09 Jan Throwback January- Your 2023 Favorite Videos
This year we had a lot of interesting videos and Adventure Pages for #TallShipTuesday. This week, we reminisced about our 2023 favorite videos chosen by you as a community. As we have grown into our new home at the Senator John Warner Maritime Heritage Center, we have also grown into our new website and our blog. Our old Adventure Pages were much shorter and a slightly different format. We are excited to get to delve deeper into topics and provide opportunities for further reading in this new format. This month for Throwback January, I also thought it would be fun to pull back the curtain in the creative process in making these videos and our Adventure Pages.
The Mess Night: A Viking Tradition
This 2023 favorite was the most shared #TallShipTuesday last year. So many of our viewers sent us stories about this tradition by email and in the comments of this video. It was wonderful to get to read some of the stories that were sent to us.
In the video, we learned about the tradition of “Mess Night” or “Dining In.” This is a formal event where military officers are honored for their service in a night of ceremony. This tradition dates back as far as the vikings, though is more recently attributed to British Naval Customs that were introduced to colonists during the Revolutionary War. The modern Mess Night traditions come from the book, the Marine Officer’s Guide by Colonel Heinl. Heinl included a section about the Mess Night in his book, and from there was popularized in the 1950s.
Throughout a night of pomp and circumstance, the main event of the evening is the toast where everyone is served wine and the guest of honor and other key members of the military are celebrated for their service. The overall formality of the event is meant to encourage bonding and camaraderie amongst their crew.
Parts of Providence: The Topmast
Your #TallShipTuesday 2023 favorite series this year was our Parts of Providence, and this was your favorite video of that series. A behind the scenes story about this video: It was incredibly windy the day this was filmed and the camera actually fell. The result? The lense of the camera broke, but that was not immediately noticeable. This was one of the first videos I had filmed after taking over the channel, and while I was proud of the final product, the cracked lense is very apparent.
In Parts of Providence: The Topmast, we learned a bit about the Topmast, or as sailors generally say, the Topm’st. To learn more about the anatomy of a tall ship, look at this diagram of a traditionally rigged mast, published in Patterson Illustrated Nautical Dictionary 1891.
Tricorn Hat and Other Sailing Essentials
Your 2023 favorite #TallShipTuesday host was Jessie. They have a wealth of knowledge on fashion history and as many of you might remember, this was the last video they filmed here on Providence. Jessie being a talented sailor has moved on to other tall ships. Luckily for the winter season, Jessie decided to return to our crew to share their expertise with us. We are so grateful that they have returned for the time being.
Tricorn hats are some of the most iconic hats that sailors wore during the age of sail. Originally referred to as cocked hats. These hats first appeared in the 17th century but became popular in the 18th century. They were most popular with American and European sailors. Despite the strange shape, tricorn hats actually had an important function out at sea. Tricorns were generally made of beaver or wool felt to provide some weather-proofing. The hat itself was worn with the tricorn points to direct the water away from the face in fowl weather. Sailors traditionally wore the hat with the tapered ends. This allowed them to move water to the shoulders and away from the face. Often, they could be dressed up with trim, feathers, ribbons, and buttons.