Welcome to the MESS

Maritime Education for Students of the Sea (MESS)

The MESS (Maritime Education for Students of the Sea) are informal lunchtime lectures meant to showcase a wide array of maritime knowledge, research and skills. Subjects in the past have included shipwreck survival, Louise Boyd: Arctic explorer, rope walks and maritime fine arts. Lectures usually last around 40 minutes with time for questions afterwards. The MESS lectures seek to amplify new voices, honor experience and respect the diversity of maritime culture. Each lecture is live broadcasted from this webpage and available for viewing. The MESS lectures are sponsored by the San Francisco Maritime National Park Association to help showcase the collection of San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. The ongoing lecture series takes place on the last Thursday of every month at 11AM (PST). 

Next Broadcast:

Sailors and their Pets
(Thursday, September 30th, 2021 at 11AM)

Sailors and their pets: Men and their companion animals aboard early 20th-century Finnish sailing ships

Pets were commonly carried aboard Finnish windjammers by crewmembers. Almost all ocean-going sailing ships had pets. Dogs and cats were especially important to sailors on an emotional level as animals provided a safe channel for sailors to exhibit, as well as receive, affection. The presence of animals was also part of the sailors’ self-image of being close to nature.

Sailors in these last sailing ships were living the masculine ideal of the deep-sea seafarer in the golden age of sail. However, sailors were also longing for domesticity and therefore created domestic conditions aboard ship with the help of companion animals. In this talk you will meet the chimpanzee Amigo, kitten Kirri and perhaps the most famous Finnish dog seafarer Päik, who sailed around Cape Horn eight times.

Watch Live, Thursday September 30th @ 11am (PDT)

2021 MESS Lecture Schedule:

Underwater Wonders of the National Park Service. Bert Ho.

Rescheduling Date TBD