Salem in Essex County, Massachusetts — The American Northeast (New England)
Wharves in the Early 1800s
This modern painting depicts the area along Derby Street in the early 1800s when Salem’s trade was at its peak. Featured in the foreground is Derby Wharf (where you are now standing) with its three-story warehouses. The other historic wharves in the painting no longer exist. Along the shore on the left side of the painting is a shipyard, where a hull is being constructed. Just above the shipyard is the Turner-Ingersoll mansion, immortalized by Nathaniel Hawthorne in his novel The House of Seven Gables.
Isaac Cushing, ship joiner, has removed his Business to the Chamber of Store no. 15, Derby Wharf, where orders in his line will be gratefully received, and faithfully executed. Patent Binnacles & Sky Lights of all sizes will be constantly kept for sale at the above place. – Advertisement in the Essex Register, March 13, 1811
How it Looked Then
1 The ship John docked after a voyage to the East Indies. The keel rests on the mud exposed at low tide.
3 Unloading sugar from Isle de France (Mauritus).
4 Unloading cotton from India.
5 Dunnage, packing material used to prevent cargo from shifting.
6 Weighing unloaded cargo on the U.S. Customs scales.
7 Weighing unloaded cargo on merchant’s tripod scales.
8 Coppering the hull of a schooner to protect it from wood-boring teredo worms.
9 Counting house of ship owner Elias Hasket Derby, Jr. whose one-horse chaise is parked in front.
10 Schooner delivering lumber.
11 Brig under construction in the shipyard.
12 The brig Badger.
13 The ship Monk.
14 Ship captain Samuel Ingersoll’s home, later known as the House of Seven Gables.
15 Fishing boat heading out of the harbor.
16 Orne’s Wharf.
17 Former privateer Rhodes.
18 Crowninshield Wharf, or India Wharf, built in 1802. Three merchant ships are docked along each side.
19 Stagecoach awaiting a shore party.
20 A visiting naval frigate, with sailors rowing ashore.
21 Coney Island, near the harbor entrance.
22 Baker’s Island Light.
23 Becket’s shipyard, birthplace of many of Salem’s famous vessels.
A Hides B Hemp C Tea D Tallow E Nutmeg F Coffee G Molasses H Cotton I Fireworks J Pepper K Wine L Sugar M Chinaware
Erected by National Park Service.
Location. 42° 31.078′ N, 70° 53.091′ W. Marker is in Salem, Massachusetts, in Essex County. Touch for map. Marker is along Derby Wharf at Salem Maritime National Historic Site. Marker is at or near this postal address: 177 Derby Street, Salem MA 01970, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. To the Farthest Port (here, next to this marker but has been reported missing); Salem Harbor (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Salem Harbor (about 300 feet away but has been reported missing); The Pedrick Store House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Central Wharf (approx. 0.2 miles away but has been reported missing); Wharves in the Late 1800s (approx. ¼ mile away); Salem Maritime National Historic Site (approx. ¼ mile away but has been reported missing); Derby Wharf (approx. ¼ mile away but has been reported missing). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Salem.
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 31, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. This page has been viewed 204 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on July 31, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.