Over the centuries
Chesapeake boat builders have designed a great variety of watercraft to
meet a particular geography and task. The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
is home to the largest collection of historic Chesapeake Bay boats in
- Edna E. Lockwood, a National Historic Landmark, and the last sailing
log-bottom bugeye, built in 1889 by John B. Harrison of Tilghman Island.
Just as Native American dugout canoes were formed by carving out one
log, a bugeye's hull is constructed by pinning together a series of
logs and hollowing them out as a unit.
- Edmee S., a swift and graceful Chesapeake Bay racing log canoe, is
crewed by Museum staff and volunteers in Saturday and Sunday races
throughout the summer. With its long masts and large sails, the only
way to keep these boats upright as they accelerate to speeds of 10
knots or more is for crew members to climb to the ends of 15-foot boards
placed perpendicular to the boat itself.
- Rosie Parks, a skipjack, is representative of Maryland's state boat
and was part of the last commercial fishing fleet under sail in the
United States. In 2002, skipjacks were designated by the National Trust
for Historic Preservation as one of America's Eleven Most Endangered
Places. Designed specifically for dredging up the vast quantities of
oysters found on the Bay's floor, only a handful of skipjacks continue
to work the Bay.
- Old Point, constructed of seven logs in 1909, is an example of such
a dredge boat used for dredging crabs throughout the winter. Old Point
also hauled freight fish in the summer and carried oysters during the
- Martha, known as a Hooper Island draketail because of her unique
stern design, was built by Bronza Parks in 1934 and was used for crabbing,
oystering, and pleasure. She was completely restored from stem to stern
by the Museum's Boat Yard staff.
- Delaware, a tugboat built in Bethel, Delaware, is a rare example
of a typical early 20th century wooden river tug. Built in 1912
by William H. Smith, it may be one of two survivors of
the notable boatyard. The Delaware hauled scows often laden with lumber
and towed ram schooners up and down the Eastern Shore’s narrow,
Throughout the year, “visiting vessels” arrange
special visits to the Museum.
These visits provide educational opportunities for visitors of all ages.