“Christmas Tree Ship Conversation” at DCMM

Best-selling author and storyteller Rochelle Pennington will host a “Christmas Tree Ship Conversation” on June 24 at 2 pm at the Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay. The presentation will explore the tragic loss of the Great Lakes schooner Rouse Simmons, better known as “The Christmas Tree Ship,” during a November gale in 1912.

One hundred years ago, Captain Herman Schuenemann set out on the Rouse Simmons to deliver Christmas trees from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to Chicago. Despite the crew’s best efforts, the ship was unable to survive the whipping winds, rolling waves and blinding snow and ice of the powerful gale. The loss of the Rouse Simmons became the thing of legend and remains one of the most storied shipwrecks on the Great Lakes.

Rochelle Pennington’s two books, The Christmas Tree Ship and The Historic Christmas Tree Ship, detail the extraordinary events surrounding the loss of the ship and her crew. The author will be available for book signings after her presentation. Both books are available for purchase in the museum store.

The presentation, along with guided tours of the historic tugboat, John Purves, will be included in admission prices on June 24. Admission is $12.50 for adults, $9 for ages 5 – 17, and children under 4 and active military personnel are free.

The Door County Maritime Museum is open daily 10 am – 5 pm and is located at 120 North Madison Avenue, Sturgeon Bay. For more information call 920.743.5958.