Mary McCarthy to host lecture during North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland

Mary McCarthyMary McCarthy will host a lecture “Sea Glass Marbles From Around the Globe” during the 11th Annual North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland on Saturday, August 27th.  Mary will share her knowledge and years of experience on sea glass collecting with you, particularly marbles along the shore of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.  Sea marbles wash up on beaches around the world. Why? Were they used as ballast for ships? Did they come from the insides of bottles at bars? Or were most simply used as children’s toys, ending up in the waves after many years on beaches at play? This lecture will explore the origins and history of the different types of marbles that wash up on shorelines, and include a display of sea marbles from over 20 countries and waterways from around the globe.

Mary McCarthy is a bestselling author and lifelong journalist. Currently Senior Editor forSpliceToday.com, her writing career includes Salon.com, Washington Post, Philadelphia Inquirer, Baltimore Sun, editorial positions at regional magazines and newspaper humor columns.  She has blogged for Katie Couric and appeared on The Today Show.  She is an Adjunct Instructor for American University and an instructor for The Writer’s Center in Washington, D.C.

Mary started sea glass hunting when she moved to Maryland’s Eastern Shore in 2001. She often writes on sea glass related topics. She has spoken at the International Beachcombing Conference and Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center Sea Glass Conference, and joined NASGA this year as a commercial member. You can follow her sea glass finds in real time online at Instagram.com/marytmccarthy.

North American Sea Glass Festival, Ocean City, Maryland

Sea Glass Soiree  Friday, August 26, 2016   5pm – 9pm

Sea Glass Festival  Saturday, August 27, 2016  9am – 6pm

www.seaglassassociation.org

Richard LaMotte to host lecture during North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland

Richard LaMotteRichard LaMotte will host a lecture “The Lure and Mysteries of Sea Glass” during the 11th Annual North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland on Saturday, August 27th.  Richard  will share his knowledge and years  of experience on sea glass with you, accompanied by Celia Pearson’s beautiful images from his two books, Pure Sea Glass and The Lure of Sea Glass.  Richard plans to provide insight into the art of identifying unique shards and review the basic science of how sea glass is formed.  Learn why certain colors are so much harder to find than others and explore the history of sea glass.  Questions are encouraged as this lecture will serve to be a valuable exchange of information between Richard and anyone seeking to learn more about these vanishing gems.

The Lure of Sea Glass

A little bit about Richard and his latest book, The Lure of Sea Glass: Our Connection to Nature’s Gems.

Richard LaMotte, author of The Lure of Sea Glass: Our Connection to Nature’s Gems, is America’s leading authority on sea glass.  His new book, which focuses primarily on the emotional side of sea glass, was prompted by the many stories and anecdotes he has heard over the years from people who shared with him how much sea glass collecting has meant in their lives.

Since the publication of his first book, LaMotte has hosted or attended hundreds of events for sea glass collectors all over the nation.  At these events, sea glass aficionados have had an opportunity to view others’ collections and learn more about the sea glass phenomenon.  He is a former president of the North American Sea Glass Association, which annually holds a national festival for sea glass collectors and those interested in learning more about the subject.

The new book is a sequel to his classic, Pure Sea Glass: Discovering Nature’s Vanishing Gems, which was published in 2004.  That book, which has become the definitive book on the subject, helped spark the increasingly popular pastime of collecting treasures from the sea.  It earned first place in non-fiction from the Writer’s Digest 13th Annual International Self-Published Book Awards.  Since 2004, his company, Sea Glass Publishing, L.L.C., also has produced calendars, note cards, identification cards and other products featuring photographs and information about sea glass.

LaMotte and his family have collected more than 40,000 pieces of sea glass, much of it from the Chesapeake Bay, near their home in Chestertown, Maryland.

LaMotte has been interviewed in leading newspapers including The Washington Post, the Baltimore Sun, the New York Times and the Boston Globe.  His work also has been featured in magazines including Coastal Living, Parade and Delaware Beach Life.

North American Sea Glass Festival, Ocean City, Maryland

Sea Glass Soiree  Friday, August 26, 2016   5pm – 9pm

Sea Glass Festival  Saturday, August 27, 2016  9am – 6pm

www.seaglassassociation.org

 

Meet NASGA’s 2015 Sea Glass Festival Lecturer, Bill Winkler

The North American Sea Glass Association’s 10th Annual Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland will be held August 29-30th, 2015 and will feature three lectures on Saturday.  Each of the lectures will offer attendees a unique look into the historical significance of objects found along the region’s DelMarVa shorelines, and we’ll also have a lecture on Greek Sea Glass.

winklerLGBill Winkler, with the Delaware Marine Archeological Society, will offer his knowledge of the local historical significance of sea glass and treasures, which can be found along the Delaware and Maryland beaches.

Bill has either spent time at the beach or lived by it almost his entire life. In the early 1950s his family vacationed in Dewey, Delaware, where they rented a cottage on Dickinson Street. That’s where his love for the ocean started. Since then, that love has taken him from coast to coast, provided Bill with a career and even a glimpse of a time when schooners either mastered the sea or were swallowed whole by it.

In ninth grade, a guidance counselor asked what career Bill wanted to pursue. He chose marine biology. He figured it would give him a chance to be by the ocean. That meant not being indoors—something Bill didn’t want to do if it would feel like the confinement of school.  Bill received his biology degree from the University of Hawaii in 1970, then continued in graduate school through 1973. He eventually left his studies to work for the airlines. My career included working for Island Air, Aloha and Western Airlines. By the time he left the islands, Bill had lived surrounded by the Pacific for a decade.

After Bill returned to the mainland, he migrated to the East Coast, where he made Pompano Beach, Florida, his home. Bill spent 17 years there fishing, surfing, scuba diving, treasure hunting for Mel Fisher and loving the beach life.

Yet Bill returned to Sussex County, just miles from where he had vacationed as a kid. Though Bill was a skilled diver, he had spent years working along Florida’s submerged barrier reef system, there was little demand for his services. So Bill ended up in the retail business with TreasureQuest Shoppe on Route 26, where he sells nautical decor and specializes in metal detectors, for treasure hunting.

Shipwrecks of Delmarva - art work by Robert Pratt, cartographer & research of the shipwreck locations with names & dates of sinking by Don Shomette. Of the 10,000 to 12,000 wrecks believed to lie on the sea floor, this is a one of a kind comprehensive representation.
Shipwrecks of Delmarva – art work by Robert Pratt, cartographer & research of the shipwreck locations with names & dates of sinking by Don Shomette.  Of the 10,000 to 12,000 wrecks believed to lie on the sea floor, this is a one of a kind comprehensive representation.

After years of selling metal detectors to people who discovered shipwreck artifacts on the beach, Bill and several friends founded the Delaware Marine Archaeological Society in 1997.

In 2002 the society completed the first maritime archeological survey in Delaware at no cost to the state. They focused on one 255-foot unidentified ship that was in the surf zone at Beach Plum Island. The fact that this boat remains anonymous is amazing, considering that it is one of the largest schooners built during its time. After years of work, we put together a 3-inch-thick report titled the “Beach Plum Island Project,” which details the architecture of the schooner. It includes VHS video, more than 300 photographs and plenty of drawings. Since the report was finished, much of the ship has been broken apart and scattered by waves, but at least part of her history has been documented.

Working in and out of the sea has taken Bill from the Atlantic to the Pacific, but now Bill finds himself on the same sandy shores he loved as a kid.  Bill finds himself at home along the Delaware beaches; although he still has the urge to seek adventure on an uninhabited island somewhere out in warmer waters.

Bill Winkler will feature a lecture, “The Historical Significance of Sea Glass & Treasures found along Delaware’s Coast” on Saturday at 11am during the North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland on August, 29th – 30th.

Meet NASGA’s 2015 Sea Glass Festival Lecturer, Christeena H. Minopetros

The North American Sea Glass Association’s 10th Annual Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland will be held August 29-30th, 2015 and will feature three lectures on Saturday.  Each of the lectures will offer attendees a unique look into the historical significance of objects found along the region’s DelMarVa shorelines, and we’ll also have a lecture on Greek Sea Glass.

Christeena H. Minopetros will feature a lecture on Greek sea glass on Saturday at 3pm titled, “Greece and Her Islands, A Sea Glass Lover’s Dream”.  Join Christeena as she takes you on a sea glass journey through the Greek Islands. After spending the last 15 summers sailing and collecting sea glass in Greece, she will share her experiences, photos and maybe even some of her secret collecting sites.

Can you share what started your love of sea glass collecting and beach-combing?

Christeena's sea glass collection
Christeena’s sea glass collection

Some of my first memories are long summer days on the beach with my family in New Jersey. Shells, driftwood and sea glass were abundant back in those days, and we brought them home by the bucket full. Even though I did not work with sea glass professionally until many years later, I am sure that those magical days influenced my love of shorelines and beachcombing.

We know that you are from New Jersey and lived in Greece. Tell us a little about what took you to Greece and your early collecting experiences there?

The elusive sea glass marble
The elusive sea glass marble

I had a wonderful life in New Jersey. But after visiting Greece the first time on a sailing trip by myself for my 40th birthday, I fell in love with the country. One year later I sold everything including my flower shop that I had owned for 15 years and never looked back. Every night I would go to the beach to watch the sunset, I remember running my hand through the sand one night and finding sea glass, my aha moment. By the time I met my husband 5 months later my lovely little Greek veranda was filled with bowls, bottles and jars of the incredible gems.

As collectors ourselves, we know how exciting it is to find a special piece of sea glass, ceramic pottery or fossilized items. Do you have a special piece that you cherish more than others you’ve found? Describe the piece and historical significance, if applicable?

Sea Glass deck prism
Sea Glass deck prism found in NJ

This is a hard question because we have a massive unusual private collection. But many years ago on a bitter cold winter day in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey I spotted a small piece of clear/white sea glass peeking through the sand, and to my surprise it was this gorgeous deck prism. Used for centuries before electricity to radiate light below deck on sailing ships.

 

 

 

 

Is there a favorite beach that you like to frequent and refer to it as “your beach”?

Yes there is, and my hands start to shake as we approach it!  To call it a “beach” is a stretch, as it is really a cove between two mountains in the Greek Islands. The winds and currents bring what floats into the cove trapping the debris, delivering sea glass in abundance, making it a serious treasure trove for a sea glass collector.

You’ve traveled to many different places and walked many beaches during your travels. Where is your favorite place to collect?

Yes, I have been fortunate to have traveled many places in my life, but none have compared to beauty of the Greek Islands.

Do you have any beaches on your “Bucket list”?

Yes, my travel days are not over. Would love to visit the Amalfi Coast, Italy and Seaham, England but wherever we are we are always in search of sea glass.

Do you have a memorable beach-combing experience you can share with us? And what did you find?

One year my husband and I took six weeks and drove from from Los Angeles to Seattle Washington leaving the coast only when we were forced too. Treasure hunting on every beach and cove the whole way. At that time glass beach in California was not well known, so as you can imagine we were thrilled when we happened upon it, and my husband found a gorgeous diamond.  I thought about the poor woman that lost it…..

Aside from collecting and aside from your expert experiences, what are some of your other interests and hobbies?

Join Christeena as she takes you on a sea glass journey through the Greek Islands.
Join Christeena as she takes you on a sea glass journey through the Greek Islands.

Living in the Florida Keys has allowed me to acquire an amazing collection of orchids and other unusual plants that grow all year long, back to my floral designing days, I just love being surrounded by flowers. Sailing is a large part of our lives, nothing gives you the freedom and serenity of floating through the ocean…….

 

 

Christeena H. Minopetros will feature a lecture on Greek Sea Glass on Saturday at 3pm titled, “Greece and Her Islands, A Sea Glass Lover’s Dream” at the North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland on August, 29th – 30th.

www.seaglassjewels.com

Meet NASGA’s 2015 Sea Glass Festival Lecturer, Patricia Samford

The North American Sea Glass Association’s 10th Annual Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland will be held August 29-30th, 2015 and will feature three lectures on Saturday.  Each of the lectures will offer attendees a unique look into the historical significance of objects found along the region’s DelMarVa shorelines, and we’ll also have a lecture on Greek Sea Glass.

Patricia Samford, Director, MAC Lab
Patricia Samford, Director, MAC Lab

The first lecturer featured is Patricia Samford, from the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab (MAC Lab) located in southern Maryland.  The MAC Lab is a state-of-the-art archaeological research, conservation, and curation facility located at Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum, the State Museum of Archaeology, in southern Maryland. The MAC Lab serves as a clearinghouse for archaeological collections recovered from land-based and underwater projects conducted by State and Federal agencies throughout Maryland.

 

NASGA: Patricia, thank you for participating in the North American Sea Glass Association’s 10th Annual Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, both as a presenter, and as a Shard ID expert on Saturday and Sunday.  We’re excited to have you join us this year. 

 NASGA: You’ve studied both land and marine archaeology, specializing in ceramics and pottery. What is your favorite part about doing what you do?

 The Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab, where I work, has over 8 million archaeological artifacts from across the state.  Ceramics and glass make up a good portion of the collections from sites that date after European contact.  Having those collections at my fingertips and being able to share them with the public through our Diagnostic Artifacts in Maryland website (http://www.jefpat.org/diagnostic/index.htm) is one of my favorite parts of my job.

NASGA: Is there a favorite beach that you like to frequent and refer to it as “your beach?”

My favorite beaches would have to be those of the Outer Banks of North Carolina.  I have not found that much sea glass there, but I am intrigued by all the shipwrecks off these shores, often referred to as “the graveyard of the Atlantic”.

MAC Lab Director Patricia Samford shows CSM President Brad Gottfried a canoe dating to 210 A.D. which is currently in the freeze drier to preserve it. The canoe has been soaked in a special solution that helps the cells retain their shape during the freeze-drying process. The vacuum removes the moisture as vapor through sublimation. The canoe will be weighed weekly and when the canoe's weight stabilizes the freeze drying is complete.
MAC Lab Director Patricia Samford shows College of Southern Maryland President Brad Gottfried a canoe dating to 210 A.D. which is currently in the freeze drier to preserve it. The canoe has been soaked in a special solution that helps the cells retain their shape during the freeze-drying process. The vacuum removes the moisture as vapor through sublimation. The canoe will be weighed weekly and when the canoe’s weight stabilizes the freeze drying is complete.                                                                    Photo Credits: College of Southern Maryland

NASGA: You’ve traveled to many different places and walked many beaches during your travels. Where is your favorite place to collect?

I will be traveling to Scotland this summer and I look forward to beachcombing in the Outer Hebrides.  I hear that British sea glass is a rare treat!

 NASGA: Do you have any beaches on your “bucket list?” 

 I would love to visit Glass Beach near Fort Bragg, California.  The photographs I have seen of this beach are amazing.

 

NASGA: Do you have a memorable beach-combing experience you can share with us?   And what did you find?

 This was not beachcombing per se, but I lived in a small town in North Carolina on a tidal creek.  A nor’easter blew the water out of the creek and a friend and I were able to walk out on the creek bottom and pick up pieces of pottery from the 1700 and early 1800s, when the townspeople used the creek as their trash dump.

 NASGA: Aside from collecting and aside from your expert experiences, what are some of your other interests or hobbies? 

 I love to travel and have quite a few countries I would like to visit (not all of them with beaches!).  I also enjoy reading about the past and imagining what life was like to past generations.

 NASGA: Thank you for sharing your story.  We’re looking forward to the Ocean City festival and your presentation and expertise in ceramics and pottery. 

Patricia Samford’s Lecture Information:                                                                         Beyond Sea Glass: Identifying Sea Pottery
Saturday, August 29th   1pm – 2PM
Patricia Samford, Director, Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab, Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum, St. Leonard, Maryland

Patricia Samford

Tucked away amongst the fragments of beautiful beach glass you have picked up over the years, there are probably more than a few fragments of pottery as well. Have you ever wondered how to identify and date them? If so, be sure to attend a talk given by Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab Director, Patricia Samford. Using examples of colonial and post-colonial pottery from the Lab’s collections, Dr. Samford will provide tips for identifying and dating your pieces based on paste color, hardness and decoration. Patricia will also be on hand all weekend long as a Shard ID expert. Attendees are welcome to bring their sea pottery for identification.