Matching the Manton Foundation $375,000 challenge grant will be instrumental in SEMA's reaching the $1,000,000 goal for Phase I
The Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey Association, Inc. (SEMA) is excited to announce the receipt of a $375,000 1:1 challenge grant from The Manton Foundation. The funding will support the final stage of the three year, $6.3 million-dollar restoration/rehabilitation of the historic Schooner
Julius Britto, President of SEMA, stated; "We are enormously grateful
to The Manton Foundation for approving this most generous grant at such a critical stage in our campaign. The challenge gives SEMA a powerful catalyst to raise the $750,000 needed to complete the project. We are also grateful to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and numerous private donors who already contributed $5,550,000 to the project, which launched in 2015."
Ernestina-Morrissey is a National Historic Landmark Vessel and the Official Vessel of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She was launched in Essex, Massachusetts in 1894 as a Grand Banks dory fishing schooner and subsequently made 20 voyages as an Arctic exploration vessel under the legendary Captain Bob Bartlett. The
Ernestina-Morrissey was then purchased by Captain Henrique Mendes, who used her as a trans-Atlantic and inter- island Cape Verde packet. She was rebuilt and presented to the United States and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by the Republic of Cape Verde as a living symbol of the connections between the two countries, and served as an ambassador for the Commonwealth, a sail training vessel, and sea classroom before becoming a shore side exhibit in New Bedford.
Upon completion of the most recent renovation, currently underway in
Boothbay Harbor, Maine, the hull will meet Coast Guard standards for an "Ocean License," a necessary requirement for the Massachusetts Maritime Academy to add the vessel to its fleet. Thus, the
can begin yet another chapter in her remarkable life: training new generations of mariners, continuing to provide public programing, and serving as a sailing ambassador for the Commonwealth and our maritime heritage.
Anyone interested in helping SEMA meet the match should contact Mary Anne McQuillan at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit