The Watermen’s Boats on Kent Island

Sitting by the dock of the Chesapeake Bay at Kent Island is a small waterman’s marina. Filled with crab boats, this is a working harbor. Small, but a strong force of tough seamen that endure the elements of Mother Nature.


Some of these boats are newer, while others show the passing of time. Filled with character you can only imagine the stories they could tell. Each boat has tools of the trade like these buckets used for holding crabs once pulled from the traps.


Bumpers on the boat sides are meant to help protect the boat while tied to the dock. The winter light bringing them a glow.


A life ring hangs in case of emergency. Hopefully never to be used.


And no boat is not complete without docking lines to use in a wide variety of ways.


It’s been an odd winter this year as El Nino has been keeping the Gulf Stream further north, holding at bay Old Man Winter. The waterman are still able to work the waters, leaving at 5:00 a.m. to drive an hour to arrive to the waters where they work.

Just a couple of years ago the boats were frozen in and the watermen were stuck at home.

Kent Island, a wonderful place to visit the old life of the Chesapeake Bay.

18 replies »

  1. Love the wonderful photo series…I grew up in a world where fathers left the house at 4 in the morning to start their day; I love the character of that world that is so indelibly etched into every thing that touches it, or surrounds it.

    • Such an admirable man you had as a father. The work ethic and dedication he must have had. Truly, it is a different way of life. The waterman’s life. There’s nothing like it. Hard work, but a sense of freedom on the water.

      Thank you Charlie!

  2. Starting around 5:00 a.m., I see & hear the watermen head south from the Kent Narrows south-end channel markers every morning from my home, one by one they follow each other out to endure the day’s weather & temperatures while working hard, long hours. They are phenomenal people who I admire deeply. And I appreciate the awesome seafood they bring to our local plates daily!

  3. Such great insights into life at the docks. The strong colours, make the shapes and the tones of each image sing and dance. Well seen. What a pleasing time to be out and about with a camera.

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