Boothbay Harbor Shipyard Bought by RI Company

The Ernestina Morrissey, under repair at the Boothbay Harbor Shipyard. Photo Tom Richardson

Andy Tyska, president of Rhode Island-based Bristol Marine, has announced the acquisition of Boothbay Harbor Shipyard. Located at the head of Boothbay Harbor, the shipyard joins Bristol Marine’s two other locations, including boatyards in Bristol, Rhode Island, and Somerset, Massachusetts.

Long a vital part of Maine’s shipbuilding tradition, Boothbay Harbor Shipyard has accommodated a wide range of vessels since its founding in the later 1800s, including tall ships and superyachts, tugboats and Navy vessels, sailing yachts and workboats. Shipyard operations will continue under the leadership of Eric Graves, and facility improvements will be devised to make the yard’s expertise and craftsmanship more accessible to boat owners and yachts visiting the region.

Boothbay Harbor Shipyard offers a complete range of marine-related repairs and services for all vessel types. The yard’s 700-ton marine railway has braced tall ships, superyachts, tugboats, fishing trawlers, passenger boats, ferries, and Navy and Coast Guard vessels; the 150-ton railway has accommodated sailing yachts, workboats, schooners, and motor vessels. Ongoing projects at the yard include the restoration of the schooner Ernestina Morrissey, the official vessel of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and a National Historic Landmark with a sparred length of 156 feet, and the 171-foot, three-masted tall ship Friendship of Salem, owned by the U.S. National Park Service.

Tyska founded Bristol Marine in 1998. In addition to providing a customized level of service on boats of all types, the company has also been a preserver of working waterfront and marine-trades jobs, employing nearly 50 skilled tradesmen and tradeswomen at two waterfront locations in Bristol (R.I.) and Somerset (Mass.). The company has also acquired and improved commercial real estate in the Bristol area, much of which has become home to over 30 marine-related businesses that employ over 300 individuals.