It was tobacco; not fishing that brought the settlers to the Solomons. Over a century the Solomons advanced from fishing to tobacco to shipbuilding and about 1860, to oysters.
Hence the skipjack, a sloop rigged, fifty-five foot sailboat boasting a centerboard rather than a keel. A traditional fishing boat used on the Chesapeake Bay for oyster dredging but hardly a traditional sailboat. Its mast is seventy five feet high and made from a single tree. It is flat and huge.
A three-hour sail on a balmy day became a three-hour magnificent sail, especially when the captain, after some cajoling, agreed to unfurl the enormous sails. It was a gorgeous day and a wonderful side trip provided by the boating club.
The cleanliness of the Chesapeake waters is touted to have improved much over the past twenty years. The theory is the Chesapeake is now so clean you can see sea grass and dolphins. Perhaps they are there but we didn’t see any, but the day was glorious.