The Scuttlebutt

Welcome to The Scuttlebutt, the Overfalls Foundation blog, where you’ll find our newsletters, articles on activities & events, photos & video clips, additional historical information, and Maritime Hall of Fame information.

Did you know?

Scuttlebutt, the Water Cooler Talk of 19th Century Seafarers

When office workers catch up on the latest scuttlebutt around the water cooler, they are continuing a long-standing tradition that probably also occurred on the sailing ships of yore. Back in the early 1800s, the cask containing a ship’s daily supply of fresh water was called a scuttlebutt (from the verb scuttle meaning “to cut a hole through” and the noun butt, “cask”); that name was later applied to a drinking fountain on a ship or at a naval installation. In time, the term for the water source was also applied to the gossip and rumors generated around it, and the latest chatter has been called “scuttlebutt” ever since.

Lewes Maritime Day

 Due to the weather conditions, the following changes are in effect for the Lewes Maritime Day and Overfalls Opening Ceremony scheduled to take place today, May 20th, 2023.

1.  The opening ceremony planned for 10 am in Canalfront Park is canceled.  However, a smaller memorial service will be held at the gangway of the ship for family members of those who are being memorialized.

2.  The Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the Cannonball House to take place at noon will proceed as planned.

3.  Exhibits are canceled with the following exceptions:

– The Lightship Overfalls will be open for tours from 10:30 am to 4:00 pm.

– The tall ship AJ Meerwald will be open for tours from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  The 2:00 pm sailing will proceed as planned.  Sunday’s noon sailing will also proceed as planned.  

– The “History Happens Here” Cruise with the Lewes Historical Society and Cape Water Taxi will take place at 11:00 am as planned.  

– The HMS DeBraak Program at the Zwaanendael Museum will take place at 4:00 pm as planned.

– “Chantey Tavern Night” at Lewes Historical Society Campus will take place 4:00-7:00 pm as planned.

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.