Shipwrecks on the Shores of Westerly

“They bilged; they mistayed; they blew their stacks; they went down in thick and blowing weather. They were the great company of ships that have been wrecked on the rocks and reefs of the Sounds off the Rhode Island and Eastern Connecticut Coasts.”

This is the first paragraph of my grandmother’s book, published in 1973 by my dad and his two brothers to honor their mother’s memory. I’ve been thinking about this book lately, wondering how I might also use her book to develop another piece of writing. I’m learning about “moon cussing” and the “Palatine Light.”

Someone actually used her book to discover a shipwreck,  the USS Revenge, a ship once commanded by South Kingstown native Oliver Hazard Perry. Unfortunately, no news reports gave my grandmother’s name, Margaret Woodbury Carter, as the author of the book. But I will give her credit in whatever I do. She was a woman, a creative soul, who made a space in her home and life for  her grandchildren to explore and play. I will be forever grateful.