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Chesapeake 1850 (Steamboats & Oyster Wars: The News Reader) (English Edition) von [Rossignol, Ken]
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Chesapeake 1850 (Steamboats & Oyster Wars: The News Reader) (English Edition) Kindle Edition

Buch 1 von 2 in Steamboats & Oyster Wars: The News Reader (2 Book Series)

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The life of Ethan Aaron Douglas is chronicled as the ten-year-old joins his grandfather for a life on the Chesapeake Bay. With his grandfather as captain of a steamboat traveling between Norfolk, Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, the boy learns quickly about life on the water. From hurricanes to blue crabs life on the Bay changes quickly. Learning Shakespeare and witnessing a hanging are just part of the life along the river. Ethan Douglas' life brushes past major events in the United States from slavery to the underground railroad and the days leading up to the civil war. How did those who lived along the Potomac deal with active warfare during the War Between the States? Life was always a war on the water with pirates shooting at each other as well as Maryland and Virginia oyster police. Ethan's younger brothers and sisters soon join him as they grow older and become entrepreneurs as the nation's capital city grows and changes.
From buyboats to newspapers the lives of the Douglas family become part of the history of the young nation. Oysters were the "white gold" of the east while railroads and shipping competed for freight. This book is the first in the series that will tell the story of life in tidewater Chesapeake Bay region from 1850 to 1950.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Follow the saga of the Douglas family as the ships of the Chesapeake sail through the beginning decades of the industrial revolution and the next century unfolds. As a maritime history speaker, Rossignol enjoys meeting audiences around the world and discussing the original news stories of the sinking of the RMS Titanic and other maritime history topics. In recent years Rossignol has appeared on dozens of ships in the Pacific, Panama Canal, Atlantic, Mediterranean and Caribbean discussing the stories of the heroes of the Titanic, the explorations of the new world voyagers, the Bermuda Triangle, the history of piracy and other maritime history topics. Rossignol regularly appears at the Titanic Museum Attractions in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and Branson, Missouri for book signings and to talk with visitors about the RMS Titanic. He has appeared on Good Morning America, ABC 20/20; ABC World News Tonight and in a currently running production of Discovery Channel Investigation Motives & Murders Series, A Body in the Bay. News coverage of Rossignol’s landmark civil rights case, represented by Levine Sullivan Koch & Schulz re: United States Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Rossignol v Voorhaar, 2003, included articles in most major news outlets, as well as a column by syndicated columnists James J. Kilpatrick. A strong highway safety advocate, Rossignol also publishes the which focuses on impaired driving and the monthly publication, The Chesapeake. News coverage of Rossignol’s DWIHitParade won an Emmy in 2012 for WJLA reporter Jay Korff and coverage of the St. Mary’s Today newspaper by WUSA reporter Bruce Leshan was awarded an Emmy in 2000. Information on booking Rossignol to speak about the Titanic is available at


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 3116 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 109 Seiten
  • Verlag: Privateer Clause Publishing (10. Juli 2012)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B008KPA7N2
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Aktiviert
  • Screenreader: Unterstützt
  • Verbesserter Schriftsatz: Aktiviert
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) (Kann Kundenrezensionen aus dem "Early Reviewer Rewards"-Programm beinhalten) 3.9 von 5 Sternen 52 Rezensionen
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Steamboats, Chesapeake Bay, Oystermen, Civil War, 28. Juli 2013
Von Anthony T. Riggio - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
July 22, 2013
A review by Anthony T. Riggio of Ken Rossignol's "Chesapeake 1850" (Steamboats & Oyster Wars: The News Reader)

I purchased this book on Kindle and having been somewhat familiar with the Chesapeake Bay and being a charter member of the Chesapeake Bay, Bluefish and Beverage Society, circa 1981 thru 1995, a group of supervisors from FBIHQ who would fish two or three time a year from Maryland on a Charter boat and spend the day fishing and "beering".

In any event, the title caught my attention and I thought it would be interesting to read about some of the history of the Chesapeake Bay. As I began to read the book, I was pleasantly surprised to see it dealt with issues on the Bay involving the Civil War, as this is one of my favorite parts of American History.

The story involves a young boy named Ethan Douglas who effectively grows up on a steamboat operated by his grandpa. It deals with the history and issues involving maritime commerce and passenger transportation during the time before and after the Civil War. The story revolves around the adventures of the ten year old Ethan Douglas as he grows into a very a successful seafarer on the Chesapeake. He falls in love with the daughter of President Zachery Taylor. Being unfamiliar with the life of Taylor I had to search out the daughter of Taylor and who she actually married. I could not verify this point as an historical fact but this does not affect the overall historical accuracy's of the story.

I totally loved the fact that Ethan was a newspaper reader for the passengers on board the steamboat. The times before and subsequent to the Civil War, newspaper articles are both entertaining and informative. This is an excellent book for anyone interested in these times and especially recommended for the young reader. It is a remarkable fun book to read and sets out a sort of story of growing success and successes of Ethan Douglas' siblings. I learned some things about the history of the Bay, namely the wars between Oystermen and how incredibly lawless they were.

I gave this book a rating of five stars because it is both a fast and very informative historical read and the story of successes of a family.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A Unique Take on Historical Fiction of the Period Leading Up to and Including the Civil War. 7. Februar 2016
Von Travis C - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Length: Print, 109 pages; Audible, 2 hours 45 minutes.

Target Audience/Genre: This is historical fiction.

What was the Amazon Rank on the date this review was published? 222,043.

Q - How was this book obtained?
A - I don't recall, but it may have been a complementary copy in exchange for an honest review.

Q - Is this a book that I can read without having to read others first?
A – Yes.

Q - Are there a lot of typos/misspellings, grammatical errors or other editing failures?
A – No, I didn't notice any.

Q - Is this a fast, easy read or is it more of a leisure read?
A – It’s a fast read, but also is a good audio production at Audible.

Q - What sort of language does this writer use to amplify the points made?
A – Plain English. No profanities.

Q - My biggest pleasure or disappointment?
A - What I most appreciated was the folksy tone that read much like a memoir from the time period.

What I would have better appreciated would have been more depth into the main character's life and, especially, his budding romance.

I’ve included a small excerpt below, so readers can peruse the style of presentation utilized by the author.


When we had arrived in Washington, Molly and her mother had been met by a horse-drawn coach. They were the fanciest steeds I had ever seen, and the coach was brilliantly painted.

That night, my grandfather and I also left the ship, something we did only in Washington and Baltimore, where the steamship company paid for a hotel room for the captain. We were each able to take a hot bath and went to a nice café to eat. Truthfully, we had better food on the Savannah , where homemade crab cakes were a daily event, but the hot baths and nice hotel were hard to beat.

The next morning, we walked down to the docks and onto an elevated platform. We stopped to watch the Negroes being sold at the slave market. Not having had any slaves in our family, the only colored folks I’d had contact with were the stevedores on the Savannah , who weren’t slaves but free men who worked for wages. Grandpa and I had seen the slave markets in Annapolis and Baltimore, but the one in Washington was held just once a month. Grandpa told me that the sales weren’t that good as there wasn’t much need in the city for slaves; they were just done for show, to prove that they had the legal right to sell and buy slaves in the National City. Just across the river, in Alexandria, there was a bustling slave trade, and we often passed by the auction house on our way to pick up a newspaper at that port.

We had picked up several newspapers that morning near the hotel, and they would provide plenty for Grandpa and me to read and talk about each evening until we got to Annapolis. We would be able to buy more newspapers there.

Grandpa was reading to me about the slaves, and how New Mexico and California were soon to join the Union and be without slaves. The great debate was all about extending slavery into the soon-to-be new states. President Taylor, though he owned slaves himself on his plantations in Mississippi and Louisiana, made it clear to the Southerners that he would not tolerate talk of secession. He set plans in motion for laws that would allow California and New Mexico to skip the territorial status and create their constitutions immediately, which would ban slavery.

As Grandpa read the articles, he paused and asked me if I had any questions.

"If someone buys a slave and that slave turns out be faulty, say, he fails to work hard, can they return them for a refund?”

"Boy, that sure sounds reasonable, but the auctioneer states at the beginning of the auction that all sales are final.”

"When President Taylor said he would round up and hang anyone who dared to split up the Union, do you think he meant those words?”

"Yes indeed.”

Bottom Line:

This is an interesting novel that also acquaints readers with a unique perspective on the history of a key region leading up to, and during, the greatest conflict the United States has thus far faced.

I read the second book (Chesapeake 1880) before reading this one. I highly recommend reading Chesapeake 1850 BEFORE reading Chesapeake 1880.

Comments regarding your opinion of this book or of my review, whether favorable or unfavorable, are always welcome. If you buy the book based on my review and become disappointed, especially, I do want to know that and I want to understand how I can improve as a book reviewer. Just please be polite.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen The life of Ethan Aaron Douglas 13. Juli 2015
Von Pat - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Based on true events, as a young boy of 10 years old went to work with his grandfather on the 'Savannah' a steamship. Ethan learned from his experiences on the steamer, he was a deck helper loading and unloading cargo which included produce, animals, passengers and anything that needed to be imported or exported in the Chesapeake Bay area. He helped in the kitchen, became a news paper reader, reading the news paper aloud to the passengers which increased his reading and learning of current events, saw President Millard Fillmore sworn into office, went through hurricanes, learned of the underground railroads and slavery and learned about the Civil War. Ethan taught his two brothers about the duties of the steamer. Ethan's grandfather taught him about saving his money in the banking business, later he started his own companies and became a very wealthy man. This is a wonderful book full of history and great adventure, well written I enjoyed it. This is a book that a young boy would enjoy and learn from also.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A delightful history lesson 24. Juli 2015
Von TFLReader - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
I really hated learning history while growing up but find that I am enjoying it immensely by reading entertaining stories as an adult. As someone who has always loved the water and boats, I enjoy author Ken Rossignol's books and he has the start to a very unique series here on the history of the Chesapeake Bay, with this one beginning in 1850. Centered on the life of young Ethan, who is working on his grandfather's steamboat, we learn about the "oyster wars", events leading up to the civil war, and so much more unique history relating to this time and place. Such a great read and can't wait to continue with this series.
11 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Off to a great start 4. August 2012
Von Nick Russell - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Ken Rossignol's new series is off to a great start with Chesapeake 1850, the tale of Ethan Douglas from his days as a 10 year old cabin boy on his grandfather's Chesapeake Bay steamship before the Civl War, through his rise to become a wealthy ship owner in his own right. The young boy witnesses everything from a hanging to hurricanes, to the bloody Oyster Wars as he matures, and meets the love of his life and later marries her. The author does an excellent job of bringing history to life in an entertaining and captivating way that keeps you reading from start to finish.

Good work, Mr. Rossignol!
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