Tattoos. They used to be just for sailors.
Long ago tattoos were for sailors, world travelers spending years at sea. Now…walk just about any beach mid-summer and you’ll see a dazzling array of tattoo art, some pretty good and artful, most…well, to each his or her own. All have meaning to the wearer. They always did.
According to TattooArchive, pig and rooster tattoos, like pictured here (one on each foot) were said to protect a sailor from drowning because neither could swim and would help a sailor get to shore safely.
Mystic Seaport is opening up a new exhibit so you can learn more about the history of this well loved art form. Go get an eye full.
Called Skin and Bones: Tattoos in the Life of the American Sailor looks at the historic ties between tattoo communities and seamen.
According to Mystic Seaport, “The exhibit explores the symbolism and meaning of tattoos and their direct connection to a sailor’s duty. For the sailor, getting a tattoo was a rite of initiation that offered protection as well as a way of memorializing significant events.”
The exhibit features stories, artifacts and video. Opens March 19, 2011.
For more to do while visiting check out Mystic.org.