Maritime author visits Eagle Point

In overflow crowd packed Eagle Point Library on Feb. 19 to hear author Dennis Powers’ much-anticipated presentation. A fascination with maritime history originally prompted the Ashland  resident to launch his series of critically acclaimed best sellers. Powers became enthralled with the heroic exploits of wrecker captains. He told how these stalwart souls rescued passengers, cargo, and vessels in poorly lit, treacherous waterways before ships used safety equipment  or radios.
 

Powers had produced the writings in rapid succession, beginning with
2005’s "The Raging Sea," detailing the devastation a 1964 tsunami
brought Crescent City’s coastal area.  The following year, he wrote
"Treasure Ship: The Legend and Legacy of the S.S. Brother Jonathan."
That book recounted how the news of Oregon’s having attained statehood
in February 1859 reached Portland by ship a month later. "Then on July
30, 1865," Powers said, "the steamer impaled itself on a rock, killing
225 passengers, and sinking millions in gold coins aboard."
   
Delving
into research for these writings sparked his deep respect for the
character of Captain Thomas Whitelaw, who acquired vast wealth in
salvage rescues. Whitelaw’s adventures dominate Powers’ tenth
non-fiction book, "Taking the Sea: Perilous Waters, Sunken Ships and
the True Story of the Wrecker Captains." 
   
Powers kept the
crowd entertained with scores of slides from his extensive photo
collection. He read passages from the book, autographed copies sold at
the meeting, and donated all proceeds to the grateful Friends of Eagle
Point Library.
By F. C. Blake
Of the Independent   

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