Workshop mixes science and history at Ship History Center - March 24, 2018

We are steaming ahead with our new educational program, teaming up with teachers from around New England to incorporate some of SSHSA's amazing archive into today's classrooms. "Teaching with Historic Archival Sources in Science and Chemistry" was held Saturday March 24, from 8:30-11:30 a.m. at the Ship History Center. Held in conjunction with the New England Association of Chemistry Teachers, faculty will earn professional development credits for taking part in this new workshop.

Building on the extensive resources of SSHSA, this program introduced participants to incorporating historical data and real-world applications into chemistry and science teaching. Thermodynamics, solution chemistry, and the engineering design process were featured. Participants experienced hands-on activities that can be incorporated into their secondary and post-secondary classrooms, and there was an introduction to the SSHSA's new educational website and a tour of the archives. If you are interested in learning more about our education program or professional development, contact our Education Coordinator, Aimee Bachari, at


RI shipwreck presentation now online - March 12, 2018

Thanks to everyone who came out last month for our presentation on Shipwrecks in Rhode Island with Historian Charlotte Taylor. More than 40 people packed our headquarters in Warwick for a spirited discussion of the countless number of vessels that met their end along the shores of the Ocean State.

Talking from her new book "Rhode Island Shipwrecks," Taylor touched on some of the hundreds of steamships that have met misfortunes in Rhode Island through bad weather, human error, equipment failure and bad luck. Some of these sinkings were epic disasters, while others were relatively minor misfortunes. Some of the stories are sad, some are funny, and all are memorable.

Couldn't make it to the presentation on February 24? Well you're in luck. We've recorded the presentation and linked it to our Youtube channel for everyone to see. Just click here for Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.


A celebration in New York - December 12, 2017

This is time of year when the spirit of the season is upon us. And as the old adage goes, it's often better to give than to receive. Thanks to the kindness of many, we here at SSHSA are usually on the receiving end. But one of the great benefits of my position as executive director is that every so often we give out awards. We get to honor people, organizations, projects and, of course, ships. It is quite a privilege to represent SSHSA and present our annual SSHSA Awards.

Over the past few years we've had over a dozen different presenters, typically SSHSA board leaders, and we've had celebrations all around the country - in San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Little Rock, Toledo, Detroit, Key West, Buffalo, Philadelphia, Providence and Boston. Last week, I had the pleasure of riding the rails down to New York City to speak at India House and meet with about 75 members and friends, all there to join in celebrating our latest honorees.

Captain Brian McAllister, recipient of our C. Bradford Mitchell Award, was pleased to share some of his related memories from the creation of his epic book project, McAllister Towing: 150 Years of Family Business. The SS Columbia Project representatives coordinated the fabulous reception, and trustee Ian Danic spoke from the heart about his crew's dedication to bring the steamer Columbia back to service - this time on the Hudson River.

It was a fitting evening and one that will not soon be forgotten. Congratulations to Ship of the Year SSColumbia. May you still be plying the waters, creating cherished memories and connecting future generations to the past for another 115 years!

Click here for an album with additional pictures from the ceremony.
(Photos: Scott Pelzel. Above, Executive Director Matthew Schulte presents the Ship of the Year Award to Ian Danic. Below, Captain Brian McAllister shows off his plaque.)