The Florida Maritime Chronicle

Occupational Folklore: The Boat Guides of Wakulla Springs c.1980

Tourism has long played a central role in Florida’s economy. On November 8-9, 1980, Florida Folklife Program folklorists Ormond Loomis and Doris Dyen set out to document examples of the colorful narratives or “spiels” used by tour boat guides at Wakulla Springs. Track 13 is their recording of James A. Moretz, a guide for the […]

What’s in a dive boat’s name? The origins of “Plunger”

“Plunger?  Why Plunger?!” Captain Rod Brandenburgh has been asked that question ever since he named his first dive boat Plunger  in 1977 or so.  The name “Plunger” was a suggestion from a local ad man and friend of Dr. Brandenburgh (Capt. Rod’s Dad).  According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Plunger is defined as follows: Plunger noun […]

The City Pier, Sarasota Alive

Rube Allyn’s Contrasting Decade in Sarasota

Author: Ann A. Shank, former County Historian Email: Source: Sarasota County History Center He came as a humorist and entertainer. He left as an accused, but never tried, murderer. Rube Allyn’s decade in Sarasota was one of great contrasts. In “The Story of Sarasota,” Karl Grismer described him as: ” a cross between a genius and a bum…(with) the […]

Seabird Sanctuary Cultivates Stewardship for Nature

Sanc·tu·ar·y (sângk’chōō-ĕr’ĕ) n. pl. sanc·tu·ar·ies: [Middle English, from Old French sainctuarie, from Late Latin sānctuārium, from Latin sānctus, sacred; see sanctify.] 1.  Refuge.  A safe place.  A safe haven, by extension the term has come to be used for any place of safety.  2.  A place or area of land where wildlife is protected from predators and from being destroyed or hunted. […]

“Temet Nosce” (know thyself)

One of the earliest books I remember reading was “A Year in a Yawl” by Kenneth Ransom, first published in 1901.  It was the narrative of one of the four boys who circumnavigated Florida and the eastern United States in a craft built by hand and a vision to break out of the norm and […]

Dedication to Service

“Dedication to Service” is the history of the men and women of the Tampa Bay Pilots Association.  Both narrative and primary sources are collected in this volume, covering the earliest accounts of the Spanish pilots to today’s Association and its 125 year commitment to public safety, industry and global trade. For a desktop view of […]

Dedication to Service: piloting on Tampa Bay through three centuries

Dedication to Service: piloting on Tampa Bay through three centuries

Dedication to Service: the history of piloting on Tampa Bay through three centuries is the organizational history of the Tampa Bay Pilots Association researched and written by Carrie Caignet in 2012. For print inquiries contact the Tampa Bay Pilots Association 1825 Sahlman Drive Tampa, FL. 33605 Phone: 813-247-3737. An online version is available here.

The Life Aquatic | Part 1 (The Treasure Divers)

REMEMBERING THE SECOND GOLDEN AGE OF PIRACY IN THE FLORIDA KEYS SUBJECT:  Capt. Chuck Mitchell (1938-2006) VESSEL:  Shaggy Cannon VOCATION:  Treasure Hunter/Diver Chuck Mitchell was early on the California diving scene through his acquaintances at Mel’s  (that is Mel Fisher’s) Aqua Shop in Redondo Beach.  He spent a majority of his time at La Jolla […]

Building a Diving Helmet | Popular Mechanics, 1933

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