I’d love to cash this in now and start photographing the world!
I’d like to recommend reading : Tracks in the Sea : Matthew Fontaine Maury and the Mapping of the Oceans by Chester Hearn, for those like me that have been over saturated with this history.
captures a rich yet little-known chapter in the history of seafaring–the mapping of the oceans by Matthew Fontaine Maury, the father of modern navigation and ocean science. Voyages in the 1800s were risky endeavors. Navigation was uncertain and knowledge of prevailing winds and current had advanced little since Columbus. Hundreds of ships were lost each year; the cost in property and lives was enormous.
Maury changed all that. In a brilliant eighteen-year effort between 1842 and 1861–driving himself and his staff with relentless curiosity, ambition, adventurousness, and altruism–he transformed the oceans from trackless hazards into a network of highways marked by dependable winds and currents and showed shipmasters how to shave weeks and even months from voyages. His career coincided with the ascendance of America as a maritime power and with the culmination of the Great Age of Sail. In a world interconnected by maritime commerce, Maury’s work was critically important not just to America but to all nations.
Now Tracks in the Sea resurrects the life and work of this unique and fascinating man. In tracing Maury’s intellectual odyssey and the dramatic conflicts of his career, Chester Hearn shows us a pivotal era in seafaring and in the history of a raw young nation.”