The last remaining wooden whaleship in the world is on its way to Martha’s Vineyard, and – WOW – it is a sight to be seen! Among motor boats and modern ships, the Charles W. Morgan is currently embarked on its 38th voyage, and will land in Vineyard Haven harbor the week of June 16th. It’s a time on Martha’s Vineyard that you won’t want to miss. You will literally be able to witness a part of history. And it very well could be the last chance to do so.
The vessel dates back to 1841, and hasn’t set sail in nearly a century — making this voyage quite possibly her last one.
The role of whaling in American history, and on Martha’s Vineyard specifically, is a fascinating one. While we'd never glamorize modern day whaling, the arrival of the Morgan reminds us that, before kerosene, whale oil powered the world and fueled the Industrial Revolution. The Morgan holds a glorious place in our history, and what better way to take a step back to the whaling days of our Island than by stepping aboard the Charles W. Morgan while she’s in our own waters?
Amazingly, the ship is the only vessel left to tell the story. The Charles W. Morgan once belonged to a fleet of 2,700 whaleships, and was well-revered for her “luck.” While other vessels of the time and over the years were destroyed by confederate raiders, storms, and dangers of the sea, the Charles W. Morgan sailed safely and profitably, bringing home more than 54,000 barrels of oil as part of an American industry that lasted more than 250 years.
Charles W. Morgan at Round Hill, c. September 1938, Courtesy of Martha's Vineyard Museum
Chances like this don’t come around often, and might never again. The opportunity to witness and be part of (actually step onto) a piece of history, is thrilling beyond measure. Consider this an open invitation to all to come and experience history in the making.
Visitors are invited to a land exhibition at Tisbury Wharf and are welcome to walk onto the ship from June 21 – 24.
To book your hotel accommodations, visit our “Stay Here” page, and for all your travel needs, visit MVY.com.
See you on the Vineyard!
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