Bringing History to Life: Interpreters at Mystic Seaport

From vintage photography to the world’s last wooden whaleship, Mystic Seaport is home to one of the world’s greatest collections of maritime history. But as visitors wander the re-created 19th-century village and visit historic vessels at the water’s edge, it’s a talented group of interpreters who truly bring the past into the present.

The interpreters come from a wide range of backgrounds, but all have one thing in common – a love of sharing their knowledge. Printers set type and create prints while shipsmiths shape iron. The Museum’s Special Demonstration Squad can often be found climbing aloft to set or furl sails, or maneuvering whaleboats on the water. Costumed actors also take to the stage to delight audiences with tales of a life at sea.

Just as the village at Mystic Seaport is made up of many trade shops from the 1800s, its interpreters are skilled in the history of their many crafts. Coopers shape barrel staves, while other historians climb rigging and demonstrate navigation with nautical instruments. Through their knowledge and passion, American seafaring history comes alive.