To the editor:
I live in an old coastal town in the county of Kent, England, Great Britain, called Broadstairs.
I research town history with a friend, Mr. Alfred “Alf” Beeching, and I have previously covered a famous sea rescue of a U.S. sailing ship called the Northern Belle. Alf has discovered some new archive information stating the vessel was built in your Damariscotta shipyards and registered in their listings as No. 639, completed on Oct. 22, 1855. There is one captain’s name associated with it: L. Clark. We don’t have the first name of this gentleman.
Would you or your readers have any pictures of your important old shipyard, and/or any details about the vessel or Captain Clark?
To assure you of my bona fides, I am attaching a picture for you to use of a relevant history board of mine, which is publicly displayed free of charge to our townsfolk and tourist visitors close to our original harbour. I have various copies of our old Victorian newspaper reports of the day, and would be pleased to share them with you in return.
Alf and I think it’s high time this famous and dramatic story was brought up to date, and we also feel this would be a wonderful history bonus for us in England and your good selves in the USA if we could trace any living descendants of Captain Clark and more evidence of the Northern Belle.
You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.