War of 1812 and the Age of Sail Celebrated in Song

Over Deep Water: Songs from the War of 1812 and Beyond

The music of American naval power and pride during the 19th century is the focus of a unique musical and educational presentation offered by Freeport Historical Society on Sunday, September 9th from 4:00p-5:30p at the public landing on Cove Road in Freeport, Maine. Cove Road is located at Porter’s Landing off of South Street.

Bring your folding chairs and enjoy maritime music on the site of the historic Porter Shipyard. Donation is $5.00. This program is funded, in part, through the generous support of the Maine Humanities Council.

This special event, titled “Over Deep Water: Songs from the War of 1812 and Beyond,” features Dave Peloquin and Bob Webb, both of Maine, who will join their tenor and baritone voices with a variety of acoustic instruments including concertina, guitar and five-string banjo to present a lively performance of real sailors’ naval songs as well as merchant-ship work-songs, called “shanties.”

The program will include nautical ballads from the War of 1812 and the Civil War. In addition, Peloquin and Webb will include unusual and little-known songs and shanties from the mid-century, when America’s merchant marine fleet ruled the oceans.

Both men are experienced at interpreting maritime songs and shanties. They have researched and presented the history of sea music for more than 30 years. “It’s difficult to imagine that sailors needed songs to operate their vessels,” Webb explained, “but in merchant ships, songs were necessary to coordinate the heavy manual labor involved in making sail and hoisting the anchor.”

Peloquin and Webb have gathered versions of traditional songs known from Maine and the Maritime provinces of Canada and will present several of these during the program.

The Cove Road location was selected because it was the site of the historic Porter Shipyard, from which the privateer The Dash was launched in 1812. The music program contains some songs from that era.

In case of rain, the program will be moved to the First Parish Congregational Church, 40 Main Street, Freeport.

FMI: info@freeporthistoricalsociety.org or 865-3170