Flossie’s Fridays: Week 47

Flossie is beginning to get a little depressed in Bath…………..we’ve been having LOTS of rain, and now there is Hurricane Joaquin nearby in the Atlantic Ocean!  Earlier this week she had a quick chance to get outside and take a fly around town and she wanted to go check out the knot tying station that was added to the Lawson Walk path on the north side of town earlier this summer.

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When Bath was a young town in the early 1700s, it functioned as a port of entry for the colony.  Lots of boats came in and out of Bath and the ships needed ropes!  A few of the jobs for which ropes would be needed are for hoisting sails, dropping anchor, creating foot ropes for climbing up to reach the sail lines, and creating “ladders” to climb up to the crow’s nest to look out a great distance.  Rope helped with small jobs too……….like hanging the clapper inside a bell in order to ring it and announce meal time or to alert sailors of things like when it was time to finish their work shift and for others to begin working. Sailors also used rope to help pass the time when they didn’t have to work……..they played a game similar to horseshoes called quoits.  Circular hoops of rope were used rather than iron horseshoes since those may have damaged the deck or more easily slid off deck into the water.  Sometimes sailors made decorative coverings for bottles, knife handles and hammocks, etc. in their spare time.  This ancient type of art form is called macramé; it is a form of textile-making that uses knot-making instead of weaving or knitting cloth.  Materials used would be cotton twine, linen, hemp, jute, leather or yarn.  Bracelets made in this manner are popular again today!

Flossie wants everyone to stay dry and safe during this hurricane………it looks like the storm may head out to sea, but do what you can to prepare.  That is one advantage we have today over folks in the 1700s…………we have some time ahead  to be forewarned and to prepare emergency supplies, thanks to television and weather satellites!

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