Hull Restoration Completed on Historic New Bedford Schooner

On October 25, the final “shutter” plank was laid into the hull of New Bedford’s historic Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey, which is undergoing a complete restoration at Maine’s Boothbay Shipyard, where she has been since 2015. In attendance were a noteworthy crowd of dedicated Ernestina-Morrissey supporters.

The shutter plank (also known as the “whiskey plank”) was inscribed with the names of financial donors to the Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey Association’s “Whiskey Plank Club”.Before being installed, the plank was blessed with rum, whiskey, Cape Verdean grogue and Buzzards Bay beer. The beverages represent the vessel’s unique history as a Grand Banks fishing schooner, an Arctic explorer, a Cape Verdean trans-Atlantic packet, and most recently, a cultural and educational sail-training vessel and the Official Vessel of Massachusetts.

 “It is inspiring to see many names of the generations who have supported Ernestina-Morrissey, from the descendants of Gloucester fishermen and Arctic explorers, to generations of Cape Verdean-Americans and all the “crew” who have loved the vessel since1982,” said SEMA Board Member Mary Anne McQuillan.

SEMA Board President Julius Britto and his wife Sandra, McQuillan and Fred Sterner, former Mate and Commissioner, SEMA Charter Board Member John Bullard, “Sails Over Ice and Seas” documentary videographer Cody Mitchell, Tyska and his skilled workers were all present.

With the hull restoration, workers will now focus on finishing the interior and deck work.

To learn more, or to make a donation, visit www.ernestina.org.