Poems From 1957


Two years ago, Old Salt, Pat Clark, who had sailed on the Mercantile years ago was passing through Camden and stopped by our check-in office.  We had a wonderful visit as she reminisced about her  earlier days of sailing on our schooners.  It was wonderful to hear the stories of the cruise she and her husband took in 1957.  I didn't anticipate hearing from her again, but in late December we received a letter.   Pat told us that she still had the log book she kept on her cruise and hanging on her wall was a little painting done by the first mate on a piece of driftwood. 

My curiosity peaked, I decided to do a little digging to see what had become of the Mercantile's crew from 1957. I was able to find that the Captain, Walter T. Hutchinson and Mate Emery H. Hardy were from long standing Deer Isle families and had returned to the island. I was unable to trace Messmate, Ed Porter.

Pat had included copies of poems written by the crew from her log book. She mentioned one in particular from the Cook, Graeme Hanson.  Having a few hints from his poem, I was able to locate information about what his future had held.  

Mercantile Cook poem

Graeme returned to the Tables at Morey's, graduated from Yale University in 1958 and went on to become a respected doctor and professor in the field of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Graeme passed away in 2014 having lived a full life where he was well loved and held in high esteem by both his colleges and students. In his obituary it was noted that he taught his family all that they needed to know about cooking lobster, so his days in the Mercantile's galley were not wasted. I  learned from his sister that he remained an excellent cook. 

With his Obituary were images of Graeme during his Mercantile days.  All of us here at Maine Windjammer Cruises were amazed to find that Graeme Hanson, Cook on the Schooner Mercantile 1957 and Tyler Calderwood, Cook on the Schooner Mercantile 2017 could well have been twins!

We value communications with our Old Salts. We are always gratified to find that no matter how many years pass, the experiences of time on our schooners becomes a part of our passengers and goes with them as  they return to their day to day lives.