Cape Cod Maritime Museum is proud to announce the publishing debut of “The Whaling Art Journal of Abigail M. Case”, telling the dramatic story of a 12 year old girl’s 5 year adventure sailing the Ocean’s of the world with her father, a Nantucket Whaling Captain, during the 1850’s. The book is for sale at the Museum gift shop and Titcomb’s for $29.95, with a book signing July 15th, from 2-3PM.
It was not uncommon for whaling captains to include their families on voyages that could last for more than four years, as they sailed beyond their home waters in search of the elusive whale oil that could make them rich or destroy them. For an artist’s journal like this one to lie hidden for well over a century in a Nantucket attic corner, nestled in a wooden box containing the personal belongings of a young girl, is easy to imagine, and early readers will find the fictional drama and rich drawings compelling
Abigail’s adventure captures the emotions of a child growing to young adulthood, lost and lonely while confined to a floating home full of strange men, hunters of whales across the oceans and cultures of the world. All on the eve of the American Civil War.
The scrimshaw depicted in the finely illustrated color pages, bound in embossed leatherette, depicts actual scrimshaw on display at the Museum. Written by Museum Director Christopher Galazzi and Kristina Rodanas, the Illustrator, the journal reflects the excitement of foreign travel at a time before i-phones and the internet.
The collaborative project, made possible by a donation from Toby Baker, a Museum Board member and supporter of Our Sister’s School in New Bedford, is a way for the Museum to reach beyond its immediate community to tell the story of whaling that was a critical part of the economic and social fabric of Cape Cod.