Through the eyes of Sneads Ferry's oldest residents, I came to see Charles Farrell's photographs as a window into a time when most of the village's people still made their livings from the sea.
A memory. I am at the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts. The museum's roots date to 1799. Though relatively small, the library holds one of the country's great maritime history collections, especially significant for understanding the period just after the American Revolution, when Salem was a thriving seaport that was growing rich in what was called the East Indies and Old China trades.