October 17, 2012

First woman sea captain

Molly Kool: Captain of the Atlantic
by Christine Welldon

Molly Kool's father was a ship captain who hauled goods like sand, gravel, and lumber up and down the Saint John River in New Brunswick. Molly always sailed with her father during summertime, when school was out. So it was inevitable that she wanted to be a sea captain when she grew up. But in order for her to sit for her master's license, the Canadian Shipping Act had to be reworded to reflect a more gender neutral environment. Molly Kool went on to become the first female sea captain in North America.

Written with a deft touch, Welldon's biography of Kool is an easy, interesting read, filled with stories, quotes, and colourful photographs. Readers will come away with a good knowledge of early twentieth century shipping practices and what being a modern ship's captain is like today.

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