16 Jan Tall Ship Providence Crew of 1776
This year we added to our cast of characters here on our tours and our #TallShipTuesday videos. We introduced our crew some time ago in one of our first blog posts of 2023, but Providence added a few more people since then and some roles have changed. If you would like to join our cast, let us know and maybe you too will be a guide on Tall Ship Providence. Our performers are what make our living history tours a 5-star experience and one of the top attractions in Alexandria in 2023.
Ship’s Boy Tommy Carter
Tommy Carter is the youngest on the crew, but also one of the most enthusiastic. He takes care of some of the more menial tasks on the ship including taking care of livestock, running food to the captain, and taking care of vermin. Tommy is a part of the Carter family, a rich family with a farming empire in Virginia. Unfortunately his family sent him away due to his bad behavior. Providence is Tommy’s first ship, and he is learning the ropes to someday be a captain. He has a lot to learn before he is ready for something like that. As Tommy learns, he also takes you along with him in his segment: Tommy’s Corner. Tommy is played by Maddie Tyler. She studies theater abroad in Spain during the school year. She is both a deckhand on sails and a tour guide for our history tours.
Marine Frank Thomas
Frank Thomas is a Marine recruited from Tun Tavern in Philadelphia before Providence made her way to the Bahamas. He was involved in the first Marine Amphibious Landing on Foreign Soil in March, 1776. Frank is a skilled fighter and a loyal member of the crew. Through thick and thin, he has pledged to stay and fight on his ship. He will remain on the ship until Providence’s untimely end in 1779. Marine Frank Thomas is played by Bryce Thomas. He has his masters in Public History from American University, and brings a wealth of knowledge of Colonial History to his role in our history tours. You may also see him at other local attractions like Alexandria Colonial Tours or Mount Vernon
Midshipman Charlie Carter
Charlie Carter was a midshipman on the Royal Merchant Ship Britannia. Fortunately for Charlie, Captain John Paul Jones took Britannia as prize in August, 1776. From that ship, a midshipman, master’s mate, third mate, six seamen, and three landsmen joined the crew of Providence. Jones was very persuasive in bringing prisoners to his side, and thus Charlie is looking to rise through the ranks and eventually lead a command, and so volunteered to welcome new crew members aboard . Charlie Carter is played by Caroline Carter. She is the Production Coordinator at Tall Ship Providence and has contributed to the creation of the tour, Tall Ship Tuesday, she is a deckhand during sails, and has many other hats.
Able Seaman Jessie Buchannan
Jessie Buchannan is one of the Able Seamen on Providence. These sailors are often the most experienced deckhands on a ship. They literally know the ropes. Buchannan started sailing at a young age, when he left his home in the Appalachian Mountains to try and make some money he could send back to his family. When the war broke out, he decided to sail in the Continental Navy for revolution. After working on a few different ships, he found himself on Providence and from time to time helps out training our new recruits on our tour. Jessie Buchannan is played by Jessie Richardson. They have been with Providence for 3 seasons as a deckhand and historian. They also have additional Tall Ship sailing experience and are training to be a ship’s medic.
Midshipman Alex Morgan
Midshipman Alex Morgan has been with Providence since she was called Katy, joining the crew in her voyage from Rhode Island to Philadelphia when she was commissioned into the Continental Navy where her name was changed. Alex has learned almost every position on the crew but hasn’t been particularly successful at any of the roles. Thus, the captain tasked Alex with training our new recruits on the tour. Midshipmen often have friends in high places that get them their positions, and that seems to be how Alex Morgan has remained on Providence all this time. He is however very good at identifying the talents of our crew and showing them the ropes. Midshipman Alex Morgan is played by Josie Morgan. She is an actor in the DC area, and has appeared in several plays, short films, and was even a performer at the Maryland Renaissance Faire in the 2023 season.
Midshipman William Hitch
Midshipman William Hitch is a new midshipman on the crew. He joined when Captain John Paul Jones took command of Providence in May , 1776. Jones, Lieutenant of Alfred, brought one of the midshipman along with him to this ship. Midshipman Hitch is a natural leader, he helps with our youngest recruits as they join our crew and is very skilled in knot tying. He is also always humming a tune aboard our ship. Midshipman William Hitch is played by Will Downing. He is the Operations Manager at the Tall Ship Providence Foundation. He also plays John Paul Jones, is a deckhand during the sailing season, and has many other behind the scenes roles that keep Providence afloat.
Captain John Paul Jones
One of Providence’s most famous captains, John Paul Jones was only in charge from May through October of 1776. This was his first naval command after coming to the US from Scotland. During the 6 months he captained Providence, Jones captured 16 of 40 total ships. Jones was initially hesitant to take command of Providence as she was quite small. He thought he would not be able to make much of a name for himself on such a little ship. Jones would later be known as one of the founders of the US Navy. Jones is primarily played by Andrew Harding. This is Andrew’s first tall ship, but he has quickly learned the ropes. He is a talented performer and sailor here at Providence and a key member of the team here at the Tall Ship Providence Foundation.