Our 2nd and last Fishers Island excursion of the season took place Monday -- a glorious day for a jaunt on the ferry. Pierce Rafferty, above left, director of the Henry L. Ferguson Museum, was our gracious host. We visited the Lighthouse Works gallery and the Ferguson Museum, which this season features a series of natural history exhibitions, and we toured the island.
In fact, our visit coincided with the discovery of a 2nd Cecropia Moth caterpillar on the island -- it is the largest caterpillar in North America and a relative of the silk worm. Here is a photo from the Ferguson Museum's iNaturalist exhibition documenting the discovery of the 1st such creature earlier this summer! photo: Murray Fisher.
Thanks to our guests, thanks to everyone who opened their homes and gardens to us mainlanders, and a special thank you to Pierce Rafferty, who made this all possible.
Tuesday, September 14, at 1:30 PM

JIBBOOM CLUB #1

John Henshaw, executive director of the CT Port Authority, will be our speaker when the JIBBOOM CLUB#1 meets in September.

At the Port Authority, John Henshaw is responsible for fostering the economic development of Connecticut’s maritime economy and overseeing the development and growth of Connecticut’s small harbors and three deepwater ports: Bridgeport, New Haven, and New London. John Henshaw came to the CPA after serving as the executive director of the Maine Port Authority for over 10 years and after serving as commissioner for the Board of Harbor Commissioners for the Port of Portland.

The Jibboom Club is not a 'club' but a friendly gathering for anyone interested in the waterfront. There is no admission fee; the events are sponsored by the Maco Family Fund. We have a speaker and refreshments. Please come and bring a friend!
Sunday, September 26, 7-9 PM
'Eat in the Street' then come to the Custom House for OPEN MIC
Open Mic, meets from 7-9 PM on the 4th Sunday of the month: Sunday, September 26. 

This month, it coincides with NL's Eat in the Street!
Bring your bongos.
Perform, or just enjoy.
We're holding it indoors. Everyone wears masks!

By donation.
Saturday & Sunday mornings, or by appointment

Visit inside New London Harbor Pequot Lighthouse
Registration is now online.
Take the tour. The views from the top are spectacular! We meet at the lighthouse, then climb 116 steps to the lantern room -- all the while learning about the 260-year history of Harbor Light, the oldest and the tallest lighthouse on Long Island Sound. A fourth-order Fresnel lens, installed in 1857, remains in the lantern today. photo: tour giver Stan Solinsky
The visit takes around 45 minutes. Everyone must be vaccinated. We all use hand sanitizer and wear masks. Tickets are $35 for adults, $30 for NLMS members, & $25 for youth 7-to-18 years old.

Dates available online through November.
Custom lighthouse tours may be scheduled any time, call 203-444-2884.
What's Up at the Custom House
September 5, 2021

Become a member - sign up online!

If you are a Charter Oak Federal Credit Union member and planning to donate this year- NOW- is the time to double your donation ! Charter Oak matches all qualified charitable donations credit union members make between now and Wednesday, November 24, 2021 or until their 2021 Matching Gifts funding limit is met. Learn more.

Above, Lisa Marien and Bill 'Fox' Mills at Thursday's Custom House Soiree. We absolutely loved it, and plan to have Lisa and Fox back again soon. Stay tuned for details.
The Custom House Maritime Museum & SHOP
OPEN Wednesday through Sunday from 1 to 5 PM
& now Saturday mornings beginning at 10 AM.
Museum visits are FREE for NL students & their families!
All of our docents are fully vaccinated! Everyone wears masks.
We're now open Saturday mornings!
Thanks to our two new docents, Steve and Shilo, above, the Custom House Maritime Museum will open from 10 AM Saturday mornings, & staying open until 5 PM. New hours start next weekend, happily coinciding with the CT Maritime Heritage Festival.
We thank our Supporters & Sponsors
Anonymous, Christina Corcoran, Nick Korstad, The Maco 
Family Fund, Dominion Foundation, DOCKO, the State of Connecticut, CtHumanties, Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Chelsea Groton Bank, the City of New London , IMLS, PPP, SVOG, & CDBG.
NEW DATE: Friday, October 15
SOLD OUT until further notice

New London Maritime Society Fundraiser -- Wine Tasting & Silent Auction -- at NL's historic LIGHTHOUSE INN

The annual New London Maritime Society fundraiser, a Labor Day Weekend Wine Tasting & Silent Auction, will be held at New London's newly renovated Lighthouse Inn, a beloved local landmark. This will be the first event to take place at the Inn since the business closed in 2008.

NB: this event has been postponed to October 15, due to recent COVID-19 Delta variant developments in New London County.
All attendees must show proof of a COVID-19 vaccine or of a negative COVID-19 test within the previous 48 hours.
We are SOLD OUT, but may reopen sales depending upon COVID & the ultimate fire occupancy number.

Inn owner Alwyn Christy and former New London economic development director Ned Hammond will be honored at the event for their work to preserve this site. The wine tasting will be hosted by Ed Cramer of Gordons Yellow Front Wines and Liquors. Tickets are $75, $100 for ticket + NLMS membership. Purchase tickets online at https://lighthouseinn.bpt.me. Email to be on the wait list.

We are collecting donations for our online Silent Auction.
If you have a donation or for us, please call Susan at 203-444-2884.
Speaking of donations, last week Barry Levinson brought us a wonderful model of the 1851 racing schooner America -- first defender of the America's Cup international sailing trophy in 1851.

(Wikipedia) 'America' was captained by Richard Brown, who was also a skilled member of the Sandy Hook Pilots group, renowned worldwide for their expertise in maneuvering the shoals around New York Harbor. They were highly skilled racers as a result of impromptu races between pilots to ships in need of pilot services... He chose as first mate Nelson Comstock of New London, a newcomer to yacht racing.

At the Custom House, we have Henry Nelson Comstock's collection of signal flags and other objects in our collection.

And Robert's building at 90 Bank Street was formerly occupied by Darrow & Comstock, ship chandlers .



Ronald Bernoudy brought Morris Hodge to the Custom House last week. Morris recognized the large ship model, the Gull, which Captain Gumbs built -- full-sized -- on the beach on St. Thomas, Virgin Islands; Morris is from St Martins. Capt. Gumbs relocated to New London, where he built this model. He died in the 1980s.

Capt. Gumbs was Morris' cousin!

Mike Dusant loaned this model to the Custom House about ten years ago.
Matthew Male has led field trips to count nests and eggs at Great Gull Island for several years -- and he has worked there summers since he was a teenager. Many of you, also, have seen Matt's wildlife photographs on facebook --some of which are now on view at the Custom House.

Matt writes: The film Full Circle, a documentary on the project I’ve worked with for the past 40 years, will be screened at The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Saybrook on October 18. Seating is limited so buy your tickets sooner than later. Really.

I have mine!

Below, the Briney Bank Border Sept. 1.
  • Keep an eye on the harbor 24/7 with the New London HarborCam. We've had 2.1 million+ views since July, 2019!

Thank you, Harry Smith, for getting our Port Vision boat tracker back up!




  • Facebook the Custom House MUSEUM SHOP for gifts with an extra feel good factor -- when you shop with us your purchases support our exhibitions, & educational programs. We'll be reopening soon.





  • We're on Instagram! nlmaritime
Below, a view of Latimer Reef Light from the eastern point of Fishers Island.
Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
James Oppenhein, 1911


150 Bank Street, New London, CT 06320 | 860-447-2501

The Custom House Maritime Museum is open Wed.-Sun., 1-5 PM | 860-447-25014