Our Sussex Roots
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The schooner Calhoun Ross measured 160 feet by 35 feet. The owners were Harry Darbee and Edgar Ross of Seaford, and the ship was named for a nephew of Governor Ross. Built in 1908, she was stranded in the Bahamas in 1917. The Calhoun Ross was typical of coastal freighters plying the Chesapeake Bay and tributaries. *** Of the three major ship yards on the Nanticoke River at Bethel, Sharptown and Seaford, the Seaford Marine Railway survived the longest. This shipyard built as well as repaired sailing vessels, barges and steamships during the early 1900s. During World War II Captain John Smith supervised the construction of 140 landing craft, patrol boats and large barges. The yard later fell into disrepair, and today there is no sign of its existence. [Source courtesy of: J. Emory Willey Family; Bethel Museum; Delaware State Archives and M. N. Willey Postcards]
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