Today!14th annual Moby-Dick Marathon
A young bearded sailor will appear at noon Saturday, January 9, in the 19th-century garb of a whaleman and say, “Call me Ishmael.”
Thus begins the Museum’s 14th annual Moby-Dick Marathon, a nonstop reading of the great American classic commemorating the anniversary of the departure from the whaling port of New Bedford of the Fairhaven ship Acushnet with 21-year-old Herman Melville aboard.
From the moment those words are uttered to approximately 25 hours later when Ishmael is rescued from the Pacific by the Rachel, about 150 readers each will have read a short passage from this novel. Some will have read in Portuguese, Japanese, Italian, Danish, Spanish, or French, followed by that same passage in English. Traditional whaleship fare will have been consumed, washed down by coffee and cider. And a few hardy souls will have stayed for the whole adventure.
Readers will include descendants of Herman Melville and their families, professors, fishermen, schoolteachers, selectmen, students, journalists, legislators, physicians, clergy, and other lovers of Melville and Moby-Dick. Spectators are welcome at any time. Admission for the entire event is free.