The Camden Public Library in April will host a series of online programs and feature a month-long virtual gallery of vintage photographs from the library’s Walsh History Center Collection.

The gallery show, “A Visual History of Camden Harbor,” will be complemented by a slide talk given by Ken Gross, director of the History Center at the library, at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 6. The gallery will be available to view beginning Thursday, April 1, at librarycamden.org. To request a Zoom link to attend the presentation, email [email protected].

The British published the Atlantic Neptune series of charts on the eve of the American Revolution in 1776. The officer in charge of the survey flotilla was Lt. Henry Mowatt, who also burned Portland to the ground in 1775 and successfully defended Castine from American attack in 1779. Contributed photo

From fishing to shipbuilding, from lime burning to anchor building, the harbor was an essential resource to the economics of Camden, from colonial days to the present. The harbor was always an entry ramp to the freeway of the day — the high seas. With a boat it was easier to get to all of the islands in Penobscot Bay than it was to take a wagon to Hope; and a boat holds a lot more cargo, whether it was fish, firewood, salt, limestone, granite, lumber, or bushels of corn.

Gross’s slide talk will employ the earliest charts available as well as photographs from the earliest days of photography. Images will show the sequence of changes to Camden Harbor as it accommodated the evolving series of industries in Camden.

For more information about the Maritime Month series, visit library’s website.

filed under: