2017 in Review
It was the best of times, it was, well... the best of times! 2017 was a year of leaps forward, leaps in exhibits, events, education and excitement (all good "e" words).
2017 saw WEE WINN travel from her home of the past several years in Building 28 to her new home in the A. Sidney Dewolfe Herreshoff Room after having been refurbished for display by a group of immensely talented volunteers. She's an amazing little yacht and an excellent example of the Herreshoff genius for innovation coming to fruition in 1892.
Our signature annual events are the Frostbite Bash, the HMM Independence Day Celebration and the Herreshoff Classic Yacht Regatta, all of which saw solid growth over 2016. Our sponsors really stepped up and embraced these events - they are fantastic companies run by good people and we hope you'll consider doing business with them if you aren't already.
Education took a big step forward with the new Herreshoff S.T.E.A.M. program, and you can read more about that below.
Excitement, for us, was seeing three schooners are our dock on July 4th. It was having Governor Raimondo visit the museum not once, but twice. It was having Panerai sign on as the title sponsor of our regatta, and it was setting an all-time HMM record with our just-wrapped Annual Appeal. We're teeing up some pretty exciting things for 2018 too, so stay tuned!
Update on the Collection
We have been very busy in the curatorial work space and in the collections vault this fall. We have several volunteers who have been helping to catalog and scan historic photos and correspondence from our manuscript collection, and we have also continued to photograph objects and ephemera in the collection for our continuing digitization efforts. Some recent highlights include a set of tools used for building and rigging pond yachts dating to the 1920s, our collection of historic burgees and signal flags, HMCo. hardware and bilge pumps, and America's Cup ephemera.
We have also been enjoying the ongoing process of linking construction details and owner modifications of boats in the HMM collection to correspondence and historic photos from the curatorial files. EAGLET (HMCo. #818) was moved from storage into the Hall of Boats this fall, where she will remain on exhibit. She was recently joined by a very exciting recent acquisition, DRAGON, a 22' replica of a Herreshoff steam launch (see more on DRAGON below).
We'll continue to share behind the scenes activity at the museum via our Instagram account, and invite you to follow along with us there over the holiday season!
S.T.E.A.M.-ing into the Winter Season
In 2017, HMM expanded the scope of our Education Program. Integrating a
combination of designing,
building and sailing sailboats, the Herreshoff STEAM Program (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math) is designed
to offer challenges
that require creative problem solving and create hands-on
experiences that get kids using the left side of their brains and thinking about engineering. In total, just under 600 kids went through some component of this program in 2017.
While the on-the-water programs are on hiatus for the winter, work in the boat shop is picking up steam (get it?) developing traditional skills that are central to the STEAM curriculum. T
his part of the program is run in partnership with the Rhode Island
Marine Trades Association, and involves
building models and full-size skiffs under the tutelage of
HMM's Director of Education Kirk Cusic and
boatbuilder Dan Shea.
irk has been instrumental in the development of US Sailing's STEM-based Reach Curriculum, and this serves as the basis for the HMM Education Program.
Enter the DRAGON
A good friend and supporter donated his steam launch to HMM, and it arrived on Monday the 18th! The launch is a slightly modified replica of HMCo. design number 94 built in 1882 as a launch for the US Fisheries Commission yacht ALBATROSS. DRAGON was built by Doug Park at Redd's Pond Boat Works in Marblehead, and while she is a new build, she is actually powered by an original HMCo. steam engine - the engine, oddly enough, that powered HMCo. design number 95, a launch that was also built for the US Fish Commission.
DRAGON will do double-duty here at HMM as both a display within our new Steam exhibit and a floating demonstration of the workings of an original wood-fired steam launch. We'll offer Bristol Harbor tours, although passengers will have to bring their own firewood!
Warren Barker presents: "Pedigree, Provenance, and Program: Searching for the Elusive History of the Restorable Wreck as Launch Day Looms"
In the yacht restoration business it is an understatement to say there can be a great deal of interest in the pedigree of the boat to be restored. Though the vessel may arrive looking more like a pancake than a runabout a glance at the engine or the paint behind the speedometer can set the Chris Craft aficionado into throws of ecstasy. The loyalty of the Lawley fans can be limitless. L. Francis? - fanatical. And then there are the Herreshoffs of Bristol whose admirers seem never satisfied with "a" boat built by Herreshoff but "which" boat. If the "which" becomes "that" through the presence of a small brass plate the floodgates open to the entire provenance of the vessel with model, drawings, dates, build time, cost, and owners; the rich fabric that makes up the vessel's story. However, there can be some murky times before getting underway if that key is missing.
Quite a number of Herreshoff built boats have come through the restoration program at IYRS and, thankfully, have arrived complete with builder's plate and/or a definitive history that can send the team through the Herreshoff archives to help bring it back to its original T. Others are not quite so fortunate and we will touch on the run down the avenues of hearsay, legend, family remembrance, or perhaps newspaper clippings to find THE boat during the race to finish it. Finally, the construction of a twenty six foot launch of truly tantalizing but elusive pedigree will be discussed to illustrate how the Herreshoff legacy can step in to save your hide even when the trail runs cold.
Reception begins at 6pm /
Lecture at 7pm
Members: $10 /
or by calling 401-253-5000.
If you're fortunate enough to be invited to one of several weddings being held here at the museum, you'll find a newly revamped waterfront wedding venue!
We installed new planters last summer, and we've just wrapped up a resurfacing project.
New lighting and a brick walkway to follow in the spring, all thanks to a grant from the Champlin Foundations, a terrific organization that has allowed us to
complete several infrastructure projects
fence and wall along Hope Street and new overhead doors.
Our friends at RIDOT even got in on the fun by taking the opportunity to replace a storm drain pipe running under the waterfront that had collapsed.
Captain Nat Herreshoff believed very strongly in an individual's right to privacy and, as a professional, that he had sole ownership of his secrets unless he chose to publish them himself. He believed that the individual, through ability and industriousness, had the right to make progress in his chosen profession unfettered by theft and unapproved disclosure of his ideas and creations. This brought him into conflict with a "
" press eager to learn and divulge the details of his latest project.
The Museum is closed for the Winter Season. Limited tours can be scheduled at least one week in advance. Please call 401-253-5000.
LECTURE: Warren Barker on IYRS
6th Annual Frostbite Bash
Tickets & Details:
LECTURE: Gail MacDonald: "
Morton F. Plant and the Connecticut Shoreline."
LECTURE: James L. Nelson on
Benedict Arnold's Navy
LECTURE: Charlie Enright on the 2018 Volvo Ocean Race
LECTURE: Alison O'Leary, "
So Close to Home" on the story of the German U-boats
The Best Party in the Winter:
February 10th, 2018
The 6th annual Frostbite Bash is right around the corner! Join the party and enjoy full open bars and food tastings from a variety of top local restaurants and vendors. Dance the night away to live music in the historic Hall of Boats, bid on items in our silent auction, and snap photos with your friends in our photo booth. It will be a night you're sure to remember! Tickets are available now and going fast at
. Get your tickets before they are gone! Group Discounts are available upon
. Share and Follow the event on
Give Back While Shopping Online
Do you use
for your online shopping? Do you want to do more to support the Herreshoff Marine Museum? Be sure to use
for all of your Amazon purchases. When you shop at
and select the Herreshoff Marine Museum, a portion of your purchase will help support the Museum, at no extra cost to you.
Online Shopping at HMM
The museum may be closed, but the online store is always open!
to find some amazing deals! Our entire inventory is up to 50% off to make room for new product coming for the 2018 Season.
- 30% off
- 40% off.
While supplies last. Cannot be combined with other offers. Sale excludes commissioned works by local artists.
Here at HMM, we can offer your employees a custom program designed to inspire innovative thinking that is tailored to your industry and your business challenges.
Our Business Advisory Team is made up of a broad range of current and retired executives, each with a unique ability to relate the history and success of HMCo. and its founders to challenges and opportunities facing today's companies.
Need Innovation? Come spend some time with us.