Shenandoah (schooner)

From SpottingWorld, the Hub for the SpottingWorld network...
The Shenandoah. Topsail Schooner.
Career (United States) USAUnited States
Name: Shenandoah
Owner: The Black Dog Tall Ships
Operator: Captain Robert S. Douglas
Builder: Harvey F. Gamage Ship Building Co
Completed: 1964
General characteristics
Displacement: 170 tons
Length: 154 feet
Height: 94 feet
Installed power: Sail
Sail plan: Square Topsail Schooner
Speed: 12.5 knots
Capacity: 30 Passengers
Crew: 10

The Shenandoah is a 108-foot (33 m) square topsail schooner that is operating as a cruise ship in the waters of Vineyard Haven Harbor, Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. The Shenandoah is the only vessel of her size and rig, without an engine, operating within the United States of America.[citation needed]

The ship was designed by Captain Robert S. Douglas and was built mainly for the purpose of being able to share his love for sailing with as many people as possible. Captain Douglass offers different types of sailing trips to people of all ages from across the globe. Sailing on the Shenandoah gives passengers a taste of what it was like to sail on a large vessel in the 19th century with a coal-fired stove, no auxiliary power, and no running water.

There are various types of cruises that are offered for the Shenandoah. These include Kids Cruises, Professional Tall Ship Cruises, and special cruises for the fifth graders of the Vineyard.


Captain Robert S. Douglas became interested in sailing during his youth. After he retired from the Air Force in 1958, he started working on an 83-foot (25 m) windjammer called Mary Day. It was while working on this ship that his dream of building a ship of his own was created. The Shenandoah was the product of his dream, which finished construction and was first launched in 1964. Its design was based on a 1850s ship Joe Lane, but the Captain made numerous changes himself in order to improve the power of the vessel. Ever since the Shenandoah’s launch in 1964, Captain Douglas has been the only one to skipper the vessel. His newest project involved rebuilding the Alabama, which now also offers Vineyard cruises for passengers as well. Captain Robert S. Douglas’s son, Captain Morgan H. Douglas, is the captain of the Alabama and has been sailing with his father on board the Shenandoah since he was born.

In order to begin his business of offering sailing trips on the Shenandoah, Captain Douglas started the Coastwise Packet Company. This office building was built on the shores of Vineyard Haven in order to set-up his new business. The Coastwise Packet Company is where trips are organized and where passengers meet prior to boarding the Shenandoah and the Alabama. The Coastwise packet company has since been adopted by its big brother company "The Black Dog" thus renaming the company "The Black Dog Tall Ships."

General characteristics

Type: Square Topsail Schooner

Designed by: Captain Robert S. Douglas

Built by: Harvey F. Gamage Ship Building Co.

Length: 154 feet (47 m) from jib boom to main boom end

Sails: 7,000 square feet (700 m2) of canvas

Topmast height: 94 feet (29 m)

Displacement: 170 tons (173 t)

Hull: made of Maine oak

Deck: made of pine

Lower masts: 20 inches diameter, 2.5 tons each

Maximum speed: 12.5 knots (23 km/h)

Maximum capacity: 30 passengers overnight

A range of one to four beds can be found in the 11 cabins below deck. It houses 7 crew members, a first-mate, a cook, and the captain. The ship contains two heads, a main saloon and a galley.

Shenandoah Gallery

See also

External links

fr:Shenandoah (1964)