Wednesday, June 29

The Old Man's Guide to Health and Longer Life

The Old Man's Guide to Health and Longer Life

by John Hill

A book review by Tony Gerard

Originally published in 1750, the modern reprint is only 74 small pages long, including pictures. It's a fun and easy read (I read the entire thing one night while taking a bath). Most of the advice is still well applied today- exercise regularly, eat moderately, get plenty of  sleep and avoid stress. There is enough 18th century advice to make things interesting. The pineapple is slandered as the most dangerous of all fruits. It can potentially bring on a fatal bloody flux- who would have thought? There is plenty of other fun advice like that. With so many Acastas approaching or past 50 maybe this little tome should be in all our sea bags.

Monday, June 27

Call for Mail

We're coming down to the wire for submissions for the 2016 Jane Austen Festival Mail Packet project… but there's still time for you to get your letters in.

Need some ideas for what to write? Try one of these:

Letter from a friend or colleague back home. 
(But none from immediate 'family' if you please. Cousins, Aunts, Uncles, Nieces & Nephews are fine, but none from Mothers, Fathers, children.)
A bill or request for payment.
An overdue payment of debt.
A letter carrying news of the war(s)

Or, use the link below to see some other types of period letters:

The Complete Letter Writer...

Wondering what a period letter looks like? Here are some beautiful examples:

Contact me to find out where to send your finished letter… or questions, or for any other additional information.

Finshed letters will need to be in the mail to me by the first week of JULY of this present year so that they can find their way into the Mail Packet!

Start thinking about what you'd like to contribute, and HAVE FUN, but hurry, the next call for mail will be the LAST call!

Thursday, June 23

Voyages and Discoveries in the South Seas

Voyages and Discoveries in the South Seas 1792- 1832
by Edmund Fanning

A brief book review by Tony Gerard

Fanning was an American sailor who rose to captain several voyages to the South Pacific, China and the far southern oceans.  Typically he would set out from the U.S. to the far south in search of fur seals. Collecting a load of seal hides and sometimes oil he would then sell the cargo in China and return with a cargo of Chinese goods to sell in the U.S. He gives a good general overview of the seal hunting process , as well as the types of seals and the areas where they were hunted. Additionally he gives accounts of collection of Sandalwood and "Beach La Mer" (sea cucumbers) for the Chinese market.

Fanning also relates his difficulties dealing with the Chinese authorities, adventures among the islanders of the Pacific, his arrest and near execution in Chile and many other interesting events. While the book is not a fast paced "page turner" it is a very excellent and readable historic account of merchant shipping in the Pacific.

While the book is not a fast paced "page turner" it is a very excellent and readable historic account of merchant shipping in the Pacific.

Monday, June 20

A Little More Inspiration

Here are some images of some of the excellent submissions for last year's Mail Packet… thinking about giving it a try? There's still time to write a few letters and get them sent in! Start your letter TODAY!

 When your letters are finished, email me and I'll let you know where to mail them to…

Friday, June 17

Images from Gunboat Weekend pt.2

More of Tony Gerard's images from the Crown Forces North America: Naval Establishment's 'Gunboat Weekend' event