documenting maritime folklife: an introductory guide

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    ED 390 760 SO 025 631

    AUTHOR Taylor, David A.

    TITLE Documenting Maritime Folklife: An Introductory


    INSTITUTION Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. American

    Folklife Center.

    REPORT NO ISBN-0-8444-0721-6

    PUB DATE 92

    NOTE 96p.; This guide is a product of a joint project ofthe American Folklife Center and the Bureau of

    Florida Floklife Program, Florida Department of


    AVAILABLE FROM U.S. Government Printing Office, Superintendent of

    Documents, Mail Stop: SSOP, Washing*en, DC


    PUB TYPE Reports Descriptive (141) Guides Non-Classroom

    Use (055)



    MF01/PC04 Plus Postage.Cultural Background; Cultural Education; *Folk

    Culture; *Heritage Education; Higher Education; Local

    History; *Maritime Education; *Navigation;*Seafarers; Social History; *United States History

    This booklet has two main purposes: (1) to promote

    understanding of maritime cultural heritage; and (2) to provide an

    introduction to the methods for identifying and documenting common

    maritime traditions. The guide is intended for non-professional

    researchers and community groups who wish to explore their own

    maritime cultural heritage. It also may !,e useful to professionals in

    fields such as marine biology, fisheries extension, community

    planning, and education who are trying to understand the cultural

    aspects of maritime activities, as well as to students and lay

    persons working on projects under the direction of professional

    folklorists. anthropologists, historians, preservationists, cultural

    geographers. and other specialists in cultural studies. Inc booklet

    includes exa.nples of common maritime traditions and methods used to

    document them, as well as offering suggestions for projects to

    disseminate collected information and appendixes containing examples

    of fieldnotes, a step-by-step description of the documentation of a

    small boat's hull shape, and sample forms for collecting and

    organizing information and obtaining informants consent. A

    bibliography of important publications supplemonts the resources

    provided here. (EH)

    Reproductions supplied by EDRS are the best that can be made

    from the original document.

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  • 3


  • DocummUng NbriUme FoWifeAn Introductory Gliide

    By David A. Taylor

    Library of' Congress Washington 1992


  • Publications of the American Folk life Center, No. 18

    Documenting Maritime Folk lij: is a product of a joMt project of the

    American Folklife (enter and the Bureau of Florida Folklife

    Programs, Florida Department of State.

    Onvr: Waterman Alex Kellam ot Crisfield, MarNland, (lett ) with his ft iend

    Charlton Marshall and their catch of. rockfish. Photo in Kellam's album

    copied bv Carl Fleischhauer (AF(: 45/28).

    Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

    Tit k)t. David Alan, 1951-Documenting maritime f(ilklife: an int roduct( )rv guide by David

    A. Taylor.p. cm.( Publications Of the American Folklife Cent(r: no.

    18)Includes bibliographical references.ISBN 0-8414-0721-6

    Cop% 3 hiti3. 116 .DG3 1992I. FolkluicNIctlimlulnp. 2. NIaritimc ,ttlthrupul()p. :; Mat itimc

    antlimpoli)pUnitud Srataring5. Seafaring liteUnited StatusFolklore. I. Title. II Scrics.(;1Z-10.1'39 1992398' .01-dc20 91-36699

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    Supcnntendoil I)o.koncrls. \ 1,1i1 S11,1,hmtun. I )(' 2114(C-9;2S


  • Contents

    Preface Vii

    Introduction xi

    Part 1: What to Document 1

    Part 9: How to Doument 19

    App;ndixes 45

    A.1: Informant Information Form 47

    Infi)rmant Consent Form 48

    A.3: Audio Tape Log 49

    Photograph IA .)g- 5 1

    A.5: Boat Documentation ForIll 59

    A.6: Building Documentation Form9

    A.7: Artifact 1.()an Form 64

    B.1: Sample Fieldn(qes 65

    11.2: Taking the lines of a Small Boat 69

    Bibliography 73


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  • Painting shrimpboat and its crru .on the side of oseafood proursini;building in.Apalachimlo.Florida. Photo In.DatidFAIPS6-80 2,


    Documenting Maritime Folklife has two mainpurposes: to promote understanding ofmaritime cultural heritage (the body oflocally distinctive traditional knowledgefound wherever groups of people live nearoceans, rivers, lakes, and streams); and toprovide an introduction to the methods foridentifying and documenting common mar-itime traditions. The guide is intended fornonprofessional researchers and commu-nity groups who wish to explore their ownmaritime cultural heritage. But it may alsobe useful to professionals in fields such asmarine biology, fisheries extension, commu-nity planning. and education who are tryingto understand the cultural aspects of mar-itime activities, as well as to students and laypersons working on projects under thedirection of prolessi(mal folklorists, anthro-pologists. historians, preservationists, cul-tural geographers. and other specialists incultural studies.

    In addition to examples cif common mar-itime traditions and the methods that canbe used to document them, DocumentingMaritime lot/dile includes suggestions forprojects to disseminate collected informa-tion and appendixes containing examplesof fieldnotes, a step-b% step description ofthe documentation of a small boat's hull

    shape, and sample forms for collecting andorganizing information and obtaininginformants' consent. A bibliography ofimportant publications supplements theresources provided here.

    Documenting Maritime Folklife seeks toopen the door to maritime culture and itsdocumentation. It does not pretend to be acomprehensive survey of all the manifesta-tions or all the theories and documentationmethods cultural investigators have used torecord and analyze them. Neither does itoffer a thorough discussion of contempo-rary issues pertaining to maritime culture.Readers who wish to explore the subject fur-ther should consult the bibliography.

    Work on Documenting Ataritime Folluifebegan in July 1986. when I tested docunwn-tation techniyies in the fishing village ofMayport, on the northeast coast of Florida.Following two months of fieldwork in May-port. I wrote a first draft for the guide,which was then tested by a team of folk-lorists Fr( ma the Bureau of Florida FolklifePrograms and an anthropologist from theFlorida Department of Community Affairs(luring two months of fieldwork in the com-munities of Apalachicola and Eastpoint, onFltirida's Gulf Coast. Although the bulk ofthe examples of maritime traditions men-


  • tioned here are taken from Florida, thetechniques for documenting culturalresources can be applied and adapted tomany other maritime settings.

    Many people assisted in the developmentof this publication: I am grateful toOrmond Loomis, chief of the Bureau ofFlorida Folk life Programs, for developingthe initial concept. Alan Jabbour and PeterT. Bartis, of the American Folk life Center,refined that concept and made helpfulgestions. James Hardin, the Center's editor,charted a safe passage through the trickywaters of the government publishing pro-cess with his customary adroitness.

    The National Trust for Historic Preserva-tion provided a grant that enabled the pro-ject to obtain the consulting services ofmaritime folklife experts Paula J. Johnsonand Janet C. Gilmore. They in turn offeredinnumerable suggestions to sharpen thefocus of the guide.

    The staffs of the American Folklife Cen-ter and the Bureau of Florida Folklife Pro-grams provided considerable assistance. Inparticular, Carl Fleischhauer at the Centeroffered valuable advice about fieldworktechniques, ethics, and cataloging fielddata, and assisted with the selection of ilhis-trations. and Yvonne Bryant at the Bureaulabored long and hard to type the various

    Fieldwork in the Apalachicola area wascoin d tic t ed by Barbara Beauchamp.Ormond Loomis. and Nancy Nusi, all ofthe Bureau of Florida Folkiife Programs.and hy Marcus Ilepburn of the FloridaDepartment of Community Affairs.

    I am gratefnl to the many residents of thetwo study areas who generously took the


    time of talk with me and other project field-workers about their maritime heritage.including Cletus Anderson, Kristen Ander-son, Deborah Beard, Dennis Butler, CostaBuzier. George Chapel, Dale Davis. LloydDavis, Steve Davis, Virginia Duggan AngeloFichera, Joe Fichera, Ken Folsom. RoyceHodge, Charles House, Robert Ingle,George Kiryin, Alice and Grady Leayins,John Lee, Nannette Lolley, NVoody Miley,Isabel Nichols, Stan Norred, Christo Poloro-nis, Gloria and.Sonny Polous, Willie Polous,Corky Richards, Arthur Ross, Lawrence San-garay, Lawrence Scarabin, Bud Seymour,Walter Shell, Judy Stokowski-Hall, WillieSpeed, A