A Finding Aid to the Edwin Ambrose Whaling Research Papers
59 School Street, Box 1310, Edgartown MA 02539 - 508.627.4441
Martha's Vineyard Museum MV Museum

A Finding Aid to the Edwin Ambrose Whaling Research Papers

Descriptive Summary

RepositoryMartha's Vineyard Museum
Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539
(508) 627-4441
Call NumberRU 517
Creator Ambrose, Edwin R., 1928-2009
TitleEdwin R. Ambrose whaling research papers
Date1947-1950
Extent2 boxes (1.581 cubic feet)
LanguageThe materials are in English.
AbstractThe collection contains mostly photocopies documenting research done by Edwin R. Ambrose while working on catalog descriptions of Martha's Vineyard Museum's logbook collections and a series of articles regarding Martha's Vineyard and its whaling history.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use and Reproduction Restrictions

Requests to reproduce material from this collection should be directed to the library's staff. Reproduction fees may apply.

Preferred Citation

Martha's Vineyard Museum, RU 517, Edwin Ambrose Whaling Research Papers.

Acquisition Information

These materials were produced by Edwin R. Ambrose during his time as a volunteer at the Martha's Vineyard Museum and therefore were not processed as a donation. The materials were presumably donated by his wife or family sometime around his death in 2009.

Publication Information

Martha's Vineyard Museum

Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539
(508) 627-4441

Processing Information

Finding aid prepared and machine-encoded by Nathaniel Janick in February 2015.

 Creation of this finding aid was sponsored by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Alexander Barclay
  • Braganza
  • Charles W. Morgan
  • Chase
  • Chili
  • Commodore Roberts
  • Emma Jane
  • Hecla
  • Hesper
  • Java 2
  • Junior Christmas
  • Laconia
  • Midas
  • Minnesota
  • Oscar
  • Rose Pool
  • Vineyard
  • Virginia
  • William Thompson

Genre(s)

  • Logbooks

Geographic Name(s)

  • Martha's Vineyard (Mass.)

Personal Name(s)

  • Smith, George Fred
  • Manter, Henry

Subject(s)

  • Whaling--Massachusetts--Martha's Vineyard
  • Whaling--New England--History
  • Whaling--Social aspects--New England--History

Biography/Historical Note

Edwin R. Ambrose was born on July 23, 1928, in Syracuse, New York, the oldest of three children. His family moved to Detroit, Michigan, when he was the age of 10. After high school graduation, He joined the Marines, stationed in Cherry Point, North Carolina, for the last year and a half of World War II. Following the Marines, he attended the University of Michigan, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in history in 1952. While living in Ann Arbor, Michigan, he met his wife, Nancy, and the two married in 1953. In 1959, Ed and Nancy and their three children, Robert, William, and Sarah, moved to Darien, Connecticut.

Ed began his business career as a salesman with Abex Corporation and remained with the company for over 35 years, last as a director of export and licensing. Most of these years were spent traveling around the world, with Japan and India among his most frequent destinations. He circled the world 37 times. In 1988, Ed and Nancy moved to Gaborone, Botswana. Ed had a contract with USAID, consulting with the Botswana Ministry of Commerce and Industry and writing speeches for the President of Botswana. After four years in Africa the couple retired to the Vineyard.

Ed volunteered for the Land Bank and the Martha’s Vineyard Museum. From 2000 to 2003, he was the Research Editor of the Dukes County Intelligencer at the Martha's Vineyard Museum. During that time, he wrote a series of articles about the whaling industry and how it affected life on Martha's Vineyard.

Ed loved sailing, owning many sailboats over his lifetime. His favorite was his first boat, the Willy Wisp, a Pearson/Alberg 35 that he sailed in Corinthian races on the Great Lakes as well as the East Coast. Ed was once a member of the Noroton Yacht Club and the Edgartown Yacht Club.

Edwin R. Ambrose died on March 18, 2009.

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains mostly photocopies documenting research done by Edwin R. Ambrose while working on catalog descriptions of Martha's Vineyard Museum's logbook collections and a series of articles regarding Martha's Vineyard and its whaling history. There are photocopies of logbooks, articles and excerpts about whaling history, clippings, and other materials related to the history of whaling and Martha's Vineyard.

Arrangement

The collection is loosely arranged by the following topics, and therein, alphabetically:

  • Logbooks
  • Whaling captains
  • Mariners
  • Whaling
  • Whales
  • General topics/Miscellaneous

Collection Inventory

BoxFolder

Materials regarding whaling logbooks at the Martha's Vineyard Museum library, circa 2000 

11

Materials regarding Martha's Vineyard Museum whaling logbooks, circa 2000 

12-3

Materials regarding miscellaneous logbooks, circa 2000 

14

Notes regarding logbooks of the ships Chase, Chili, Oscar, and Vineyard, circa 2000 

15

Materials regarding logbook of the Alexander Barclay, circa 2000 

16

Notes concerning and photocopy of logbook of the ship Braganza, circa 2000 

17

Materials regarding logbook of the Charles W. Morgan, circa 2000 

18

Log data sheet and photocopy of the logbook of the Commodore Roberts, circa 2000 

19

Materials regarding logbook of the Emma Jane, circa 2000 

110

Materials regarding logbook of the Hecla, circa 2000 

111

Log data sheet and photocopy of the logbook of the Hesper, circa 2000 

112

Materials regarding logbook of Java 2, circa 2000 

113

Materials regarding logbook of Junior Christmas, circa 2000 

114

Photocopied excerpts from the logbook of the Laconia, 1993 

115

Materials regarding the logbook of the Minnesota, circa 2000 

116

Materials regarding the ship Midas, circa 2000 

117

Materials regarding the ship Oscar, circa 2000 

118

Materials regarding the logbook of the Rose Pool, circa 2000 

119

Materials regarding the ship Virginia, 1847-1851, circa 2000 

120-21

Materials regarding the logbook of William Thompson, circa 2000 

122

Materials regarding whaleship William Thompson, circa 2000 

123

Martha's Vineyard whaling captains (3 folders), circa 2000 

124-26

Materials regarding whaling captains (2 folders), circa 2000 

127-28

Materials regarding Captain Henry Manter, circa 2000 

129

Materials regarding Captain George Fred Smith, circa 2000 

130

Materials regarding Martha's Vineyard mariners, circa 2000 

132

Materials regarding mariners, circa 2000 

133-37

Materials regarding officers and crews, circa 2000 

138-39

Materials regarding wages of whalemen, circa 2000 

140

Glossaries of whaling terms, circa 2000 

141

Research materials from the New Bedford Free Public Library Whaling Project, 2002 

142

Materials regarding New Bedford whaling voyages, 2002 

143

Materials regarding whaling, circa 2000 

144

Materials regarding whaling history, circa 2000 

145

Materials regarding whale hunting, circa 2000 

146

Excerpt on whaling ports, circa 2000 

147

Materials regarding whaling ships, circa 2000 

148

Martha's Vineyard whaling voyages, circa 2000 

149

Materials regarding whaling wives, circa 2000 

150

Materials regarding whales (2 folders), 1996-circa 2001, undated 

21-2

Materials regarding Northern Right Whales, 1998-2000 

23

Materials regarding sperm whales, circa 2000 

24

Excerpt regarding whale attacks, circa 2000 

25

Materials regarding Kendall Whaling Museum, 1999 

26

Packet from 25th Annual Whaling History Symposium at the Kendall Whaling Museum, 2000 

27

Photocopy of 1859 Vineyard Gazette article, circa 2000 

28

Materials regarding schools, 1998, undated 

29

Materials regarding shipwrecks, 2003, undated 

210

Introduction [?], circa 2000 

211

Sources (2 folders), circa 2000 

212-13

Voyages [?], 1998-2002, undated 

214

Miscellaneous materials, circa 2000-2001, undated 

215-16