Press Release

Life and Death on the Greenland Patrol

CASTINE, Maine – The Castine Historical Society will present the fourth annual Deborah Pulliam Memorial Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 7, at Delano Auditorium on the Maine Maritime Academy campus.

This year’s Pulliam lecturer is Dr. P.J. Capelotti, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Abington College of Pennsylvania State University, and author or editor of 15 scholarly books, including Life and Death on the Greenland Patrol. The lecture, which is free and open to the public, is being presented in conjunction with the Castine Historical Society’s summer exhibit “Schooner Bowdoin on the Greenland Patrol”, co-sponsored with Maine Maritime Academy.

Dr. Capelotti earned B.A. and M.A. degrees in history from the University of Rhode Island and an M.A. and Ph.D. in anthropology from Rutgers University, and served 24 years in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve before retiring earlier this summer. It was while in the Coast Guard that Dr. Capelotti came across the diary of Thaddeus Novak, a seaman from Detroit who served on the Greenland Patrol in the summer of 1942. Life and Death on the Greenland Patrol is Dr. Capelotti’s edited version of Novak’s diary, which gives a remarkable account of a sailor thrown into a global war in a remote area full of environmental hardships that few endured in World War II. The book was selected as ‘Best Book of the Year’ in 2006 by the Foundation for Coast Guard History.

The annual lecture honors the late Deborah Pulliam, a generous benefactor of the Castine Historical Society and many other organizations in Castine and beyond. CHS is open seven days a week through Labor Day; 10am-4pm Mondays-Saturdays and 1-4pm Sundays. For more information on the “Schooner Bowdoin on the Greenland Patrol” exhibit, the Pulliam lecture or the full schedule of events for summer 2012, visit CHS online at, email or call 207-326-4118.