and a model for successful non-profit schooners. Captain John’s 46-year schooner career has taken him throughout the entire east and west coasts of this country and throughout the Caribbean.  Aired May 19, 2022.


Marine Photography: A New Approach for Old Salts with Richard Sherman

Internationally renowned photographer, Richard Sherman, walks us through his techniques for taking better marine photographs. Full of tips, this is an engaging and informative glimpse into how the “pros” do it. Aired April 14, 2022.