This is the first in the series of the chronicles of the Douglas family, vividly depicting life on the U.S. east coast in the mid-19th Century. Chesapeake 1850 (Steamboats & Oyster Wars: The News Reader), by Ken Rossignol “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 Civil War, through his rise to become a wealthy ship owner. The young boy witnesses everything from a hanging to hurricanes, to bloody Oyster Wars, 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.” — New York Times best-selling author Nick Russell
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.