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Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

Delaware Quote of the Day: The Great Turkey-Thief Crime Wave of 1934!

Here is a detailed report from the Wilmington (Del.) News Journal that appeared on Nov. 27, 1934 under the headline below. "Thieves Steal Fowl, Haul to City 'Fences':" A band of chicken and turkey thieves are operating from Harrington and Milford to the Delaware-Maryland line at Delmar, and hundreds of the fowl are reported to have been stolen within the past few weeks. The thieves…
MiscellanyQuote of the DayWay Back Machine

Harvest Time in the 1850s: The Key to Success Was … wait … Whiskey on the Job?

The Delmarva Peninsula "Quote of the Day" is a regular feature around here. What I do is share funny, enlightening, or otherwise interesting tidbits that I come across while reading up on the history and culture of our communities. This one comes from the 1976 book Trappe: The Story of an Old-Fashioned Town by Dickson Preston. Trappe is located just up from the Choptank River…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

A Day in the Life of a Child in Chopank, Md., early 1900s

I am not sure which individual is responsible for the memory I'm sharing here, as my source material was the work not of a single author, but of a committee of volunteers. Back in 1976, the Choptank Bicentennial Committee put together a little booklet to mark 200 years of American independence by celebrating life in their own little town, which lies on the river of…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

“Like a Visit to Another World:” Remembering Childhood Steamboat Trips on the Choptank River in Times Gone By

Sometimes, the best-laid productivity plans in a day go awry. I ventured into the Maryland Room of the Talbot County Free Library in Easton, Md. one day to research a very specific topic within a tight time window. Alas, I stumbled upon a little pamphlet titled "Memories of Choptank" while thumbing through a shelf. The title is a reference not to the river, but to…
MiscellanyQuote of the DayWay Back Machine

Saxis on a Saturday Night! Scene from the Eastern Shore of Virginia, 1928

Saxis is a remote, real-deal watermen community on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. I visited there while working on my book, Eastern Shore Road Trips #1: 27 One-Day Adventures on Delmarva. It's a quiet place nowadays, with one fun restaurant, one tiki bar, and a local history museum being the main attractions for visitors outside of the waterfront, the marshland scenery, and the local people.…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

QUOTE OF THE DAY: In Colonial Times, You Could Pay Your Tax Bill in Squirrels’ Heads

Taxes come due a little later than usual here in 2020. Because of the big pandemic, the government pushed the deadline back to July 15. My condolences to those of you still wading through paperwork. If it's any consolation, taxes were complicated back in colonial times, too--just in a different way, one that might have you donning camo garb and grabbing a gun instead of…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

“The Exile’s Song:” A Poetic Ode By a Homesick Eastern Shoreman

Aside from having a beard for the ages, Littleton Purnell Bowen was a lawyer, historian, preacher, and poet. Born in Worcester County, Md. in 1833, he did his early schooling at the Berlin (Md.) Academy, graduating in 1851. He later earned a law degree, but abandoned that career to become a Presbyterian minister. Early on, Bowen served as a pastor in Lewes, Del. and Pocomoke…
Quote of the DayWay Back Machine

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “The stately looking steamboat … cautiously, almost stealthily edged her way into the locks” of the C&D Canal.

In 1881, the Wilmington (Del.) Morning News published one writer’s eloquent account of his steamboat journey from the old city of New Castle through the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal and on across the Chesapeake Bay to Baltimore. Here are some highlights: Steamboats ran on the bays and rivers of Delmarva for a century and a half, from 1813 until 1962. This account of one brief…