Tom Gay has a perspective of Annapolis that is unusual. He shares that perspective with our guests as we sail towards the Bay Bridge, explaining how Governor Preston Lane ran for re-election on the promise that the bridge would only cost “pennies a day”. Everyone new what that meant: TAXES. And they did not want to pay taxes. He lost the election, but the bridge got built.
He then tells us of Anthony Stewart who in October 14, 1774, knowingly tries to bring a cargo that includes Tea which is so heavily taxed by England by the “Townshend Acts” of 1767, that it infuriates the citizens who form a committee to boycott the tea.* The committee allows Anthony to live only if apologizes publicly in the Capital Gazette (still published) and burn his ship. What makes the story come alive is that he plays a fiddle tune of the period.
* See Tom’s clarification in comments below.
As Tom takes tells his stories, Raquel, takes the helm, an steers the boat back to the entrance of the Severn River.
This inspires young Aaron to steer us carefully forward. Tom fiddles as Aaron brings us back to our home port.
2 thoughts on “History, Violin, and Taking the Helm”
Hey Captain Ken,
Indeed Aug. 11 was a great cruise with a huge SW breeze that took us under the bridge and back.
As I’m a bit of a history geek, I need to clarify the Peggy Stewart affair. Owner Anthony Stewart didn’t know about the tea until the ship arrived. His crime was that he paid the tax on the tea knowing that Maryland had joined all the colonies in a nonimportation agreement to boycott British tea. Stewart was a loyalist and had broken an earlier colonial embargo, so he had a history with the local patriots.
see ya on the water …
–tom guay, musicioner
Thanks Tom. I will footnote your comment.