For Whaling Captains, Diversity Flourished

Men of color were full participants in the whaling industry, a business so difficult and dangerous that most people only went out once.

Vineyard Bookshelf: Whaling on Martha's Vineyard

It’s a testament to Tom Dresser’s storytelling gifts that a subject as big as whaling on the Vineyard can be told so well in only 150 pages.

Black Whaling Captains Found Liberty at Sea

Of the 2,500 masters who captained whaling ships during three centuries of whaling, at least 63 were men of color, five with Martha’s Vineyard ties, Skip Finley told a rapt audience Wednesday night.

Connecting the Vineyard to the Arctic, Whaling Family Tree Is Familiar

Next week Alaskans and New Englanders will gather for a conference about whaling in the Arctic, with events in New Bedford, Nantucket, and on the Vineyard.

Thar She Costs; Whaling History Preservation Is on Town Agenda

When Edgartown voters gather next week for their annual town meeting, preserving town history will be among the items on the agenda.

Charles W. Morgan Whaleship Brings History to Life

Nearly 173 years after she first set sail, the Charles W. Morgan has survived to earn a new distinction. She is the last surviving whaling ship and this spring she sets sail once again.

A Sea of Good Will Helps Harpoon History

Last weekend the Charles W. Morgan was relaunched on her 172nd birthday after a major rebuild; much of her remains original including the keelson. The live oak in her massive double sawn frames was salvaged after a southern U.S. hurricane, and she has been rebuilt absolutely true to her original design and methods of construction. She was originally launched from the Hillman Shipyard in New Bedford (the Hillman family came from Chilmark) on July 21, 1841, and sailed on 37 voyages with the last voyage in 1921.

Last of the Wooden Whaleships Returns

The Charles W. Morgan, the last of the wooden whaleships, will be refloated Sunday, July 21, at Mystic Seaport after an extensive and expensive restoration. A large crowd is expected at the Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard, which is on the grounds of the Mystic Seaport.


Gone Whaling: A Child’s Eye View of Life on a Whale Ship

“It is Sunday, and a very pleasant day. I have read two story books. This is my journal. Goodbye for today.”

So opened six-year-old Laura Jernegan’s journal, in an entry dated Dec. 1, 1868, as she set sail on a three-year sea expedition with her family aboard the whaling vessel Roman.


A Piece of Vineyard History, Whaleship Is Set to Sail Again

The last remaining New England whale ship with Vineyard connections — the Charles W. Morgan ­­— may sail again. The president of Mystic Seaport spoke at a private fund-raising function recently in Edgartown, at the home of S. Bailey Norton, to report on the Morgan, now undergoing a $6 million restoration effort. It may take another $2 million to do the necessary work to get her to sail.