Dedicated Craftsmanship: The Art of the Wooden Boat at Mystic Seaport

Wooden boat owners have an unparalleled passion for their boats. They’ll tell you it’s the way the deck creaks, the distinctive lines of the hull, and the feeling that these boats have souls. A wooden boat isn’t simply owned. It is cared for. In fact, a whole lot of time is spent caring for it. The good news is the more spent, the closer the bond with the boat.

Fiberglass boats, on the other hand, are much easier to care for. Come spring, owners can simply polish up the hull with a buffer and be good to go. Because fiberglass boats are so much easier to make and maintain, these boats became more popular than wooden boats when they were introduced after World War II. Many wooden boats were abandoned in backyards and sheds as boaters fell in love with the ease of fiberglass. Luckily, a wooden boat revival began in the 1970s and many were rescued from yards and sheds. A new generation of boaters and craftspeople, with a hands-on mentality for building and caring for wooden boats, brought them back to life.

At Mystic Seaport, visitors can see first hand what it takes to maintain and restore these vessels. Visitors can also appreciate their artful lines and timeless beauty and get a sense for what makes them so unique and beloved.