WORKING WATERFRONT, NEWPORT, RI

The Newport of my youth was a working waterfront. fishing boats, commercial boats and yachts co-existing side by side in the same water and the same docks.

Today, the is not a shred of evidence of this life.

WORKING WATERFRONT, NEWPORT RHODE ISLAND

LOOKING NORTHEAST FROM BANNISTER'S WHARF
LOOKING NORTHEAST FROM BANNISTER’S WHARF
TONY VIERIA AND JOHN SHAY
TONY VIERIA AND JOHN SHAY
LOOKING ACROSS MATHINO'S SHIPYARD
LOOKING ACROSS MATHINO’S SHIPYARD
THE NEWPORT BRIDGE AND THE NEWPORT FERRY
THE NEWPORT BRIDGE AND THE NEWPORT FERRY
NEWPORT SHIPYARD
NEWPORT SHIPYARD
BOOK COVER
BOOK COVER

What do I do with the archive of photos I have accumulated over half a century? I jumped in with both feet and produced a book titled “WORKING WATERFRONT”. These are images of Newport’s waterfront, which has long since disappeared from the landscape; along with those who worked there.

Each photo has a story connected to it for me. Anecdotes unconnected other than by the waterfront that I remember in these photographs.

WHARF RAT

I googled the words “wharf rat” and to my dismay I found many references to those who were ardent followers of the “Greatful Dead”; not one reference to my assumption of that who wandered the docks attracted to the life on boats. Even in the International Maritime Dictionary there is not a reference to “wharf rat”. Naturally I then started to question my own idea. Was it self created; a figment of my own mind?

Continuing my internet search I found some references by Sven Carlsson about a man Jerry Warren; a self professed “wharf rat” stating it was a title one had to earn; a badge of pride.

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote ” When I saw the seafaring people leaning against posts and sitting on planks, under the lee of warehouses,–or lolling on long-boats drawn up high and dry, as sailors and old wharf-rats are accustomed to do, in seaports of little business.

Of course the quote from “Wind in the Willows by Kenneth GrahameĀ “There is nothing–absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” spoken by Ratty.

I had many of my own experiences on Newport’s Waterfront over the years; some of which I had the good sense to capture on film.

WILLIE, AFTER A DAY OF SANDBLASTING
WILLIE, AFTER A DAY OF SANDBLASTING
FISHING BOATS
FISHING BOATS
LOOKING FROM BANNISTER'S WHARF
LOOKING FROM BANNISTER’S WHARF
LOOKIG AT MATHINOS' YARD
LOOKIG AT MATHINOS’ YARD
BOAT REPAIRS
BOAT REPAIRS
AMERICA'S CUP YACHTS ON THE WEIGHS
AMERICA’S CUP YACHTS ON THE WAYS