JCC Rotary was treated today to a running history of the marine industry in tidewater Virginia, both on an amateur and professional level. We learned about dugout canoes as built by the Indians, early sailing ships at the time of John Smith, mainly the Susan Constant, whose modern reincarnation was taken to sea by local boys. We saw the vessels of war assembled by both North and South during the Civil War, the first practical submarines, and the first attempt at useful aircraft carriers. Mr. Shoemaker worked at the shipyard for many years.
On the commercial side, work boats have not been improved to the extent of their military cousins. The bows have been designed to meet local conditions, such as surf out beyond the breakwaters, but the hulls remained much the same.
Mr. Shoemaker has spent his life working on and around boats, and considers it well spent. He gave us a good picture of what life was like down on Virginia waters...
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