Profile of a Veteran Boatyard Worker
September 21, 2010
A nice article by Rick Brown in the Martha’s Vineyard Times profiles Steve Rose, a longtime employee at the Martha’s Vineyard Shipyard in Vineyard Haven. Here’s an excerpt:
“If you don’t know him, you certainly know someone who does. His name is Steve Rose, boss painter at the Martha’s Vineyard Shipyard in Vineyard Haven, and he’s been there for nearly 50 years.
Mr. Rose went to work at the age of 16 for Tom Hale, who had only recently acquired the shipyard on Beach Road. The year was 1964. School was no place for Mr. Rose, but he certainly put his back into working for a living. Anyone who knows him will say he still does. His first task at the shipyard was mucking out the sheds after a good-sized nor’easter, the kind of storm that floods the buildings along that low stretch of land, carrying along seaweed, sand, driftwood, and dead crabs. After a short while his boss was happy enough with Steve’s efforts to offer him a fulltime position. He’s been going to work there ever since.
Over all these years, Steve has seen some changes at the Shipyard. He likes to sum them up simply: “Concrete floors, and a lot of new faces.” The changes to Steve’s work-a-day world are a little more complicated. The shipyard has upgraded its equipment and methods. Where there were once five or more marine railways used to haul and launch the boats, now there is a single travel lift that can do the same job many times faster and with fewer people.