Where in the World?
Hong Kong!
Oil on canvas of the ship ROSIE WELT of New York, painted by Taicheong of Hong Kong in the 1880s. PMM 1971.36.1.
Photographed by Henry Peach.

In the latest round of examining the port paintings in our collection, in anticipation of this summer's "Where in the World?" art exhibit, we travel to Hong Kong.  As a result of the Opium War between the British and Chinese in 1843, which Britain won, Hong Kong was ceded as a British colony in the treaty.  Hong Kong became a major shipping port for Chinese goods coming out of China in the years that followed.  The ship ROSIE WELT, built in Waldoboro and homeported out of New York City, visited the port city of Victoria in the 1880s.  Her captain, Gerard M. Jones of Waldoboro, commissioned her portrait.  In the 1880s, Hong Kong exported opium, sugar, salt, flour, earthenware, oil, amber, cotton and cotton goods, sandalwood, ivory, betel, livestock and granite.  It imported coal for steamships and industrial factories.   

In the portrait, we see the signal station on Victoria Peak, rising up behind the city, and the hongs or factories at the base of the Peak, where the cargos were stored.  The surrounding hills of Hong Kong ring the harbor.  In the harbor, is a British warship converted into a storage hulk and the Chinese junks conducting trade with the mainland.
Children's Explorer Camps
Kids on Land/at Sea in the 19th Century

Collections News
One-Design Archives at
Penobscot Marine Museum

Two images of Wee Scot class boats from the Sturgis Haskins Collection, PMM 36-48

Our good friend and fellow maritime historian Maynard Bray recently reminded us of the treasures we have tucked away in our archives, ready for the right enthusiast to create an article or book:

" Anyone interested in Sturgis Haskins's entire archive should be aware that it is split between Penobscot Marine Museum and Maine Maritime Museum and that there's a significant portion at both institutions-the overall emphasis being on the One-Design Sailboat classes that were once used in Maine.

Classes include Herreshoff S-boats and Bar Harbor 31-footers, Mount Desert Island (MDI) class, Dark Harbor 17s and 12s, Alden O-boats, Brutal Beasts, Winter Harbor 21s, and Northeast Harbor A-boats.

MMM has the correspondence and photos, as well as a notebook relating to formation of the Maine Antique Boat Society, a rather short-lived organization initiated by Sturgis."

The PMM archives covers:
  • Lists of vessels built by Alden, Lawley, Rice Brothers Corporation, Ellis Boat Company,  and Bunker & Ellis Boat Builders, 
  • The racing fleets and rules for the Luders L-16 and L-24 classes, Knockabouts, MDI class, B class, Herreshoff S class, and others, and 
  • Photos and racing information from Buck's Harbor Yacht Club, Southwest Harbor Fleet, Frenchman's Bay Racing Classes, Sorrento Yacht Club, Winter Harbor Yacht Club, and Bar Harbor area. 
The archives are open year-round Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9am-1pm or by appointment.
Maine in the China Trade, Part 2
Photograph, taken in Hong Kong about 1880, of the executive staff of Russell & Company, the leading American Mercantile House in the China Sea. PMM#92
Did you miss our curator's talk on Maine in the China Trade as part of the Camden Conference's satellite programs? Save the date for May 30, 6pm in our Old Vestry Lecture Hall. 

Drugs, armed conflict, and free trade. Sound familiar? The First Opium War of the early 1840s, with British and Chinese fighting over the opium trade and Chinese sovereignty, opened up Chinese ports to the world. Maine's merchant mariners aboard Maine-built ships soon thereafter entered the Chinese import and export trade. The trade aboard Maine-built ships lasted into the turn of the 20th Century. In the meantime, Maine sea captains and their families brought back souvenirs, stories, and an economic understanding of China. 
Internship Opportunities
The Penobscot Marine Museum seeks two full-time museum interns for summer 2019. These are general museum internships providing hands-on work experience in the daily operations of a medium-sized museum. Interns will actively participate in multiple departments including visitor's services, education, curatorial, marketing, and photo archives. This is an excellent opportunity for a student who would like to learn more about the variety of jobs available in the museum field, and also can be tailored for a more specific experience. About 40% of the internship will be public programming and the remaining 60% will be spent on other projects. These internships will include visits to local cultural institutions.