The Charles W. Morgan was welcomed home to Connecticut’s Mystic Seaport Museum on Wednesday, completing a historic three-month 38th Voyage tour.
With Capt. Richard “Kip” Files at the helm, the ship left Mystic Seaport on May 17 and visited New London, Conn.; Newport, R.I.; Vineyard Haven, Mass.; New Bedford, Mass.; the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary; Boston; and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy as part of the centennial celebration of the opening of the Cape Cod Canal.
The 113-foot ship was towed from New London to the nearby Mystic Seaport, where she is now tied up at her traditional berth at Chubb’s Wharf. The 19th-century whaling ship and National Historic Landmark will reopen to the public on Saturday.
Hundreds lined the waterfront to cheer the return of the iconic whaleship, the oldest surviving commercial ship in the country.
“The nearly three-month journey was a commemoration of the role of the sea in the history of America and an appreciation of our changing relationship with the natural world,” Mystic Seaport president Steve White said in a statement.
The Morgan was built in New Bedford, Mass., in 1841 and sailed 37 voyages around the globe during an 80-year whaling career.
In May of this year, after a five-year, $7 million restoration, the ship set out on her last voyage to raise awareness of America’s maritime heritage and to call attention to the issues of ocean sustainability and conservation. It was the first time the Morgan had left Mystic Seaport since her arrival on Nov. 8, 1941.