Moby-Dick Marathon Reading

November 9-10, 2019

Climb aboard the Pequod with Independence Seaport Museum and The Rosenbach for a great white whale of a celebration!

Join us as we read Herman Melville’s entire novel over a 25-hour period, starting on Saturday, November 9 at 2 p.m. and reading through Sunday, November 10 at 3 p.m. This collaboration with The Rosenbach celebrates the iconic novel and the adventures of 19th-century seafarers with live readings, an interactive artifact show-and-tell, hands-on activities for all ages, boatloads of food and fare for purchase, a late-night happy hour, and much more. Celebrate the Great White Whale with us!

While you can’t climb aboard the Pequod during the marathon reading, you CAN climb aboard Independence Seaport Museum’s two National Historic Landmark ships, Cruiser Olympia and Submarine Becuna.  Open Saturday & Sunday, from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (last boarding is at 4:30 p.m.), it’s just $10 a person!

Sign up to be a reader

Click here for the reader list. If you would like to be a reader, please email Edward G. Pettit at epettit@rosenbach.org. Please indicate what times you are available to read and we will do our best to accommodate.

 

Moby-Dick Marathon Reading Schedule

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 9

10 a.m. - Independence Seaport Museum opens for free to the public with kids activities offered throughout the weekend
11 a.m. - Kids story time reading of Chasing the Great White Whale by Eric A. Kimmel
12 p.m. - Kids Scrimshaw Craft Activity opens, available until 4 p.m. on Saturday, reopens again on Sunday at 10 a.m.
When sailors were done with their work for the day, they made a type of art called Scrimshaw, using a special needle to carve  pictures of things they saw while they traveled the sea. At this workshop, you will get the chance to make your own Scrimshaw masterpiece with educators from The Rosenbach.
12 p.m. - Artifact Show-and-Tell: The Real-Life History of Whaling; presented again at 4 p.m.
Get a close-up look at artifacts related to the real-life history of whaling around the time that Herman Melville wrote Moby-Dick.  Collections staff from The Rosenbach and the Independence Seaport Museum will be on hand in the J. Welles Henderson Archives and Library to share rare artifacts including the log book from the whaling vessel Ceres, which sailed out of Wilmington, Delaware in the 1840s; scrimshaw made aboard the Ceres, historic prints depicting the process of whaling, a model whaleboat, and other relics of the whalefishery. If you miss it, the Show-and-Tell will be held again at 4 p.m. on Saturday and 12 p.m. on Sunday. 
1 p.m. - Moby Dick’s Diet: Squid Dissection Lab Project
What would a whale as big as Moby Dick actually eat? Fish? Sharks?? People?! Take a close-up look at the tentacled creatures that make up 80% of a sperm whale’s diet! If you miss it, the project will be available again at 3 p.m. on Saturday and at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Sunday.
1:45 p.m. - Remarks
2 p.m. - Ishmael’s arrival kicks off the Moby-Dick Marathon! Reading continues until approximately 3 p.m. on Sunday
3 p.m. - Squid Dissection Lab Project
3 p.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 9, The Sermon. In this reading Father Mapple tells the Nantucket version of Jonah
4 p.m. - Artifact Show-and-Tell: The Real-Life History of Whaling
7:30 p.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 32. In this reading we learn more about whales than we ever wanted to know! 
8:50 p.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 36. In this chapter, Captain Ahab exhorts his crew to hunt for Moby-Dick. 
11 p.m. - Late night happy hour, open until 1 a.m. on Sunday

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 10 

12:45 a.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 54. In this reading we hear The Town Ho’s Story, in which we hear of a blood-curdling story of mutiny on the high seas
1:40 a.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapters 55-90, in which we learn all about the “honor and glory” of whaling
8 a.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 94, A Squeeze of the Hand. In this chapter “long rows of angels” join hands with the sailors
10 a.m. - Kids scrimshaw activity opens, available until 2 p.m. 
11 a.m. - Kids story time reading of Chasing the Great White Whale by Eric A. Kimmel
12 p.m. - Artifact Show-and-Tell: The Real-Life History of Whaling
1 p.m. - Moby Dick’s Diet: Squid Dissection Lab Project, available again at 3 p.m.
1:45 p.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon continues with Chapter 133, The Chase – The First Day. In this chapter, the thrilling chase of the White Whale begins. 
3 p.m. - Moby Dick’s Diet: Squid Dissection Lab Project
3:10 p.m. - Moby-Dick Marathon ends with the reading of the Epilogue and Ishmael concluding his story