Jack Shaum, author of Lost Chester River Steamboats, will be onboard at the Open House on May 6 to give a history of Steamboats on the Chesapeake and Chester River. Lost Chester River Steamboats will be on sale.
In the golden age of the steamer, the rich bounty of the Eastern Shore was transported down the Chester River and across the Chesapeake Bay to the port of Baltimore. For over one hundred years, vessels like the Maryland, the Chester and the B.S. Ford traversed these winding waters laden with fruit, grains, crabs and oysters. For a dollar, passengers could enjoy the novelty of a ride and the slow panorama of the shoreline. Through freeze and fog, skilled captains plied the waterways until the last of the steamers the Bay Bellemade its final passage in the 1950s.
Jack has had a 50 year career as a reporter with The News American and later became press aide to Maryland Congressman William O. Mills. He later enjoyed almost 30 years as a news anchor and reporter for WBAL in Baltimore. He has written for several local newspapers and is a former editor-in-chief of the quarterly journal of the Steamship Historical Society of America.