Cape Cod and the Portland Gale of 1898

Cape Cod and the Portland Gale of 1898

Date: November 4, 2023
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Meeting Place: Directions emailed with registration confirmation.
Leader: Don Wilding
Price: 20
Attendee Limit: 20
Age Limit: Recommended for ages 12 and up.

It was 125 years ago, on the night of November 26, 1898, with a killer storm of historic proportions approaching, that the steamer Portland set out from Boston. By the following night, the winter hurricane sent the vessel to the depths of Massachusetts Bay off Cape Cod, claiming nearly 200 lives. On the Cape, a few dozen victims of the Portland disaster washed ashore on the outer beaches, while ships piled up in harbors, high tides swept away railroad tracks in Truro and Sandwich, and the landscape and shorelines were changed forever. Several Cape Cod mariners went to sea and never returned, caught in the gale’s evil clutches. Don revisits this disaster and the heroic deeds of the U.S. Life-Saving Service and the Cape’s citizenry in what came to be known as “The Portland Gale.”

This walk is sponsored by Harwich Conservation Trust and Eastham Conservation Foundation.

Photo courtesy of Cape Cod National Seashore.

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