Schooner Bowdoin, Arctic Veteran Turns 100

I don’t often pay much attention to sailing vessels, mostly because of this from Melville:

Again, I always go to sea as a sailor , because they make a point of paying me for my trouble, whereas they never pay passengers a single penny that I ever heard of. On the contrary, passengers themselves must pay. And there is all the difference in the world between paying and being paid.

I have been aboard the Bowdoin once and know a little of it’s story.

The video at Old Salt Blog is a good one, about the captain and crew but especially the people of the far north who knew the Bowdoin from past voyages and visited her again on her return.


In 20/20 hindsight I should have wrangled a tour of the Bowdoin when it moored near the Bluenose in Lunenburg a few years ago. I’ll probably never have that opportunity again.

I was aboard the Bowdoin a few years ago when she was in Portland (Maine).

Took a couple pictures:

The TS State of Maine was also nearby:

I also took some pictures of the Bowdoin when I was visiting MMA in Castine with a group of girl scouts.

Chilly spring day, April 2007. Perhaps not very interesting wrapped up in a blanket.

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I walked by it but would have liked to see the inside.

Yeah, you probably would have appreciated it more than I did. It wasn’t even my idea to visit in the first place. Merchant mariner visits sailboat.

If I visited it now, knowing her history better, I’d appreciate what I was looking at more.

I was at the Bowdoin College Perry McMillian Arctic Museum as well but it was a long time ago.

I think I saw this up in Belfast in May of this year. Was hauled out at Front Street Shipyard. Looked to have 6 or so (I assumed) cadets performing various repairs.

Went up there last weekend to check out this story but the shed was all locked up.

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By the Jesus chummy, Finest Kind!

Well it’s not any old run of the mill fair-weather WAFI weekender. No shame in checking it out given its unusual construction and history.

FWIW, the “Sail, Power and Steam” Museum in Rockland (ME) has a quantity of logs, instruments and other artifacts of its Arctic history. Apparently Capt. Sharp was involved in restoring her at some point.


I’ve actually have some experience on a couple run of the mill fair-weather weekenders and enjoyed it, Puget Sound, San Juan Island, Canada’s Gulf Islands. A little time on sail boats both bigger and smaller as well. I just don’t really have enough knowledge of these wooden schooners to really appreciate what I’m looking at.