The adventure, romance, excitement and hardships experienced by 18th and 19th century seafarers will be brought to life at the Zwaanendael Maritime Festival: A Sailor’s Life for Me from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, May 25, at the Zwaanendael Museum,102 Kings Highway in Lewes.
The festival will provide opportunities for adults as well as children to experience the everyday lives of sailors by scrubbing the deck, learning about shipboard food, playing Crown and Anchor and Colonial games, exploring a vessel’s cargo, creating a sailors’ valentine and serving on a block-and-tackle station where visitors will be drilled by a demanding mariner looking for new crew members.
The Archaeological Society of Delaware, the Indian River Life-Saving Station, the Lewes Historical Society, the Lewes Public Library and Lightship Overfalls will offer information and displays about their activities.
The festival will also feature a special tickets-only lecture and tour commemorating the 215th anniversary of the sinking of His Majesty’s Sloop DeBraak, a British warship that was escorting and protecting a convoy of British and American merchant ships en route to the United States when it was capsized and lost off the Delaware coast May 25, 1798.
The program, which begins at 1 p.m., features a lecture on the ship presented in conjunction with A Seaborne Citizenry: The DeBraak and Its Atlantic World, an exhibit that has been on display at the museum since Dec. 1, 2012.