Above, Our CAP assessors examined the Custom House inside & out, from roof top to sub-basement, last week.

Aside from reasons we all share, last year -- from August 2019 through July 2020 -- was in some ways an annus horribilis for the Custom House.

A decade before, in 2009, we'd commissioned a water penetration study of the building. Following that plan, we'd made steady improvements. Then, in July, 2019, the back gutters failed and, well -- you saw it: we had water pouring into the building whenever it rained. Much of a decade's work was undone. It was a battle to get Markel Insurance to cover the damage; they did (and then they canceled our policy).

Fortunately we do have friends. And how things have changed.
Marshall Plasterers repaired the damaged hall and customs office, the City gave us a grant for the roof, Montenegro Roofing covered the failed gutters with EPDM rubber and silicone caulking and then insisted on repairing the masonry and windows. All that took us through August & September -- what you might call the start of our improved new year.

There was just one tiny spot of water in the attic following last week's rain.
The building is now sealed -- perhaps not perfectly, but better than it has been for many deacades -- and we are almost able to afford these repairs thanks to United Rentals, of North Stonington, and Montenegro Roofing. Your renewed NLMS memberships should help cover the balance.

And then last week, our much anticipated CAP assessment commenced --what a gift!

Below, CAP historic building assessor Mary Jablonski with NLMS librarian Laurie Deredita in the museum's Frank L. McGuire Library on Friday. On Friday, Laurie 'found' the collections computer, which had been relocated to a drawer in the library some years ago!
The Custom House Maritime Museum currently is closed for tours.
We plan to reopen the museum on a regular schedule for members only some time soon.

Our terrific MUSEUM SHOP is now open by appointment. Members always receive a 10% discount.

You've already received your membership renewal letter in the mail, please renew today. We appreciate those of you who have responded -- thanks!

What's Up at the Custom House - October 4, 2020
New London Maritime Society - local friendly authentic
Telling the stories of New London's waterfront
& preserving four historic maritime sites
New London Maritime Society thanks our Friends & Sponsors 
Anonymous, John Steffian, Jr., The Maco Family Fund, DOCKO, the state of Connecticut, CtHumanties, USLHS, Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Chelsea Groton Bank, the City of New London , IMLS, United Rentals, & CDBG

The Collections Assessment for Preservation (CAP) program is a joint effort of IMLS and the Foundation for Advancement in Conservation to help small and mid-sized museums better care for their collections.
A CAP assessment is a study of an institution’s collections, buildings, and building systems, as well as its collections care policies and procedures.
(Above, is that frass evidence of powder post beetles in the attic?)
The assessment involves a site visit by collections and building assessors, who spend two days touring the museum and interviewing staff. The assessors then prepare a comprehensive report that outlines recommendations for improving collections care.
Above: our CAP assessors Rachael Perkins Arenstein and Mary Jablonski.

A CAP assessment may assist small and mid-sized museums by:

  • Providing recommendations and priorities for collections care specific to ones collections

  • Facilitating the development of a long-range preservation plan

  • Serving as a fundraising tool for future collections projects

You'll remember Rachael. She planned and oversaw the transformational Re-Org at the museum in June 2019. We applied for & won a CAP grant following that event.
We thank the Inn at Ocean Avenue for providing our assessors with a great New London experience. Our guests also sampled drunken noodles at Noodles & Rice, dinner at the On the Water Front, and lobster rolls at Capt. Scott's!

After many quiet months, it was a little unsettling having people back at the museum. Glen with Dunklee Heating & Cooling saved the day Friday: plaster dust had blocked the air conditioner filter.
Please help us out when you order bulbs for your garden.
Brent and Becky's Bulbs supports non-profits by donating 25% of one's flower bulb purchase to groups like the New London Maritime Society.
Our Japanese Anemones var. Honorine Jobert, from B&B, were planted in May 2019.
Visit inside New London Harbor Lighthouse.

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, one of the oldest lighthouses in the country, and the tallest on Long Island Sound. The views at the top are spectacular! photo: visitors on Saturday, photo by Christina Corcoran

The visit takes around 45 minutes. Everyone uses hand sanitizer and we all wear masks.

Tours for one small Covid pod of up-to four people may be arranged by emailing nlmaritimedirector@gmail.com.

Suggested donations are $35 for adults, $30 for NLMS members, & $25 for youth 7-to 18 years old.
David proposed marriage at the lighthouse on Saturday. Here is the happy couple! photo by Christina Corcoran
Your gift to us will be matched through November 25, 2020.
Charter Oak Credit Union is committed to giving back to charitable entities that are meaningful to its members.
It’s simple – they give back because it is part of the foundation from which credit unions were built on…people helping people – and they’re proud to offer our members the opportunity to maximize their charitable donations through our 1:1 Matching Gifts Program. Here's how to give.

Pfizer, too, is matching donations of retirees through 2020. Please consider NLMS for your charitable donation.
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This geodetic marker can be found at the US Custom House. It's in the sidewalk on the east side of the building. Find it, and you're here!
FEEL GOOD.
Get your VOTE soap!
The MUSEUM SHOP is now open by appointment. If you happen to be downtown, call 860-447-2501 to check if we're open. Docent Hank Savin will be in part time next week, so do try the SHOP.

You can still donate to the New London Maritime Society by shopping online at smile.amazon.com/ch/06-1086688.
  • Keep an eye on the harbor 24/7 with the New London HarborCam. We're at 1.1 million views since July 2019.

Watch a time-lapse video of New London Harbor from the HarborCam, from July 8, 2019 to September 30, 2020 -- 14 months -- here: https://public.earthcam.net/timelapse/tJ90CoLmq7TzrY396Yd88A4BH10eMdv7STgTGRkmPko!



  • 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.
Below, the Eagle is back. Here's the view Thursday from the alley beside the Custom House.
150 Bank Street, New London, CT 06320 | 860-447-2501
The Custom House Maritime Museum is closed until further notice | 860-447-2501