Not all Chesapeake watermen are actually men. This image taken by Lila Line in 1981, is a perfect example of the tenacity, tirelessness, and work ethic of plenty of the Bay’s water-working-women. While many women work off the water in watermen families, picking crabs or placing orders, some women choose to follow the example of their fathers or brothers, buy their own boat, and make a living from what the Bay provides. In this photo, Kathleen, a Tilghman Island waterman, is heading out for a long day of crabbing, despite being heavily pregnant. She continued to work until three weeks before her son, Noah, was born.
Image by Lila Line, collections of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.