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Biography & Autobiography Personal Memoirs

Old and Young Ahead

by (author) Abram Kean

edited by Shannon Ryan

Flanker Press
Initial publish date
Nov 1999
Personal Memoirs
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Nov 1999
    List Price

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When Captain Abram Kean, doyen of our ice hunters and northern seamen, invited me to write a foreword to his book, I felt profoundly honoured, for we have been friends for forty years, and I know what he has consistently stood for among our northern seafaring people: true seamanship, courage, unselfishness, and genuine love for his fellow men. To the American public and the world “Captain Bob” has introduced those yeomen of our fisheries, the Bartlett family. I am hoping this book will introduce another than whom none are better loved and trusted in the North. Somehow it may, I hope, lead to a better appreciation of the character developed in what is regarded by some as a “humble calling.” There are many such yeomen in the North. It was to men of such calling Christ Himself entrusted the ineffable message He came to earth to reveal. A gale of wind in the winter in the North Atlantic when your sheets are frozen solid, your canvas blown to ribbons, and you have no way of knowing where you are in a heavily laden small schooner with all your own and perhaps your best loved one aboard off an ill-charted coast makes one feel humble in the presence of the unseen—and yet all that is manly and noble is challenged. “They that go down to the sea in ships” don’t often write books; when they do I advise all my friends, especially professional storywriters, to read them. I heartily recommend Captain Kean’s book to every one of them.
From the foreword by Sir Wilfred Grenfell

About the authors

Abram Kean's profile page

Shannon Ryan was born in Riverhead, Harbour Grace, Newfoundland, in 1941 where he received his early schooling. He began teaching in 1956 and by 1968 had taught and/or served as school principal for nine years in Newfoundland and the Northwest Territories and had received a B.A. (Education) from Memorial University of Newfoundland. Ryan received a B.A. and M.A. (History) from MUN during the following three years and was hired by MUN in 1971, retiring as professor of history in August 2006. He received his Ph.D. from the University of London in 1982.During his career, he published in Oral History, Maritime History and Newfoundland/Labrador History, including a monograph on the seal hunt (to 1914) and one on the saltfish industry (1814–1914). For several years, Ryan served as graduate coordinator of the History Department and as chair of the Newfoundland Studies Minor Program, both at MUN. Outside the university, he served as president of the Newfoundland Historical Society, chairman of the Atlantic Oral History Association and as Newfoundland’s representative on the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), as well as a member of other heritage groups including the Cupids 400th anniversary committee and, most recently, the Elliston sealing memorial committee. Ryan was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and is an Honorary Research Professor of History, MUN.

Shannon Ryan's profile page

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