Published: March 18, 2016
COS COB, CONN. — Through paintings, photographs, maps, charts and instruments, “Close to the Wind: Our Maritime History” will explore the rich history of maritime Greenwich, sharing the myriad stories that link the community to its coastal roots. With 36 miles of coastline, the sea has always played a significant role in the history of Greenwich. The exhibition will be on view March 30–September 4 at the Greenwich Historical Society Storehouse Gallery and Bush-Holley Historic Site.
Since the town’s founding in 1640, boats plying Long Island Sound were a regular and reliable means of commercial trade and passenger transport. Yet by June 1896, signaling the end of an era, the last market sloop sailed from the Lower Landing in Cos Cob to New York.
With the rise of pleasure yachting, new maritime pursuits appeared on the horizon. Yachting became both a sport and a leisure activity associated with the grand lifestyle of the wealthy tycoons who built the great estates. Over time, as boating became more affordable, Greenwich once again witnessed a proliferation of boats of every size and description, as well as the establishment of many organizations dedicated to boating.
Enthusiastically endorsing the new show, exhibition committee chairman Jessica Guff says, “We wanted to honor the unique relationship of Greenwich to both the Long Island Sound and our many local rivers and waterways. Recreation and commerce on the water transcend social and economic distinctions. Our waters are open to everyone and unite us in enjoyment and appreciation.”
The historical society plans a number of lectures and programs in connection with the show, including a talk by sailor, author and historian John Rousmaniere on April 19, a Story Barn program featuring personal stories with the theme “Any Port in a Storm,” a lecture on Revolutionary War-era coastal charts and maps, and a cruise highlighting the historic features of Captain’s Harbor.
The Greenwich Historical Society Storehouse Gallery and Bush-Holley Historic Site is at 39 Strickland Road.
For additional information, www.greenwichhistory.org or 203-869-6899.
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