Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Harvest Time

The Talbot Historical Society’s “Harvesting our History” fundraising event is this evening in the Gardens on our Washington Street campus! This Talbot Historical Society H. Robins Hollyday Collection photo of a steam tractor, mules and a wagon is the perfect photo to celebrate our event tonight! Also remember the Galleries at Neall House Agriculture Exhibit is open from 10:00 to 3:00 Saturday!

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Looking at Talbot County from the West: The New Yorker Chats about Easton’s Maggie Rogers

Editor’s note: This is a new Spy series that will be sharing historic or interesting news clippings on Talbot County from the perspective of the newspapers and magazines of Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York. While the Shore’s local newspapers have faithfully recorded life and times for three centuries, when this Talbot County periodically finds itself being the subject of a major daily story, it’s always been greeted, like any small community, with extreme interest. For when those occasions occur, now, or in the past,  it gives  a rare opportunity to see how the rest of the world may view it. And thanks to such powerful databases as newspapers.com, we can now able to share some of that coverage from the West of Talbot County. 

As most of our Spy readers know from first hand experience, some Google searches are a roll of the dice in a certain way. Never able to predict what may pop up, the researcher waits for the binary results to come in.

In the case, the Spy threw in the words “Easton” and “New Yorker” magazine and was instantly presented with the work of the Easton-raised singer and songwriter Maggie Rogers.


Here’s a highlight:

In the Internet age, this is how almost everybody listens to music, minus the dust: songs arrive free of circumstance. For artists working today, records from any time and place are easily juiced for inspiration. Maggie Rogers, a twenty-two-year-old singer and songwriter from Easton, Maryland, feels like the apotheosis of this sensibility. Recently, Rogers released “Now That the Light Is Fading,” her début EP. She has already enjoyed an unlikely flash of celebrity. Shortly after she completed her undergraduate degree at New York University, in 2016, she returned to her childhood home to figure out a viable path toward adulthood, as recent graduates often do. Then a video went viral; it featured the producer and songwriter Pharrell Williams hosting a master class with Rogers and other students at N.Y.U. and listening to a recording of one of her songs.

For the full article please go here

October 2018 Sky-Watch

There is nothing particularly astronomical about Halloween which comes each October 31st. Halloween is actually All Hallows Eve, the night before November 1st, which is the Christian feast of All Saints. On All Hallows Eve the faithful remembered the dead. But we can find some astronomical items to mention this October.

October is the peak fall month in the northern hemisphere. Autumn leaves are falling, birds are migrating, and the growing season is slowing. Harvesting, canning, and preserving are more the order of the days. October is also the time of year when we notice sunsets happening earlier and day length dropping rapidly. Though we still hang onto daily savings time until the first weekend in November, we sky-watchers can get out earlier to enjoy the night sky.

Darkness has always been associated with Halloween and this year there will be no Moon in the sky for the “tricks or treaters.” Moon-rise is well past midnight on October 31st. But rising in the east by 9 pm is the famous Pleiades star cluster, which has had a rather sinister reputation throughout history. Seeing the Pleiades on the horizon in late October reminded ancient cultures that winter was getting closer, and that the harvest and storing of food needed to survive whatever kind of winter lay ahead was a top priority.

The Pleiades does not evoke sinister thoughts today for sky-watchers. It is a great open cluster of stars which were presumably formed at about the same time from the same immense cloud of inter-stellar gas. We can count 6 or 7 stars with the unaided eye and binoculars bring in at least 40 stars.

Look south for Mars; 30 degrees up by 8 or 9 pm, among the dim stars of Capricornus; standing out at magnitude –1.3. Though this is far lower than its late August peak of –2.8, Mars is still dazzling. It dims to our sight because we are moving away from it in our faster orbit, and because Mars, at 60% the size of Earth is small, reflecting far less light than say a planet the size of Jupiter. Though it will dim to –0.6 by October 31st, in a telescope, Mars still reveals surface features all month.

Mercury will be in the southwestern sky near the end of the month but very, very low and hard to see. Perhaps the best time to see it will on the 27th, when it lies right below Jupiter. Jupiter at magnitude –1.8, is 10 degrees up in the southwest sky an hour after sunset, but bright enough to spot in the deepening twilight. On October 1st look for Jupiter about 15 degrees to the upper left of Venus.

Despite being at –4.7 magnitude, Venus will be hard to see this month. It will only be 3 degrees above the western horizon 30 minutes after sunset, but if one has a clear view to the horizon, it should be seen. By October 10th Venus will have moved between us and the Sun and will be lost to view until it emerges on the other side of the Sun (right side) early in November.

Finally, Saturn gives us good views of itself in the early evenings. It is found in the south-southwest sky above Sagittarius some 25 degrees up and shining at 0.5 magnitude. Binocular views of Saturn nestled among the rich Milky Way star field of Sagittarius are great, and telescope views of Saturn and its wonderful rings are terrific!

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Goes Horseback Riding

Could this be Aurora Street, Easton, Maryland across from Idlewild Park? The houses look familiar? So many things to look at in this Talbot Historical Society H. Robins Hollyday Collection photo! Can you help identify what years these vintage cars were manufactured? There must have been an event that day in what is now Idlewild Park!

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Sailing: Sailors in a Storm this Weekend

Tred Avon Yacht Club Sends Sailors into the Storm

Of course, into the weather is exactly where they wanted to be after light winds over prior weekend events.

The Hammond Memorial Regatta is one of TAYC’s biggest events of the year and foul weather was not going to interfere with the competition. Beginning in front of the Tred Avon Yacht Club in Oxford, the race from the Tred Avon River to Poplar Island includes Alberg 30s, Catalina 27s, PHRF, Multi-Hulls, Beach Cats, and J boats.

Spy Agent 7  followed the Naval Academy competitors into the Choptank and produced a short slide show to share the experience.

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Looking for Some Wind

This beautiful Talbot Historical Society H. Robins Hollyday Collection glass negative image was featured in “ National Geographic” Magazine’s September 1939 issue. The database information also identifies the sailing background location as being Ferry Neck. It was most likely an Oxford, Maryland Tred Avon Yacht Club racing event. The Tred Avon Yacht Club was established in 1931. Such a peaceful scene! Definitely the calm before the storm!

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Heading to the Avalon

This 1931 Talbot Historical Society H. Robins Hollyday Collection photo of Avalon Island off of Tilghman Island, Md. is another recently found 6”x 8” glass negative!! How about that huge pile of oyster shells and the boats next to the seafood packing plants!!

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!

The Eastern Shore Community Rowers: One Stroke, One Spirit

I’m not an early morning person, so the idea of meeting people from the Eastern Shore Community Rowers at 5:30 in the morning seemed way out of my comfort zone. Which is why I showed up for their second session at 7:00 AM on the Tred Avon River at the Landing at Evergreen in Easton. At least the sun had risen.

The first thing that stood out was how sweaty the 5:30 group was. Then there was the smiling and camaraderie as the nine men and women tended the oars and shell. That’s what happens according to Terry Gleim, Safety Officer and ESCR Board member. “When people start to row, they drink the ‘Kool-Aid,’ they get really into it; they get hooked. Why? Because it’s a total body exercise, particularly the legs and core.” Additionally, Gleim mentioned how “the teamwork involved in rowing it is a great way to bond with others.” The members I spoke to agreed that they all felt stronger and fitter being part of the group. In the process, they’ve made some new friends.

As I learned, this is what makes this sport so interesting: it’s appropriate for all ages, all experience, and all walks of life. “We have members aged 21, and we have members in their 70s,” said Gleim. “We have a retired naval commander, an architect, physicians and people who work in an office.”

Despite the diversity, there is also a oneness that is necessary. “There are no stars, you can’t be doing your own thing,” says Gleim. “You have to work together as a team. If your movement is different than anyone else’s, it’s going to throw everyone off. It’s all about synchronization. Everyone has to do the exact same thing at the exact same time.” Part 1 of their motto is “One Stroke. One Spirit.”

The 7 AM group showed me precisely what this meant. (DISCLAIMER: I was in the chase boat which follows the rowers at each session. I got to watch, not do.) What I saw was four women and a man lift the over 100-pound 4-man boat over their heads, and as one, walk to the river, and put it in the water. They climbed in, barely making a ripple and pulled away from the dock. We followed.

I watched as a heron took off, disturbed by our presence. Saw the sun rise higher in the sky and heard the osprey yell in protest over our approach. The four rowers dipped their oars in and out of the water in perfect harmony, barely making a splash. I was told the coxswain was giving instructions that were being broadcast and heard through the speaker system by their seats. All I heard was the sounds of the river. It was a beautiful and calming beginning to the day.

By the time we returned to the dock an hour later, and the sweaty rowers picked the shell out of the water, I understood why this sport is such a hit.

The program was created only two years ago by President and Head Coach, Chloe Tong. Tong, who used to belong to the youth group, Freedom Rowers, moved to Australia and joined a large rowing club. After returning to the States, she realized she missed the sport and found others who were interested. Initially, they had to borrow Freedom’s equipment, but as word got around, it became evident that this was something the Eastern shore of Maryland community wanted—a master’s rowing program.

The group filed for a 501(c)3 (nonprofit status), took in donations and were able to buy a used 8-man boat. Now, they also own a couple of singles, one quad (rowers use two oars), two 4-seaters, and this month picked up another 8-seater. They meet six days a week at 5:30 AM and four days at 7:00 AM. There are three seasons: Early March through May, June through August, and September through “you can’t get out anymore.” Although the program is recreational, they are starting to compete and will be racing the 13 miles around Wye Island on September 8. Not bad for a startup!

Those interested in finding out more about rowing, are invited to a FREE clinic on the first Saturday of every month at 9 AM. Potential members, who have never rowed before, are required to attend a three-day clinic before joining.

ESCR will be holding a fundraiser on October 13, hoping to raise money for more shells, new equipment, and educations for the coaches. They dream about building their own boathouse, and they even have a design in the works. This group also firmly believes in the second part of their motto which now, more than ever, is essential to remember: “In life and in sport, we row hard – young or old – toward the finish line, because we are, all of us, in the same boat.”

Val Cavalheri is a recent transplant to the Eastern Shore, having lived in Northern Virginia for the past 20 years. She’s been a writer, editor and professional photographer for various publications, including the Washington Post.

Update: Light Air, Stiff Competition: Spy Briefing on Myers Regatta

A weekend full of racing organized by the Tred Avon Yacht Club in its William H. Myers Heritage Regatta launched Friday afternoon with the Hampton One Design sailboats racing in the Choptank. Winds were light and challenging making competition all the more exciting. The Hampton One Design boats will race all weekend with a winner determined on Sunday.

In addition to the Hampton One Design boats, spectators can see Log Canoe racing, Stars, Shields, Penguins and Comets.

Most of the racings starts by 11:00 AM each morning. Go to the Tred Avon Yacht Club website for more information ( www.tayc.com/racing ).
Heritage Regatta….Day 2

Light winds prevailed for the second day of racing, but that did not deter the Tred Avon Yacht Club and the Race Committee of a large number of racers. With some delay and boats towed out to the courses, racing did occur in the afternoon and our marine spy was there for the action in the Shield competition.
Here’s a short video of scenes from the racing….

Talbot Historical Society Project Rewind: Lost on Tilghman Island

Dr. Laurence Claggett donated this undated photo of Tilghman, Maryland to the Talbot Historical Society. Do you recognize this street? Are these beautiful homes still standing?

Contact: Cathy Hill cvhill@atlanticbb.net to share your old photos. Comment, Like our page and join THS!