Topic: Profiles

Jenna Sammartino, National Park Ranger, Eastham, Massachusetts

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Jenna Sammartino

Photo/Art by Erik Rank

In 1997 Jenna Sammartino, a newly minted Cape Cod resident, first started hearing stories about the Whydah, a 28-gun pirate ship that sank in 1717, just off the coast of Wellfleet. Today Jenna’s a ranger at Cape Cod National Seashore, teaching others about the ship, whose watery grave was discovered in 1984.

During a mile-long beach stroll, Jenna unspools the story like a movie, beginning with Captain Sam Bellamy’s early attempt to make an honest living on the high seas, to the final high-drama point, when the Whydah “rolled, then splintered in the waves, leaving wreckage and bodies strewn along the beach we’re walking today.” Best of all is this unique classroom — seals and surfers, high dunes and waves — a setting that’ll turn anyone into a history buff.

nps.gov/caco”>Salt Pond Visitor Center, Cape Cod National Seashore, .
50 Nauset Road. (Tour leaves from Marconi Beach Bathhouse, off Route 6, Wellfleet.) 508-255-3421.

  • Jenna Samartino is awesome. I am so glad that you have highlighted her in this article about the NS Park Service on Cape Cod. She is so knowledgeable and studies thoroughly everything that interests her and brings it to life with ease. We wish her the best!
    Tom Leach, Harbormaster, Harwich Port, Massachusetts


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