22 JEWISH WORLD • APRIL 1 - 7, 2022 introduce today’s Jewish commu- nity to the world of ships and sail- ing. “My interest is in bringing this story to light.” However, he cautions against connecting the Jewish immigra- tion to the Western world centu- Foer points out that “the vast number” of Jewish immigrants who came to the United States “did come to New York, and they came by ship, of course, but mainly on steamships at the end of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Reed says university-level scholarship has belatedly recog- nized the contributions of Jews to maritime history. “Since the 1990s, a new academic area of study has arisen about ‘Port Jews,’ such as those “who were involved in seafaring and maritime com- merce in the port cities of Europe during the Middle Ages.” R eed says the idea for Metrosails came to him when he saw pho- tos of schooner ships that accompa- nied the print advertising for the 13th Siyum HaShas – the completion of the 76-year cycle of Talmud study - illustrating voyages on the sea of the oral law, which was held in early 2020 in MetLife Stadium, home to the NewYork Giants and Jets. At the time, the multi-lingual Reed was thinking of starting a new business, as the translation service he’d been running for more than a decade and a half in Europe had become less and less profitable because of the advent of computer- ized translation programs. He had long had “a passion for schooners,” and the images in the advertising led to his coming up with a novel idea: to give contemporary Jews a taste of the mode of travel familiar to many of their ancestors, in the type of vessel they sailed. With Merchant Mariner cer- tification as a “master” (i.e., a captain,) Reed is entitled to wear epaulets on his shirt as well as a captain’s hat. Though his vocation-avocation is a relative rarity in Jewish circles, he made several unexpected Jewish connections during his purchase of the “ Red Sea ” and its voyage to New York City – starting with the man from whom he bought the 41-ton, double-masted gaff-rigged ship with 55 high sails. As a captain, says Reed, “I think I will be able to make contact with less-frum Jews on the boat in a way I otherwise could not. I saw in Keno- sha that because I was working on the boat, Jews felt comfortable ap- proaching and speaking with me, though that may not have been the case with a non-Jew at the helm.” Will the boat have a mezuzah? “It’s not a simple halacha,” Reed says, “because some people – the crew– do sleep on the boat. In the final analysis, a boat does not need a mezu- zah. However, we have one on board because several rabbis have said we should have one for protection.” With limited space available be- low-deck, the “Red Sea” can ac- commodate 49 passengers. The ship will sail in the rain and or other rough weather, as long as it is safe, Reed says. “This is an outdoors experience.” Steve Lipman is a longtime jour- nalist. ries ago with the type of vessel Reed has restored. It is “highly unlikely” that a ship like the Red Sea,” a “coastal schoo- ner,” was like those which brought many Jews to North or SouthAmer- ica or the Caribbean hundreds of years ago, Foer says. Schooners originated in the 17th century in the Netherlands but came into prom- inence only in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and then were eclipsed by steam-powered ships as the Age of Sail declined. Onboard activities will include lectures and shiurim on Jewish and maritime topics, mincha service, and possibly Sunday morning learning. Avid sailor Nesanel Reed is the founder of Metrosails, which will begin offering kosher day tours and private cruises on his refurbished schooner in the spring. Schooner continued from page 8 O UTDOOR D INING C OMING S OON T AKEOUT & L OCAL D ELIVERY Wishing everyone a happy and healthy Passover